I did a Freebooksy on July 17 for the first book in my series to try to jumpstart some sales. Here are the results:
First I spent a little more time with the ad:
I really wanted to make sure that readers knew what they were getting. It’s a holiday romance, so it takes place in the winter. It’s got kind of a Beauty and the Beast type theme, and I wanted to bring that home because not every reader likes that kind of trope. Damaged heroes, yes, but damaged on the outside, not so much. Plus I wanted to highlight that it’s first in a series that’s complete because indies have burned too many readers with series that aren’t done or won’t be finished for many years. Readers are smart enough to know not to get invested. I’ve seen Chris Fox do this too, in his ad copy on Amazon. Plus it’s a great way to let readers know there is more than one book available.
I didn’t care so much about the ranking since potential read-through of the other books is more important. But I think I did okay in the free list in Small Town Romance:
Eleven was as high as I got, but I did go up to number 2 in Holiday Romance:
So that was fine. I don’t think it means much, to be honest–I kind of feel like anyone can give away a book. Especially if you’re paying to do it.
So the promo ran on July 17th, and the first day of the promo I gave away 3,866. I always give away the book the next day in case someone opens their email late and by chance looks to see if the book is still available. On July 18th I gave away 915. I did give away some on the 19th probably because of a time zone thing: 51. So in all total my promo gave away 4,832.
The first couple of days didn’t earn me any read-through, and that’s to be expected because a lot of people download a book but don’t/can’t read it right away. Twelve days later, I am getting some read-through and I’ve made back what spent on the promo.
Here are the stats for each book in the series this month. And if anyone wants to know, more than half of my royalties come from KU page reads.
It thrills me I’m getting read-through. I was so full of doubt when the first few reviews of book one came in and they were bad. Now, hopefully with Amazon ads I can have long tail off this promo. And if the people reading the whole series would review, that would be fantastic too. I need a few good ones to wipe out the negative ones on Amazon and Goodreads.
So all in all, I had a positive experience with Freebooksy this time around. If I could give you advice it would be this:
- Make your ad copy in the Freebooksy newsletter count. I tried to add as much information as I could so the reader knew exactly what they were getting.
- You’ll get more bang for your buck if you’re promoting a series. If you’re not, at least fix your back matter and offer links to other books so if your reader likes your book they have something else they can immediately read when they’re done. Don’t make them hunt–make it easy to read your books. All my books in the series link to the next. That did mean going in and adding the buy-link after publishing the next book, but the extra effort is very much worth it.
- Make sure you have a good cover that conveys your genre.
- Make sure the blurb is well-written.
- Make sure if you’re promoting a first in series, that all your books look like they belong together.
Obviously, I haven’t made what I could have if those 4,000+ giveaways had been sales. And I’m not really sure what’s going on with more books. The books I’m writing now are different from these, and I think I”m going to be publishing them under a pen name. Does that mean my next book is going to be in 3rd person past? Or do I want to write in first person present? If I’m going to keep promoting these, then I should eventually have something new readers can move on to. On the other hand, if I have to fight like a trout upstream for sales, then I need to stop beating my head against a brick wall. Writing first person present is fun, and if I can find a foothold writing that, I would be content to let my 3rd person past stuff rest for a while.
Lots of choices!
Tell me, have you done a pomo lately? Let me know!