My dad swung by my place yesterday.
He was on his way home from my grandfather’s house, where he’d been staying for a few days. Apparently, grandpa is losing it. That’s the only reason I can think of to explain why he would think that spending his 97th birthday in the hospital was a grand idea…anyway, he got released and dad spent a few days with him, getting him resettled.
And…since I’m on the way home, dad and I spent some time chatting in his car and catching up.
The hot topic: my book. Well, we could also call it how I’m passing the time while I’m not working, but where’s the fun in that?
It all reminded me that not too long ago, I was mad.
Oh, so mad.
I know. Don’t sprain your face trying to feign surprise.
You see, a while back there was a Facebook policy change re: linking non-Facebook “businesses” to an individual’s profile. That means WordPress, specifically, in my case. At least until Fuckerberg buys it up. Basically, this forces people to create unique “pages” for their blogs, crystal jewelry Etsy page, etcetera, etcetera, screw you, Zuck.
Let’s all take a moment to remember when he was trying to enforce “real names” on profiles a few years back and how well that went over with the drag queens…
Yeah, that was a misstep…in 6″ sequined heels, no less.
But, intrepid souls that they are, they chose to Lean In on a few other changes. This has all resulted in what appears to be the Facebook incessantly trying to monetize my newly created blog page by recommending what they call a boost for my page.
“For as little as $30, your post could rea”…and I’ve stopped listening, Mark.
When that didn’t succeed in getting my attention, they gave me a $30 credit to prove their point. I went back to read how many people I could be reaching if I followed their recommendation: up to 16,000 and change per day? No…3,000. Well, I mean it depends, I guess.
I’m not going to lie. I tried it. I don’t just decide to get mad and fly off the handle with only a perceived affront, after all. It was kind of an interesting experience. I got to select my target demographic from an age and gender and lifestyle perspective. It’s kind of like a Choose Your Own Algorithm Adventure, right?
Still, what I ended up with was a half dozen new followers and two people commenting on my boosted post something along the lines of “Why am I seeing this on my page?”
Fuck if I know, ask The Zuck.
As far as I know, there aren’t any angry women in the Liberal, Gay & Lesbian, 25-50 demogra…oh, wait. Hey, Mark, my advice? Just shortcut that into an Overly Woke demographic option and save us all some trouble.
Anyway, as an offset to this trauma, the Emoji upgrades are cool-ish, except the nerd emoji now looks like a Minion on FB
It makes me wonder how Disney is just letting that go?
So, what about my conversation with dad got my hackles up about this again?
Well, since this forced transition, my overall WordPress traffic has been down. Like…way down. I have managed to put that particular ire on a back burner, since I don’t really care. It’s not like I’ve monetized my blog. That was actually slated to be a 2019 consideration…ta-da! I think the folks who have signed up for ads on their blogs are the ones who truly care about traffic. 300 per week seems to be the magic minimum from what I’ve seen in my research. I get there.
Truth be told, that’s been a struggle since the transition, though. On the flip side, the only day I’ve ever hit over 100 views per day on WordPress was post transition, so it seems – like so many of the metrics on WordPress – to be fairly random. One of the things that WordPress doesn’t seem to be able to track well is the people who scroll from your archives versus people who click from one post to another.
You’re probably still wondering why talking to my dad would bring this back up, right?
Alright, alright…a friend of mine connected me with a publisher for my book. I have a FaceTime (thanks, again, Zuck) meeting with them on the 15th. Then there’s the whole NaNoWriMo Pitch-a-palooza thing on the 17th. That could result – depending on how much faith one puts into random math – in a consultation with some professionals, too.
But, the more I look into this, the more I lean toward simply self-publishing. My research tells me it’s a viable concern and that you get more out of it. I’ve read testimonials from authors who have done both straight to self-publishing and worked with publishers and then converted. The control you have over that process seems to be preferred. Hell, if only for the reason that one author gave that you get paid every month instead of twice a year.
Let’s face it, this book isn’t a vanity project, for that I have this little blog-thingy. I’m going to see this through for the potential income stream. Y’know, since I can’t trick anyone into hiring me, that’s gonna come in handy. If I didn’t need to consider that, I would simply leave the book in NaNo-Land and pat myself on the back for doing it.
And that’s where my frustration bubbled over a little while talking to my dad. One of the things self-publishers need to do is rely on support from their social network to drive initial purchases – er, I mean…reviews. Favorable reviews drive sales from new readers. So, I need to be able to connect with my Facebook friends and family to ask for that review or share. I realize that posting a link to my personal page is not that hard when compared to the old system where WordPress automatically shared to my Facebook page. But it’s my rage, so just let me manage it.
…plus, I am getting over it.
But you just know that I’m going to try boosting my post when there’s an Amazon link involved. I can’t wait to see what the Overly Woke demographic makes of that.
Oh, and you’re all on the hook for a review or a share. So, there.