ME ME ME, also some marketing stuff

Peak ebook 140x210Let’s start with the shameless self promotion, shall we? It goes so well with my morning tea. Peak of the Devil, the second book in the Lydia Trinket series, is not only available for Kindle, but it’s on sale! All the ghosts, witches, demons, and supernaturally powerful dogs you can handle for just 99¢, but only through Thursday, so don’t wait! This book is moodier and less bloody than the first, more of an old-fashioned haunted suspense kind of tale.

Now, on to a couple of promotion things that we might actually want to discuss. Would love to hear everyone’s thoughts and experiences and favorite promotional strategies.

First of all, did you know that if you sign up for a Bit.ly account (as opposed to just quickly shortening your URL’s on their home page), you can edit the links to customize them? Some of you probably did, but I didn’t. So for example, now I can tweet with the link , and not only have a short link, but a memorable one that has my book title in it too. Very useful for character economy. Here’s a post from Juliet Rich that explains how to do it.

For me (because I’m new at this), deciding how to market book two in a series has been a bit tricky. It seems like a waste of time and sometimes money to use an advertising site to reach an audience made up almost entirely of people who haven’t read book one. So I decided on a two pronged approach: promote book two mostly to my existing readers, friends, and colleagues, and promote the crap out of book one at the same time.

The 99¢ sale I have going on until Thursday isn’t so much designed to attract new readers (although of course I’d love some new readers, too), but to try to reach anyone out there who may have been considering buying the book anyway. First to give them a deal, because my readers rule. But also to give them some incentive to buy it in this first week of release, to get those Amazon algorithm juices flowing. The only promotion I’m doing this week is through the usual channels: my newsletter, blog, and Twitter.

Next week, I’m doing a ton of promotion for book one, to give that a boost as well as funnel some readers into two. One of my categories is pretty small, so getting both books in the top 100 is a reasonable goal. That’s what I’m shooting for, just working on the theory that having two books there makes me twice as visible as having one. Peak of the Devil will be up to full price by then, but Ghost in the Canteen is always 99¢, making it ideal for promotional sites. Here’s the lineup:

  • Monday: Awesomegang (free), Choosy Bookworm ($8)
  • Tuesday: eBookHunter ($15), BKnights ($10)
  • Wednesday: Pretty Hot (free)
  • Thursday: Genre Pulse ($10)
  • Saturday: eReader News Today (ENT) ($15)

Total spent, $58.50. That’s a pretty big whack to my indie budget, personally. And I don’t expect to make it back, or probably even close to it, especially not on 99¢ sales. I consider it more of an investment in visibility and building readership. Plus these were all sites I wanted to evaluate at some point, and it’s tax deductible.

I’ll keep you guys posted on which sites were effective and which were duds. It’s highly genre dependent, but that information still may be of some use to folks here.

On a tangential note, fretting over one’s sales rank on a day-to-day basis during a release week is pointless and will only serve to stress a girl out. I get sales during the daytime, but my sales rank ignores them and continues to drop throughout the day. Then all the sudden at 8PM my rank will shoot up, and I’ll be in the top 100 for my category… overnight, when nobody is browsing. By the time I wake up in the morning I’m back down to 100k again.

Luckily for me, I’m guaranteed a spot on the HNR lists for two of my categories, because they don’t even go to 100!

14 thoughts on “ME ME ME, also some marketing stuff

  1. Heading out the door for my second river tour, and will have to read this when I come back, but I wanted you to know, I’ve already tweeted it, AND I’ve already downloaded Peak of the Devil. (Got it the day I got the newsletter). I was going to finish another book from my TBR pile first, but I couldn’t help myself. I started reading it, and it is EVEN BETTER than the first, so far. I love how it started off, and I love Phineas, though I don’t know if he’s really going to earn that or not. More later!!! Your WRITING and YOU both ROCK!

    Liked by 1 person

      • I calls ’em as I sees ’em. 🙂 You definitely ROCK. And I’m with Lydia & Phineas in Bristol. This book just pulls me right in! Man, your character development is good! Lydia feels totally real–attitude, snarky humor, language, and all–she’s very, very believable.

        Now, on to this post. I never knew this about bitly, either, and had stopped using them in favor of TinyURL because I could never find half of my short links. Still have that problem, but I have changed them all over to “prettier” ones. I can’t get them to work as “amzn.to” links, but they work fine as “bit.ly” links, and are much easier to remember. And do double duty as promotional links, too, putting my book names right up front. No more guessing what the shortened link will bring up when you click it. Such as: http://bit.ly/SwampGhosts I like this idea very much, and I’m really glad you shared it with us.

        I’ll be tweeting this post all day, and I’ll also be telling everyone about “Peak of the Devil”. The story is building beautifully, the characters are great, and your writing is SO strong!

        Oh, and the reason I’m still here to comment is because our tour got rained out. We’ve rescheduled for next week, and luckily, we didn’t lose a single passenger. Yay.

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          • I never lie about books I’ve read, Jen, which means that once in a great while, I have to dig hard to find something to compliment. Not so in your case at all. I loved Ghost in the Canteen, but I can already tell this is going to be even better. And I truly love your style. The addition of the bloodhound is fun, too. I like books with animals in them. I think they say a lot about the characters, and a bloodhound is perfect for Lydia. Oh, hell, I just like this book, and I want to stop work and go read it right now! But I’m going to be good, and use this as a bonus writing day. But…shaking my fist at the sky and doing my best Scarlett O’Hara impersonation…”As God is my witness, I’ll READ TONIGHT!” 😀

            Liked by 1 person

    • Louis, I don’t know if you read Ghost in the Canteen or not, but I think it would be right up your alley. Some majorly creepy things in there, and Peak of the Devil is even better, so far. I think you’d love it! Hope all is well with you? Hot enough for ya? I’m dying up here.

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  2. Thanks for sharing about bitly – I didn’t know that either.
    Aren’t indie authors great? Sharing our knowledge is such a rewarding part of it.
    And I will be following your campaign with interest – I will be launching the second part of my epic fantasy series later this year, and your approach sounds exactly what I have in mind.
    Good luck with it 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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