Category Archives: Marketing
I’m excited that The Temporal is still going strong. It is now #483 in the Free list (which again, is horrible compared to that one experience with Tanaka and the Yakuza’s Daughter which quickly zoomed under 100 in the entire Amazon store!) and #15 in Action & Adventure.
A few days ago, I took The Temporal off Smashwords (which was still pending review for the Premium distribution), and BN.com (which was not selling at all) to test KDP with it. KDP Select allows authors to make their books free for up to five days every three months. The only bad thing is for three months I have to agree to not sell the ebook anywhere else.
That’s fine. If I can get a few reviews on Amazon, it will be worth it. So far 468 people have downloaded it. That is over about 28 hours. Again, not nearly as impressive as when Tanaka went free–I counted two seconds, refreshed, and saw another “sale”! While I’m not getting that kind of response, one good side effect is, I’ve sold four, I think, Tanaka and the Yakuza’s Daughters since yesterday. I think the freebie is leading people to checkout my other work. I just wish I had more “other work”!
I had planned to make it free for just one day (yesterday), but it seemed to be gaining momentum last night so I decided to use the second free day for today. And overnight, it went from #30ish to #15 in Action & Adventure.
The novel is in the final editing, smoothing out stage. We are still hoping for a January 15th-ish release.
The Short Story became free on Amazon about a month ago. It immediately shot up to #117 in all Free ebooks. Then, it dropped and dropped.
Around #2,000 I decided to try to make it not free (.99). My idea is, I can make it free again once the novel is out. The short story will have a link for readers to click on their Kindles to check out the novel after reading the short story. And if it works like before, I may get a boost in downloads and that may help with sales of the novel (probably priced at $2.99).
KDP Select is an option and would make it easier to make it free (for five days). But I suspect most people who “borrow” books will get the expensive ebooks ($9.99 and above) and buy the cheap ones. We’ll see…
As I mentioned in my first post, I plan to be as open as I can about how my efforts help or hurt sales. Here is the report for the first 24 hours “selling” Tanaka and the Yakuza’s Daughter as a freebie.
Joe Lemont (a proper introduction is forthcoming) and I have been working hard on the Tanaka novel. I had wanted the short story to be free as a way to gain readership and hopefully a few sales of the novel. I learned the best way to make an ebook free on Amazon was to set the price to $0 on Smashwords and then report to Amazon that iBookstore or BN.com or whatever has it for a cheaper price ($0). I also heard it could take weeks or even months for this change to take place. Not wanting to miss our target launch date of December 15th (we’ll probably have to extend this unfortunately…), I started the process a few weeks ago.
Yesterday morning, I checked sales and saw my normal (non-fiction) titles selling one here, two there. But there at the bottom, I saw: Tanaka and the Yakuza’s Daughter – 180.
Ecstatic, I jumped to the Amazon product page and saw the beautiful $0 where .99 had been the day before. Then I jumped back to the KDP sales page and refreshed. Two new “sales”!
Here are the details:
The short story currently ranks in:
#149 Free in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Free in Kindle Store) [it peaked at #134]
#3 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Fiction > Short Stories [this is the best rank]
#23 in Kindle Store > Kindle eBooks > Fiction > Genre Fiction > Mystery & Thrillers [this is the best rank]
Over the past 24 hours, there have been 1,022 downloads. It appears right now you need about 1000 downloads a day to reach around #150 ranking for all free ebooks.
My next moves: Finish the novel; upload the novel; update the short story to include a direct link to the novel (I’ll post how to do that soon); market both ebooks
Now, I have a question:
Do you have any idea why my ebook went from #2,369 (when I first spotted it) to #134 overall? Surely, not every ebook made free does this? Or is that the norm for the first day and I should expect it to drop to the netherworld tomorrow?
And secondly, would you be interested in reading some (or all) of the novel and give us your input? If so, please contact me.
Grab it absolutely free and let me know what you think!
It is currently #85 in Fiction > Short Stories (7,500 words) and #2,369 Free in the entire Kindle Store.
Update: two hours later (9 AM EST), it is #55 and #1,578.
Update: an hour and a half later (10:30), there are 348 downloads and it is #10 and #473 in the entire Kindle Store (plus #56 in Mystery and Thrillers)
Update: At 2 PM it is #4 in Fiction > Short Stories and #147 overall
From #2,369 to #147 on the first day ain’t bad!
I started this great adventure with a 7,000 word short story about a man named Tanaka who saves his daughter from some nasty yakuza types. I asked a friend who is good with words and style to edit it. After much discussion, we decided to go into “business” together and create a novel about Tanaka. We are almost done with it. (maybe 1-2 months of pure editing left–should really only be about a week of editing, but this is our first big attempt and what isn’t there to fear?)
One early plan was to make Tanaka and the Yakuza’s Daughter free as a way to give readers a taste of our style (and hope they will then buy the novel). I told Joe, my writing partner, that it would be an incredible sacrifice to make the short story free–it was, after all, created by a mixture of my blood and my sweat and my tears. This is especially heartwrenching considering the .99 short story sold a whopping five copies during the month of October! All that money… gone.
Smashwords now has Tanaka and the Yakuza’s Daughter free. I will begin the process of making it free on Amazon too. (Amazon will match the price, if it is $0 at BN.com or Apple’s iBookstore.)
Please feel free to grab the short story absolutely free–and if you are one of the five who bought the story this month, sorry.