Have you tried collaboration as a means of marketing?

MULTI-AUTHOR COLLABORATION

Authors, if all your marketing efforts so far have been an isolated, individual slog, how about giving the multi-author approach a try?

I did this last month (June 2014) in two different ways, and thought I’d share with you both the benefits and the results – not to mention how much fun it was, not feeling like a solitary voice in the wilderness for once.

GIVEAWAY

First up, I took a couple of slots in a multi-author giveaway to win a KINDLE FIRE. 

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Each month, a Kindle Fire is offered up as a prize, and authors pay $10 a slot for a place on the Rafflecopter. You can opt for people to sign up to your mail list, like your Facebook page, or follow you on Twitter. I took Twitter and mail list slots.

Your book is then displayed on emails about the giveaway with purchase links. And, of course, you are increasing your reach each time someone signs up on the Rafflecopter.

We were also encouraged to contact each other and swap promo posts about our books – another way of meeting new authors and getting ready-made posts for your blog, not to mention yet more exposure to new sets of eyes.

I wouldn’t say I noticed any book sales as a direct result of this promo, but I did get a rake of new Twitter followers, AND, best of all, 235 people signed up to my newsletter 🙂

When I then embarked on the promo I’m about to detail, I emailed a newsletter out to all these new people, specifically reminding them why they were receiving the newsletter and asking them to unsubscribe (easy to click link in the newsletter) if they were really not interested and had only signed up to enter the giveaway.

I had just 2 people unsubscribe. Okay, I’m sure others were not interested and couldn’t be bothered even to take time to unsubscribe, but that’s an encouraging result.

Now I admit, this particular giveaway is slanted towards books in the fantasy/paranormal genre, but it wouldn’t be hard to replicate this style of promo for other genres – indeed, they may already be out there.

Take a look at the site and see for yourself:

http://www.freekindlegiveaway.com/sponsors/

THEMED PROMO

Next, I took part in a promo entitled: SUMMER BOOK CRUSH

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The theme? ‘What kind of book boyfriend are you looking for?’

80 titles, covering a variety of genres, all of them featuring a hunky male character somewhere in their pages, and all of them on offer at $0.99.

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This one cost me around $10 to get one title in there – great value!

This was the 3rd year for the site, first for me and I can’t wait to do it again next year.  It runs over 4 days, and with 60 or so authors promoting it hard, your book gets in front of thousands more eyes than you’d manage on your own.

Between us, we got 150 blogs running the promo feature, plus all our individual efforts on our own blogs, social media and Goodreads. At peak, the website got 2000 views in one day, with over 500 clicks through to Amazon.

I went for a concerted push on the first day, taking out all the free ads I could find, (see the list here: Ads for 0.99c books), posted on all the Facebook pages that take free promos (list here: Promo friendly FB sites) and a few small paid ads, amounting to no more than $35 in total, and also embarked on a big push advertising the SBC website with an event on Goodreads and pushing it on my Facebook and Twitter pages.

In addition I did a couple of interviews, which you can see here and here, plus guests posts on 3 blogs – example here.

RESULTS

PM-EBOOK_FLAT

Now my results are small fry compared to many peoples’ sales, but to put it into context, the book I promoted, THE PRINCE’S MAN, has been somewhat in the doldrums since the D2D/Amazon disaster, when it crashed from selling around 10 copies a day, to about 5 a week. So, ta da, on the first day of Summer Book Crush, THE PRINCE’S MAN sold 108 copies, shot up from a ranking in the 200,000’s to inside the Top 3,000 paid books on Amazon US overall, and peaked in the Top 100 lists at #17 in Sword and Sorcery  and #40 in Epic Fantasy.

Needless to say, one very happy author 🙂

As I’d concentrated everything on that one day, things slid down after that, selling 37 copies the following day, and down to just around 10 on the other days. However, the benefits continue even though the promo is done and the price has gone back up to its regular $3.99 – The website is still accessible and people are still viewing it and clicking on the links, and the raise in THE PRINCE’S MAN’s ranking has stabilized in the top 30K-60K depending on the day, but still a huge improvement on the 200K where it was languishing – and sales continue.

On the financial side, I came out in profit, despite the price drop, and with the price back up and sales continuing on a steadier footing, I’m looking forward to a better pay day than I’ve had in months. The second book in the series will be out before the end of the year, and that will be time for another promo push.

In the mean time, aside from the improvement in figures, I’ve made lots of new friends and followers, and had a lot of fun doing it – the Summer Book Crush Facebook page should give you some idea of other people’s successes (one made it to #1 in her category), and the camaraderie of the ‘crushers’!

 

So, fellow authors, have any of you collaborated in joint ventures like these? If so, please share.

 

 

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11 comments

  1. Deb thanks for sharing this great info and congrats. I’ve really got to start branching out my marketing strategies, it’s so hard to juggle all while trying to write. This fall there will be changes! 🙂 And, I’m sharing your post. 🙂

    1. It’s tough, isn’t it? Without marketing we don’t get the exposure our books need, but when we devote time to marketing, we lose writing time.
      I know we are supposed to ‘do one thing towards marketing every day’, but I simply don’t have the time.
      I decided to prioritize these promos and put the time in to make them effective over a short period, and then get right back to work on the next book, which is what I’ve done.
      So, back to the writing cave…

      1. I applaud you! I know all that you did for those two marketing strategies had to involve a lot of time. I enjoy finding out new things from you. 🙂

      2. We can all learn from each other, can’t we?
        I’m just about to go back and add a little to this post – I also did some interviews and guest posts. Yes, it all took time, but what doesn’t?

      3. This is how we can all learn from others how to become successful! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  2. Thanks for the info! So happy fo see your results. 🙂 I must say, you are one of the first authors I had met when I started promoting my book, and I always find such great info here! 🙂 Thanks again.

    1. My pleasure Rhoda 🙂 For me, this is the spirit of the Indie publishing movement – sharing knowledge for mutual help 🙂

  3. […] Jay presents Have you tried collaboration as a means of marketing? posted at Deborah Jay, saying, “Sharing two examples of collaborative marketing efforts that […]

  4. […] a previous post, I extolled the virtues (and fun to be had) of taking part in a multi-author promotion. Now […]

  5. […] giveaways (see Deborah Jay’s blog for more on these last two […]

  6. […] giveaways (see Deborah Jay’s blog for more on these last two […]

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