Exploring the Unexplored Content Distribution Channels
My friend Wanda Shapiro is a first-time novelist. And she is facing a fork in the road. In fact, most content creators as well as artists are finding themselves in Wanda’s predicament.
Do you spend great time and effort getting signed up with a large publishing company, or do you do the damn thing yourself?
For Wanda, the answer was clear. She has decided to publish her novel herself. Not only can you purchase Sometimes That Happens With Chicken on Amazon (affiliate link) but you can also download it for free.
I am always inspired by people like Wanda so I decided to help in some small way. One of my suggestions was to make her novel available on Bit Torrent. Why?
The Untapped Distribution Channel
You want to make your work available on Bit Torrent for the same reason you want to be on Twitter. It’s the virtual water cooler around which everybody gathers.
The difference is, when someone is on Bit Torrent, they are explicitly there to download something. Why not your new book or CD?
In the great tradition of Napster (remember Napster, kids?), Bit Torrent is a file sharing technology.
The technical innards of Bit Torrent are much different than that of Napster, but for our purposes, that is irrelevant. The only thing we care about is how can we use it to spread our content far and wide
Content Distribution on Crack
First thing you want to do is download a Bit Torrent client.
Once it’s installed on your computer, point your browser to one of many popular Bit Torrent websites:
- The Pirate Bay
The Pirate Bay is a great first introduction to Bit Torrent, so perhaps you want to start there.
Demonoid requires you to have an account; the accounts are given out by invitation only. Leave a comment and I’ll see what I can do.
- ISO Hunt
Torrent site of last resort in case the first two are down or dont have what you’re looking for.
We are not interested in that content, but I say that so that you approach this patiently, it will be worth it. I promise.
I’m There. Now What?
- Spend some time familiarizing yourself with what’s available on these sites.
- There are many e-books that are submitted using Creative Commons or GPL license. Your ebook, music, even software, should be distributed under the same licensing guidelines.
- Enter the name of your favorite book, or a favorite author in the search field and see what comes up.
- Notice that your search results can be listed based by date (default), or SE/LE.
LE stands for Leeches. Leechers are people who have a file (or part of the file) and are only downloading but not sharing. More SEs, the better. In other words, larger the number of SEs, the faster the download will take.
To download a file of your choosing, simply click on a download arrow or the file itself. You should be able to see the download link somewhere. This will open your Torrent client. Wait till the progress bar reaches 100% to open. Congratulations, you just downloaded your first Torrent.
But How Do I Distribute my Content?
Once you’ve had some fun looking around and downloading, it’s time to create an account on one of these sites so that we can actually contribute to the collective.
So go ahead, don’t be shy. Create an account and upload your intellectual property.
Don’t forget to “tag” your file with the names of similar authors, or similar books. In other words, think about some kid sitting home bored out of his head. He might not know who you are, but is likely to search for Stephen King. If you think your book might be of interest to Stephen Kind fans, then tag it with “Stephen King”. Makes sense?
Once uploaded, you will be the ONLY Seeder So, let your friends know how they can receive the wonders of Bit Torrent and download your book; make sure they not only download but seed as well.
Remember, more seeders, the better. Also, more seeders means you can shut down your computer and some kid in Sweden can still download your book.
What Good Will This Do?
A well known marketer has successfully released his first book in this manner. Seth Godin’s Unleashing the Idea Virus (affiliate link) was -and still is- available for free via torrents. Since then, he has released many books with a large publishing company because, let’s face, that does have its benefits.
The point is, you don’t have to sit on your ass waiting for a large publishing company to come to your door; you can start making waves on your own, you just need to know how. So here is how.
- Have you used Bit Torrent before?
- Does it sound like something you might decide to use?
- Are there other seldom discussed distribution channels worth exploring?
Make sure you read the other two articles in my Bit Torrent series:
- How To Walk Through a Landmine Without Getting Blown Up
- How To Download and Test ANY Premium WordPress Theme For FREE