Tuesday, April 13, 2010


A person styling herself "Kait-Amazon Optimization" has been posting on the Fiction board at Amazon, telling authors to do loads of self-promotion. Because of her signature, authors are assuming that she is with Amazon and that she's saying that the aggressive self-promotion she's suggesting is okay on the Amazon boards. As far as I can tell, she's not with Amazon at all, but from this site. This is pretty much the giveaway: "If you are further interested in what you can do to enhance your presence on Amazon, Strategic Book Marketing offers a service dedicated to 'Amazon Optimization'. Please email me for more information." She's selling a service, folks. That's all.

Some of her advice is great (yes, go create an Author Central page if you haven't already, and if you have, go update that sucker right now!). Some of it isn't, such as: "Post away my friends, promote away, it is a competitive world out there so do not be afraid to step out. The point in these boards (besides shamelessly promiting your work) is to let Amazon users see your style of writing." No, no, no. She's making it sound as if Amazon wants the boards to be all about author promotion. They are not all about author promotion. They are about DISCUSSION. And they are about all users of the Kindle, not just authors.

In short, unless you are absolutely clear she works for Amazon (and I don't think she does), please do not take what she says as gospel. She's already creating some issues on the boards by making authors think Amazon is just fine with tons of author promo. Maybe they are, maybe they aren't. But I'd rather hear it from Amazon, not some person who's deliberately passing herself off as working for Amazon when in fact she's peddling a self-promo site. Caution is advised here, folks.

ETA: And some nice person on the boards did the legwork for us. Check here and here and here. They're apparently the old Sydra-Techniques gang. Nice. But we really didn't need to read that to know, did we? If people try to pass themselves off as something they're not, they're best ignored.

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