Some time ago, I posted a blog fussing about the amount of messages appearing in the many Yahoo Groups dealing with romance and erotica romance novels by a small number of promotional companies and individuals acting as promo companies. You can read that blog here.
A week or so ago, an update to my E-Mail program (Thunderbird) went all wrong. Actually, it went all wrong for everyone in the corporation, but that’s another story. The IT folks had to essentially burn down all of our E-Mail systems on local PCs and reinstall. This meant that the many E-Mail filters that we all use also needed reconstruction. While fixing mine, I had the gurus build a new filter that catches the messages from the aforementioned promo operations and put them all into a common mailbox for me.
I knew that the promo companies and individuals were sending a lot of messages, but I didn’t know how many. Now I know…
The filter captures all messages from only four senders. Three are clearly identified as promo companies (that is, their FROM address is obviously a company) and one is posting as an individual, but the messages are clearly promoting books by a number of authors and not that person. In other words, this one person is acting as a promo company.
Also, the filter acts on some 60-odd Yahoo Groups in the romance and erotica romance genres that I subscribe to, not counting those that are “private” like those for author from a particular publisher. These groups have a total membership of about 70,000 readers.
Now, here’s the real issue…
In the last week (from 02 SEP 2012 until 08 SEP 2012), these four posters have sent 1,063 messages to the various groups. That compares to a total number of messages to the same groups of 4,917 in the same time frame.
Yes, that’s right…
Four promo operations accounted for nearly 21% of all the messages posted. I suspect that over the long-haul, this number will approach a quarter of all postings.
Is it just me, or is that excessive?
Our research here finds that most (more than 85%) readers use similar filters, either formally or in a more casual manner. In short, they ignore messages from the promo companies. Some have actual filters that send the messages to a special mailbox (like mine) or to directly to JUNK or TRASH. Others just skip over any messages from promo companies and delete them unread.
Wouldn’t it be better for the authors to post their own messages? Yes, that’s time consuming, but more effective.
Or, better yet, for the promo companies to post as the author using a special E-Mail account linked to the author? That’s what MAE does, and it works very well.