Ads: Beta Testing (part 2)

Well, I mentioned that this was a work in progress, and so it is. . .

I wish I could have spent more time tinkering with it, but work, life, and preparations for my month-long trip made it all but impossible to devote more time to this endeavor. We seem to have reached a happy medium with the way things are now.

Though I can't do nothing for those Firefox users who go for such a high resolution, I did what I could to make things easier for those with smaller computer screens. So the 468 x 60 banners on top appear to be of an appropriate size, though the 728 x 90 leaderboards looked much better on my 17-inch laptop screen. In addition, moving the sidebar ads down a bit helped clear up some room, which hopefully makes reading the new posts easier without the distraction.

No, I didn't go commercial. I had been thinking of posting ads for many months now, but the powers that be decreed that I couldn't do it without becoming part of a network. I'm not happy about the whole deal, but those are the rules. Hopefully publishers will post ads that reflect what I wanted to post myself. We'll have to wait and see. . .

The truth is that running the Hotlist is now taking too much of my time. Understandably, I could never envision that the blog would one day reach this many people all over the damned globe. Since last fall, I now devote between 10 to 15 hours a week to this little corner of the World Wide Web, and that doesn't include the time I spend reading. Which means that running this blog now gets in the way of many other things in my life. Which is why, in the end, I needed to find a way to monetize the site. It was either that, or reduce the time I spend trying to make this the best blog of its kind.

To those who can't stand the ads and are considering stopping hanging around, I hate to see you go. But a drop in quality and content would hurt the Hotlist a lot more than four ads will, I'm sure. This has basically become a part-time job for me. I love it, make no mistake, but I just need to get a little something in return.

I can't/won't ask people to buy more stuff through my Amazon links. I know that everyone works hard to earn their money, and it's not my place to ask you to throw it my way. Feel free to do so, as every penny goes back into books to read and review. No, I wanted publishers to help monetize the Hotlist, not its readers. I have just reached a one-year agreement with a publisher, so that's wonderful. Hopefully I can convince enough publicity people and authors to post ads here, ads for books/series I enjoy and want to share with the rest of the online community. The giveaways were meant for that very purpose, but a banner on top of the homepage for a number of days will give novels way more exposure.

As always, I welcome your feedback. This is and will remain a work in progress, though no change will likely see the light while I'm traipsing around Europe. If it all goes according to plan, publishers will jump on the opportunity to promote titles I want to give exposure to, and I won't have to rely on the online ad network. That would give me the control to decide exactly which ads will be posted on the Hotlist.

So here's to hoping that the next few weeks will see ads for Erikson's Toll the Hounds, Edelman's MultiReal, Esslemont's Return of the Crimson Guard, Sedia's The Alchemy of Stone, Morgan's The Steel Remains, and many more!

From your numerous emails, it's evident that many of you are shocked by how little such ads can generate in terms of revenues. When I tell you that I'm in no danger of quitting my day job, now you'll believe me!:p If I wanted to make money, I would have gone into porn. I elected to create this SFF book reviewing gig, and I have no regrets. It's been a great ride, one that will hopefully continue for a long, long time.

Thanks for your patience and suggestions. Having an audience is what makes it as fun as it is! As always, I'll try to keep up the good work.:-)

13 commentaires:

Chris said...

Looks great to me Pat and I use FF. The smaller banners work well and don't take up most of the screen. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Pat,

Long time fan of your blog! Since the winter of 2005 to be exact, when you ran that first Tad Williams interview.

The Hotlist became so popular because of all that you put into it, my friend. And anyone who begrudges the fact that you want to make a bit of dough is a fool. I for one would prefer a few ads than seeing the content go down a bit.

You have made this site what it is. And you have pimped enough books over the years that I hope authors and publishers will return the favour and put an ad of two on this blog.

I'm sure I'm not the only one who doesn't have the time and the energy to visit countless sites and messageboards. What I always enjoyed about Pat's Fantasy Hotlist is that it's my fantasy/sf one stop shot that caters to most of my needs.

Don't change anything about this blog and put more ads if you feel like it! Will miss you while you're backpacking around Europe! Kiss a few chicks for me will ya!!!;)

Nicholas

Larry said...

Pat,

I'm sure if you would devote two hours a weekend to watching porn and then rating the performances, you could strike a few ad deals with Vivid and a few other places, make the moolah, and still have time for the other "fantasy" components in the Hotlist ;)

Hey, thought it'd be best to joke around than to worry either way about what makes things easier for you.

Dliwir said...

Although I didn't really like the big ad that started this whole discussion, every option that came after was/is fine with me.

I got into reading Erikson, Abraham and Rothfuss because of this blog, and enjoyed every one of them. So by all means, as long as the blog remains visible, put up as many ads as you need to to make it worth your while!

Oh, and I hope you'll have a great time in Europe!

ediFanoB said...

Hi Pat,
I started to read your blog on a regularly base in April this year.

To be honest:
I'm highly pleased with your blog !!

And I totally agree with comment from Nicholas.


QUOTE
"Many a small thing has been made large by the right kind of advertising."
Mark Twain

Jorro said...

The ads are alright now :) I didnt even notice they were there and I thought you had taken them off and then I spotted them on the top and left.

This way, nothing gets in the way of reading, it's perfect! ~jorram

blackstormdragon said...

Ads don't bother me, especially the ones on top. They seem to fit in perfectly with your bolg.
Keep up the great work Pat.

Tim said...

I have a question on how our purchases can help send money your way. Do we have to purchase the item that amazon.com advertises, or can we click the link then go to whatever item we really wanted to buy and credit still heads your way?

Arrgh said...

I run adblock and don't see a thing. Great job!

dragonb said...

I also have no problem with the ads. You deserve something for your hard work.
To answer Tim's question, if you click an Amazon ad here on Pat's site, anything you buy at Amazon will give him a kickback. So click an Amazon ad for a book, and then buy a $1000 Digital camera at Amazon and Pat will get 4% (or more). It's the best way I know to show appreciation for a great blog.

Gabriele C. said...

The smaller banners don't bother me.

Well, even the big ones would not have made me stop reading the blog, but I was gnashing my teeth every time they popped up and that can't be good for said teeth. :)

Cynthia said...

Pat, the page looks great. No one ever wants ads but they are a fact of life. You have found a way to make them non intrusive and I hope they generate enough $$ to keep the Hotlist worthwhile for you; I would really miss it if it went away! thanks for all your work to make this a fun and informative page.

Ian said...

Hi Pat,
just checking "Though I can't do nothing" is this an example of elegant prose? :-)

Kind Regards

Ian