There’s a reason cinemas in the depression gave away glass plates and banks in the 70s gave away toasters, steak knives and luggage. Competition was tough and it put butts in the seats. Giving stuff away is always a good way to get attention. The internet is a big messy place, you want your site to get attention you do something note worthy – like giving shit away. Sometimes it’s only information, some of the more interesting bookseller sites also are repositories for lots of yummy facts about the seller’s specialty or fetish or favorite author, whatever works. But offering something appealing in exchange for attention is a time honored method of getting some, ask the ladies in the red light district.
Another way to get attention is something downloadable, templates are easy, a USEFUL template is even better. A while ago I put up a pdf template for a page from a reading diary and it drove the visitations up 3 times normal, if a few of those folks come back, hooray. A few days ago I put the same template formatted for an 8×10 Moleskine Cahier journal up on my personal blog, along with instructions on disassembly, printing and reassembly – and once it hit the ‘free moleskine stuff grapevine’ I got 16 times my normal visits, granted only for one day. But still – it put BUTTS in the seats.
I post Banktoasters when I find ones that have an appeal to the ‘literary crowd’ sometimes I just post ones that appeal to me. Today we have a nifty goodie offered up to the Bullpen screaming hoards from Rebekah Bartlett Coelacanth Books – An eBay fee tracker worksheet (xls)– that also reflects the ebay fee increases starting 1/30/2007. (btw if you HAVE a banktoaster on your site, tell me about it)
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• Clichéfinder Paste your draft of a paragraph or essay into Cliché Finder, and it will find any cliche expressions collected in the Associated Press Guide to News Writing.
• Gate2Home onscreen virtual multilingual keyboard emulator which enables you to write in your language wherever you are in the world, with an online onscreen keyboard emulator.