Webcomic Workshop #35

Solving Webcomic Issues We All Face.

Drezz was busy becoming a papa and Byron was busy doing whatever Byron does in New Orleans so it was up to Dawn, Antoine and Ken to resolve their issssssuuuuuues…

This podcast we discuss:

Dawn:  What do you think is most important to focus on when reviewing your stats on analytics, if you want to expand your readership? hits, page views, traffic sources…something else?

Ken:  What do you guys think about offering the comic on the site 2 or 3 days per week or by subscription for 5 days. In other words, if you subscribe, you get all 5 days. It could be a free

Antoine:  While we all agree (I hope) in having some sort of notepad at all time with us to write down ideas. Is their any good techy toys to use? An app like Evernote?

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Posted in Featured News, Helpful Hints, Podcast, Site News.

10 Comments

  1. Dawn: Really over all you should not bother to look at numbers unless you really want to sell ad space and hope to make tons of money on that. Over all you can see every so often where they go, but it is not 100% accurate being some people just click around and open many windows sometimes they never look at the pages. Over all if you want new fans you should work on spreading around and expanding your own talents, if your talents are to make cute little animals you will only draw people that like cute little animals, and so on. Over all you will know when people like your stuff without looking the sites stats in that much details. You will only expand readership if you have things other people like. You said yourself most people come up to you because they have animals particular dogs. So that is the audience you will get, granted there are many dog lovers but not many of them read comics or go to that detailed of dogs.

    Over all, its like owning a mattress store, no matter how hard you try, you will never get the people looking to buy cloths and food to come in and buy mattresses, they may come in but if they are not looking for one all they do is look around and leave.

    Ken: So… You want to give away a sub for free so you can connect with fans… and just offer 2 comics.. That is a dumb idea.. You will be alienating the people that may be fans but not great of a fan. Some people would stay around read a comic and buy stuff, they may never comment and they may never join in conversations and they may not want to be in something to get more spam, but they read your comic and buy stuff. Then you will loose fans, many fans once they see they have to sign up to read many people do not want to sign up, like me, i wanted to read your comic, you moved to G+ I did not bother following. Who knows I was liking what I read but I just do not go to G+ just to get more stuff to read there. And with your lack of updating you really gonna have to think about that even if it’s free you pretty much promise them something, so over all you not updating would hurt you, just gotta remember that, but you can try it some ideas are worth trying, you said yourself you tried other ideas and they did not work, so one more idea not working won’t kill ya.

    Antoine: I seen a program like that tbh but I do not think it is out yet. What you want is the card experience on the tablets. That is not easy to do but it is being worked on but I do not think it’s for I products. Me I just write ideas down or remember them. The card thing was never my cup of tea. Maybe best idea for now is to get a printer you can hook up to I products to print out the cards and then you can play with them. http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/actprinter-virtual-printer/id296083171?mt=8

    Not what you want anyway but what you describe is not really something they can make money off of, not millions of Downloads, so the market is not there for them to make it that easy, odds are there is one out there but it may barely work as you want. You can try flashcard touch… But I do not think it’s what you describe as arranging it on the screen like you would on a table and pick and choose the cards discard them inventory them so on. But if you do find it tell me.

    And that is it for me $$ I rant to long sorry >.> I gotta figure out how to get a picture like you guys have

  2. Thank you guys for answering my question.
    Dawn’s idea of partnering with your comic book shop for “Free Comic Book Day” is a great one! I was also thinking of creating an advertisement partnership through ad space on my upcoming comic print. The local comic book shop can help promote my comic locally while an ad for the comic book store could run on my book.

  3. Ken, I’m here to put ice on the verbal beating Lexia gave you over pondering the idea of closing part of your content to readers to subscribe to see it for the full monty.

    I disagree that closing off part of your updates to “subscription only” will allow any comic creator to pull in an interested reader. Its been widely established that the comic itself per se, is the billboard to advertise your work. Its the merchandise, or like your counterpart Byron Wilkins does, extra art behind the wall for those who clamor for more that brings in the money-money-money. I don’t think it’s a bad idea to have this conversation, especially if one is looking for innovative ways to bring your time and effort monetary value.

