That title reflects my current state. Orders have slowed down over the past few days, but that’s okay, because I was getting worn out. It does consume a lot of effort to fill each individual book order personally, along with dealing with e-mails, packing books, confirming shipments, taking them to the post office, etc. It can be quite satisfying, especially when purchasers of the book send e-mails saying they enjoyed the book; a few of them have done that, which I appreciated greatly.
I need some downtime so I can catch up with tracking the orders. After asking around, I decided, at least for now, to use Bento, a simplified database for the Mac from the FileMaker company. I have used FileMaker in other contexts, and I used Bento to track eBay sales for about the past year, and I think it will be flexible and powerful enough to track my orders and shipments, and also my business expenses.
I probably need to work more on promotion. I know very little about marketing and advertising. One good example of my lack of knowledge is an e-mail I received today. Back on October 25, I sent a message to dpreview.com inquiring about advertising on their site, which I visit often to read (and sometimes post in) the forums about Leica and Panasonic cameras. It’s a great site, with very sophisticated reviews of equipment and discussions of photography. I thought there might be some sort of inexpensive way to put a small notice about the D-Lux 4 book on that site.
I never received any response until today. I was surprised at that, because I thought an inquiry about advertising would get a fairly quick response. I guess I understand now, though, because the responsive message, which was courteous and businesslike, and laid out the options nicely, included this key sentence: “Our minimum campaign size is $10k.” My advertising budget does not stretch quite that far.
Ironically, though, it turned out that I do actually advertise on the site, through Google AdWords. If someone goes to dpreview.com and searches on one of the terms I have signed up for, such as “D-Lux 4 book” or “D-Lux 4”, there’s a fairly good chance that one of my ads for the D-Lux 4 book will show up. With that ad campaign, I have a budget of up to $20 per day, which is somewhat more in line with my financial situation.
Anyway, I need to try to get the book reviewed in other places, and I’m working in that direction now.