How To Self-Promote (without review swaps) // tips & tricks?

#1
I'll start by offering what has been the most important for me so far:

➼ DECENT COVER ART - I improved mine shortly after posting my story here, and I do think it made a difference... 
    A cover doesn't need to be complicated to be eye-catching: browse your genre on amazon.com or other bookstores for references!
➼ ACCURATE SYNOPSIS - Going to take a wild guess that a good way to generate 0.5 star reviews is to foster false expectations.
    Think about what might intrigue your target audience, but don't spoil the entire plot...
➼ SIGNATURE - If you post around the forums at all, your signature is basically free ad space: find it in the settings and use it!
➼ LUCK - I really think it all comes down to this; not sure where to get my hands on more of it, but if anyone else knows, do tell!

I am unable to currently participate in review swaps for a few reasons: chronic fatigue, busy schedule, and stressful expectations among them. Also not the target audience for most stories on RR, so while I do love leaving helpful comments, I'm not exactly qualified to review LitRPGs. At any rate, been wondering:

How do other writers generate interest in a story BESIDES review swaps or comment swaps?

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If you have time to share, I would love to know what has been the most important or effective (and perhaps oft-overlooked) detail with regards to your self-promo? Hoping that this thread is of benefit to new faces and anyone else who isn't really sure what they're doing yet (like me)!

Do you... 

Ensure your synopsis is flawless?
Seek shout-outs?
Pay for ads?
Haunt the forums?
Self-promote on social media?

What are your best tips and tricks for getting readers to click on your story?
Is it possible to acquire many reviews/readers without swapping?

DrakanAmused

If anyone replies, be sure to link your signature below, as always.
(It's the Marketing Forum, after all!)

~ Saf

Re: How To Self-Promote (without review swaps) // tips & tricks?

#2
I'm just starting out so take mine with a grain of salt. 
1. My biggest promotion strategy has been putting out chapters. That's it. I just put out chapters consistently. 
2. The next thing I do is hang out in forums and discords. I put out an initial self-promo if its allowed but mostly I just hang out. I talk to people and sometimes someone will ask what my story is and I'll tell them. 
3. I also crosspost to different places to get more eyes on the fic. RR is my main focus but nothing wrong with sharing my story in other places.
4. I also have written other stuff before so I let my old readers now in case they want to check out my new stuff. 

I also don't do review swaps because of personal reasons but I accept that means my reviews are likely to trickle in. 

Re: How To Self-Promote (without review swaps) // tips & tricks?

#3
So, I am not qualified to answer this one but I can link you to a shoutout option - https://www.royalroad.com/forums/thread/118654

Alexalee offers shoutouts if you review Thick as Thieves. She is popular and it is fantasy (not Litrpg) that is broadly like yours Saf. It is still reviewing but the minimum word count for a review is 50 words and the etiquette for review swaps is to read 10k words or five chapters. 

There are discord writing groups, I'm part of the Reviewer's Guild (which includes authors). If you want more info on that, send me a DM. 

Re: How To Self-Promote (without review swaps) // tips & tricks?

#4
VyStarlit Wrote: I'm just starting out so take mine with a grain of salt. 
1. My biggest promotion strategy has been putting out chapters. That's it. I just put out chapter consistently. 
2. The next thing I do is just hand out in forums and discords. I put out an initial self-promo if its allowed but mostly I just hang out. I talk to people and sometimes someone will ask what my story is and I'll tell them. 
3. I also crosspost to different places to get more eyes on the fic. RR is my main focus but nothing wrong with sharing my story in other places.
4. I also have written other stuff before so I let my old readers now in case they want to check out my new stuff. 

I also don't do review swaps because of personal reasons but I accept that means my reviews are likely to trickle in.

Thank you so much for sharing! 

100% agree: I think reasonable expectations are a good place to start.
Review swaps are definitely something most people do, so anyone who doesn't is going to lag behind them.
I appreciate all the tips you listed!

Will be striving for more consistency in my posts.

~ Saf

Re: How To Self-Promote (without review swaps) // tips & tricks?

#5
TealiciousTea Wrote: Alexalee offers shoutouts if you review Thick as Thieves. She is popular and it is fantasy (not Litrpg) that is broadly like yours Saf. It is still reviewing but the minimum word count for a review is 50 words and the etiquette for review swaps is to read 10k words or five chapters.
This is very good to know! I've done exactly one review swap to date, but I would certainly consider a few more here and there. I was aware of the 5 chapter (or 10k) etiquette, and that is great information to provide for anyone who might happen to be interested in swapping reviews.

Also, many thanks for the discord group info!
I might DM you about that in the near future.

Thanks for the reply!

~ Saf