I've recently been uploading stories or parts of stories to Wattpad in an effort to build a presence in that market. Here are some things I've learned/noticed...
1. The interface is glitchy. I title each part of the story and it often reverts back to the default 'Untitled.' I've even had one story grab another story's cover and replace the existing one...meaning I had two books with the same cover! It's so weird when data goes sideways like that! Fortunately, once I re-uploaded the correct cover, it was fine. The reverting back to Untitled thing keeps happening though, no matter how often I fix it.
2.You can message your followers. Whether they read it is another story, but given how often my newsletter ends up in spam, I like the idea of being able to send updates to followers that they might actually see!
3. Complete stories do better than unfinished ones. I have waaaay more reads on my complete novel than any samples or novels that I haven't finished uploading. So make a splash by posting a full, complete work to start. (And be sure to mark it as complete in WP's interface!)
4. Wattpad readers don't appear to like short stories. Works with just 1 or 2 parts will not see a ton of reads. This is not a market for short story lengths.
5. The preferred cover style on Wattpad can be different than what we see on ebook retailers. Be sure you look at the top read books in your genre and take note of the general cover aesthetic. You may need WP specific covers to attract readers.
6. Ask for votes and comments at the end of each part. I also will include promo for my other WP titles. Keep it short, but don't waste the opportunity to connect either. Oh and don't forget to say thank you!
7.You can upload video and graphics. Each story has a header bar that will support multimedia.
8. WP integrates with your social media accounts making it easy to let people know you have a new work or new chapter up.
9. Know what people are reading in your genres. While there are all sorts of books on WP and all different styles of story telling can do well, I did notice a good amount of first person Twilight style stories in my genre (which I happen to enjoy so not doggin' it at all!). Your easiest 'in' is to write to the WP market. If you see a lot of books with a certain style, your best bet is to post something similar.
(Note: My sense is WP is in a state of transition as with the royalty sharing program (authors get paid!) they'll attract a whole new writer and reader base. So things may change markedly in the next 6 months in terms of reader tastes.)
10. Be active in the community. Add books to your reading list. Comment on stories--there are a lot of new writers just starting out who would love some positive feedback. Do your best to connect with others.
11. Get your book featured on Wattpad. This will grow your reader base on the platform and can help you qualify for their royalty sharing program (where you get paid!). Once your book is complete, hustle for some reads and then submit it for review.
Thank you! Following this story.ReplyDelete
Wow. I so admire your energy. You are a marketing queen.ReplyDelete
Good information, Michelle! It seems like a lot of tailoring needs to be done for these readers. How much does your writing vary for this market? You had said "Write to the WP market." Are you changing your style of writing? Or your content? If so, how?ReplyDelete
You also mention a different cover might need to be created to attract readers. I guess the big question I have is, "Are these efforts worth it?" What are you getting out of this interaction? Are people joining your mailing list? Have you noticed an increase in your sales?
Thank you for sharing this information!!! This really is useful!!
What you get out of it is hopefully an invite to their royalty sharing program so you can earn some kind of income from it. I haven't changed my covers or tailored my stories yet. Just uploaded stuff I had to see what would happen.ReplyDelete
How do you submit and get approved to their royalty sharing program?ReplyDelete