10 Places to Promote Your Book


Let’s face it, everyone pretty much knows about BookBub (if you don’t, feel free to read up on my own personal case study). But, the ‘Bub can be a tough nut to crack and they won’t just keep running the same books over and over. And, while free works, occasionally we’d like to get paid for our writing. 😉 So, what are the second-tier options for my discounted, but still paid book? Check out some of the options below. In no particular order.

The Midlist
Pixel of Ink
Bargain Booksy
Fussy Librarian
Daily Cheap Reads
Digital Book Today

Now, while I’d like to say that the ROI is as solid for these as BookBub, that just isn’t the case. Make sure you do your homework before running an ad with ANY site. Some genres do better than others. They might have a big mailing list, but unless it’s segmented by genre, you could be sending your high fantasy novel to romance readers. Remember to temper your expectations. Be comfortable in the amount you’re investing, as you may not see a dollar for dollar return. Judge success on your own scale and understand that what works for one may not work for another.

Do you have experience with these or other advertising sites? Share with us in the comments and thanks for stopping by!

BookBub Postmortem


Now that the dust has settled from this week’s Multiples of Six (by Andy Rane) BookBub promotion, it’s time to look at some of the numbers, not only in terms of sales, but reviews and other intangibles.

Book Sales

Before this week, Multiples had languished around #400,000 in the Amazon store, with the occasional sale coming once or twice a month. Divisible had a little more consistency as past readers would discover it. But, it was still only 4 or 5 copies a month at best. On 9/1, Multiples went free (normally $3.49) and Divisible went on a Kindle Countdown sale at $1.99 (normally $2.99).

                            Multiples (KU/KOLL borrows)            Divisible (KU/KOLL borrows)
September 1      404                                                             9
September 2     47,294 (9)                                                409 (2)
September 3     9,044 (9)                                                   114 (13)
September 4     3,083 (15)                                                 78 (10)
September 5*   61 (18)                                                        37 (16)

5-day total        59,825 (51)                                                647 (41)

*Free ended early morning of September 5, so sales on this day were back to full price for Multiples.

Now, on top of this, I’d kind of forgotten about the audiobook for Multiples. The numbers haven’t fully caught up, but as of this writing, I added 143 audiobook sales as well. A pleasant side effect.

Divisible climbed as high as the upper #200s on Amazon on 9/2. It’s still hanging strong in the lower #1000s and is still in the top 15 of its sub-categories (Thriller/Assassinations, Spies & Politics/Assassinations, and Spies & Politics/Political). Multiples had a nice little boost of paid sales when it came off of free and I always expect half of those to be returned as I think someone clicked “Buy” thinking it was still free. But, it’s in the mid #2000s now and in the top 20 of its sub-categories (Thrillers/Assassinations, Spies & Politics/Assassinations, and Thrillers/Conspiracies). Hopefully, hanging around the top 25 of a few of the Thriller categories will help keep it going for a little while. We’ll see.


At the beginning of this little venture, Multiples had stood at 21 reviews, the last of which came 13 months ago. This, despite having given away thousands of copies in 2012. As I write this, I’ve added 10 reviews (8 five-star, 1 four-star, and 1 one-star). Even more special to me are the three new reviews for Divisible, which had been out for 9 months, sold ~100 copies, and had no reviews (2 five-star and 1 four-star).


Traffic to my website has certainly increased during the week. Lots of searches for this crazy Andy Rane guy and his writing. 😉 Also saw a bump in newsletter subscribers, which is nice. And, lastly, the big question has been about book 3 to close the trilogy out. Well, this rush has sparked the flames of that story once more and I’m going to start focusing my efforts on completing that novel.

In the end, this wasn’t just a boost in visibility, but a bit of a boost to my own ego. I have no delusions of being an amazing writer. I just want to tell entertaining stories. This was a reminder that, despite how I feel sometimes, I seem to be doing an ok job. 🙂

Thanks for the support and I hope my fellow indie authors find this information valuable!

Wow… BookBub… Wow

That’s pretty much all I can say. As you might have seen yesterday, I ran a BookBub ad for book #1 in my suspense thriller series (Multiples of Six by Andy Rane). The first book was released back in 2011 and did reasonably well over the years (~1200 actual sales). But, being a slow writer, I saw little to no response when I released book #2 in the series, nearly 2.5 years later. I then went on a run of failed BookBub submissions. I’d gone down the free road with Multiples in the past. I’d probably given away just over 20k copies of that book prior to yesterday. So, in my mind, it only made sense to run a sale promotion instead of a free promotion. I wanted my $0.99, darn it! Well, it wasn’t to be, and after countless rejections, I finally asked for a free run. Apparently, I just had to say the magic word (free!) and that would’ve gotten me in long ago (kidding, but it kinda felt like that). Finally, the BookBub folks relented and let me into the pool.

I decided to add an incentive to buy book #2 in the series by lowering that book’s price, in a Kindle Countdown Sale, from $2.99 to $1.99. The joy of the Countdown is that you still get your regular royalty rate, even if your sale price is less than $2.99. So, I would make $1.39 on each copy of the sequel that sold. This was going to be how I recouped the BookBub fee (US$250 for a free thriller). That meant I would need to sell ~180 copies to break even.

