Writing is easy … Marketing is hard.
Once you finish writing a book, that’s pretty much it, except for occasional updates and revisions.
Marketing is FOREVER.
Recently, I decided to update my second book, A Dangerous Talent for Time and add the eleven books I have written since in the series. I increased the front matter to include the additional books, and then in the back matter, I listed the following books by title, a brief synopsis, and included a link to Amazon. This way when your readers are still in the story, after it ends, and they love it, they see the next book right in front of them, and with a simple one click, they go to Amazon and a buy button.
So I did all that, and felt that here was a good time to market again. Not being great at social media, I do a lot of my marketing through ad websites. Freebooksy is my go-to site because I have gotten the best results there. However, the last time I did, the numbers were down, and I felt that meeting new readers on another website might be better. Bookbub is famous, but extremely selective and very expensive. If you pass the hurdles, the return is said to be good. Have you tried it? Results?
Then I thought of Book Barbarian. This website only accepts science fiction and fantasy. That’s the target market I want. But closer scrutiny of the guidelines revealed that they take only the first book in a series. They also require more than ten reviews.
There is a series option for $125 that will feature the first two books in your series together. Maybe, but as a reader I usually don’t choose it because I want to see if I like the first before I buy the second. I also am value oriented, otherwise known as cheap.
So back to Freebooksy for A Dangerous Talent for Time, but, hey, I can do Caught in Time on Book Barbarian. It meets all their guidelines easily.
That’s when I got the brilliant idea to do a marketing experiment. I will compare cost, platform, price, and position of both. On Book Barbarian, I will post Caught in Time, Wednesday, July 27 and price it for $1.75. The cost to me will be $45. Reasonable. And, readers will get a nice discount from the normal retail price of $3.99.
On Freebooksy, I will advertise A Dangerous Talent for Time Saturday, August 6 for free. The cost to me will be $75. The readers will get an even better price than the $3.99 retail, so I should get a lot more downloads. Over time, I have found that offering one free usually results in retails sales of several other books in the series.
Then, I will compare both promotions to evaluate which was the better investment. Yes, I know that there are variables that will influence the data, it’s summertime, but the results should be interesting.
Which do you think will do better? What platform? What price? What day? Which cost? Comment below. Or if you prefer social media, how do you do it?
And …. on October 2, I will participate in a blog tour (for the first time ever) involving Diana Peach’s upcoming release of The Necromancer’s Daughter. When I blog about the results of my marketing experiment, I will reveal her awesome cover.