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Stone and Silt
by Harvey Chute

$2.99
Kindle Edition published 2013-08-14
Bestseller ranking: 713665

Product Description
Big Al's Books & Pals 2014 Readers' Choice Awards: Young Adult Nominee

A ruthless murder and a stolen shipment of gold.

At school, sixteen-year-old Nikaia Wales endures the taunts of bullies who call her a “half-breed.” At home, she worries about how her family will react if she reveals her growing feelings for the quiet boy next door.

Those are soon the least of her troubles. Nikaia discovers a hidden cache of gold, and when police find a corpse nearby, her father becomes a suspect. Worse, Elias Doyle is circling, hungry to avenge his brother’s death.

Nikaia desperately searches for clues to save her father. In her quest to find the killer, she learns about the power of family, friendship, and young love....

Author Topic: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day  (Read 5081 times)  

Offline jazzywaltz

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How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« on: March 10, 2016, 02:09:33 PM »
When I first joined Kboards, a bunch of people were asking me to do a post about my release day strategy for Burned by Magic. I never got around to doing that, but because you guys are such a great community and I've learned so much from you all I thought I'd do one for Bound by Magic, which released today!

To keep things simple, I'll just do a numbered list here of the actions I took which I think were successful:

1. I put up Bound for pre-order on 1/24 - a month after Burned released. This worked out well for me because readers were finishing Burned and emailing me asking for the sequel, so this gave them something to look forward to and pre-orders sold like hotcakes. Unlike Burned, which was on pre-order for 99 cents, I put Bound up for pre-order at $2.99. From the get-go I was getting something like 50-60 pre-orders a day, and the week before release it was more like 80-90. Total pre-orders were 3094, and my ranking the day before release (yesterday) was in the 1200-1500s.

2. I ran a KCD for Burned by Magic during the week of release (3/5 - 3/12). The KCD is still running as of now, and the book is priced at 99 cents for the week. I also scheduled several promos during the KCD including ENT, Booksends, ILVN, and more, as well as emailed both my current mailing list and two new lists I got from giveaways. The day before the KCD started Burned was in the 600s, and it has since jumped into the 200s and stayed there. Also, ever since the KCD started running my pre-orders jumped from around 70 per day to 90+ per day, sometimes even 100+.

One thing I want to note here is that though some people warned me that running a KCD with these promos could lower the quality of my also-boughts, that hasn't yet occurred for me. In fact, they've pretty much stayed the same. So I'm happy about that. I started a separate thread for the KCD a few days ago which you can follow here if you like: http://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,232074.0.html

3) I sent out around 100 ARC copies of my book about three weeks before release date. There were three main sources of ARC readers I used:

1 - my own ARC mailing list. I built this list by sending an email to my current newsletter subscribers inviting them to join. I believe I have somewhere around 120 readers on this list. This is a new weapon in my arsenal as I had no ARC list when Burned came out.

2 - a book club I'm a member of on Facebook. I asked one of the admins to post a call for ARC readers for me, which was something I also did when Burned was releasing and I got a decent number of reviews from them that time, probably 5-7.

3 - Hungry Author's Review Service, which is similar in nature to Netgalley. I used them for Burned and got probably 8-10 reviews off them.

4) I sent out an email to my subscribers the day after pre-order went live inviting them to pre-order the book.  This jump started my pre-orders, got my ranking up into the thousands, and helped populate my also-boughts early on.

5) I sent out a reminder email to the ARC readers (the ones who got a copy of my book) on the morning of release (today) asking them to please post their review on Amazon. That was around 10am west coast time, and at 2pm I'm sitting very pretty at 28 reviews and counting, which is INSANE. I think it took me around a month to get that many for Burned. A good number of these reviews were also posted on Goodreads (I actually had 14 reviews on Goodreads prior to release day).

6) I sent an email to my subscribers telling them that Bound by Magic was live on Amazon. These were to my CURRENT subscribers only, and not to the new subscribers I'd recently gotten from two promos because I'd already sent them welcome emails and advertised the KCD for Burned and I didn't want to get spammy with them. I probably got something like 20 sales off that. I also did a promoted post on Facebook but I don't know that did much.

7) I also booked the same two promo services I used for Burned's release day - BKnights and Hungry Author's Bookblast service. I can't say how many sales I've gotten from them because around 300 of my pre-orders spilled onto today's sales graph, but I think probably 20-50 from each. Which isn't bad since my book isn't priced at 99 cents.

