Author Topic: Audio book pre-orders?  (Read 6112 times)  

Offline Mark E. Cooper

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Audio book pre-orders?
« on: January 28, 2015, 01:08:28 am »
I've never done a pre order. Reasons range from hating deadlines, too lazy, fear of it going wrong, fear of messing up the early sales bump in list etc..

BUT, the way ACX works is this. Find your book at ACX (using the tool to search Amazon's database) claim it, and then make a proposal for getting auditions. So in theory, I could put a book up called Merki Wars Book 5 for pre order, claim it on ACX, and then have the audio, the ebook, and the paperback all launch the same day.

1. Have you done something like this? Did it go pear shaped?
2. Did pre orders lose you visibility?
3. If you were me would you run a mile from pre orders?

Here's another idea. I give the manuscript to my narrator, but I don't set up a pre order. He tells me when the files are ready, I proof them outside of ACX, and I launch the kindle version, claim the book, and he uploads the files THAT DAY. ACX generally takes two weeks to QC and get the book on sale, so the audio "should" arrive before the 30 day cliff.

1. Good idea?
2. Not worth the agro?
3. Do a combo? A 2 week preorder and proof outside of ACX to get the closer on sale date?

Or should I just do what I always do? Release kindle and paper together, and then audio when it's done months down the road?
« Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 01:10:12 am by Mark E. Cooper »

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    Offline Chris Fox

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #1 on: January 28, 2015, 06:25:44 am »
    I'm planning on doing exactly this for the 2nd full novel in my series. Set up the pre-order, claim the book and then have the narrator get to work so I can launch them the same day. The idea being that every ad I use to drive traffic should offer readers the ability to get the audiobook (or use Whispersync).

    I did a lot of promotion for my first book before the audiobook was out, and that feels like money left on the table.

    Offline Mark E. Cooper

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #2 on: January 28, 2015, 06:50:47 am »
    I'm planning on doing exactly this for the 2nd full novel in my series. Set up the pre-order, claim the book and then have the narrator get to work so I can launch them the same day. The idea being that every ad I use to drive traffic should offer readers the ability to get the audiobook (or use Whispersync).

    I did a lot of promotion for my first book before the audiobook was out, and that feels like money left on the table.

    Getting the HNR visibility is why I want to do it I admit. The WS thing won't work for you, Chris. It takes weeks to get whisper set up. I have found they usually do it after 90 days and sales look good. That has been my experience so far anyway. Because this is book 5, I hope that the 4k or so buyers who bought the other audio books will buy this one. It would really be something if they all bought it the first week! :)

    So, would you get the files done, and proofed ready to upload, then get a 1 month (more?) pre-order so that ACX have 4 weeks to get the book up? How long are you going to set?

    Offline Chris Fox

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #3 on: January 28, 2015, 08:25:43 am »
    That's interesting about Whispersync. Maybe I just got lucky. It took two weeks from the time I submitted to approval, and the book launched with Whispersync. I wonder if they rushed the book so it would be ready for Christmas? Either way sounds like I can't count on it for future books.

    I'm setting the pre-order for April 27th, and will start sending the book to the narrator in chunks on March 15th. We should have it submitted to ACX for final approval by April 15th at the latest, though from what you're saying it may take a lot longer to get Whispersync. I guess as long as the audiobook is up for launch I'm a happy man.

    Offline Mark E. Cooper

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #4 on: January 28, 2015, 08:42:29 am »
    That's interesting about Whispersync. Maybe I just got lucky. It took two weeks from the time I submitted to approval, and the book launched with Whispersync. I wonder if they rushed the book so it would be ready for Christmas? Either way sounds like I can't count on it for future books.

    I'm setting the pre-order for April 27th, and will start sending the book to the narrator in chunks on March 15th. We should have it submitted to ACX for final approval by April 15th at the latest, though from what you're saying it may take a lot longer to get Whispersync. I guess as long as the audiobook is up for launch I'm a happy man.

    No, not lucky. SALES will bump you to the top of the list.

