Well, my publisher, William Morrow, has decided to promote the new Bangkok thriller, THE QUEEN OF PATPONG, by giving away the Kindle version of the first one, which is called A NAIL THROUGH THE HEART.  They're including three chapters of QUEEN to try to lead readers from one book to the other.

What does anyone think of this idea?  Any drawbacks?  (NAIL will only be free for about a month, after which it'll go back to $9.99.)  Any ways occur to anyone re: how to capitalize on it?

I don't know whether they're doing the same thing with the Barnes & Noble e-book version.  Should they?

Opinions or thoughts, anyone?

Thanks in advance.

Views: 41

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Any promotion is better than no promotion. I have no experience with Kindle vs print sales. Do Kindle owners also buy ordinary books?
My sense is your typical Kindle reader doesn't buy the dtb after reading the work digitally unless they are absolutely in love with the work.

One thing that has surprised me is how price sensitive Kindle readers are. I've got to assume they are mostly middle class and up, having to shell out (until recently) more than two hundred bucks to get in the game, after all, but small price reductions can make a big difference, and there is a vocal minority who refuse to pay more than $9.99 for any ebook.
Price is the whole deal. I actually think few people will go from NAIL to QUEEN because QUEEN is going to be 12.95 or something whereas THE FOURTH WATCHER and BREATHING WATER will be in trade paperback by then and the Kindle price will be the magical 9.99.

I just put on Kindle the first of my six Los Angeles PI books from the 90s at 1.99 and I've sold almost 120 in ten days with no promotion at all. I think a lot of people shop purely by price. I know I download free books right and left -- now reading the autobiography of US Grant and a bunch of Wodehouse downloaded for free.
Amazon pushes that $9.99 price point, and actively promotes several "boycott" groups on the Kindle site. That price sensitivity is basically Amazon's creation, which sucks big time. I guess they think it's equivalent to Apple's .99 price point for iTunes songs, but I don't see Apple promoting the boycotting of songs that cost $1.29, or whatever.
Not only does Amazon push the $9.99 price point, they favour some publishers over others. Only one of my books is available for Kindle - from ECW Press, a small Canadian company - and after someone here at Crimespace said he wouldn't buy a Kindle book for more than $9.99 I contacted ECW and asked them to lower the price - they said they'd originally listed it for $8.99 but Amazon raised it to $11.99 and have ignored requests (once a week) to change the price. I have no idea what's going on.

As to the original question, yes, thre have been some good examples of giving away books to sell them. Cory Doctorow is the most famous and there was this article a few days ago from Thrillerfest:

http://www.mediabistro.com/ebooknewser/digital_publishing/author_je...

On the other hand, I downloaded the free copy of Charles Bock's, Beautiful Children (a fantastic book) but I don't think the give-away helped sales. Of course, in that case, neither did all the fantastic reviews, so who knows.
He paid actors to prosduce an audio? That can't have been cheap. Did his share of the 5000 copies help defray costs?

And yes, readers can be unpredictable. Or else your taste is too good. :)
John, I missed this...

Amazon has odd delivery contracts with Whispernet for non-US users. The price is higher when the customer is "international" and it could be there is an issue because the publisher is Canadian.

The only other time I've seen Amazon do this is when a publisher had a different list price on another site. (Although they don't usually care if the price is HIGHER. They get snarky if it's lower.)
I think the boycott groups are loathsome, if they're the folks who leave the one-star reviews of books over $9.99. Somebody puts a year or more into a book, turns out the best he or she could do, and these clowns bring down the quality ratings by responding to something that (a) has nothing to do with quality, and (b) has nothing to do with the writer of the book.

I send them all really rude messages. Accomplishes nothing but makes me feel better, however briefly.
Highly variable. I have a Kindle but there are some books (yours, for example) I want in paper. I asked on the Kindle Korner forum whether I was typical because it felt like it might be valuable to know. Most of the 20 or so who replied buy paper editions of certain kinds of books, usually by genre. So they'll have a sci-fi library or mysteries or science or something, but outside that limited spectrum they mostly buy for the Kindle. Admittedly an unscientific sample, but interesting.
Highly variable, EJ. I have a Kindle but there are some books (yours, for example) I want in paper. I asked on the Kindle Korner forum whether I was typical because it felt like it might be valuable to know. Most of the 20 or so who replied buy paper editions of certain kinds of books, usually by genre. So they'll have a sci-fi library or mysteries or science or something, but outside that limited spectrum they mostly buy for the Kindle. Admittedly an unscientific sample, but interesting.
Yes, very interesting. And thank you. Entirely mutual. :)
The only downside I can think of is Kindle readers are hoarders when it comes to cheap books. I know because I publish to Kindle (just sold my 5,000th unit of my first title yesterday) and hang out on some Kindle boards, and it is not at all uncommon for individuals to establish queues of a hundred or more unread books, scarfed up for free or at very low prices. Some of these books will never be read; others, months or even years from now.

The upside is visibility: whether a reader "buys" the free one, a free book will get a lot of attention on the Amazon site and presumably that'll help the new book too.

RSS

CrimeSpace Google Search

© 2020   Created by Daniel Hatadi.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service