Despite Amazon's site glitching out majorly today and nearly giving me a heart attack when both my books disappeared, I'm pretty happy with where I'm sitting at right now. #211 paid in the Kindle Store, 28 reviews, and BOTH of my books have the #1 and #2 spots in several different categories. Not too shabby, methinks.

EDIT: Ranking is now at #150 and I've got 35 reviews. WOOT!

I'll post updates here if anyone's interested in following. There wasn't a ton of interest in my KCD thread so maybe people are tired of hearing from me. :P
« Last Edit: March 10, 2016, 10:38:30 PM by jazzywaltz »

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Online Nathan Elliott

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #1 on: March 10, 2016, 02:17:18 PM »
Thanks for sharing, Jazzy, and congrats on a strong launch!  Hadn't heard of Hungry Author before.  Will take a look at them.


Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #2 on: March 10, 2016, 02:26:43 PM »
Thanks for sharing, Jazzy, and congrats on a strong launch!  Hadn't heard of Hungry Author before.  Will take a look at them.

Thanks! Their website is www.hungryauthor.com.

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Offline Marilyn Peake

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #3 on: March 10, 2016, 02:29:00 PM »
Thanks so much for sharing this, Jasmine! I'm currently writing the second book in my YA series. The information you shared is very helpful!

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Offline Lisa Blackwood

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #4 on: March 10, 2016, 03:57:54 PM »
Thanks for sharing. I've heard of HungryAuthors but didn't know they had a newsletter blast service.

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #5 on: March 10, 2016, 04:03:10 PM »
Fantastic results! What made you decide to put up the preorder for Book 2 at 2.99? Was it the fact that you planned to do the KCD for Book 1 to coincide with the launch?

Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2016, 04:20:03 PM »
Fantastic results! What made you decide to put up the preorder for Book 2 at 2.99? Was it the fact that you planned to do the KCD for Book 1 to coincide with the launch?

Honestly it was just the fact that at $2.99 I get 70% royalty and at 99 cents I only get 35%. I already knew that readers of Burned were going to jump on pre-orders as soon as I put the book up and would be willing to pre-order it at $2.99 so I didn't see any reason to use the lower price point. In retrospect, if I could do it again I would have done 99 cents for the first week so I could offer a special pre-order price to my mailing list, and then afterwards raise the price to $2.99. If I'd run the pre-order price at 99 cents I would have made 83% less than I did at $2.99.


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Offline Sonya Bateman

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2016, 04:55:54 PM »
Thanks for sharing all this! Phew, you have been super busy... hope you're giving yourself a day or two to celebrate before you jump into book three! :D

I'm glad to hear that the Countdown deal didn't saddle you with irrelevant also-boughts. I'd heard that happened as well... good to know it doesn't happen all the time! :)

Congratulations on doing so awesome!
Credentials: I used to write stuff.

Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #8 on: March 10, 2016, 05:08:10 PM »
Thanks for sharing all this! Phew, you have been super busy... hope you're giving yourself a day or two to celebrate before you jump into book three! :D

I wish! I'm actually already 30k into Book 3... I want to get it out within a month or so, so that I don't lose momentum! But I've been so distracted by this release that I didn't do any writing today and not much yesterday, and the week before I was on vacation... So yeah. I'm thinking tomorrow I'll sit down and get a big chunk done.

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Offline Sonya Bateman

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #9 on: March 10, 2016, 05:11:09 PM »
I wish! I'm actually already 30k into Book 3... I want to get it out within a month or so, so that I don't lose momentum! But I've been so distracted by this release that I didn't do any writing today and not much yesterday, and the week before I was on vacation... So yeah. I'm thinking tomorrow I'll sit down and get a big chunk done.

Well, at least you took release day off, even if it was involuntary! :D And you are rocking it out with book 3 already... awesome!
Credentials: I used to write stuff.

Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #10 on: March 10, 2016, 06:53:08 PM »
Well, at least you took release day off, even if it was involuntary! :D And you are rocking it out with book 3 already... awesome!

Thanks!

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Online Monique

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Re: My release day strategy
« Reply #11 on: March 10, 2016, 06:55:02 PM »
Impressive launch!

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Offline GhostGirlWriter

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #12 on: March 10, 2016, 07:02:56 PM »
Great launch! Thanks for sharing your strategy. :)

Offline Jenny Schwartz

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #13 on: March 10, 2016, 07:07:43 PM »
First, congratulations! What a fab release! and secondly, thank you so much for sharing what you did and what worked. Much appreciated.

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Offline Melissa McClone

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #14 on: March 10, 2016, 07:20:01 PM »
Congrats on the great release and thanks for sharing how you got there!

