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Starwatcher

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This is something that "came across my desk", so to speak, and it looks interesting, so I thought I would run it past you guys.

This BookSoleil.com thing is an eBook marketing company that is apparently launching on December 1st. I subscribe to a press release service (and talk about having your email box fill up with stuff!), and this is the first thing in many weeks to come in that actually seemed usable. I'm going to paste the press release below, but just go to their website and check it out -- because THEY ARE LOOKING FOR AUTHORS AND PUBLISHERS TO SUBMIT THEIR WORK. I thought it was important enough to do an all-caps on you. They claim to have over a million subscribers to their service so far, and they do require submitters to pay a fee, but only if their work gets featured. They do have a vetting process, and they don't feature every work that comes in.

http://booksoleil.com/wp/

Scroll all the way down to the bottom and you'll find links for "Publishers and Authors".

I don't know if it is worthwhile, but its a possible sales channel that might work. Here's the press release, in case you want to read it:

================

BookSoleil.com Achieves One Million Subscribers Before Launch


Book Recommendation Service Delivers Much-Needed Outlet to Under-Served Indie Authors

SAN MATEO, Calif., Nov. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Ahead of its December 1st launch, BookSoleil announced today that its mailing list has exceeded one million email addresses. The start-up will send readers a regular, free email informing them of discounts and deals and popular, bestselling, and newly released eBooks.


"We've been shocked by how quickly it has come together," said Andrew Brooks, founder and CEO. "We have dedicated ourselves to spreading the word about great books to engaged readers."


Recommending eBooks has become a cottage industry as readers look to muddle through the nearly half-a-million new books released in the last year alone. "Readers appreciate us for doing the legwork for them and publishers appreciate us for being an efficient avenue to reach new readers for their books and authors."


Very often the writer and the publisher are the same person. BookSoleil offers a cost-effective way for these indie authors to reach over a million potential readers with a single marketing effort. "We cost less than half as much per email as our primary competitor. And, unlike other book recommendation services, we are not hostile to indie writers and publishers. We embrace them."


To that end, the first title to be featured on its debut, December 1st email will be Armstrong Dent and the Edge of Earth by indie writer, Aeyess. The media-shy artist is the first person in history to write a book series and write and record an original soundtrack to accompany the stories. "It's a real honor to be featured on the first BookSoleil email ever," Aeyess said. "It's been a real journey. I've had the chance to work with Leslie Ann Jones at Skywalker Sound who was the consulting producer on the soundtrack and now with BookSoleil, a service I really believe will help my projects chances at getting noticed."


(Leslie Ann Jones is a Grammy Award-winning Director of Music Recording and Scoring at Skywalker Sound, a Lucasfilm, Ltd. company. She is a past Char of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences Board of Trustees, the organization that awards Grammys.)
"460,000 books were released last year," said Juliana Fleming, BookSoleil's Executive Editor. "Our selection process focuses and discovering the gems that might otherwise go unnoticed in such a crowded field."


When registering for BookSoleil's service, subscribers choose the genres they enjoy reading and BookSoleil seeks out the best deals on the best books that match their interests. "We pride ourselves on not underestimating the indie writers or ignoring the mainstream publishers," Juliana said. "There are exceptionally written books originating from even the most obscure places. We aim to find those stories and help our subscribers be the first to know about these amazing books."
BookSoleil is currently accepting submissions at BookSoleil.com for writers and publishers.


About BookSoleil


BookSoleil is a free service that helps avid readers locate great deals on great eBooks while empowering authors and publishers with a direct link to new fans and more sales. Its readers receive regular emails pointing them directly to eBooks matching their interests. BookSoleil was founded in 2014 and is based in San Mateo, CA.


Contact: Seth Danson
Telephone: 434.728.1100
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cornflake

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This is something that "came across my desk", so to speak, and it looks interesting, so I thought I would run it past you guys.

