Your book is the best thing since sliced bread, and you know it! So why aren't people rushing in droves to download it? I mean look at the top books on Amazon right now, how in the heck did those books become number one when your book is obviously better! We've all done that at one time or another, and those that say they haven't, well .... they are in denial! So what is the magical secret formula that makes one book #1 and another languish in the pits of book ranking hell begging for a reader to find the redemption inside? Marketing, baby!
Groan now.. get it out of your system because it's a business world out there in our creative mindscape and those that know how to do it well are kicking your ARSE (mine too). For the last few months, I've worked my assets off researching these "overnight" success stories and what I've discovered is they aren't better writers but better promoters. Forget all that crap that used to fly, because that's all last year. To make it today you either have blind luck or a healthy budget to smack your book right in the face of hungry readers. Let's start at the top.
Bookbub: The elusive holy grail of all book marketing promotions. Hell yes, it's expensive for us mere mortals not already pulling 80k a year in royalties, but the after effects are fracking unbelievable. Taken from their website, below are the results of a Bookbub ad.
Contemporary Romance ad for $744 for a 99¢ book with an average sale of 3,000 books. With roughly a 35¢ return on a 99¢ book you'll recoup $1000. What happens if you sell that many books? You just might make a few bestseller lists which will keep that momentum going. To make sure that momentum flies on to the days after your Bookbub feature, stack the promotions. Like I said it's about promotions baby. There's a reason why Bookbub is known as the holy grail, though. (If you can't get it another solution is GenreCrave not a substitution for Bookbub but at $299 cheaper and still impressive results, just don't think as high as Bookbub).
ENT (Ereader News Today) Getting your book here for the day your Bookbub feature ends can get some kick arse results! This is what every single author I saw making bank recommends! That should tell you what you need to know. Bookbub first followed by ENT! A 99¢ book ad for Contemporary Romance costs $55 you can check other prices here: PRICES on ENT
Mailing List: The majority of my book sales come from people on my mailing list. If you don't already have one (Dear GOD what are you waiting for) get one started. The link for your mailing list should be in the back cover of every book you write, front and center on your blog and facebook page and everywhere else you're hanging out on social media. I offer a free book to get people to join, giveaways, and TRY not to spam the crap out of my subscribers (although sometimes I SUCK at this). You can start out for free on Mailchimp and get your first 2,000 subscribers. I did that then moved on to Send in Blue because $8 a month was cheaper than $30 (yes I'm frugal about some things) but other people recommend Mailer Lite.
Robin Reads: I've seen tons of people follow up the ENT with Robin Reads, so I'm mentioning it here. $60 Ad and they claim 109,957+ subscribers so I can see this giving an extra push for marketing.
Breaking down the costs for using Bookbub, Ent, and Robin Reads Stacked for a Contemporary Romance selling at 99¢ = $859. The best possible chance of making your book a bestseller. It's not cheap, but it works. The next time you look at some of those top books on your favorite site, you'll have a good idea how they got there!
It's a dog eat dog world in publishing these days, and if you want to make it out there, you've got to learn to play with the big boys. I hope my Author Survival Kit post helped give you some insight into the world of promotion. Feel free to drop any questions below, and I'll answer the best I can.!