View Full Version : The Ideas Thread

11-13-2005, 04:29 AM
I'd like to start to accumulate our ideas here, rather than scattered all over - be that ideas for a new press release, a new marketing idea, or anything really - any idea at all.

Here are a few of my latest ideas:

1) Media love to print (or otherwise tell their audience about) freebies (I learned that USA Today regularly prints freebies in its lifeline column on the front page of the life section) - so lets make advantage of that in our press release:

e.g. near the end, probably between book details and contact details?

FREEBIE: A 13 page excerpt containing the introduction and 5 other pieces from the anthology is freely available from www.storiesofstrength.com (http://www.storiesofstrength.com/)

Of course, that involves making it available for access/download there (it isn't yet) and while at it we should also ask lulu to make a link to the preview file direct on www.lulu.com/storiesofstrength (http://www.lulu.com/storiesofstrength) as not everyone will hit the 'buy now' link and so may not realise a preview is available at all.

2) Have we got an email address dedicated yet?
eg: storiesofstrength AT hotmail.com
or: enquiries AT storiesofstrength.com

3) If there are any radio talk shows in your area be vigilant to see if they ordinarily cover or are due to cover any related subjects and if so CALL IN and make sure to be interesting and on topic but most importantly, sneak in a free advert for the anthology - find an angle and slide down it!!!

11-13-2005, 04:51 AM
Ah yes... more ideas

4) Could we have a media page on the website? It should contain links to 'all' our press releases, sample interviews, key contact details, key milestones, fact-sheet, and whatever else might belong there .... hey ... do you think we should have a 'mission statement' too?

5) Could we have a full blown thanks page and it should definately include:

'Organisations that have helped spread the news about 'Stories of Strength' via their internal communications'

We may not have any to list there yet, but if we have a nice thanks space waiting it will make it much easier to engage that type of support (I think)

6) Don't forget that one poster (or even one flyer!!) in a willing shop window is worth at least a thousand flyers - at least 200 potential buyers will pass by and see it, and they'll probably pass by the five times needed for them to actually go buy it as a result of their interest.

11-13-2005, 11:31 PM
Sorry Jenna, I've posted this in three separate places, but I think justifiably.
(TIO 'Haikuicide', Poetry Forum 'The Swing of Things', and here)

>>>you get to mail your haiku to books@usatoday.com !!!

SO I hope everyone (no, it really doesn't matter if you are hopeless at haiku, it still means you too!) will visit there daily, and enter daily, and every time add to the base of the email details about the Stories of Strength anthology and www.storiesofstrength.com (http://www.storiesofstrength.com/) Vary what you say about it each time, etc, but hey.. lets bombard them until they HAVE to go take a look, right?

AND, one of us might even win a daily prize!!

Of course, I say WE but I really mean YOU because I'm not american so I'm pretty sure that I'm not allowed to enter the contest - BUT, I'll mail them to find out for sure.

11-15-2005, 07:14 AM
Oh.. latest idea (I can't believe I'm the only one posting to this thread, btw!)

8) I just read 'NOTHING TRAVELS FASTER THAN HUMOUR ON THE NET' Sooooo if we've anybody with a good annecdote/joke - a really good one - then we could try and get that going with a message about SOS included with it? Just tossing that one out there for someone to catch - I'm not funny, at least, not intentionally. ;-)

11-15-2005, 11:41 PM
9) So.. I was thinking bookstores shmookstores - if they're going to grab most the money we need to find outlets that won't!... it needs to be like having a charity tin on the counter... but that's no good.. I mean, it's ok up to a point, sure, but the truth is that when a customer walks in and buys the book they are NOT buying something else in the store - I couldn't really blame stores for not wanting a customer stealing tin on their counter!!! So it made me think - we need some outlets that just don't sell christmas gifts at all THEN this really is a charity tin on the counter (and we get a very GOOD chance that the counter is exactly where it will be put!!!)

Outlets like this:

Fruit-Veg store
Shoe-Repairs store

Well, they weren't spectacular enough ideas to come tell you all about sooner - but THIS ONE IS!!!


They don't sell gifts, they've people trapped there wanting something to do at night ;-), they could easily retail the books for us at zero profit direct from the reception desk IF THEY WANTED TO - heck, they could even put a copy of the book in each room as a permanent courtesy reading material - now THAT would be a nice tidy sum of books sold if we can get a major hotel chain interested.

I'll try Accor hotels - and guess what, Ibis hotels (one of the hotels in the Accor enterprise) have got two red flowers as their logo - I swear, I had the hotel idea and a minute later on the next road I went into there it was the big red ibis sign - red flowers and everything.. I couldn't believe it!

Wish me luck, but most of all - wish me energy!!

