As noted in my last post, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, I relaunched my first book False Witness by offering the book for free. For years, I’ve read of the impact and effect that a free book/give-away can have and was itching to give it a test drive.
When the rights to my book reverted back to me, I felt it was the perfect opportunity to try out this whole free thang.
So this is what I did prior to the freebie weekend:
- Designed a new cover
- Wrote a new blurb
- Revised, edited and rewrote the book. The main problem with the original book was that there was a lot of head hopping between characters, which was probably a left over from my days of writing scripts. So the simple edit I expected to do turned into a major rewrite, while not changing the path of the story. It was a challenge and half the time I felt like Psycho Writer Girl, but when I came out the other side of it, I knew I’d made the right decision.
- Assigned new ISBN
- Did key word research
- Uploaded the new manuscript, cover and book blurb to Amazon
- Spent 2 days communicating with KDP about migrating my existing reviews to the new edition
- Scheduled the promo
- Created a promo email to my mailing list
- Created and scheduled a Face Book post
- Wrote and scheduled a post on my blog about the freebie
- Put together an excerpt (guest) post here
- Then we let her rip
It’s like a drug
I told myself that I would then go about my business and check the sales dashboard once or twice a day. Sorry, writers are just too obsessed to act that rationally. And yeah, I checked every ten minutes for the first day. It was like a drug, watching that stat graph go up, up, up. I just couldn’t do anything else. It was exhausting, but also very cool. By the next day I was able to only check every hour. By the last day I checked in a few times. Aside from seeing my graph going up the things that were cool:
- I hit page one for sub category ‘cozy mystery’ in US, UK, DE & AU
- I ranked #368 in the Free Kindle Store
So, the book was ‘visible’ for a few days. And that was very exciting.
Today I received an email from what appears to be a reputable book promotion site, asking me to do a promo deal with them. That’s a first. LOL. And I’ve decided to think of it as a win.
I’ve seen blog posts where writers talk about thousands of books being downloaded during free promotions, but I had no such expectations. Though I certainly would’ve been delighted had that happened, I tried to be realistic maybe even pessimistic in my expectations. So I was pleasantly surprised that nearly 1,000 books were downloaded.
I write this post not to brag but to possibly help other writers see what they might be able to expect when doing their first free promo. If there are any other developments that come from the free promo, I will update you.
How about you? Have you done a free promo with any of your books? How did it go? Were your expectation met? Were you surprised with the results or disappointed? Feel free to share your war stories in the comments.