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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

Over the last two years I've learned a hell of a lot from Kindle Boards, and I thought that I would try to give something back. So here is my USA Today bestseller strategy for the week of May 4 -- May 10. I don't know if I'll reach it, but I'm going to give it my all. (Spoiler, the results are in, check them out at the bottom of this post)

I was recently accepted for a Bookbub deal of my Epic Fantasy Bundle, Whill of Agora Books 1-4. I will be discounting the $9.99 bundle to .99 from May 4-11. I was apprehensive about offering up the bundle at such a cheap price, and decided that if Bookbub accepted it I would use the momentum to try to hit the USA Today top 150. I recently hit it with a group of other authors with the bundle FIERCE (#94), and learned so much from the experience that I think I might have a shot. Given what I know, I think that I will need between 7,000 -- 10,000 sales on amazon for the week, and at least 500 on Barnes & Noble to qualify (Depending on mother's day sales spikes).

Below is a list of the 27 or so sites that I've contacted. My budget for this endeavor is $1,000.

Mon, May 4
1. Bookbub - $380
2. Fussy librarian - $8
3. Manybooks - $20
4. Discount Books Daily - $30 (4th -- 6th)
Tues, May 5
1. Ebook Habits - $10
2. Awesomegang - $10
3. Digital Book Today - $30
Wed, May 6
1. Free Booksy - $40
2. Kindle Boards - $35
3. Booklovers Heaven -- Free
4. Ebook Hounds - $28
Thurs, May7
1. Booktastic - $10
2. Book Sends - $50
3. Ebook Soda - $10
Fri, May 8
1. eReader Cafe - $25
2. Kindle Book Review - $25
3. E-Book Hunter - $22.50 (8th & 9th)
4. Pixlescroll - $22.50 (8th & 9th)
Sat May 9
1. E-book hunter
2. Pixlescroll
3. Kindle Nation Daily - $150 (9th -- 11th)
Sun May 10
1. Sweet Free Books - $5
2. Kindle Nation Daily
Below are the sites running the promotion all week
1. Reading Deal.com - $10
2. Choosey Bookworm - $20
3. People Reads - $15
4. New Free Kindle Books -- free
5. Kindle Book Promo - $25
6. Read Freely -- free
7. Book Goodies - $20

I've also got a few promotion lined up on Fiverr

I came in a little over budget with this one, at about $1,050, which is the biggest promotion I've ever done. At .35 profit per sale on Amazon and .53 for all Draft 2 Digital venues, I'm going to have to sell a little over 3,000 copies to break even, but I don't think that will be a problem.

The week kicks off with the Bookbub ad (today), which I predict will launch the book into the Amazon top 30 by May 5th. I've been keeping an eye on all the Fantasy bundles that Bookbub has been running, and each one has begun the next day in the top 30. I think I might have a slight advantage here, as I have four books in the bundle and not 3...we'll see. Assuming that Bookbub gets the bundle to the top 30, the hope is that the algorithms coupled with all the sites promoting throughout the week will keep it there (or at least in the top 100). The week ends with the other powerhouse, Kindle Nation Daily running their facebook triple play promo Saturday and Sunday.

Well, that's about it. I'll be posting throughout the week with updated sales figures and rankings.

I hope this thread helps other Indies with similar campaigns. Have a great day!  ;D

*Results* The Whill of Agora Bundle hit #144 on the USA Today Bestseller list on 5-14-15 for the week of 5-4-15 - 5-10-15.
 

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Good luck with this!

Can I ask if you saw any uptick in sales since you put the "From USA Today bestselling author Michael James Ploof" on your copies?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
jd_ruthers_85 said:
Good luck with this!

Can I ask if you saw any uptick in sales since you put the "From USA Today bestselling author Michael James Ploof" on your copies?
I can't say for sure, since we hit the list a month ago, and sales are up across the board because of all the people who have bought book 1 through the Bundle.
 

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As you go into this, make sure your back matter is exactly as you want it -- this will be a big moment to get new newsletter subscribers, or to start them on a series if you have one. You can send them to your Author Central page to see what you have. Think about your first call to action after "The End" as it's super important. Use it well!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
TexasGirl said:
As you go into this, make sure your back matter is exactly as you want it -- this will be a big moment to get new newsletter subscribers, or to start them on a series if you have one. You can send them to your Author Central page to see what you have. Think about your first call to action after "The End" as it's super important. Use it well!
Excellent advise. At the end of the bundle is a letter to the reader thanking them for their time and directing them to my mailing list. I offer a free eBook for new subscribers. I have also inserted the first chapter of another series in the same world.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Update:

Starting rank - #9,953 on Amazon, and #50,744 on Barnes and Noble. I will update ranking when practical.

The Bookbub email just went out at 12:45 PM eastern time, and so far 587 downloads on Amazon. So far so good...
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
By the way, I almost shot myself in the foot...

I changed over the price on Draft 2 Digital on Saturday evening. This morning the price still hadn't changed on Barnes & Noble and Bookbub informed me that they wouldn't be able to add the B&N link. Without it, my hopes of USA Today are gone... Luckily, B&N updated it shortly after Bookbub's email, and I contacted them with the attached links. Bookbub was very helpful, and were able to add the link before the email went out.

Phew...

Note: Barnes & Noble isn't open on weekends. If you have a deal on Monday, be safe and change your price Friday afternoon.
 

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7,000-10,000 sales seems like a lot based on Bookbub's projections. Did you find with your previous set that because it was a box set and a deeper discount that your sales numbers were better than a single book?
It looks like a great line up so good luck with it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
AJStewart said:
7,000-10,000 sales seems like a lot based on Bookbub's projections. Did you find with your previous set that because it was a box set and a deeper discount that your sales numbers were better than a single book?
It looks like a great line up so good luck with it.
The other bundle was multi-author, which Bookbub doesn't run unless it is a collection of short stories. I personally have never done a bundle with Bookbub until now. I've been watching the other bundles, however, and have noticed that they sell better than single books.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Update:

Four hours since Bookbub mailer.

5 new mailing list subscribers.

Amazon sales - 1,671
I won't know about Barnes and Noble and the other ones until tomorrow.

Amazon rank was 9,953, and is now 6,687. (They will update this more often as the sales pile up. Low ranks are updated less often than high ranks.)

Barnes & Noble rank was over 50,000, and is now #52, which is a very good sign.

So far, awesome. I think that locking down 2,500 sales today on Amazon will be doable with these numbers.
 

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Thanks so much for sharing your marketing/ad strategy and results. It looks like you're doing very well already! Should be a fun week for you.  ;)
 

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Very impressive!! Thanks for sharing. The big publishers have been doing big promotions forever to get their books high in the lists (the books that they decide to promote) and indie publishers have to think big, too :)

Just in case anyone misses the bit about B&N, I've bolded it below. So important to get all the stores synched for promotions. I've shot myself in the foot a couple of times before! ???

Michaelploof said:
By the way, I almost shot myself in the foot...

I changed over the price on Draft 2 Digital on Saturday evening. This morning the price still hadn't changed on Barnes & Noble and Bookbub informed me that they wouldn't be able to add the B&N link. Without it, my hopes of USA Today are gone... Luckily, B&N updated it shortly after Bookbub's email, and I contacted them with the attached links. Bookbub was very helpful, and were able to add the link before the email went out.

Phew...

Note: Barnes & Noble isn't open on weekends. If you have a deal on Monday, be safe and change your price Friday afternoon.
 
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