    So is launch day April 27th? Or is that the day you will activate the preorder? If the latter, how long will you have the preorder going?
    « Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 08:44:53 am by Mark E. Cooper »

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #5 on: January 28, 2015, 08:57:37 am »
    No, not lucky. SALES will bump you to the top of the list.

    So is launch day April 27th? Or is that the day you will activate the preorder? If the latter, how long will you have the preorder going?
    I've had WhisperSync take 3 months, happen during pre-order, or take somewhere in between. All my books have sold about the same on release, and all have had merchandising from Audible to some extent or other (including when they weren't WhisperSynced). To me, from that very small sample and a look at the Top 100 titles in my genre & whether or not they're WS'd)--it seems fairly random.

    Offline Chris Fox

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #6 on: January 28, 2015, 09:03:48 am »
    No, not lucky. SALES will bump you to the top of the list.

    So is launch day April 27th? Or is that the day you will activate the preorder? If the latter, how long will you have the preorder going?

    That's interesting. My book was selling decently when I submitted the audiobook to ACX, but certainly not great. My narrator seemed to think they did something out of the ordinary, but had no way to verify that.

    Launch day will be April 27th and I'll be setting up the pre-order the instant the cover is done. Probably in the next two weeks. The idea is to have the pre-order in place as soon as possible, so people can see the next book is coming out. I'm hoping that will help sales on the first book.

    I've had WhisperSync take 3 months, happen during pre-order, or take somewhere in between. All my books have sold about the same on release, and all have had merchandising from Audible to some extent or other (including when they weren't WhisperSynced). To me, from that very small sample and a look at the Top 100 titles in my genre & whether or not they're WS'd)--it seems fairly random.

    Rosalind, how did you find out they did merchandising on your behalf? I've wondered, but couldn't find a way to verify it.

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #7 on: January 28, 2015, 09:06:27 am »
    That's interesting. My book was selling decently when I submitted the audiobook to ACX, but certainly not great. My narrator seemed to think they did something out of the ordinary, but had no way to verify that.

    Launch day will be April 27th and I'll be setting up the pre-order the instant the cover is done. Probably in the next two weeks. The idea is to have the pre-order in place as soon as possible, so people can see the next book is coming out. I'm hoping that will help sales on the first book.

    Rosalind, how did you find out they did merchandising on your behalf? I've wondered, but couldn't find a way to verify it.
    Somebody there tells me, and sends me the links when they do something, which is nice! I can also see it in the Audible emails that pop up. (Worth subscribing in your genre. Nothing like seeing your book!)

    If they do something like including your book in a Buy One/Get One promo or similar, they'll probably tell you, I'd imagine.

    Offline Mark E. Cooper

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #8 on: January 28, 2015, 09:20:52 am »
    Somebody there tells me, and sends me the links when they do something, which is nice! I can also see it in the Audible emails that pop up. (Worth subscribing in your genre. Nothing like seeing your book!)

    If they do something like including your book in a Buy One/Get One promo or similar, they'll probably tell you, I'd imagine.

    That's interesting. I do get audible mails, but I've never seen my book in them, unlike Amazon. The thing with amazon is that they email you based upon pages you visit as well as stuff you've bought. That screws things up, because i check my pages weekly to make sure all is well.


    Launch day will be April 27th and I'll be setting up the pre-order the instant the cover is done. Probably in the next two weeks. The idea is to have the pre-order in place as soon as possible, so people can see the next book is coming out. I'm hoping that will help sales on the first book.



    Okay, I never considered they might not have based your WS treatment upon sales but on a special one off thing. Maybe the Whisper guy likes werewolves and wanted to buy it! You're not worried about reducing early sales bump with the pre order then? I shouldn't be either really, as sales stack over the long term. Soft launches, hard launches, pre orders... none of it means squat a year down the road.
    « Last Edit: January 28, 2015, 09:23:49 am by Mark E. Cooper »

    Offline 555aaa

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #9 on: January 28, 2015, 12:18:33 pm »
    When I go thru cdbaby they put me up the day after I upload (assuming I haven't screwed something up) but it takes 2-3 weeks for them to push to the Amazon mp3 and iTunes stores, about the same delay as ACX. On those, I get the "passed QC" email and status on my ACX project page, but there is this long and variable (and very inconvenient) couple week delay to go live, so I speculate that it has to do with their partners, particularly iTunes.  I wish that they would guarantee me a date, rather than letting it be unknown, but I think this is really associated with their partners. iTunes is also slow to report sales.

