Tag Archive | marketing tips

Why I Love To Give Free Stuff

I’ve been giving stuff away lately, and I have to admit, it feels pretty good! And I’m not even concerned about getting anything back. That’s the best way to give, isn’t it? Pay it forward and all that. So when I give I try to do so with pure intentions and hope karma does the rest.

Free Works, Apparently

I was pleasantly surprised this month when I had my “free days” on Amazon. My first book, Unexplained, had almost four thousand downloads! I had run some promotions on social media and a few newsletters, and it seems to have paid off. All three of my Higher Elevation Series books are in Kindle Unlimited right now, and the sales and page reads have been better than I ever expected. The idea of giving away that many copies felt weird to me at first, but at least my books are out there, finding an audience. So I consider this a win.

I’ve also given away paperback copies, signed, of course. I ran Goodreads Giveaways, I gave away books through my Facebook Group, Renee Regent’s Readers. I gave away an Amazon gift card when I did a takeover on Facebook. This is nothing new, authors have been doing this and more for years, but I never realized how good it would feel to do it. I knew giving things away was a good business strategy, but it’s more than that. It’s something I actually look forward to. Even though it’s common now to hand out swag and free books, people still get excited about it, and for me, seeing their excitement is the fun part.

But Wait, There’s More!

All this giving away of goodies had me thinking, “What else can I give?” While looking through the statistics report of my blog for ideas, I decided to compile a free mini ebook. Or two. Well, I ended up with five, actually!

I’ve been blogging since 2013, and according to WordPress, I have over 2,400 followers. I’ve written over one hundred posts on various topics, some of which have been viewed thousands of times. I love blogging and have covered diverse topics over the years, so I compiled some of my most popular posts into mini ebooks by subject. They’re a quick, easy read, and I hope readers will find them fun and informative. Here’s a rundown:

Romance Novel Trends– a (sometimes humorous) look at the trends shaping Romance Novels today, from those ubiquitous “Ab Covers” to Seasoned Romance

Writing Tips on Marketing– the elusive Holy Grail of discoverability, and ways to find it

Writing Tips on Craft– Useful and practical information I’ve learned along the way. I put myself through the ringer so you don’t have to!

Supernatural/Metaphysical– curious about the Law of Attraction? Wondering if ghosts are real? Find out in this exploration of the unexplained, which often end up in my stories

From the Heart– In which I share stories from my real life experiences. There’s some humor, some heartbreak, and of course, love.

 

Whether you are a writer, a reader, or both, I hope you’ll find something interesting in these posts. They are available exclusively to my newsletter subscribers. If interested, you can sign up here.

There’s also a page on my website called “Free Reads”, where you can read the first chapter of Unexplained.

When it comes to giving, I feel like I’m just getting started. I have plenty of stories and blog posts still in my head, so don’t worry, there’s more to come. If you were one of the readers who downloaded or bought my books, or read them on KU these past few weeks, thank you from the bottom of my heart!

That’s the best gift anyone could give me.

 

 

 

Who Ya Gonna Call? Men In Kilts, Of Course!

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Och!

 

A great Romance Novel usually begins with a “hook”- something happening that pulls the reader right into the story, making them eager to read the entire book.  The goal is to grab them from the first page. (That is of course, after luring them in with an attractive cover and exciting cover blurb).

Not so different from marketing for a business of any type.

A good “hook” is that elusive quality that makes a product or business stand out and win the consumer’s attention, resulting in an inquiry and ultimately (if the ploy is successful) a sale.  That is the purpose of every marketing effort, no matter what the industry.

Today I saw an article where a business is using the “The Hook” concept in an interesting way.   You know those chores around the house that no one seems to want to do, like cleaning windows and gutters, or shoveling snow?  Well, there’s a company that will send a crew over to take care of that for you- and they will all be dressed in kilts!

Men In Kilts Window Cleaning was started in 2002 by Nicholas Brand of Vancouver, Canada.  A Scotsman himself, he hand-fashioned his own kilt which he wore while cleaning windows, and the idea (some would say gimmick) caught on.  By 2009, the company had grown so much that they began the process of franchising, and today Men In Kilts has locations across Canada and the United States.  The company has been featured on numerous TV shows and in magazines, and was recently in an online article on Yahoo, which is how I heard of them.

I watched a video interview on the company, and I was intrigued.  Their employees really do wash windows, residential and commercial, while wearing kilts.  They even shovel snow in kilts!  I think it would be fun to hire them simply because it is something you just don’t see every day.   (And, yes, they stressed in the interview they do hire women, as well, and they also have to wear kilts.)

Scotland has long been the setting for many Romance Novels, (and for other genres, and movies, too) and kilted Heroes have been a staple for years.  There is just something so different about a very masculine man wearing what otherwise would be a feminine article of clothing.  Most of the women I know love to go to the Renaissance Faire every year just to catch a glimpse of a brawny lad in a kilt!

So the clever folks at Men In Kilts Window Cleaning have figured out how to grab our attention.  In the video and on their website though, they do stress that quality and customer service are top priorities, which is likely why they have grown to have so many locations and such a loyal following.

From a women’s fantasy point of view, isn’t this a great concept, though? Maybe this will start a trend.   It certainly had me wondering what might be next- maybe a crew of men wearing only cut-offs and work boots, washing my car?

What do you think?  Great idea or just a gimmick?

Either way, I give the guys credit for being “Brave” enough to wear the kilts, and for having the “Heart” to get the job done!