Author Topic: This is it... my biggest (and best) launch ever (thanks to you)! UPDATED BK 3!  (Read 8906 times)  

Offline rachelmedhurst

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Back in the summer, I was at a place where I had to make a choice to take a month off writing and do some research on writing to market. You would've thought that after 3 years of publishing, I would know what I was supposed to be doing. But, no. I kept making the same mistakes over and over again, not quite hitting the right mark with any of my releases. And, there were a few.

You guys were so encouraging when I posted to say that this might be my last chance before I have to find a different full time job. You also helped me when I posted my ideas for the new series.

Well, after all your input, I'm finally ready to release my new UF series on Tuesday. So, I thought I would share my launch plans and document how it goes. I'm really nervous, but really excited too. I just have a gut feeling that this just might be the one. Fingers crossed!

Release date: 28th Nov

ARC's sent out: 28th Oct
Pre-order book 1 went live: 07th Nov
AMS Ads went live: 11th Nov
Pre-order book 2 went live: 17th Nov
Series page created: 22nd Nov
Paperback went live: 20th Nov
Paperback and Book 1 linked: 23th Nov
ARC review request email: 24th Nov
Also-boughts kicked in: 25th Nov

Pre-orders -
Book 1: 142
Book 2: 27

Reviews on release day: 47 with 4.7* (A lot of these were new ARC readers too!)

Release day and week 1 promo:
My newsletter, various author NL swaps, Thunderclap campaign, AMS and FB ads.

Week 2 promo:
A couple more newsletters, I love vampire novels, ebooksoda, bargainbooksy, Fantasy book deals, Romancing the dragon, Booksends, ereaderIQ, bookscream, other free sites. A couple of cross promo's.

I'm feeling so humble and thankful to everyone who is helping with my launch and those who helped me to get this series as good as I can.

I will update this as the release happens with numbers and ranks etc.
Wish me luck and thank you!  :)

RESULTS:

DAY ONE:
Newsletter swaps, my newsletter, FB and AMS ads (always only small budget).
Sales: 125
Page Reads: 1004
Pre-orders book 2: 50
Best Rank: #1200

DAY TWO:
Newsletter swaps, FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 110
Page Reads: 5896
Pre-orders book 2: 27
Best Rank: #1334

DAY THREE:
Newsletter swaps, FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 64
Page Reads: 3836
Pre-orders book 2: 18
Best Rank: #1194

DAY FOUR: - Not a good sales day at all. Not sure if this is Amazon reporting or it's naturally dropping off already.
Newsletter swaps, FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 26
Page Reads: 4513
Pre-orders book 2: 17
Best Rank: #1455

DAY FIVE:
Newsletter swaps, FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 42
Page Reads: 6829
Pre-orders book 2: 22
Best Rank: #2400

DAY SIX:
Newsletter swaps, Author FB group, FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 58
Page Reads: 6262
Pre-orders book 2: 20
Best Rank: #1900

DAY SEVEN:
Bargain Booksy, FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 60
Page Reads: 6829
Pre-orders book 2: 17
Best Rank: #1800

DAY EIGHT:
Booksends, Fantasy book deals, Speculative Fiction Showcase. FB and AMS ads.
Sales: 52
Page Reads: 4515
Pre-orders book 2: 21
Best Rank: #1900

DAY NINE:
One NL and ads.
Sales: 20
Page Reads: 5935
Pre-orders book 2: 13
Best Rank: #2400

DAY TEN:
ILVN and ads.
Sales: 36
Page Reads: 5391
Pre-orders book 2: 9
Best Rank: #2200

DAY ELEVEN -
Bookscream and ads.
SALES: 19
KENP: 5236
RANK: #3700
PRE-ORDERS FOR BOOK 2: 11

DAY TWELVE -
FKBT, ereaderIQ and ads.
SALES: 51
KENP: 5960
RANK: #2400
PRE-ORDERS FOR BOOK 2: 13

DAY THIRTEEN -
Romancing the dragon and ads.
SALES: 26
KENP: 6127
RANK: #1900
PRE-ORDERS FOR BOOK 2: 12

DAY FOURTEEN -
ebooksoda and ads.
SALES: 33
KENP: 4547
RANK: #2500
PRE-ORDERS FOR BOOK 2: 12

----
DAY FIFTEEN -
My NL and ads.
REVIEWS BY DAYS END: 64
SALES: 43
KENP: 6729
RANK: #2300
PRE-ORDERS FOR MAGICALLY BONDED: 43
----

DAY SIXTEEN -
Ads.
SALES: 13
KENP: 5569
RANK: #2500
PRE-ORDERS FOR MAGICALLY BONDED: 17


RESULTS:

All in all, this is the best release I've had by far! I've sold almost 1,000 copies and had over 80,000 page reads in just over 2 weeks. I've also got almost 350 pre-orders for book 2.

