Thursday, July 7, 2016

My Kindle Countdown Deal Experience

I mentioned in my previous blog post how necessary marketing is to having a successful career as an indie writer/publisher.  (At least it's a requirement for most of us. I do recognize that there are a few outliers who will achieve success without it.) That being the case, I thought I'd try my hand at offering a Kindle Countdown Deal.

A Kindle Countdown Deal refers to the ability to offer your book for sale on Amazon at a discounted price for a limited time. The way it typically works is that you might discount your book from, say, $3.99 to 99 cents.  From there, the price will move up incrementally - for instance, from $.99 to $1.99 to $2.99 - over a period of several days until it's back at full price.  (While it's discounted, a clock on the book's product page counts down the amount of time left until the next jump in price.)

The theory behind a Countdown Deal is, of course, that your book is on sale for a limited time, so hopefully that will spur readers to purchase it. (On a side note, you do have to be in KDP Select in order to run a Kindle Countdown Deal, and Select requires that your book be available only on Amazon.) Hoping to juice sales a little, I decided to run a Countdown Deal on my novel EON to see what would happen.

My KCD began on July 1 and will run through tomorrow (July 8).  Thus far, I'm really pleased. EON had its highest number of 1-day sales (23) during the countdown and also picked up a few more nice reviews.  In all honesty, however, some sales were undoubtedly the result of me also doing a few promos during the countdown. (Remember, you have to market/promote.) Page reads did not increase in numbers that I would consider to be proportionate with sales, but I'm thinking - hoping, really - that a lot of people may have snagged it via Kindle Unlimited and simply haven't gotten around to reading it yet.

The thing that really got me excited, however, was the dramatic increase that I had in my mail list.  Frankly speaking, it's still a very small list, but it's grown exponentially during the course of the countdown. That alone has pretty much made the countdown a success in my book.

In short, I believe that the Kindle Countdown Deal has a place in my marketing strategy.  I think it's important, however, to not simply focus on the direct return on investment, but also the long-term effect, like readers enjoying your work and expressing their interest in reading more of it (such as by subscribing to your mail list).  I think having a long-term vision and outlook is important and will definitely lend itself to success.

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