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You are invited to read Marcus of Abderus and the Inn at the Edge of the World, the first novel in my fantasy adventure series. Visit the Edge of the World! Come for the view, stay for the adventure!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Spam Sushi-

The comment management software I am using is called Comment Kahuna. It is free, and though rather rudimentary it does the job. You can create profiles which include a user name, email and website information that is auto-filled into the various blog comment forms you will be filling out.

The process begins by entering key words for which the software will search. The user interface is clear, simple and easy to use. Lists of blogs are generated and you simply tab through them to read and add comments. It all works rather well, and I have found a lot of blogs I otherwise would not have ever found.

There are some weaknesses in the software. It logs where you have been, but does not use that information to eliminate blogs you have commented on from the list. So, as you tab through you will see the same blogs come up again and again. If you run several separate searches using the same or similar key words you can find yourself thumbing through a great many blogs you have already seen.

This free software is a marketing ploy. You will subsequently receive offers to buy a more robust and automated software. The marketing is not too aggressive, and I find it easy enough to simply read the offers and delete them. I do read them, since the software marketer offers bits of advice with his pitch and some have been useful.

I have enjoyed using this product. I have been to blogs I otherwise would not have visited, and learned some things I would otherwise not have learned. Some are just a lot of fun to visit, and even my least positive experience taught me a few things about how to do this.

Karen, who was clearly critical of my marketing approach, offered the advice to make a sincere and genuine comment, and not add my link to my book right in the comment section. She suggested that I instead have a clearly placed link in my blog. I immediately modified my blog to have such a link, which I simply had overlooked before.

Using her helpful criticism I modified my way of doing these things. On blogs that are obviously personal projects and not intended as marketing vehicles I would not include a direct link to my books. However, on such sites as are obviously not just information sharing venues but vehicles for marketing I would place a link following a suitable comment.

As a consequence of using Comment Kahuna I have also discovered a community of independent self-publishing authors. Some, like Randolph Lalonde, have achieved sufficient success in independent publishing to quit the day job and write full-time. Most others are still building a following. Many purchase, read and revue other independent publisher's works.

However you use Comment Kahuna you gain what are called back-links. I don't fully understand how all of this works, but ultimately it makes your own website or blog more visible. You gain higher and higher placement in search lists. In other words, you shine brighter and people can find you.

If you are marketing yourself or a product on a very tight budget Comment Kahuna will prove to be a useful tool to add to your tool box. Since it is free it will cost you nothing to try.

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