    I think Mark you are right to try to get them all out together.

    Here's another option Mark. Pre-sell the audiobook outside of ACX during the pre-order period (for example, sell mp3-CDs). Then, once the book goes live as a book, issue all the pre-sold mp3s and then stop offering them for sale. Then go onto ACX on the exclusive contract. The exclusive contract doesn't say that there are no existing copies of the audio, it only says that you grant them an exclusive license to sell, promote, market, etc. your audiobook. It says nothing about prior sales.

    I'm pretty sure it says that. But I would read it before doing anything that I said you should do :)

    If you want info on producing mp3-CDs, pm me.

    Offline Mark E. Cooper

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #10 on: January 28, 2015, 01:15:57 pm »
    When I go thru cdbaby they put me up the day after I upload (assuming I haven't screwed something up) but it takes 2-3 weeks for them to push to the Amazon mp3 and iTunes stores, about the same delay as ACX. On those, I get the "passed QC" email and status on my ACX project page, but there is this long and variable (and very inconvenient) couple week delay to go live, so I speculate that it has to do with their partners, particularly iTunes.  I wish that they would guarantee me a date, rather than letting it be unknown, but I think this is really associated with their partners. iTunes is also slow to report sales.

    I think Mark you are right to try to get them all out together.

    Here's another option Mark. Pre-sell the audiobook outside of ACX during the pre-order period (for example, sell mp3-CDs). Then, once the book goes live as a book, issue all the pre-sold mp3s and then stop offering them for sale. Then go onto ACX on the exclusive contract. The exclusive contract doesn't say that there are no existing copies of the audio, it only says that you grant them an exclusive license to sell, promote, market, etc. your audiobook. It says nothing about prior sales.

    I'm pretty sure it says that. But I would read it before doing anything that I said you should do :)

    If you want info on producing mp3-CDs, pm me.

    Thanks, but I'm all about downloads. I'll not venture into CDs

    Offline Chris Fox

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #11 on: January 28, 2015, 05:09:19 pm »
    That's interesting. I do get audible mails, but I've never seen my book in them, unlike Amazon. The thing with amazon is that they email you based upon pages you visit as well as stuff you've bought. That screws things up, because i check my pages weekly to make sure all is well.

    Okay, I never considered they might not have based your WS treatment upon sales but on a special one off thing. Maybe the Whisper guy likes werewolves and wanted to buy it! You're not worried about reducing early sales bump with the pre order then? I shouldn't be either really, as sales stack over the long term. Soft launches, hard launches, pre orders... none of it means squat a year down the road.

    Exactly! I'd rather launch with a lot of also bought items, which preorders will give me. That will soften launch day, but I'll have a massive promotion planned so it shouldn't hurt me much (I hope). I have seen my book in Audible emails, but that's the only advertising I've seen.

    Rosalind, it's interesting that they contact you. That suggests they may not have done much for my book and I just got lucky. Hopefully it generates some attention from them for the next book!

    Offline Mark E. Cooper

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    Re: Audio book pre-orders?
    « Reply #12 on: January 28, 2015, 10:19:27 pm »
    Exactly! I'd rather launch with a lot of also bought items, which preorders will give me. That will soften launch day, but I'll have a massive promotion planned so it shouldn't hurt me much (I hope). I have seen my book in Audible emails, but that's the only advertising I've seen.

    Rosalind, it's interesting that they contact you. That suggests they may not have done much for my book and I just got lucky. Hopefully it generates some attention from them for the next book!

    Oh yeah, the also bought slider fills in on launch day does it? That is very interesting. Sales pages look naked without them the first week.

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