Thursday, April 14, 2016

#Marketing for #eBooks and Kindle - #AtoZChallenge

Today is the “M” Day in the A to Z Challenge – 2016.

Marketing: It’s something we all hate to pay for but most definitely it’s a necessary evil. If you’re an indie author like me probably the thing you despise most is giving your book away for free. You spent months writing the story. The next step is the editing and proofreading and the rewrites. You put a lot of work into developing the finished product.

Now you want to get paid!

Not so quick. It’s tough to make a buck if you don’t have readers. Chances are nobody has heard of you, let alone able to find you among the thousands of unknown authors in the world that have a product or two up for sale on Amazon.

In some ways I made that mistake. But what I did do was keep writing. When I did decide to pay for some marketing advice the unanimous suggestion was to have a presence on Amazon and Kindle. By that time I had 6 novels and a nice series going with recurring characters.

The next piece of advice was to give away the eBooks. I was distraught! All of my work was going to be given away. What a rude awakening.

I went to work to understand the various programs that are offered by Kindle Select. Countdown deals offer a reduced price that escalates during the promotional term. In another program an author can give away their title for 5 days during a commitment period. That has a lot of advantages if social media is leveraged properly. Finally, Kindle / Amazon will match competing prices if an author decides to offer their work for free on other eBook sites. That is where the Permafree option can be advantageous because the free offerings last more than the 5 allowed days when an author participates in the Kindle Select program.

I offered four of my titles for free over the course of a year. Several marketing services and free eBook services were purchased. With that paid exposure to eBook readers the thousands of downloads of my titles literally shot off the chart. My book ranking rose to the Number 1 OVERALL position on Kindle. Needless to say that Number 1 position was held in several sub-categories as well.

What did the final results mean when the promotional periods ended? It got me a ton of readers and reviews. Amazon helped to advertise my eBooks after the promotion. Sales and cross sales of my other titles followed. When Prime members and Kindle Unlimited participants read my pages royalties are earned.

It never would have happened without marketing. If you’re a writer that is serious about selling your books, then educate yourself about what is out there from a sales standpoint. Pay for some marketing and enjoy the success of being a published author.

James Ross has penned several novels from the Prairie Winds Golf Course setting. The stories are character-based, cross many genres, and have become Kindle favorites. Visit his website for detailed information, reader comments, and contact links.

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