It came to light in September that celebrities like Justin Bieber, Lady Gaga, Katy Perry and more have been buying fake Twitter followers to boost their numbers.
However, you, like I, may have been under the impression that only pluck, dedication, ingenuity, a smattering of luck, an expensive Rolodex and the occasional sexual favor could land your magnum opus on a well-respected bestseller list. We were wrong!
A clever San Diego-located marketing consultancy company called ResultSource can guarantee clients no less than a number 1 spot on lists like The Wall Street Journal and The New York Times—as long as they fork over the cash accordingly. Their foolproof method is to break up obvious book-selling boosting bulk sales into smaller purchases that could be made by real people or organizations and overcome the attempted safeguards established by these lists.
For example, The Times samples sales from multiple retail outlets in order to avoid an artificial result. (Naturally, their rep was rather curt with the Forbes reporter on the ResultSource story.)
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One author who used the service describes the pay grade as such:
To ensure a spot on The Wall Street Journal's bestseller list, I needed to obtain commitments from my clients for a minimum of 3000 books at about $23.50, a total of about $70,500. I would need to multiply these numbers by a factor of about three to hit The New York Times list.
There's nothing clandestine about the company's services, either, who are quite clear on their website about the process. However, Amazon has told WSJ that they have chosen not to do business with the company in the future.
Moral of the story: Everything's a racket, we should all just be sherpas.
'Here's How You Buy Your Way Onto The New York Times Bestsellers List' [Forbes]
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