Having the two weeks promo did help to keep the book sticky. I just hope that now it's full price, it can stay that way. I'm trying not to panic that sales and rank will drop!

I've saved the bigger promo sites to use for book 1 when book 3 comes out in February. Fingers crossed that will breathe new life into the series too.

I'm astounded and grateful to my mailing list for producing over 60 ARC reviews over the first week of release. I was so shocked considering a huge amount of them weren't regular fans. I was also really worried the book wouldn't be good enough, like most of us are when releasing a new series. However, I was very pleasantly proved wrong.

I've been approached by Tantor and will be signing a 3 book audio contract for this series! This is really exciting as I've never worked with them before!

So, in conclusion, writing to market in a genre you enjoy really does work. I don't know if I can keep doing this full time, although if I can keep the book sticky until book 2 comes out, then I should be able to!

I'm going to start a new series along a similar thread when book 3 is written to try and keep that momentum. Fingers crossed I can launch it in the spring.

I've tried to plan for the release of book 2, but it's not been as easy. If anyone has any good tips for those next book releases, I'd appreciate them!

And, lastly, thank you so much to all those who shared my book, grabbed my book, gave me advice, gave me encouragement. I really couldn't have done it without you.

For those of you struggling, keep going, keep learning and listen very carefully to what those who are successful are trying to tell you. For some reason, I never quite did what people on here and in groups were saying. It really is simple:

Write a good book that's in your genre market, but not a carbon copy.
Get an amazing cover that fits with your genre.
Write an amazing blurb.
Build a mailing list.
Plan your release in advance.

Thanks for coming along on my ride with me! Fingers crossed I don't fall off the horse. :D

-----

UPDATE: 27/02/2018

Yesterday was the release day of book 3 in this series. It's been a fantastic 3 months since the launch of Magically Bound. Here's some thoughts and figures:

Sales of the whole series: Almost 3k
KENP: Almost 1.1 mil.
Reviews: Book 1 - 79, Book 2 - 47, Book 3 - 32.

Thoughts:

1. My ARC team/mailing list are amazing. I've kept the NL engaged twice a month, asked their opinions on what I'm working on etc, and it's worked wonders. I had 32 reviews on book 3 by the end of release day yesterday!

2. I didn't have much budget for AMS or FB ads, but I still used them. I would certainly have used even more money if I'd had it. I think that may have made a difference in getting me over the 1k threshold with book 1. Book 3 managed to get to 3k yesterday with mainly KU borrows.

3. Newsletter swaps with authors in your genre are really good!

4. Sales and reads did go down in Feb, which means the 30 day cliff set in. Luckily, I released on the 60th day, so it's been boosted again. I plan to release book 4 in 6 weeks and book 5 (the final book) 6 weeks after that. The whole series will be out by the end of May. Quick releases do keep income up in this case.

5. All books have been full price for 2 months now. This makes me happy as I have a lot of room for promo's when book 5 comes out.

6. After Tantor bought the rights to my first 3 books, I approached them when I decided to do another 2 books to complete the series and they bought the rights for those too. Dream come true!

Final heartfelt thought. In August last year, I gave the universe and myself an ultimatum. I had been living off nothing for 2.5 years and things were getting tight and stressful. I decided that if I wasn't making enough money to live on by January 2018, I would cut back on writing and go to get a full time job doing something else. After a lot of hard work, December was my first trout month (trout is earning low 4 figures). Jan was double what I earned in December. Feb has gone down, but I'm still a trout! Which means I'm making enough to live on, yay! I'm hoping that having the whole series out and getting another one out will nudge me up to mid-4 figures so I'm more secure in what I'm earning. I'm so grateful to have the pressure lifted! I've got my whole year's worth of books planned and I'm super excited!

Thanks again everyone!
« Last Edit: February 27, 2018, 06:57:38 am by rachelmedhurst »

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    Offline anniejocoby

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #1 on: November 25, 2017, 01:33:27 pm »
    Wishing you all the best! Be sure and update us on how it goes!

    Two dollars! Two dollars! I want my two dollars!!!
    Annie Jocoby | Annie Jocoby website

    Offline CarolynVMurray

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #2 on: November 25, 2017, 02:10:46 pm »
    I think the worst thing we do as authors is just toss our latest title out without any kind off thoughtful preparation. You really have a well thought out plan, and I'm sure it will make a huge difference in your sales numbers. Good luck.
    Carolyn V. Murray | Website

    Offline PearlEarringLady

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #3 on: November 25, 2017, 02:38:23 pm »
    Fingers crossed for a great launch! I'll be watching with interest.

    Offline Evenstar

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #4 on: November 25, 2017, 02:42:15 pm »
    That's fantastic Rachel! Really well laid out plan. I like how you've released the paperback and got everything in place before the ebook release.

    Where on earth did you find all these new reviewers? That's off to a fantastic start! Will be watching with interest.

