If you have an eBook on Amazon Kindle, that is also enrolled in the Kindle Select program, you are able to do what I did. For each subscription period that you are enrolled, you are able to give your book away for free 5 days out of that period. I enrolled in June and I will be locked in until September, so approximately 5 days every 3 months.
But don’t expect people to suddenly buy your book just because it’s free. You need to do the legwork to get it in front of people; especially in front of the right people. Here is what I did during my first free book weekend, June 19-21, 2020.
I utilized Facebook the most. I have a personal page and a page specfic to my book. Whenever I posted anywhere, I was sure to include a picture like this. It gave a clue as to what my book was about and the book name. Always try to include a picture if you want to catch people’s attention. I know I’m much more likely to look at a post if there’s a picture. I assume for most people it’s the same.
- My book involves living in a camper, and I’m a part of many Facebook groups that support that lifestyle. So for the groups that allow personal advertisements, I made a post explaining that my book was a part of that niche, and posted the link.
- I was pleasantly surprised by how many kind people downloaded my book and commented on my post to tell me good luck. It was wonderful and I felt like I was building a fanbase.
- I also found ways to subtly advertise on other groups I’m in. A homeschooling group asked a question about buying books, and I inserted my information into a comment. Not only did it result in several downloads and well wishes, I met someone who wanted to be my advocate. She added me to a book club and advertised my book on her personal instagram page. She reminded me that there are wonderful people in the world. Hopefully you are lucky and find one like I did.
- My free weekend began on a Friday, so on that day I did post on my personal page that the sale had begun. But I did not focus my attention there at all. I didn’t want to bother my friends and family more than I already had! I posted once or twice a day with updates, but tried to keep it to a minimum. We’ve all had that excited MLM friend and I didn’t want to do that. I hope they weren’t annoyed.
- I am on the fence about paid Facebook ads. I ran one for a couple days and got almost no engagement, and zero sales. I don’t think I’ll be using that platform again. All of the Facebook advertising I did for this sale was unpaid and personally placed.
Book Sales Friday and Saturday with only Facebook Advertising:
I was very pleased with this result.
- I’ll be honest, I suck at these platforms. I never really figured them out, and though I tried to use them to advertise, I think it’s safe to say, I failed.
- If you are already good at these, they are probably a great outlet. But unfortunately, I missed that boat.
The Fussy Librarian
This is a FREE email subscription that notifies you of free or cheap books on Kindle, Nook, and many others. I have been a member for awhile, but it didn’t occur to me to use them until Friday afternoon. I reached out and luckily, they had a spot available on their Sunday newsletter for my book.
For authors, this is a PAID opportunity to have your book placed in front of 117,000 of the company’s subscribers. Readers receive a daily email with books they can get for free. It was the perfect platform for my book during its free weekend.
COST: To advertise my book as a “Cozy Mystery” novel, it costs $43. That is the highest, and the prices for genre go down from there. I did manage to find a promo code and saved 20%. I’ve been doing paid book reviews, so I paid the balance with that. Win-win.
The Fussy Librarian email goes out around 7am. Because we are on the west coast, and because I got up at 10am, a lot of people saw the email before I did. When I woke up there was already 1,300 downloads! My jaw hit the floor when I saw it.
In addition to the massive sales I enjoyed, it was also really cool to see my book being emailed out in an official way.
I am enjoying every facet of new author-dom and seeing my work advertised, is giving me major butterflies ❤
Other Services That Were Recommended To Me
- Thrifty and Thriving Blog
- This blog is run by the same person who runs the facebook page, All Things Target. A friend recommended contacting her, because each Friday she posts a blog with free and sale items Amazon will have available.
- However, I reached her on Saturday, so I will keep her in mind for my next event. But her pages are super cool, so I’m happy to know about them!
I assume this is service much like The Fussy Librarian. It’s a free subscription and they send you a daily email with free/reduced priced books. I received my first email from them this morning and it was more “reduced” with very few free. I would have tried this one, but my kids were being whiney and my patience was thin.
- This website is identical to The Fussy Librarian and BookBub! You can go to the site and learn which books on Kindle are currently free. I actually just downloaded a free mystery novel while researching for this blog!
- I don’t know exactly how you’d go about advertising your book with them, but I’d imagine it’s strightforward.
On Goodreads.com, a site I consider to be very literate, I now have three ratings! Previously I had none. The average score is 4.33 and I’m happy to have it.
Currently 18 others have Dahlia’s Ridge on their “currently-reading” or “to-read” list.
While I didn’t gain any additional reviews on Amazon (yet), I did find something interesting. Because the free event went so well, I made it to #5 in free suspense books, and #6 in free women sleuths on kindle. Overall I was #41 in most successful free downloads. So that’s pretty neat.
I am going to unglue myself from my computer and hang out with my kids. I hope that reviews will come in over time, but for the next few days I’m going to get offline a bit.
I’ve already started brainstorming my next book and I’m hoping to start writing soon! I picked out an awesome name, and I’m hoping it sticks throughout the entire process. You just never know. Afterall, Dahlia’s Ridge was not the original name for this book!
Thank you for the support if you’ve read this far. Dahlia’s Ridge is still available on Amazon if you’d like to check it out ❤
Happy Monday everyone!
Updates since publishing:
June 22, 2020 – ManyBooks.net reached out to me, they are another company like The Fussy Librarian that will advertise your book to their 100,000 followers. The price to advertise with them is $29. Their website looks clean and attractive. I will keep them in mind for the next promo!