This BookSoleil.com thing is an eBook marketing company that is apparently launching on December 1st. I subscribe to a press release service (and talk about having your email box fill up with stuff!), and this is the first thing in many weeks to come in that actually seemed usable. I'm going to paste the press release below, but just go to their website and check it out -- because THEY ARE LOOKING FOR AUTHORS AND PUBLISHERS TO SUBMIT THEIR WORK. I thought it was important enough to do an all-caps on you. They claim to have over a million subscribers to their service so far, and they do require submitters to pay a fee, but only if their work gets featured. They do have a vetting process, and they don't feature every work that comes in.

http://booksoleil.com/wp/

Scroll all the way down to the bottom and you'll find links for "Publishers and Authors".

I don't know if it is worthwhile, but its a possible sales channel that might work. Here's the press release, in case you want to read it:

================

BookSoleil.com Achieves One Million Subscribers Before Launch


Book Recommendation Service Delivers Much-Needed Outlet to Under-Served Indie Authors

SAN MATEO, Calif., Nov. 25, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Ahead of its December 1st launch, BookSoleil announced today that its mailing list has exceeded one million email addresses. The start-up will send readers a regular, free email informing them of discounts and deals and popular, bestselling, and newly released eBooks.

You realize that noplace in there, does it even begin to imply they have a million, or even two, subscribers to any damn thing, right?

They have a million email addresses. I can get a million email addresses tomorrow, if I wanted to spend the money on them, in order to spam people too. I wouldn't refer to those people as "subscribers," obviously, but I'm not a jackass who sends people unsolicited email for a living.
 

Polenth

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It looks like a copy of BookBub. Which can work as an idea because it works for BookBub, but you won't know if this company can make it work until after they launch.
 

Osulagh

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It's real funny how they have "One Million Subscribers" when their Facebook page only has 193 likes. https://www.facebook.com/booksoleil

And that you pretty much copy+pasted the same thing from this site: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-rele...lion-subscribers-before-launch-300000760.html



Cornflake is right; buying email addresses is easy. Email spamming is one of the easiest and stupidest marketing tactics.

Here's the bottom line: No person would subscribe to something that does not exist. No smart consumer would subscribe to a service that spams their email with advertisements. No smart consumer would only visit a site that advertises its own advertisements--sites that have reviews, a community, and such are more attractive.
 

Once!

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Sorry, I'm being a little slow today. How can they have a million subscribers before the service is launched?

And how can they have testimonials on their website if they haven't started doing anything yet? Unless the launch on 1 December isn't really a launch.

This is from their website - a section called "how it works"

1. You submit a title for consideration. The first step is to fill out an online submission form which gives us the information necessary to make an informed decision.

2. Your submission is reviewed. Our team of authors and editors reviews your book’s submission and decides whether it fits our criteria for being featured in our emails.

3. Decision Time. If your book is chosen to be featured, we will email you a confirmation and an invoice to make an online payment. If it’s not selected, we will let you know and may offer suggestions to improve your chances for selection in the future.

4. You setup your promotion with retailers. It’s your responsibility to ensure you’ve set up your price promotion with the appropriate retailers and distributors.

5. We do the rest. We prepare everything expose your book to our readers. On the day of your promotion, we confirm the deal is in place with the retailers you specified. Once we have confirmation, we send out the deal in our email.


In other words, it's a bookbub type deal. The author has to pay in return for the promise of advertising to 1 million subscribers. Who may or may not exist or be interested in buying books. That list could be a genuine newsletter or it could be spam email.

There are a couple of niggly typos in the website - "setup" instead of "set up". And at least one missing word in the sentence: "We prepare everything expose your book to our readers. "

I don't know. This new company may develop well and be a credible alternative. Or it might fold quickly if authors don't see a good enough return on their costs.

The problem they have is that I don't see what they are offering that we can't already get from established sites like Bookbub and with less risk. As usual the risk falls on the early adopters.
 

