The September update is a little late due to a well – deserved holiday break, from the end of September until the first week in October.
While August was a record sales month and September sales started with a hiss and a roar, with another record day, the numbers rapidly tailed off rapidly after the first week. I am not sure why this happened though it could have been that my Amazon add wasn’t running as I seem to have suspended it somehow. I also wasn’t running any Facebook adds as I continue to test new marketing theories and consider the advice of my new mentor and guru. Library or KENP volumes were strong until the last week of the month which is pleasing.
The upshot of all this is my self – imposed stretch target of three thousand copies sold by March one next year is looking even further off now.
To address this challenge, I have already run a free giveaway promotion for the second novel in the series as a marketing ploy in October. I would have done this for the first novel. However, a technical issue means I can’t at the moment. I will run a few more promotions through the next few weeks to garner interest. With an hour to run on the promotion there have been 130 free downloads in the twenty – four hour period! If only I could get that many paid downloads daily!
While it may seem counter intuitive I am also reviewing my Kindle ebook pricing upwards. There are many schools of thought around pricing. I have always priced myself at the lower end to make the novels accessible. Recently I have been advised I should re-consider this and instead use the free giveaways as a promotion incentive instead to boost my readership. Within reason higher priced books are generally perceived as being of better quality, not just in terms of the story, but in the production quality and grammar as well. The opposite is often true of books priced at the lower end which is why the $0.99 books often don’t sell at all, or well. Pricing right is the key.
I did quite a bit of thinking and research regarding the pricing and an overall strategy to increase my fan base and set up an expectant market for the fourth novel in the trilogy and possibly a fifth. I landed on a pretty simple process to work out prices for my books based on adding up the total cost of all the books I have downloaded from Amazon over the last year, plus all those recommended for me, and getting an average. I am applying this methodology to the first two novels in the series and I am pricing The Lifeboat at the same level I paid for the last ebook I downloaded from a major publisher.
I’ll let you all know how these strategies are working in upcoming posts.