Recently two of our children’s ebooks – Stars by Antony Lishak, a book celebrating adversity and friendship between two boys in during the Nazi invasion of Poland, and The Golden Moonbeam by Angela James, a magical fantasyland adventure – were featured in the Kindle Books Summer Sale on Amazon. The sale targets readers who are looking for a good, inexpensive, leisure read to enjoy while they are traveling or on holiday. Most books in the Kindle Book Sale start at just 99 pence, as Amazon tries to tempt buyers in for a quick impulse buy. We work with the merchandisers at the biggest retailers every single month to pitch our authors’ works and get them into as many suitable promotions as possible. Being included in a retailer promotion is a really valuable marketing tool with both short-term and long-term benefits.
Phase 1: Getting Visible
The Kindle Books Summer Sale, like all the Amazon promotions our authors feature in, provides our authors with a great opportunity to stand out from the competition (and on Amazon there is a LOT of competition). Amazon has a 65% share in the ebook market, so being included in an Amazon promotion is likely to increase your visibility and sales more than being included in a promotion with a smaller retailer. Amazon gets an enormous amount of traffic every single day. According to eBizMBA, Amazon is ranked 5th in the top 15 most popular websites and generates over 500 million unique monthly viewers. But with size comes challenges. Although Amazon has proved that it is the most powerful place sell your books, the problem is that with high traffic comes high competition. Everyone is fighting for a chance to be seen. Writer Claude Nougat estimates that one new book is added to the Kindle store, every 5 minutes, and that number looks likely to increase!
Being in a featured promotion such as the Kindle Book Summer sale allows authors to get visible by clearing through the clutter and connecting directly with readers. Instead of their book being buried on the 167th page of Amazon, it can be featured in a banner on the Kindle Deals page thus placing it in closer proximity to potential readers.
Phase 2: Getting More Reviews
Kindle Books Summer Sale authors will see a massive increase in visibility/chart position and a short-term sales spike. However, there are longer-term benefits too. A little while after the sale, readers will start to finish reading the eBook and will leave reviews. There may be a lag between the end of the sale and when you see an increase in reviews (don’t lose heart – people are busy). This boost in reader reviews increases credibility and buyer confidence (especially from a debut/relatively unknown writer), and this will be beneficial long after the promotional period has ended. Reader reviews sell books. If someone has never heard of your book, they probably want to know what other people have to say about it before they purchase it. Alternatively, if no one has bothered to review your book, why should they try it? The Kindle Book Summer Sale becomes a catalyst for the increasing books reviews and establishing the author’s brand. Even mixed reviews are helpful because readers may purchase your book just so they can form their own opinion. When the promotional sale is over, you will still have the reviews as base to lure in readers.
Getting into a promotion like a Kindle deal is marketing gold for an author, but requires you to have a good working relationship with book retailers around the world (many retailers will not work with authors directly unless they are serious bestsellers). We have spent years building up these relationships and work with retailers to find out what they are looking for when to make sure our authors have the best chance of being selected, consequently our authors are featured in promotions nearly every month. Have a look at some of the recent promotions we have been involved with at Amazon and Kobo.
Limited price promotions “hurry” customers into snap decisions and quick purchases (a couple of clicks is all it takes). With prices around 99p, Amazon can whip customers into a buying frenzy. Have you ever bought a book/eBook as a result of a price promotion? Please let us know below.