I’m a closet optimist. I wear the pessimists mask in public, but I’ve always got high hopes, no matter what. But even I was leaning toward pessimism on this one. I thought the exposure would be good, but I held out no hopes of getting some of the kinds of numbers that romance authors see on a regular basis (a 40k free run is very common for romance, from what I’ve seen). I’m happy to say that my fears were alleviated by midday on Tuesday. But, let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

In preparation for this week, I had notified several sites of my book going free (Pixel of Ink, Ereader News Today, to name a few). So, I was pleased when I cleared 400 copies of Multiples on Monday alone, with 11 sales of Divisible. Eleven down, 169 to go! Not sure where they came from, as I couldn’t find a major site listing my book, but it was a nice start and pushed me up to just over #1000 in the free store by late Monday. My expectations at that point were at least to get into the Top 100 Free list on Amazon. Knowing BookBub’s past successes, I thought I could get that far.

Then I woke up Tuesday morning to a surprise. At 7:24, Multiples was already at #610 on the Free list. I watched the numbers climb slowly during the morning, despite telling myself I wouldn’t keep checking. What can I say? I’m weak. I was really waiting to see what happened when I got the suspense/thriller email from them. It arrived around the same time it normally does, at least for me; ~11:45 AM. That was when things got crazy. Like, stupid crazy.

It was so torrid for a while that the rankings couldn’t catching up. Two hours after I’d received my email, I’d crossed the 20,000 unit mark. Amazon was still saying it was ranked higher than it should have been. I left the house and my KDP dashboard behind for a while in the afternoon. If it was this crazy during the afternoon, what would happen as evening approached? When I returned, I saw what I could have only hoped to see.

Number 1 in Kindle Store-2

Multiples was the #1 free book in the entire Kindle Store. No categories to get in the way. Just #1 overall. It’s 11:08 PM Tuesday evening as I write this bit. I have given away 44,718 copies of Multiples of Six, and sold 379 copies of its sequel, Divisible by Six. It’s now 11:38, and I’m entering this into WordPress. In the half hour that’s elapsed, the numbers are now 45,190 and 382. 472 books in 30 minutes. And that’s slowing down! Oh yeah, and I made my ad fee back… and then some. 😉

As I polish up this post on Wednesday morning, the ride isn’t quite done, but we’re on that slow coast back into the station. Tuesday’s grand total for book #1, according to Amazon, was 47,295. I’m not sure where their cutoff for the day is, but I’m guessing 12 AM PT. Today, I’ve added another 1641 copies in the wee hours, giving me a 60 hour total of 49,343. Oof! Book #2 fared well overnight and reached 409 units sold on Tuesday. Another 16 have sold this morning, giving me a 60-hour total of 434. Multiplied by $1.39 = ~$603. Not bank-breaking by any means, but not too shabby either.

Multiples of Six is still #1 on the free list as I post this. Later, however, someone else’s book will appear on BookBub and more than likely push me out of the way. Sure, I’ll get some play for a few days. My sale lasts until the 5th on both books. But the rocket to the top is over. Looking at Monday’s BookBub freebie, Jackpot by Susan Fleet, it’s still at #14 on the Free list. I’ll have to see where I stand in 24 hours. For now, though, I’m just excited to see how long the tail end lasts. At this point, it’s not unrealistic to expect over 55k total giveaways, possibly more. The ‘Bub turned out to be everything I had imagined it could be. Now, as my wife said, “Guess you’d better get your ass in gear on book #3, huh?” Yes dear!

If you’ve got any questions about my experience with BookBub, I hope you’ll ask them in the comments below. No secrets here! Or, if you’ve had experience yourself, please feel free to share! Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

OMG… the BookBub Gods Have Finally Smiled Upon Me

So, yeah… BookBub. If you haven’t heard of them, then you’re more than likely not a self-published author. If you have, then you know that running an ad with them can often be a marketing and financial boon. I might have set the record for submitting my book (Multiples of Six by Andy Rane) to them… and getting rejected every time. Well, apparently, they just never wanted me to make money off of it. Every time I submitted, I would offer to lower the price of my novel to $0.99. I submitted to them well over 15 times, perhaps 20. Each and every time, I got the standard rejection letter. So, when my next opportunity came to submit, I broke down and submitted the book as a freebie. And now I’m in. My scheduled day is September 2nd.

Mind you, this isn’t the first time Multiples has been free. It’s just the first time in a very long time. You see, back in the day, when the KDP Select  program was in its infancy, going free could be miraculous. My first free day was in February of 2012. I gave away 6700 copies in a single day (thanks to being picked up by Pixel of Ink and Ereader News Today). The next day, the book went back to being $2.99 and sold another 450 paid copies over the next month. It was awesome. A few months later, I ran another promo. This time, I gave away another 9000 copies, but the post-free bump was less than half of what it had been a few months before. Amazon had changed their algorithm. A free sale was no longer equivalent to a paid sale. I ran my last free promotion for that book during the summer of 2012. I gave away another 2500 copies, but saw no post-free bump at all.

I’ll admit, I really didn’t want to go free with that book again.  But, now I’m looking forward to it. I only have one other book in that series and maybe it’ll help generate sales and reviews for both.

If you’re looking to promote your book, take a good look at the options. BookBub can be a tough nut to crack into, but the results are well documented. Be sure to check out some of the other sites listed above as well.

Have you had success with BookBub or other marketing sites? Tell us about it in the comments below!