eNovel Authors Report Promotion Results ~ Part 3

Written By: Jackie Weger - Jan• 10•16

Welcome again to the Cyber Porch…

where eNovel Authors at Work gather to share the ehow of book promotions

This is the 3rd in a series of reports on actual results of promotions. eNovel  authors tell you where they promoted, how much they paid, number of books downloaded and how much they earned–or not.

Back Porch Cyber Chatter

Welcome to the Cyber
Porch where eNovel authors gather to chat.

Many of the authors in eNovel have their titles in Amazon Select, which means their books are sold exclusively on Amazon. Other  more established members with an array of ten books or more, such as USA Today bestselling author Donna Fasano, have a presence across all sales venues: Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Kobo, Smashwords and iTunes. But for a new indie author who is just learning the ropes or has one book or a minimal few, Amazon offers us streamlined ways to put a title FREE and price pulse in Kindle Countdown Deals (KCD). Both promotions are ideal for exposure and getting our books in the hands of a readership we might not otherwise engage. eBook readers are savvy. They will take a chance on an unknown author by downloading a book on FREE or 99¢.  Seldom will readers download a priced book by a new author unless they have first read a free or discounted book. So how do you decide what is best for your book?

Caveat: Be careful who you listen to in this ever-changing industry. Many new indie authors often have unreasonable expectations. Some authors exaggerate their sales. Some publish ebooks and CreateSpace editions, and wholly ignore the digital reader in favor of print readers by engaging in book signings in their local communities. Moving on…

Here is  eNovel member Julie Frayn  to share with you her recent promotion experience in her own words….

Julie Frayn with Mark Coker BEA 2015 NYC

Julie Frayn with Mark Coker of Smashwords. BEA Convention 2015 NYC.

Prior to going free, I was in the ‘I’m not giving MY book away’ camp. I didn’t see how it would benefit me, nor why anyone would ever buy it if it might be free again one day. I assumed that readers were only looking for a deal, not a good book. I was wrong on all counts. And I’m happy to admit it.  Here is what convinced me to go FREE: Following the results of eNovel member’s successful campaigns on Amazon. Reading the results they shared with members. I was lucky to snag a BookBub slot the first time I submitted Mazie Baby. On the first day, watching those downloads tick,  I was hooked. Before the

415 Reviews ranked 4.6/5.0 in 2015. Only on Amazon

415 Reviews ranked 4.6/5.0 in 2015. Only on Amazon

end of the day readers were posting reviews. People were reading my book. That’s really all I ever wanted. Well, and to retire and write full time, but that may never happen. I’m keeping the day job! Mazie Baby had 50 reviews prior to her free run in January. As of July 7, 2015 it has 365 reviews ranked 4.6/5.0 plus an additional 50+ reviews on amazon.uk.

I advertised on BookBub, supplemented by several other ads including Ereader News Today, fkbt, Choosy Bookworm, Digital Book Today  plus a few others. **

  • Total downloads: 62,200
  • Total spent: $500 US
  • Crossover sales and borrows on another title during the promotion: 20-40 units per day.
  • Once returned to Paid/Priced: 168 unit sales per day slowing to 50/60 unit sales per day for 21 days.
  • Kindle Unlimited Borrows spiked for 3 weeks.
  • Royalty earned in 1st  30 days after the FREE campaign: $5600 US.
  • Royalty earned in 2nd 30 days after the FREE run campaign: $6200 Canadian.

Using KDP Select works when it works. I can’t wait to do another free offering! Bookbub only accepts 10 to 15% of books submitted. Slots are coveted. But indie authors can still promote a title free in a well-designed campaign.  One of my eNovel colleagues, Effrosyni Moschoudi, ran a title on FREE and saw 5,000 downloads. She didn’t spend a nickle on promotion. For a list of sites she used visit Frossi’s Blog.


Just want to test the waters? eNovel member Traci Hall whose titles are not exclusive to Amazon, ran a single day promotion on Ereader News Today and had these results: Sales: 167 units of Ambrosia by the Sea. Crossover sales: 5 units of Karma by the Sea. 4 units of Puppy Love by the Sea.


For more indie author results on promotions, Carol Bodensteiner asks and answers: Does Paying for Book Promotion Pay Off?

JackieWeger-BioHeadShot top cut off

Jackie Weger, author of Setting up House, a collection of 3 of her most popular romance novels. Read all 3 FREE with Kindle Unlimited.

