Kris and I Went to An Aces’ Game Tonight…
Great fun, great game.
And then at the half, I was out in the huge lobby that circles the arena and every 100 paces or so was another booth selling swag. And a lot of them had long lines and a lot of stuff was sold out.
And then I really looked around and it seemed I was one of a very few people out of the 9,000 there that didn’t have an Aces’ shirt or hat or something. Kris even wore her Aces’ t-shirt.
And so I watched with that vision in mind starting the second half. Everything, and I do mean everything, was about entertaining the crowd, keeping all of us in the game completely, and paying the fans back in different ways.
Every game time-out on the floor, the big screens showed kids dancing or people showing their muscles or some other fan-involvement trick. And they were constantly throwing t-shirts into the crowd.
If someone from the other team missed two free-throws, everyone in the stadium got a free slice of pizza. Everyone. You ought to hear the noise during the other team trying to make free-throws.
And randomly, they picked a row in a section and gave them all in the row something nifty.
Every person in that stadium felt involved with almost every play and they felt cared about and valued in hundreds of different ways.
And I realized that is something each indie writer needs to do. We get one fan at a time with our writing, but after we have the fan, we need to learn to keep care of them. This is why someone like Brandon Sanderson can have such a massive Kickstarter. He interacts with and cares about his fans.
And even if you get 20 people backing your campaign or on Patreon, make them feel welcome, give them stuff for supporting you, talk with them.
This is a lesson Kris and I and WMG have been learning slowly over the years because we came out of traditional publishing which does not sell to readers, but only down their trade channel.
While indie writers are direct to readers.
And once we get a reader, a fan, we need to treasure them as best we can. Entertain them with new books and fun stuff and projects, ask their opinions at times, make them feel valued.
The Aces do this clearly, every minute of every game. And it fills their stadium every game.
And I am just starting to catch a clue as to why.