    Offline Fleurina

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #5 on: November 25, 2017, 02:43:14 pm »
    Good luck with it, Rachel - the book covers are gorgeous - piqued my interest.


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    Offline Talbot

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #6 on: November 25, 2017, 03:05:11 pm »
    You're certainly not alone in getting it wrong the first time. Good luck!

    Offline rachelmedhurst

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #7 on: November 25, 2017, 03:17:19 pm »
    Thanks so much for your encouragement everyone, I really appreciate it.  :D

    Evenstar, I put a call out to my mailing list after asking them to help me decide on the cover and blurb. They've been fantastic!

    Rachel Medhurst | Website/Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Goodreads | Google+

    Offline Luke Everhart

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #8 on: November 26, 2017, 09:00:26 am »
    Good luck! Thanks for the details and looks like you're going to do great.  🤞
    Over 100 pre-orders & 34 reviews on book 1 at 4.7 stars with 2 days until it goes live!
    And those are terrific covers.
    They're on my to-read list now.
    I hope you post details as it goes. Looks like you have a smart plan. ...I'm going to be copying a lot from Izzy Shows and you on my launch 😏
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    Offline T E Scott Writer

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #9 on: November 26, 2017, 09:05:16 am »
    Looks like you're going to nail it, well done!

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    Offline Sapphire

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #10 on: November 26, 2017, 09:29:16 am »
    Looks like a great launch ahead for you! Please keep us updated on results.
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    Offline rachelmedhurst

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #11 on: November 26, 2017, 09:35:02 am »
    Thanks, guys!

    They're on my to-read list now.
    I hope you post details as it goes. Looks like you have a smart plan. ...I'm going to be copying a lot from Izzy Shows and you on my launch 😏

    Thanks, Luke! I will post details as it goes. Luckily, I'm going to a concert in Brighton (UK) on release day, so I won't be refreshing for a few hours (which might save my sanity), but will update everyone the next day and onwards.

    I actually spoke to Izzy and took some of her advice, so there's a lot of that in my plan too! :)

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    Offline wingsandwords

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #12 on: November 26, 2017, 07:26:20 pm »
    Thanks, guys!

    Thanks, Luke! I will post details as it goes. Luckily, I'm going to a concert in Brighton (UK) on release day, so I won't be refreshing for a few hours (which might save my sanity), but will update everyone the next day and onwards.

    I actually spoke to Izzy and took some of her advice, so there's a lot of that in my plan too! :)

    Don't worry, I'll be refreshing plenty for you!  :P You've done so much and I'm so excited to see how it goes for you. Totally stalking this launch.

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    Offline CynthiaClay

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #13 on: November 26, 2017, 10:21:41 pm »
    Congrats and may your luck continue to hold. If you do more please let us know so we can learn from you.

    Thanks for supporting my art.
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    Offline LittleFox

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #14 on: November 27, 2017, 12:12:15 am »
    You're rocking it! It's going to be amazing, I'll be cheering you on  :D

    Offline C. Gold

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #15 on: November 27, 2017, 04:52:24 am »
    Ooh well done! Super grats and hope you sell lots!

    Offline Jim Johnson

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #16 on: November 27, 2017, 06:02:53 am »
    Congrats on the launch! Keep at it and don't forget to get cranking on book 2 and 3 and beyond.

    Offline dpwoolliscroft

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #17 on: November 27, 2017, 07:37:02 am »
    Good luck! Really interesting to see your launch plan. Looking forward to the updates.

    Offline rachelmedhurst

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #18 on: November 27, 2017, 08:50:11 am »
    Thanks so much, guys! I'm pretty nervous for tomorrow, but confident too! Will update the pre-order final tomorrow morning. :D

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    Offline achick

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #19 on: November 27, 2017, 09:37:11 am »
    Thanks for sharing along the way, Rachel! I'm totally stalking this launch. Can't wait to see how well it goes!

    Offline SA_Soule

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #20 on: November 27, 2017, 10:22:23 am »
    Thank you for sharing.

    Lord knows I've made my fair share of mistakes as a self-publisher. Best of luck!

    S. A. Soule

    Offline MaryArdine

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #21 on: November 27, 2017, 03:18:07 pm »
    Sounds like a well-thought out plan. Wishing you great success.
    Mary

    Offline KitSarge

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #22 on: November 27, 2017, 05:18:52 pm »
    Good luck!
     

    Offline Rose Andrews

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #23 on: November 27, 2017, 05:23:44 pm »
    Just stopping by to wish you the best, Rachel! Your covers look amazing! Crossing fingers for a wonderful launch and growth (and the avoidance of a job not writing lol).  8)

    Offline Kristy Tate

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    Re: This is it... my biggest launch ever (thanks to you)!
    « Reply #24 on: November 28, 2017, 08:18:04 am »
    Watching with interest. Good luck!

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