I’m Jackie Weger, Founder of eNovel Authors at Work.  We hope this series helps you to make the best decision you can for your books. In addition to promotion, reviews are always a hot topic. To read about how to approach a reviewer read this article by TOP 1000 Amazon and Goodreads reviewer, Julie Whiteley. Comments are open. We welcome any questions you may have about indie authorship. If we know the answer, we’ll tell you. If not, we will find someone who does know. eNovel Authors do not trade reviews. If you are wondering how eNovel member’s book gather reviews in the hundreds, it is because most have this gem right after THE END of each of their stories:

Thank you for taking the time to read [title]. If you enjoyed it, please consider telling your friends or posting a short review. Word of mouth is an author’s best friend and much appreciated. Thank you, [author name].

Does that gentle gem of a plea work? Yes it does. eNovel members have an aggregate of not less than 14,000 reviews of 400 + books with more being posted daily, especially after a successful promotion.

eNovel Members at Work has an aggregate of not less than 255,185 Twitter followers. When we Tweet, we TWITTER loud!

@Copyright 2015 by Jackie Weger. Updated 2016 Sharing welcome. Just give a pingback.




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  1. Traci Hall says:

    Sharing the real numbers and strategies matter 🙂 I ended up selling a total of 185 copies of Ambrosia by midnight that night. My total indie book sales for the month was 407 books. Very good for me…and well worth the cost of ENT (45.00) and Fussy Librarian. (17.00)
    I’m still trying for that BookBub.

  2. Julie Frayn says:

    Thanks for highlighting my results, Jackie! I plan to do another Free offering with my new release, Goody One Shoe, before the year is out (fingers crossed for a Bookbub slot!), and another with my first novel, the newly retitled Romeo is Homeless. As I said, I’m hooked.
    Julie Frayn
    Goody One Shoe

  3. Laurie Boris says:

    Excellent results, gang! 😀

  4. These numbers are golden! I think too many writers think big bucks will come after they launch a book and that just isn’t the case. Being an Indie author takes a lot of hard work and dedication and a little bit of luck with BookBub and Kindle promotions. Thanks for sharing your numbers to shed some light on how others promos turn out.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Lorena Angell; Welcome to eNovel Authors at Work. Your observation about indie author expectations is dead on. What we hope to achieve by this series is to clue in talented indie authors about the numbers of downloads and how return on investment works–and keeps on working. I put Setting Up House in a KCD in January. Here it is mid July and readers who borrowed the set while in promotion have read above 70,000 pages since July 1, 2015 in the new Amazon KENP pay-by-pages read algorithm. That is a lovely passive income at no promo cost at all since January. Thank you for your keen comment.
      Good luck with your books.

      • Lorena Angell says:

        Thanks Jackie! I found with the Bookbub promotions I’ve held some readers don’t get to the download for many months. For instance, one promotion included a free offer at the end of the book. I’m still getting people sending me emails asking for that offer. It’s been over two years since the promo. I’m glad I put that offer in the book so I can have an indication of the long-term effects of Bookbub promos. I guess the trick is to get as many “rainy-day” copies out there on digital devices to develop evergreen income.

  5. Mary Smith says:

    I felt exactly as Julie describes about going free and it was partly seeing her results which made me re-think my ideas. Effrosyni Moschoudi’s well-planned promo worked amazingly without BookBub. The clue is in the word well-planned.
    Great post, Jackie.
    Mary Smith

  6. Excellent post, very helpful!

  7. Oh Julie, what wonderful ROI! Congrats! I am hoping to run my first BookBub ad before the end of the year. I’ll choose my fantasy but only after changing the cover, I hope that will increase my chances. I’ve never applied to Bookbub – it would be awesome if they accepted me with the first try. Fingers crossed 🙂 Got a lovely email from an author today who said my pdf of free promo sites got her 2,100 downloads without spending a dime. So pleased to hear! Thank you for sharing the file Jackie 🙂

  8. Dale Furse says:

    All terrific numbers. Congratulations and thanks for sharing. It’s good to know who the best promoters are. I know BookBub is the one to get but..eh, one day. 🙂

  9. susan tarr says:

    Amazing collection of talent and support right here, guys.

  10. Pete Barber says:

    I was also in the “never free” camp like @JulieFrayn. Until, that is, I studied the tips on EnovelAuthor’s site and ran FREE with NanoStrike May 2014. Like Julie, my first objective is to be read by strangers. To do that I need to have the title seen. I used Bookbub, Ereader News Today, Fussy Librarian, Choosy Bookworm and a few other sites. One year later, I have 250+ Amazon reviews, and the book still sells copies every week. I’m planning a FREE run for my new title “When A Warrior Comes Home” in the fall. For a new author, this is definitely a solid and repeatable strategy to get a novel “out there.”

