Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Leaving Smashwords and Other Tidbits

If you hadn't noticed, I gave my blog a facelift, mainly because Google offered some new free Blogger templates and you know I can't resist free stuff (or leaving well enough alone). If you spot any issues or can't find something that you liked on the old blog page, please let me know, and I will fix it.

All right then, on to the main topic. With the release of the third and final book of my trilogy looming on the horizon, I've decided to retool my marketing strategy. Because the majority of the ebooks I've sold have been through Amazon, I want to try maximizing the options available through KDP Select and plan on enrolling all three books through this exclusive Amazon service (currently only Mirrors & Mist is enrolled). Unfortunately, this means I'll have to pull Crimson & Cream from Smashwords.

I like nearly everything about Smashwords - the publishing help, multiple sales outlets, the 'meatgrinder' book formatter, free self-help guides, customizable coupons--just not ebook sales. Although Smashwords provides a fantastic infrastructure to give away free ebooks,  Amazon's sales are significantly better (for me, at least). I like pulling for the underdog, and hate to leave Smashwords, but since Amazon requires exclusivity to get the most out of their services, that's what I plan to do.

Although I haven't set a hard deadline for when I'll pull Crimson & Cream from Smashwords, consider this fair warning. I'll be giving away free copies right up to the end, so if you or someone you know may want to grab the book for free, click here and use this code: RK84U.

Regarding the Amazon ad I ran for my last Kindle Countdown Deal, the results were dismal.  My ad displayed 386 times ('impressions') but had zero customer clicks. The upside is that I didn't get charged anything by Amazon, since there were no clicks; however, that's small consolation.

After I ran my Amazon ad, I found C. L. Murray's blog post where he shares his strategies and results with Amazon ads. I highly recommend reading the post if you're interested in Amazon ads, and also recommend his debut fantasy novel A Facet for the Gem, if your looking for an exciting fantasy read (after you've finished Mirrors & Mist, of course). Based on C. L.'s advice, I'm going to take another shot at Amazon ads following his recommendations.

Regarding my last promotion, I didn't have much luck with my Fussy Librarian ad, either. I sold 3 ebooks the day the ad ran, which is quite a bit lower than sales results I've seen from sites like Ereader News Today (ENT) and BookSends (where I had 15 and 19 sales, respectively). I'll have another Countdown deal coming up in May, and will share my strategy with that promotion when the time comes.

Author Update: I'm crafting/refining the last chapter of Warlock & Wyrm, and am still on schedule for having my changes finished by the end of March (thought it's coming down to the wire). The book now stands over 131,000 words, which is so much more than I ever imagined, but I'm pleased with how the story has developed and feel I've tied up the many loose ends that were dangling.


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