I hear you, brother. I just completed the preorder process on Valkyrie on Planet Fury this past week, bless the handful of people who preordered, but it was basically a disaster. It even got in the way of getting the book as perfect as it could have been by imposing a deadline for Amazon's convenience rather than my book's polishing. (I still did polish the best I could but the deadline got in the way).
Alas for me, the numbers Derek so candidly reports as pitiful for his launch would have caused me to break out champagne and celebrate. Well, I don’t do alcohol anymore, but I would have brewed myself a very strong cup of Ceylon cut black tea and felt quite encouraged.
That said, Derek does have some useful ideas about what exactly didn’t work for him and why using the preorder feature didn't contribute much. Unfortunately, most of the suggestions he has to improve the book launch process seem to involve strenuous people-seeking skills more appropriate to raving extroverts. If I were raving extrovert, I wouldn't spend so much time in front of my computer commuting to other fictional planets.
I'm not even going to get into the world-class Olympic gymnastic Google keywording activities. Maybe after a cup of tea, I'll revisit them!
I had to stand back and in the words of that old 12 Step motto: “Take what you need and leave the rest.” I share the link because I found some things worth taking in Derek's post.