Guest Blogger Karen Magill
Please welcome Karen Magill to our blog this week. She is going to talk about a freebie promotion she ran this past weekend on Amazon. The amount of work it takes to put it together as well as how she did with it. She was extremely organized this time around and very impressive with her planning and goals. It was a pleasure to help promote her. Look for a review of her book Mystique Rising here in the near future. Now I hand the blog over to Karen:
Free to Succeed
by Karen Magill
Most authors by now have heard of Amazon’s KDP-Select program and have heard of those who are making masses amount of money through it. An author has to make their book exclusive to the KDP-Select and Amazon for a period of ninety days and readers not only buy the book but can also ‘borrow’ it as if it were in a public library. Part of the KDP-Select program is that an eBook can be listed as free for a maximum five days during the ninety day period. On July 9 and 10, I tried the free promotion.
The first thing I would like to point out is that getting organized for one of these promotions – even if it is only for two days – is lot of work. For this one I started three weeks before so that I could notify places like Pixel of Ink because I hoped that they would list my free eBook. That site, as well as Ereader News Today are two of the bigger sites for listing free eBooks. The exposure that an ebook promotion can get from those two sites is invaluable. (Pixel of Ink didn’t list my book though Ereader News did.) As well, I wrote out numerous tweets and postings so that I could just copy and paste the information over the weekend.
(You know all of this would have been a lot easier if I didn’t have to deal with fatigue, sleep, tendonitis in my wrists, food – normal things we humans deal with. If I were a machine that could just keep at it for hours, I could have notified the world and exploded on Amazon. Maybe next time I will work that out.)
The week of the promotion is the time to notify most contacts – the day before in many cases. Any earlier and the person may forget. Therefore, that was a busy week for me. I started to direct message everyone on my twitter followers list. At that time, I had over seven hundred and that takes awhile even if I am copying and pasting the message. I worked on it for two days and I notified everyone I thought would be interested and might help. After that, I sent the same message to anyone new who started following me.
Friday the 8th came and I had to do more notifying. I had researched groups on Facebook that advertise free eBook days and I started copying and pasting my message about Mystique Rising being free on them. If you are going to do this, be careful. It didn’t take long to get a notice from Facebook saying I was ‘spamming’ people and if I didn’t quit they would block my account. Next time I will do it over a few days and be sure that I word the notice differently for a few of the groups. I spent much of that day tying up loose ends and doing another push to get the notifications into different places.
Finally, the first day of the promotion arrives and I am up bright and early. I had a couple of places that would only take the information the first day of the promotion so I did that first thing, created an event on Facebook and invited all my friends (the first time I did this I tried to contact everyone individually but that was tiresome). I also checked to see the number of downloads since midnight. There were a few hundred. Then I got onto Twitter and started posting tweets.
That is what I did for most of Saturday. I tweeted, I posted on Facebook, I thanked people who said they downloaded the book, I posted notices repeatedly. Saturday evening Mystique Rising was number two in fantasy/contemporary and number four in action/adventure. I was ecstatic! I was sure it was going to go to number one.
Sunday morning I woke to find the numbers the same as the night before. I tweeted, posted, emailed and gently nudged people to download the free book. However, in the late afternoon, the eBook started to slip in the rankings and I was getting tired. The eBook never reached number one.
That’s all right though, I’m not upset. Number 2 is not a bad position to be in. I am waiting now for the exposure I hopefully got to translate into sales. I haven’t made massive amounts of money on this program yet but I am going to keep working on it.