snake-oil book marketing sites abound

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When I first sat down to write My Father’s Prostitute: Story of a Stolen Childhood, I didn’t put much thought into what would happen after I published it.  After all, I felt it was a good story, with a positive message, so it should just sell itself, right?  Wrong.  Writing it was the easy part.  Getting the word out that it exists has been much more difficult.  Many articles have already been written about how hard it is to get your book noticed among the thousands of books that are released each week, and they are correct. It IS incredibly hard to get your book in front of people and have it stand out.  Unfortunately, I have noticed there seem to be an awful lot of websites that take advantage of a new authors desperation to get their book noticed and offer packages that promise great results, at a cost of course.  I have heard of some authors who have had great results with promotional deals from sites like Bookbub (I haven’t run a promotion with them yet – too costly for me), but not all authors have the same experience.  But those are established sites with a proven track record, and for every one of those, there are a half-dozen sites that just seem shady to me.  For some amount of $$, they will tweet your book, or Facebook your book, or send out an email to their bazillion subscribers.

Perhaps I’m just the cynical type, but I have yet to hear of these sites having great success.  Perhaps I’m just not talking to the right people, and I don’t doubt that some of those sites can have a positive impact on sales, but to me the ‘post publishing’ marketing world seems rife with with snake-oil sites and pie-in-the-sky promises that prey on the desperate author.

If you have used any sites like this, I would love to hear about your experiences.  Did they work for you?  Was it a disappointing waste of money and time?

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