11-21-2005, 09:09 PM
Right.. I think there were 15 Ideas before transition.. so I'm putting the numbers here and hopefully we can remember what they were - probably no longer in the correct order though.

10 Somebody posted to suggest Hospital Gift Shops

11 CC Posted to let us know about his idea for the local theatre to run SOS slides in their theatre-fill pre-performance slideshows.. I thought he ought to get the slides towards the end when the theatre was full, and he explained that it was a cyclic sequence so position in time couldn't be set but each slide ususally showed twice, sometimes three times. YAY CC! Great idea!

12 I had an idea about printing Tshirts/bumper stickers, and said it probably hadn't been mentioned because noone knew what the T-shirt should say.. but I'd had the idea to use

I believe in

as I thought it would make people curious to go find out what it was about. Good for small space advertising! But incase it was controversial I wanted Jenna to stop by and approve/permit the idea... well, Jenna is now on holiday (hopefully having a fantastic time) so that idea can wait a while.

13 I think I mentioned my letter to assist in contacting businesses here.. please see the UK activities thread for details on that one, although I think it might be of use to anyone hoping to enlist local support for the anthology (not just if you are in the UK).

14 Oh.. I think I mentioned I was frustrated by the fact that bookstores were taking a cut from a project everyone else has freely contributed to - and if we were going to let them do that then why not let charities sell the book and take themselves a commission too? $1 seemed fair, as an incentive to let their members know, and to facilitate purchases - and is actually less than the bookstores are grabbing PLUS we'd get free publicity to just the type of person most likely to want to buy SOS. If someone is going to take money I'd rather it was another charity rather than a business fat-cat.

15 Maybe this was linked to 14 and saying that we could extend the idea to cover large-subscriber-base magazines too - they'd have to place adverts at their own cost for the promotion - and magazine promotions should definately be time limited (I'd say valid for one month only from date of first announcement).

So.. did I remember them all? anyone remember anything I've forgotton please let me know. At this point the next idea vacancy is No 16 though.

11-21-2005, 10:15 PM
We have the link to access the forum by IP on HE... as soon as the forum is turned back on over there people will be able to go grab posts and PMs. Rep points, I'm afraid will have to be "reissued". So, hang tight and perhaps a copy and paste of those ideas will happen shortly.

11-22-2005, 12:59 AM
Thanks for bearing the headaches for all this, Moondancer. We appreciate your hard work!

11-22-2005, 01:32 AM
I'm so happy to see it clicking along, I don't think about anything else. CC has the link to the forum on HE. He has this global post thing going which he is using for any status updates and so on... he's such a sweetheart, isn't he?

11-24-2005, 07:58 PM

Well.. I've got an idea to send out an Open Letter to Society
which I hope will be published all over as is, but if not
might at least get read by the editors and a different headline/article result
It is also region non-specific - ie. can be sent anywhere (= everywhere)
- and if not we can blog it into existence -
BUT once it steps out there it is fixed -
and I really wanted input on it before that!!!
SO go take a look at it in
Show Your Work (Other) (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=22548) - Go, Go, Go! (Please)
password is vista
and as a reward, you get
to see what I look like -
I'm adding the link to the base of the SYW thread!!!
(for a limited period only!)

11-26-2005, 07:41 AM
17) I'd like permission to create a MSN Group under books groups for 'Stories of Strength Fanclub' if we have enough members to the group it will cause the group to rocket to the top of the Book Groups List under normal view, and if we have enough activity (we'll have to see how much that needs to be) then it will appear easily under the activity rankings too. I'm thinking a messageboard for each of the sections in the book, with a thread for each of the items in that section where discussion of that particular item might take place as just one feature. Then, a contributor profile board. Then maybe a 'spread the word' board. and of course a 'milestones and other measurements of success' section. Initially we'll be the members but hopefully complete strangers will join us. It isn't different to the facility we already have at AbsoluteWrite except it allows pure fans of the book to join in, and it allows us to push the word outside our own fence a little bit. Permission granted?

12-03-2005, 04:15 AM
18) Maybe we should think of applying to become a supplier to lastminute.com. An email to giftsupplier AT lastminute.com is what is requested by them


But, it doesn't say what type of information to supply. I'm thinking that in reality it would be LULU that is the 'supplier' and Jenna or CC that would need to make contact and provide further contact information for lulu if lastminute.com are interested (I doubt I'd be taken seriously as merely a contributor)

The fact that they list AFRICA FARM (goats and chickens) as a gift option is promising that they might agree to list our 'product' too.

I've no idea what their pricing / commission requirements would be - they add money on top for their lastminute services for sure, but do they require a steep discount from the supplier too? We'd need to ask for details.