And, the promotion is finished…
And how did it go? Delighted to tell you!
Let me break it down a little:
In the UK, Clown had sold a total of 19 copies. The majority of these I can attribute to friends and family, with maybe a handful bought by people I don’t know. Three reviews, two glowing “family and friends” automatic 5-star reviews, and one honest 4-star review from another friend.
In the US, 1 copy sold. No reviews.
I opted for a three day promotion, covering the Father’s Day weekend, in the middle of the month.
Three days covers one week day, and two weekend days.
Father’s Day gives me an extra gimmick.
Middle of the month is different from the standard start of the month, when most people post their promotions, so less combinations.
To increase awareness, I hit the following:
- Facebook and assorted groups
- Twitter, also contacting various e-book promoting users, and some celebs
- Several forums
- Promotional websites
- Free domestic advertising sites
224 downloads in the UK.
517 downloads in the US.
12 downloads in Germany.
Some thoughts overall:
- I’m pretty pleased to have beaten 750 downloads. That’s a hefty increase from 20!
- Where the hell did the German downloads come from?
- At various points, I was in the Top 500 free ebooks in the UK, Top 1000 in the US, and Top 2000 in Germany.
- I was being downloaded more than The Brothers Grimm. Yay!
- I was very popular in the World Mythology and Fairytales category (Top 10).
- Sales went well on Friday (initial barrage of promotion), dipped a little on Saturday (no promotion), and climbed very well again on Sunday (more and different more promotion).
- By and large, most of the tweeters ignored me. However, I did get a large pickup after retweets from former professional wrestlers Lance Storm and Rowdy Roddy Piper!
- The various websites were very helpful and positive in listing my promotion*
- Seriously, who the hell found me in Germany?
The domestic advertisers I used (places like Craigslist and Gumtree) are free, simple and quick to use. Gumtree doesn’t like the advertising, but I’m going to make a suggestion that they have a category for free books. Not sure how much benefit they bring, but it’s easy to get a load of adverts on quite quickly. Just choose your timing well.
One subject I hadn’t even thought of for advertising was through a friend who plays and enjoys World of Warcraft. He generously retweeted for me, and I secured a few more downloads. It’s a fantasy game with a huge online community, in which he plays a major part – and runs a podcast! Something to bear in mind next time I promote a fantasy book.
I did ask for retweets from 50+ celebs, and got 2. They obviously led to some sales, so I’m pleased, but I think they’d rapidly get annoyed by a barrage of requests. I thanked them, and will leave them alone now. Hopefully they read the book and enjoy it, though.
A number of others also ran promotions, with their results hitting in the thousands, typically 6,000 – 10,000. Obviously, I’d love to do the same. But, for an initial run, with no reviews at all, I’m not going to beat myself up about it. They tend to have good numbers of 5-star reviews and whatnot, so it’s easier to sell. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!
One poster in a forum roundly derided the use of promotions, giving away books which take away from actual sales; that no one would read them; that we were destroying the system as a whole. Rar rar rar.
In some ways, I agree with him. I would much rather people paid to download my book and put a little money in my pocket, as any author would. On the other hand, I’m happy that people are actually reading it. And, in order for people to read my book, they need to know about it. In order for them to know about it, I need to be able to promote it/have it recommended. So, I need to take a short term hit, for long-term gain. I hope.
I’ll let you know how I get on.
*I will be posting a separate page full of links and useful names for new writers shortly.