Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Contest Part 2

Yesterday, the author running The Best Ebook of the Summer contest blogged about whether or not contests are based more on popularity votes than on merit. I imagine she was referring to her own contest as well, and wondering how many people who voted did so without reading the ebooks.

Is it a popularity contest? In some aspects, I suppose it is. For those of us near the top, it became a quest to see who could pull in the most votes. But isn't that the case with most contests/elections/polls? People choose a candidate for a variety of reasons, whether it's top quality or word of mouth or wanting to help the underdog.

I know many people voted for my book because they read it, if not in full then in part, as a beta reader or friend. I know many more voted for my book because they knew my name and were intrigued by the excerpt and the reviews they read. And yes, some voted because a friend or family member told them to.

Should I feel bad, soliciting votes from such a variety of people? I don't know...I don't think so. Publishing and sales is all about promotion, like it or not. This contest got my name in front of people who now are interested in buying and reading the book. The hits on my website and blog have doubled in the last 4 days. And if I win the contest outright, I'll get a free review as well.

So what do you think? Was it just a popularity contest? And in this case, is there anything wrong with that? Did the end result - free promotion - warrant my approach to getting the word out? Or did I overstep bounds by asking people to vote even if they hadn't read One Night in Boston?

5 comments:

ollie1976 said...

Promotion is promotion is promotion. I don't think that you did anything that anyone else wouldn't have done.
Jen

Dru said...

Promotion is promotion, no matter how you get the word out.

Diane Craver said...

Well, you did what every author does when participating in any kind of competition - you got the word out about the contest. Each person made their own choice whether to vote for a book they hadn't read or not to. And being realistic, I don't have time to read each book on Ciar's list before the contest ends. But like you said, many either read your book or read your excerpts, blurbs, and reviews before making their decision. And sure, some did none of those things and voted for you because they personally know you.

You worked hard writing your book and have every right to promote it to the best of your ability. Taking advantage of this contest was an awesome way to get your name in front of lots of people.

Allie Boniface said...

Thanks, Diane (and ollie and dru, too)...that's sort of what I thought, too. But of course I'm biased :)

Ciar Cullen said...

NO ONE does not ask people to vote for them, unless they don't know they are nominated. I asked people to vote for me in one contest, just to see how far I could push. I don't think the win mattered, but a number of folks who didn't even know I wrote books bought a copy. I run the contest for promo for myself (if you think you got hits, honey...LOL), and to give especially debut authors a place to promo. PS--Your review is up. I liked the book :o)