Promoting Your E-books On A Deep Discount Budget

Funny-lol-star-trek-aliens-wont-talk-us-next-generation-annoyed-picard-humor-joke-meme-photo-pic

Welcome to the time warp.

All right – so I fell off of the promotion wagon all summer long and my sales figures reflect that. However, in July I noticed a slight bit of a bump in my Kindle income thanks to the new KINDLE UNLIMITED per page bonus. It wasn’t much of a bump but it was enough to get me thinking. SO – I have decided to begin promoting again and have a few promos lined up over September and October – and I have signed another half dozen books or so into the KINDLE UNLIMITED program. We’ll see how that works out.

Tomorrow – for Labor Day – I used one of my KU freebie days for TALES FROM THE TANGLED WOOD.

Tangled Wood - smaller size

I lined up five different promotional websites to help promote the freebie.
(or at least I thought I had lined up five different promotional websites)

IT’S WRITE NOW (free)
BOOKS BUTTERFLY ($5.00)
BOOKSCREAM ($4.00)
PEOPLE READS (free)

Yes, I am working on a budget.


You have  to understand that this all happened over a week ago – so welcome to the time warp.

Let me tell you how it all played out.

First off, I goofed up on the FREEBOOKSY. I actually had booked FREEBOOKSY for a BIG upcoming Halloween promotion that I will tell you all about later in October. I really don’t know where I came up with the notion that I had booked it for Labor Day.

I wasn’t drunk.

I wasn’t wearing a straight jacket.

Actually, I’m wearing a burgundy muscle shirt, tailored to allow room for my pythons of power to protrude comfortably.

Let me get back to the punkass promotion.

Secondly, I never did get the BOOKS BUTTERFLY lined up either. The folks at Books Butterfly replied to my initial submission with a counter-proposal that made more sense – but then I forgot to get back to them in time.

So all I have got lined up are these three promo pages.

BOOKSCREAM – http://bookscream.com/history.php?id=362

PEOPLE READS – which did not come through. That is what I get for not sending them any actual money and just relying upon their good will.

IT’S WRITE NOW – which did not come through either. Again – it is better to pay actual money.

Then, to make matters worse I forgot that I had also lined up two other freebies for Labor Day – but had COMPLETELY forgotten to line up any other promotion.

I suck.

I can say “I suck” on my blog without any censor-bots bleeping it out?

So – there is two rules for you to remember the next time you line up a promotion for one of your e-books.

Rule #1 – GET FREAKING ORGANIZED!

Rule #2 – BE PREPARED TO SHELL OUT A BIT OF MONEY.

Those five dollar and ten dollar promo sites can do a bit of good – but if you REALLY want to make a big thumping boom you ought to shell out a bit of money to somebody like Bookbub or Ereader News Today or Free Kindle Books & Tips. Still, I find that the smaller promo sites can do a lot to fill out your promotional campaign.

Whether you go with a big promotion website or something smaller you REALLY need to get freaking organized.

Let me give you an example.

While I was busy neglecting to get promotional website services lined up for TALES FROM THE TANGLED WOOD I goofed again. I COMPLETELY forgot about setting two other e-books to freebie status for that same date.

This is the ONE e-book that is STILL a freebie for today - Sept. 11, 2015 only!

This is the ONE e-book that is STILL a freebie for today – Sept. 11, 2015 only!

A Hat Full of Stories
So all three of these were free on Labor Day but I had only promoted ONE of them.

Again – and again – and again – I tell you that you REALLY need to be organized for this sort of promotion.

🙂

In any case – here is the total results at the end of my poorly-managed Labor Day promotion.

TALES FROM THE TANGLED WOOD – 33 copies
REVENANT (permafree) – 2 copies
DO-OVERS AND DETOURS – 17 copies
FLASH VIRUS: EPISODE 1 (permafree) – 1 copy
A HAT FULL OF STORIES: THREE WEIRD WEST TALES – 22 copies

(and who out there does NOT love Book Report – that makes this sort of tallying easy?)

That is a total of 75 freebies moved yesterday with very little labor – which is supposed to be how a Labor Day promo works, isn’t it?

On top of that there was ONE (that’s 1, folks) page of A Hat Full of Stories showing up as read on my KU2 tally-meter.

That first page sure must have put somebody off!

