Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Opinions on Book Advertising

As I creep closer to finishing my epic fantasy trilogy, I'm also planning a more focused marketing effort once all three books are available. Part of my marketing plan will include buying advertisements to promote my books. So far, I've only used free promotions to market my two books, and have experienced the appropriate "you get what you pay for" returns.  Upon glancing at the myriad of options available to spend my advertising dollars on, my big ol' head spun like Regan MacNeil.

So, in addition to doing some research online, I posted a poll on the Google+ community Writers' Discussion Group (shown below) to try to get some idea of what platforms were working for other authors.

With 30 voters, this poll gives a glimpse into a small data set of what advertising platforms writers are using effectively (ads on Goodreads and Facebook). Unfortunately, 27% voted for the 'Other' category. From the comments beneath the poll, I gleaned that the 'Other' category included promotions on Amazon and Reddit, among others (some of which appear below, I suspect).

I also read a post on KBoards by author Patrice Williams Marks where she provided her experience with book advertising for discounted book promotions (e.g. Kindle Countdown, et al). Because the discussion is excellent and informative, I recommend reading the entire thread here, but I'll condense and paraphrase the contents pertinent to this topic.

Ms. Marks identifies her top six websites for advertising for discounted book promotions as:
  • Book Bub
  • EReader News Today (ENT)
  • Robin Reads
  • Booksends
  • OHFB
  • Bargain Booksy
Other sites that had multiple endorsements in this KBoards thread included Free Kindle Books and Tips, BooksButterfly, Fussy Librarian, Fiverr, Manybooks, Book Bassett, and Sweet Free Books. To give you an idea of how many sites offer book promotion packages, I started a list which currently contains over 90 different web sites that offer book promotion services.

Indies Unlimited is also currently running a survey of book promotion sites through the end of February. If you're interested in taking the Indies Unlimited survey, or reading the survey results in March, here's a link to their survey page; Book Promotion Site Survey for Authors.

Obviously, what's presented above is a only small slice of author opinions, and your actual results may vary. What's red hot today may be an ice cold afterthought tomorrow, but I hope this helps your promotion selection process a little. I'll share my own results once I start experimenting with paid promotions, but for now, I'm still learning and collecting data.

Author Update: I've  found the demarcation between the end of the first draft and start of the second draft to be a bit of a gray area, but for purposes of this update, I declare the first draft of Warlock & Wyrm, Book III of The Oxbow Kingdom Trilogy complete! So begins the second draft . . .

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