Sunday, July 7, 2013
Thoughts On Free Giveaways and 99 Cent Specials...
Well, as you all know last month I did my first free promo on Amazon, where 400 people snatched up their own Kindle copy of my paranormal/mystery "THE BRIDGE". Now, one of the things that inspired me to take that risk was the fact that I'd read in many different articles and blogs, that such a promo could help actual paying sales. Those who grabbed a copy start spreading the word about how much they liked the book and tell others to get their own copy. I can safely say, I've seen a slight increase in the number of actual purchased copies of the book, but nothing astronomical.
So this last weekend I did a special .99 cent promotion which netted about 5 or 6 sales total and that's all. Now a number of you may be thinking, "Wow, that wasn't very impressive." And you'd be right. But, it's about what I expected because, "THE BRIDGE" is my first book. I'm still an unknown author. I did try and foster a following in advance and build up anticipation and interest in the book and look at the total results. To date, about 500 copies of my book are out there, which to me is rather impressive for a first timer. The book has been garnering mainly 4 and 5 star reviews, 13 on Amazon and 15 on Smashwords. Now only 3 of those reviews came after the free giveaway.
That might sound discouraging to some people, but I'm not looking at it that way. When you do a free giveaway, most people are loading up their Kindles with books that they will eventually read. A lot of those people who downloaded my book, still haven't had a chance to read it yet. I know this, because a number of them have told me this is the case. They message me and to say, 'You're number ( ) in my reading list, but I'm looking forward to your book and getting back to you about it afterwards.'
So, I have reason to hope for more reviews and that these folks will be so excited by what I've done, they'll not only be dying to see the next installment (which is something I keep hearing from those who have read "The Bridge"). But I'm also hoping they're going to be spreading the word about it and the upcoming sequel to all their friends and networks, which will in turn translate into more sales.
Remember when it's only your first or second book, you're still building a fan base which takes time and patience.
Now, I do plan to do one more free giveaway on Amazon sometime in August, before my exclusive KDP Select contract expires. Once it does expire, I'm bringing "THE BRIDGE" back to Smashwords, Nook, Apple and other e-readers. I've already had a number of inquiries of when the book will be available in those formats, so I've still got more prospective customers to come.
On the other hand, I do have one concern and that is, "Have I hit my limit of possible customers in my current "sphere of influence?" I'm always interested in getting the word out about my book out to more and more people, but I'm starting to run low on ideas of how to make that happen. I've done LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, press releases, contacted radio and newspapers (with minimal results on these two but I'm still trying).
So, if any of you have suggestions, please leave them down in the comments section for me and other readers to learn from. Remember, we're all in this writing thing together and one of the main purposes of this blog is to share ideas and experiences. So don't be afraid to share or ask questions.
Until next time, take care and keep writing.