Author Topic: Christmas Bookbub Results  (Read 894 times)  

Online AlecHutson

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Christmas Bookbub Results
« on: December 24, 2018, 12:24:45 pm »
About a month ago a topic was started about whether the Christmas season would negatively (or positively) affect the results of a Bookbub promotion. At the time I had happened to have just secured a .99 Bookbub deal for my first novel for the 23rd of December, and so I said I would report back so that those interested could see how Bookbubs perform this late in the holiday season.

I was going to just add my results to the end of the original thread

https://www.kboards.com/index.php/topic,306577.msg3755025.html#msg3755025

but I suppose I'll go ahead and start a new one.

A little background - this was my first book, published two years ago. It's entire life it has been in KU, and I've consistently been turned down for Bookbub promotions. Well, my KU term was set to expire on the 23rd of November, and when I applied for the Bookbub (in mid-November) I told them that if I was chosen I would go out of KU and put my books up wide until the promotion was finished. I thought this might be of interest to those who are in KU and hesitant to leave without the assurance that you'll get a Bookbub to help launch yourself Wide. Anyway, they agreed to feature me in a US & International Bookbub on the 23rd of December.

So I left KU for a month with that book. I did this knowing that I would certainly lose money in the long run - despite that my first book had been in KU for 24 months (and is approaching 9 million lifetime page reads) it was still averaging 9k page reads a day in the three weeks of November. The depth of the KU reader pool in fantasy continues to impress me, honestly. Anyway, I pulled the book from KU really just because it seemed to me that Bookbub was a rite of passage that I needed to have as an indie. Also, I've never cracked #400 in the store or gotten an orange bestseller tag, so I thought that would be pretty cool if it ended up happening.

I had some minor reservations about doing the Bookbub on 12/23. I thought folks might be distracted and not willing to spend any money on themselves after splurging on gifts for others. Maybe others have similar reservations, so you can check out my results.

Now, I have almost no reference, outside of the occasional Bookbub results thread that gets posted here. It seems like it went okay, and I think I've already made back the cost of the ad (which was - I believe - 730 USD. I could check but that's about right).

These were the first day results:

Amazon.com: 1246 sales (peaked at #104, that I saw)
Amazon.ca: 65 (peaked at #21)
Amazon.au: 52 (around #100)
Amazon.uk: 238 (#222)

Total Amazon sales: 1560
Itunes: 105
B&N: 121
Kobo: 52
Audio - Unknown! I'm actually really curious how sales were, but my ACX sales page hasn't updated since the 22nd.

So total sales that I saw were 1,838 for the first day. Obviously not all can be attributed to the Bookbub, but I've only been averaging about 50 sales a day with that book or so in the days before the Bub. Actually, I'm disappointed in the Wide sales . . . but Amazon treated me well, yet again.

Second book in the series sales for the first day: 59 (at 5.99)


Second day sales have been pretty good. I can update here when I get those results back, but I'm nearing 300 for the day so far.

So all in all I'm pleased. Bookbub seems to still be a good investment, even in the holiday season. I could certainly see how regular Bookbubs would be an invaluable way to build Wide readership. For me, I'm really missing those page reads, so I'll be going back into KU in a day or two. But it has been a good experience, and I finally got that Bestseller tag (#1 in Sword and Sorcery - missed out on Epic Fantasy because for some reason Nora Roberts has just released an epic fantasy novel :-P)

Alec Hutson

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    Offline ShaneCarrow

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    Re: Christmas Bookbub Results
    « Reply #1 on: December 25, 2018, 12:49:06 am »
    I think mine might be the Bookbub you were talking about - mine was December 24 and has wrapped up now.

    It was for a 6-book complete box set which I slashed from $9.99 to 99c. Like you I'd had a lot of trouble getting a Bookbub but I wouldn't go wide, and I suspected (correctly I guess) that they'd only accept a KU title if it was a huge bargain. I think the massive price cut was also how I ended up the lead title in the Deal newsletter.

    Anyway I've at least broken even: 1,642 sales for $477 (so this day alone makes December my best month of the year). Currently sitting at #70 on the ebook list and #2 on both horror and post-apocalyptic for all books in general, beaten only by Bird Box. I think I'll put it back up to full price by Christmas night USA time, and hopefully pick up a bit of KU flow-on. Even if not, I'm more than happy with how it turned out, I was worried Christmas time would make it a flop.

    edit - hey, I'm #1 horror in Australia, that's nice!
    « Last Edit: December 25, 2018, 01:00:09 am by ShaneCarrow »

    Shane Carrow

    Offline A. N. Other Author

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    Re: Christmas Bookbub Results
    « Reply #2 on: December 25, 2018, 01:16:16 am »
    I'd suspect KU BookBubs would go slightly better just after Christmas due to kindles coming with a free trial on KU. The titles will be marketed and those with decent visibility just before will more than likely land in the new customers' inboxes. If memory serves, don't we normally get a small boost in price per KENP in January - possibly due to kindle sales?

    Offline PhoenixFromTheAshes

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    Re: Christmas Bookbub Results
    « Reply #3 on: December 25, 2018, 07:30:58 am »
    If memory serves, don't we normally get a small boost in price per KENP in January - possibly due to kindle sales?

    Actually, January payouts have historically (all 3 years past) dropped markedly from the Nov and Dec payouts.

    I think the massive price cut was also how I ended up the lead title in the Deal newsletter.

    Nice BB run! However, BB has a template they use to always position the categories the same way (note that some categories don't feature books every day). It all depends on the subscriber's choices which books come first. For instance, yours in Horror was #6 in my email.

    Offline ShaneCarrow

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    Re: Christmas Bookbub Results
    « Reply #4 on: December 25, 2018, 03:31:58 pm »
    I was just going by the deals on the actual Bookbub site - I only signed up the other day in order to check it was in the email correctly, but I must have signed up for the wrong one because the email I'm getting just shows a single Deal of the Day, I think in any genre. Christmas Day's was The Orphan's Tale by Pam Jenoff.

    Shane Carrow

    Offline ShaneCarrow

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    Re: Christmas Bookbub Results
    « Reply #5 on: December 25, 2018, 03:33:32 pm »
    Also: I had Day 2 (Christmas Day) flow-through of another 235 copies for about $180 as of 5pm east coast time, and have bumped the price up to $2.99. Will be interesting to see if being high in the charts gets you any more leverage as you start inching your prices back up.

    Shane Carrow

    Offline Eskimo

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    Re: Christmas Bookbub Results
    « Reply #6 on: December 26, 2018, 03:37:44 pm »
    Yes, the KU page reads resulting from a BB promo can be very impressive, I had one monstrous month with nearly 700k page reads for 8 books following a BB feature. I went wide a couple of years ago, and concluded that my wide sales almost made up for the lack of Page Read numbers. Long term, I suspect being wide will bring greater revenue due to increased book sales for new releases. I hope so anyway....

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