    I have to agree with Lexia though on the google+ move. Since you’ve moved over there, you are kind of off the radar now and I wonder how many others reading this might feel the same way? I don’t even see you using twitter anymore either, so my only knowledge of you still being in the game is when I come here. Its something to think about.

  4. 1. Money from Stone: sell digital download of your “advance” issues. Create a huge buffer, charge impatient people for downloading. Everyone else wait for the daily updates. You don’t piss off your loyal; but, poor readers and the impatient readers get their copies FAST. Sell it on amazon, sell everything on amazon!!! Why? Convince. Reading it FREE on computer screen is awful from the stand point of monitor/screen orientation. Further more: why would people pay 1.00 for coffee when they can make it at home: convince

    2. Write or die!!!
    Celtex scripting software. I have it, have not dive deeply into it.

    I have been experimenting with several Mind Mapping software, I came across many free ones. Found a few that’s web base, I’m playing with the iPhone/touch versions, free downloads:

    Chainr note taker, audio and photo taker.
    Headlite mindmapping
    iDesk lite
    Mindjet
    Board
    SimpleMind+
    mindmeister
    Idea sketch
    Total recall
    Mind master
    Mindblowing

    3, Consignment

  5. One more thing: selling older content or exclusive content on amazon, always let people know that reading it on your site is free so that there’s no misunderstanding.

    There are people who will gladly trade away .99-2.99 (depending on page count) in order to read it on a vertical format more akin to a book than the horizontal format of a monitor……

    “it’s hard to replicate that Full Page feel by rotating a notebook on it’s side”

    • That’s exactly how I feel honestly. Since I got my iPad, I filled it with pure Comic Book goodness from the Publishers apps (Dark Horse, IDW, Dynamite, etc..) and some independent releases as well. I prefer by far reading on my iPad instead of sitting in front of my Computer.

      Of course, iPad can browse the internet and I could read a Webcomic’s archives from my iPad Browser, but it’s not the same thing. I like to turn pages virtually, without links and stuff to distract my tiny brain.

      That is why I prefer paying for it and have it in a PDF(or other format) to read as an ebook on my Tablet.

      So I told myself, if I feel that way, surely other people feel the same way!

  6. Hey kids – still alive here!

    Dawn – At this stage of the game, I wouldn’t worry about relying on your stats to drive where you’re focusing your efforts to gain traffic. Comics are a different beast – the successful comics rely WAY more on leveraging your contacts in the ‘industry’ than by advertising spread. I’m talking about quality readers, not hit-and-runs that an ad campaign provides.

    These thoughts are part of a larger discussion about how we as webcomic artists aren’t going about gaining traffic/readers in the right manner – in my opinion. We can talk about this on another podcast, if I ever get on air again! LOL

    Ken – I understand what you’re trying to do but I think the method needs work. The subscription should offer something of value – I agree – but offering 3 extra comics per week isn’t going to cut it. ESPECIALLY since you were already giving people 5 for free with no strings attached. Now there’s a caveat involved, and people hate that sort of thing. So you need to rework this so it is more worth their while.

    I think you need to look at giving people a number of FULL arcs (say 20-30 strips per arc/5-6 arcs) that they wouldn’t get for free on the site. Also, you could give them other content like your prelim work, notes, sneak peeks at new material, etc. My point is, you need to offer a LOT of content in a subscription in order to make it worthwhile. But pulling back on your current offering is NOT a good idea.

    I hate to say it, but you’re going to have to put in WAY more work in order for this to be successful. Trying to implement this model with your current schedule and offering will come off half-assed.

    Antoine – I think you should talk to a developer and create an app. Seriously. If it has anything to do with note-taking, mind mapping and idea generation, it will sell. When there’s something specific you have in mind your best bet is to go and have it made yourself.

    Hector (my cuz!) – Distributing free samples of your comic to local vendors is a great way of getting your name out there. OR, you could approach them by offering to do some free advertising on your site and possibly some ‘plugs’ to their shop in exchange for them selling your work.

    Be smart about it – draft a contract up so they don’t walk with your merch and money.

    —-
    Thanks for the well wishes – being a dad rocks.

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