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I'm not sure what to think about this testimonial on their webpage.

Because of BookSoleil, I haven’t bought a full-price book in I don’t know how long. Okay, that’s a lie. I bought a whole series from an author I found on BookSoleil…fortunately the whole series was free on Amazon.
 
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Helix

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I am a little surprised that the first title featured on this you beaut service and promoted in the press release appears to be the owner's own work. I might have got the wires crossed somewhere.

Andrew Scott Brooks on Google+ and LinkedIn.
 

ShaunHorton

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I'm not sure what to think about this testimonial on their webpage.

I'm pretty sure I know what to think. Fiverr.com. If getting 1 million subscribers a week before the website launches is hard, I can't imagine how they could have any honest testimonials before they've even started listing books.
 

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I don't think Self Publishing is the best room for this when we have a Book Promotion room and BR&BC.

I'm going to move it to BR&BC for now, but the room mods there might bounce it back to Book Promotion.

I have to say that I agree with everyone who is curious about how this service already has so many subscribers. I'd want to see more data about that before I signed up.
 

aliceshortcake

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More totally convincing testimonials:

Every time a BookSoleil email lights up my phone, I know I’ve got my night cut out for me reading an amazing book. I’ve considered cancelling cable and reading constantly, for free!

- Felicia, Golden, CO

My mother sent me a Facebook link about BookSoleil. I used to barely ever read my mom’s messages, but, boy am I glad I looked at this one. We now read the same books and we actually have things to talk about. BookSoleil brought us closer together as mother and daughter.

–Daniela, Montreal, QC

http://booksoleil.com/wp/?page_id=72

BookSoleil - reduces reliance on TV, brings families together, removes stains and cures acne!
 
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Filigree

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1. 'Email addresses' do not equal 'actual subscribers'.

2. How can they have testimonials before launch? Did they offer a previous beta version of the service?

3. What can they offer that is different/better than established operations like BookBub?

The names dropped so far sound impressive, but I've learned to ignore most of the press releases I've seen, especially when they deal with publishing. I'll see how the service looks a few months after launch.
 

cornflake

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Oooh, will there be someone in black and white, fumbling with Amazon, Goodreads, and in a bookstore, trying to pick up or pick out a book and like, tipping over ineffectually?

This problem can only be solved by spam mail!
 

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You realize that noplace in there, does it even begin to imply they have a million, or even two, subscribers to any damn thing, right?

They have a million email addresses. I can get a million email addresses tomorrow, if I wanted to spend the money on them, in order to spam people too. I wouldn't refer to those people as "subscribers," obviously, but I'm not a jackass who sends people unsolicited email for a living.

You're right, in that they say that they have a million email addresses, but don't say these were "subscribers". Good catch. But not saying they are subscribers doesn't mean they don't have any, however. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence. FWIW.

I myself signed up as a subscriber to see how it worked in their case, and it seemed pretty much identical to any other legit subscription process I've ever used.

I note that "Armstrong Dent and the Edge of Earth" by Aeyss is among the first works they plan to market. I checked, and it's a real book by a real author. The release says Aeyss is media-shy -- said because they don't want people contacting him (her?) to verify the story? I have no idea.

I am also chary about the idea of a marketer charging authors and publishers to have their work featured. On the other hand, I pay Google some money every month to have my books show up in relevant search results. So, I don't think I have a legitimate beef with BookSoleil's charging for featuring.

Well, I'm going to watch them and see. Doesn't kill me to submit my two books, anyway, either.
 

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It's real funny how they have "One Million Subscribers" when their Facebook page only has 193 likes. https://www.facebook.com/booksoleil

And that you pretty much copy+pasted the same thing from this site: http://www.prnewswire.com/news-rele...lion-subscribers-before-launch-300000760.html

Cornflake is right; buying email addresses is easy. Email spamming is one of the easiest and stupidest marketing tactics.