That’s 75 books that might net me a couple of more reviews, and a few more appearances in the also-bought, as well as 75 more copies to (hopefully) turned into a little bit of jingling change in the KU2 piggy bank.

Okay – so now that you have seen what a promotionless promotion looks like – stick around.

Later in October I’ll post all of the details on my big-butted Halloween promotion.

I believe the numbers will be VERY different that month.

At least that’s the plan.


Lastly, let me tell you about what I have got going on in the way of promotion for TODAY.

My good buddy M.L. Katz has put together a little duct-tape-and-fish-glue-and-thumb-tacks-and-hope group promotion for myself and six other fantasy and spec-fic authors that you can check out right here.

It is advertising SEA TALES – my collection of seven way-out nautical yarns – which is on sale for this weekend for a mere 99 cents.

SeaTales

Click here if you want it!

And then tomorrow and Sunday I will be taking part in a HUGE freaking 99 cent group promotion of all-speculative-fiction. So if spec-fic is your bag you will REALLY want to swing on over here and check it out. I will talk a little bit more about this promotion this weekend  – but for now here is a link for you to take a peek at.

Click this image and it will take you DIRECTLY to the promo page!

Click this image and it will take you DIRECTLY to the promo page!

Now – if you are on a budget and are looking to promote your latest e-book OR an e-book from your back catalogue – this is one of the most economical and efficient ways of doing it. The only thing you REALLY need to remember is to find yourself somebody who is as organized as Patty Jansen is.

Click onto that image.

Check out how you can clearly see each author’s e-book cover. See how easy Patty has made it for a reader to view and order whatever e-book they desire. That – brothers and sisters – is how you want to set up a group promotion.

Over the weekend each of the authors involved will tweet the sale out. They will share it on their Facebook pages and on like-minded Facebook groups. They will hang it on their Pinterest pages and G+ it like you would not believe. Heck, some more organized writers will even send it out to their mailing list.

What’s that, you ask?

Well, a mailing list is something that every indie e-book writer ought to set up. It is one of the very best ways for you to get word of your latest promotions or your latest releases to your hungry, hungry fans.

I don’t have one yet – but if I did I would use it to keep my hungry, hungry fans alerted to all of my new Steve Vernon releases.

Just in case any of you folks out there reading this blog – all the way down here to the bottom – might be interested in signing up to be an exclusive member of my mailing list and to be eligible for FREE e-book specials – well this here bearded fellow pictured below might have something to say about such a matter.

You should ALWAYS listen to a fellow with a beard.

Click this picture if you would like to sign up for my mailing list for news on new Steve Vernon releases and exclusive opportunities to receive free e-books.

Click this picture if you would like to sign up for my mailing list for news on new Steve Vernon releases and exclusive opportunities to receive free e-books.

Yours in storytelling,

Steve Vernon

PS: I want to apologize for the whole throw-the-bowl-of-pasta-at-the-cupboard-and-see-what-sticks nature of this blog entry – but I have been far too delinquent in keeping this blog current and I am just trying to shake the clutter out of my creative system.

Advertisements

4 responses to “Promoting Your E-books On A Deep Discount Budget

  1. Great advice, you really seemed to share a lot here about the business of promoting one’s work.

    Like

  2. Thanks, Shane. I try to pass on whatever I’ve learned whenever I can. 🙂

    Like

  3. Shame about Books Butterfly promo not going through; I would have really been interested in finding out results from them!
    I know what you mean about needing to be really organized with the promotions. My promo muscles are a bit atrophied at the moment, but I’m going to try a warm-up with my permafree soon. I think a new book cover on that one with a nice shot of downloads from some advertising will go a long way.
    Just a little curious, have you considered bknights? If I use them, especially for a free promo, I only do the $5 fiverr. I ALWAYS get sell-through with them too, amazingly. I’ve also thought about trying Awesome Gang, which I’ve never tried the paid promo from.
    I’m limited with some of these lists because my permafree is under 100 pages long. BookBub doesn’t want anything under 150.
    Thanks for sharing your results and your very sage words!

    Like

  4. I absolutely LOVE bknights – ESPECIALLY for freebie promotion. I’ve got bknights booked for a separate freebie promo on September 18th and I plan to hire them for my big Halloween 99 cent promo this Halloween as well.

    I’ve used Awesome Gang as well before – but bknights TRULY rocks.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s