Offline 555aaa

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #15 on: March 10, 2016, 08:21:27 PM »
Congrats and thanks for posting! So when's the audiobook(s) coming out?  There's a couple narrators I can think of who might be a good fit and I bet some other folks here might have suggestions, too.

Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #16 on: March 10, 2016, 08:45:01 PM »
Thanks everyone! I'm really happy with how things have turned out.

Congrats and thanks for posting! So when's the audiobook(s) coming out?  There's a couple narrators I can think of who might be a good fit and I bet some other folks here might have suggestions, too.

I'm still doing some research regarding audiobooks before I decide which way to go on them. I definitely want to get some out though.

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Offline J.T. Williams

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #17 on: March 10, 2016, 08:45:43 PM »
Awesome! Awesome! Awesome!

Congrats!


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Offline Felix R. Savage

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #18 on: March 10, 2016, 09:51:53 PM »
In retrospect, if I could do it again I would have done 99 cents for the first week so I could offer a special pre-order price to my mailing list, and then afterwards raise the price to $2.99. If I'd run the pre-order price at 99 cents I would have made 83% less than I did at $2.99.

Congratulations on a fantastic launch!!

Question: Is it actually possible to put a book up on pre-order for $0.99, and then after one week has passed, 2-3 weeks BEFORE launch date, raise the pre-order price to $2.99? Would not all the people who pre-ordered for 99c end up getting charged $2.99?

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Offline jaehaerys

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #19 on: March 10, 2016, 09:56:07 PM »
Another informative thread, thank you, Jazzy! I've learned a lot from your launch strategy, thank you for sharing it, and congratulations!  :D


Offline Nicholas Erik

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #20 on: March 10, 2016, 10:03:03 PM »
Kudos on the successful launch, Jazzy. Very impressive.

How many people do you have on your main list, out of curiosity?

@Felix: Amazon has a pre-order price guarantee. So the first people would get it at $0.99. Those who snagged it after the price was raised would get it at $2.99.

Where you might run into to tricky stuff is in reverse: if you run it at $2.99 for the beginning and then decide you want to switch it to $0.99 during release week. I believe all the pre-orders at $2.99 from the earlier weeks would then be charged only $0.99. This is the way it works if a CD/video game/Blu-Ray/paper book drops in price between when you ordered it and when it's released.

Nick

Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #21 on: March 10, 2016, 10:31:31 PM »
Congratulations on a fantastic launch!!

Question: Is it actually possible to put a book up on pre-order for $0.99, and then after one week has passed, 2-3 weeks BEFORE launch date, raise the pre-order price to $2.99? Would not all the people who pre-ordered for 99c end up getting charged $2.99?

Well, to be fair my book was up for pre-order for nearly two months. But yes, I checked with Amazon and they said that it's fine. If you start off at 99 cents and then raise it to 2.99, the ones who pre-ordered at 99 cents will still get it at that price. If you do it the other way around, however, and start at 2.99 then drop to 99 cents, those who order at 2.99 will get it at 99 cents. The idea is that Amazon wants to make sure those who pre-ordered get it at the lowest price possible, so anyone who pre-ordered at 99 cents will of course not be charged 2.99.

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Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #22 on: March 10, 2016, 10:35:10 PM »
How many people do you have on your main list, out of curiosity?

By main list, do you mean my organic sign ups? If so, I have 404. But what I consider to be my "main list" includes email lists I've gotten from FKG that I've already used in the past with success and which have brought me new readers. So if you include those it's more like 1200.

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Offline Silly Writer

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #23 on: March 10, 2016, 10:43:45 PM »
Did you lose your ranking of the preorder when the book launched? It was my understanding any preorders don't count toward release day initial rank...has that changed?

(I hope so! Apple counts preorders right along with all other sales, and I think Amazon should too)

Offline jazzywaltz

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Re: How I got a #150 ranking and 35 reviews on release day
« Reply #24 on: March 10, 2016, 10:49:49 PM »
Did you lose your ranking of the preorder when the book launched? It was my understanding any preorders don't count toward release day initial rank...has that changed?

(I hope so! Apple counts preorders right along with all other sales, and I think Amazon should too)

You don't really "lose" your ranking... Amazon ranks your book on number of sales per day as well as your overall sales trend, so your pre-orders count toward your sales rank, just only on the day the pre-orders were actually made. Your "initial rank" is technically the rank on the first day your book is available for pre-order, not the first day your book goes live.

So if you're asking whether or not I got to count those 3000 pre-orders toward one day of ranking, the answer is no. But in my opinion they still helped establish a good ranking for me and they also helped populate my also-boughts.

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