Here's the bottom line: No person would subscribe to something that does not exist. No smart consumer would subscribe to a service that spams their email with advertisements. No smart consumer would only visit a site that advertises its own advertisements--sites that have reviews, a community, and such are more attractive.

Well, I didn't copy it from PRNewswire, I copied it from an email that PRNewswire sent to me. Of course it would be the same verbiage as on their website. I subscribed to PRNewswire so I could see examples of actual press releases, so I could perhaps write one for my books. I expected to be inundated with PRs, and indeed have been. This was the first one to catch my eye.

You make good points here -- I guess I was being a bit too gullible about it all. I've been careful so far and haven't (yet) lost any money to scams with regard to publishing, but I am probably still somewhat of a babe in the woods.
 

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Well, whether or not BookSoleil ends up being legit or not, at least I learned about BookBub as a result of all your fine replies!

HOLY CRAP! I just signed up with BookBub, and I'd say that BookSoleil looks like a word-for-word copy of it! BS's categories are identical so far as I could tell, and if you go all the way to the bottom of BB's page, it looks just like BS's bottom of the page.

I'd say that BookSoleil is likely be just that: BS

ETA: And further checking I see that BB charges authors and publishers for distribution, too. So the models of both are the same.
 
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BenPanced

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BookSoleil:
(Leslie Ann Jones is a Grammy Award-winning Director of Music Recording and Scoring at Skywalker Sound, a Lucasfilm, Ltd. company. She is a past Char of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences Board of Trustees, the organization that awards Grammys.)
Wikipedia entry:
Leslie Ann Jones is a multiple Grammy Award-winning recording engineer working as Director of Music Recording and Scoring at Skywalker Sound, a Lucasfilm, Ltd. company. She is a past Chair of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences Board of Trustees, the organization that awards Grammys.
 

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Has anyone pointed BookBub in BookSoleil's direction? Because if BS is plagiarising BB's website, they really ought to know.
 

Helix

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I note that "Armstrong Dent and the Edge of Earth" by Aeyss is among the first works they plan to market. I checked, and it's a real book by a real author. The release says Aeyss is media-shy -- said because they don't want people contacting him (her?) to verify the story? I have no idea.

I suspect that Aeyess (A S?) is the alter ego of the site's creator, Andrew Scott Brooks. Aeyess' videos are featured on Brooks' Youtube channel and Google+ page. Brooks is also CEO of Showcase Magazine. The website for Aeyess' books -- armstrongdent.com -- is hosted by the Showcase Magazine server. (Or whatever the technical term is.)
 

aliceshortcake

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I suspect that Aeyess (A S?) is the alter ego of the site's creator, Andrew Scott Brooks. Aeyess' videos are featured on Brooks' Youtube channel and Google+ page. Brooks is also CEO of Showcase Magazine. The website for Aeyess' books -- armstrongdent.com -- is hosted by the Showcase Magazine server. (Or whatever the technical term is.)

I noticed that too. Aeyess, who is based in Virginia, appears to have no existence beyond the above-mentioned sites and the press release; according to his LinkedIn profile Andrew Scott Brooks lives in Danville, Virginia, and his specialties include writing and songwriting.

https://www.linkedin.com/pub/scott-brooks/21/679/118
 
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aliceshortcake

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That's quite a shortfall. I hope the 66 subscribers were happy with the "I'm a bestseller" silicon wristbands they were sent as a token of gratitude.

"When we first started on this project, Chuck told me that I was a better writer than Dan Brown," Andrew says. "It felt good to hear him say that, but I didn’t believe him. After talking with him for hours and hours while we worked on the basics for this book, a funny thing happened. I started to write better. I became more confident as a writer. My stories became more clear and well thought out. I started to believe that I was a novelist on par with Dan Brown.

Has Mr Brooks published novels, stories and songs under his own name or does Aeyess take the credit for everything?
 
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Only activity after May '15 is a FB post that Sept. promoting owner.
 

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