Whew! How’s everyone feeling after that rollecoaster ride? Due to popular demand, #ComedyBookWeek is coming back sooner than originally planned – in January. It will be even better, but first, how about some stats on this first, inaugural event? This will become the benchmark to track the performance of the next event.
As you may already know, it was exactly 2 months between that first idea and post on KBorads, and the day 2016 #ComedyBookWeek went live on 16 July. So, how did we do, considering that there was no paid advertising for the event this time?
- Participating books: 117 and counting. The intake was finally closed during the event and a waiting list created instead of adding new books too late.
- Total of 72 book reviews, interviews, and guest posts took place across 28 platforms (blogs and Facebook).
- There has been 4,500+ views of the site since it’s launch in mid-June, barely in time for going live:
- 2,654 clicks-through to Amazon have been generated.
- The site has over 52,000+ followers (although this is mostly due to my personal Twitter account).
This was a steep learning curve for everyone involved, most of all myself – I did not in my wildest dreams expect such a level of interest and enthusiasm! With almost six months until the next event, I’m committed to making it even bigger and better, and I need your help. Please let me know in the comments below what you think of the proposed changes, or if you have something else you’d like to see happen. Some of these came from the discussion board on Goodreads – we’d love for you to join the group there.
Here we go. Feel free to say yay or nay (as long as you explain why it’s a nay), or add your own ideas.
- Next event dates: Monday 16 January to Sunday 22 January. Some people mentioned December, but it appears that the holiday season is dead for book sales, as everyone is having too much fun. Also, I propose to make the event only 6 days, with Sunday being an Awards day. The reason for this is that I’d noticed “comedy fatigue” towards the end of the 8-day week.
- Daily Highlights. Since there are more submissions anticipated, I plan to split them into Morning and Evening editions if more than 10/day are submitted.
- Static landing page: the site already has one, with the focus on Participating Books. I plan to add one called “How It Works”, explaining exactly that.
- The event will continue to be free for everyone, however, to reward those that have worked the hardest to make it such a success, the books and blogs will be displayed according to a new Point System, where authors/bloggers with most points will be closest to the top of the list. Authors/bloggers will earn points as follows::
- Book review in PREVIOUS EVENT = 5 Points;
- Interview or guest post PREVIOUS EVENT= 1 Point;
- Donation: 1 Point per $1 USD. Each $25USD donation also earns a side banner (book link or image with link).
- Any donations above the cost of site maintenance ($150/year) will be used for paid ads to drive traffic to the site. I was thinking Twitter ads, but happy to hear your thoughts on this.
- Although not required, participating authors are encouraged to offer their books at a reduced price during the week.
- We will have a new banner, chosen via a competition, with a $50 prize. A separate post will be published next week, inviting graphic artists to submit their work. Once chosen, this will become a branding image for the site.
- More awards have been mentioned – please let me know your ideas!
- Authors having short bios on the site – up for discussion. I personally like the look of the covers alone on the landing page, as it’s condensed and colorful – I expect about 300 authors to participate, so with bios, it will be too much scrolling. However, there will be a separate post on participating author contact details (no more Dropbox), so that could be expanded.
- There was a suggestion to list 10 “most unusual” questions asked by authors, with all authors answering them on their blogs. We can do that based on the previous event’s interviews, but the only comment I have is that I personally would prefer to see more book reviews than interviews. Open for discussion.
- There will be a cut off date for submissions, let’s say about a week before the event. The timeline will be spelled out on “How it Works” page. Bloggers can set their own submission guidelines and cut off dates, depending on their schedules and capacity.
- This time, I will only accept an event (review, interview) submission with a scheduled URL for the review. Sorry, I’ve had way too many last-second requests for changes.
- I won’t be maintaining a list of books as “taken” for reviews – anyone can choose to review any book on the list. It will also motivate the authors to be more active, rather than “set it and forget it” approach. In addition, I’ve had to take two reviews off the list the last time, as the book reviewers emailed saying they will review a book and then disappeared.
- Blog structure will be (pages): Participating Books-Participating Blogs-How It Works-For Authors-For Bloggers-Blog. Author contacts will be in a blog post, with a link from the top of Participating Books. participating Bloggers will be displayed as banners, with the link from the image to the blog contact page.
- There could be regular “fun” blog posts highlighting something prior to the event, to help build buzz. Of course, for now there will be plenty of posts just explaining how it will work the next time!
- There will be a Facebook page dedicated to #CBW
- There will be a Twitter account dedicated to #CBW