  11. Great going eNovellers-at-Work. You really do work hard to sell your titles, and good for you because you are serious writers and they’re all worth it.
    I have a promotion coming up this weekend via Fussy Librarian for two of my books – Seventeen Seas (which I categorise it as ‘a travel book with a difference’),
    and novel Every Five Minutes.
    Best wishes to all!

  12. David WInd says:

    I think the eNovelers, as a group, have done a great job in getting the books out to the public, with the assistance of some of the great promotional blogs and websites available to us, like Ereader News Today, fkbt, Choosy Bookworm, Digital Book Today, fussy librarian, etc. eNovelers showed me how to offer a “free” book to get the word out. These websites and blogs help us to bring our books to new readers. I use many of the sites to bring Born To Magic to readers who might never have found it without these marketing experts.

    David Wind

  13. Thanks, Jackie! TERMS OF SURRENDER is currently on 99¢ promo with PeopleReads, ChoosyBookworm, The Books Machine, and The Fussy Librarian.It’s also FREE with Kindle Unlimited! I hope folks will check out this award-winning Western historical romance at http://www.amazon.com/Terms-Surrender-Lorrie-Farrelly-ebook/dp/B003ZDO4SI

  14. I also used to pooh-pooh giving away large quantities of books until I realized the potential ROI in doing it. Being an author is like any other business–if you don’t keep up with the market, you’ll soon be left behind. I’ve used BookBub, Ereader News Today, fkbt, Choosy Bookworm, Digital Book Today, Fussy Librarian, and others to promote giveaways. They’re all good. Sales were a bit sluggish for one of my books “Regarding Anna” before I offered it for free in April. During the month following the free promotion, when the Kindle book went back to $2.99, I sold 4,600 copies of it (includes Kindle Owners’ Borrows). I spent a total of $281 on promotions. I’ll take that ROI any day!

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Woot! Florence Osmund: Wow!Great stats. I am reading Regarding Anna right now. Love it. It is no wonder you saw so many downloads. All of the promoters you mention are on eNovel’s preferred list, above the fold. Thanks for commenting and adding to the discussion.

  15. Mike Markel says:

    Like Julie Frayn and many others who have joined eNovelAuthorsAtWork, I have tried to follow Jackie’s advice. I’m three days past a BookBub promo for Fractures, and the “pages read” in the new KENP are still growing–averaging over 25K per day. I predict that serious and talented writers who are in Select will find that KENP works to their advantage. I’ve said it before, and I’m not embarrassed to say it again: if it weren’t for the generous and informed advice of Jackie Weger and my other friends in eNovAaW, I think I would have given up as an indie writer last year. Now, I’m making rent. “Thank you” seems a little tepid.

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Thank you Mike Markel. I appreciate the kudos, but it is all about THE BOOK. The information I share is already all over our industry. The only thing I will accept credit for is hounding, shoving, pushing and nagging eNovel members to promote and get their books in the hands of readers in the climate afforded us. I love it when that happens because that is the goal and it spells S.U.C.C.E.S.S.
      eNovel Authors at Work

      • Mike Markel says:

        All right, Jackie, if you prefer: Thank you for the hounding, shoving, pushing, and nagging. It might not work for everyone, but it works for me, and I do appreciate it.

  16. Hi:
    You guys have some GREAT input!
    Like most of you, I am still trying to win a Bookbub slot for my novel The Duck Springs Affair.
    On the other hand, I’ve done quite well with some of the others including ENT, Fussy Librarian fkbt, and Choosy Bookworm. There are plenty such sites out there, but they are not created equal.
    Also, I’ve found that free equals downloads in the long run. Free equals reviews and reviews equal dinero.
    So, like most of you, I’ll continue to cast my bread upon the waters.
    Thanks again for all the great insights.
    John I. Jones

    • Jackie Weger says:

      Hello, John! Oh! You are an Alabama native as I am. And The Duck Springs Affair takes place in Georgia…another of my stomping grounds. Your book is doing wonderful and the reviews are outstanding. All of the promo sites you mention are tops with eNovel. Smart you to recognize all promo sites are not equal. Love it that you promote FREE to gain an audience for your books. Thank you so much for sharing and visiting eNovel. Don’t be a stranger.
      Best from Jackie Weger

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