Posts Tagged ‘sales’

PromotionalServices

Howdy!
After the rousing success of my last blog post. I decided to supplement it with some specific promotional services available to indie authors. There are a lot of choices out there and we never know which ones are worth pursuing and which should be ignored.
But the first step is having the right information. So below are a series of links to various promotional services for you to look into, research, and make your own decisions. I personally have not used all of these services, so please do your research, no guarantees for sales and/or reviews can be given.

Melissa Tapp – Free Blog Tours
Monark Design Services
Sweet n Sassy FacebookSweet n Sassy Website
Book Heathens Website
Anything But Vanilla Book BlogAnything But Vanilla Promotional Services
Book Rhythm
Pure Texuality PR
Ashley Wheels Promotions
Honest Book Reviews
The Literary Whisp FacebookThe Literary Whisp Website
Like A Boss Book Promotions
Raven PA FacebookRaven PA Website

We didn’t get quite as many responses to this request as we did for the last one. But these are some of the choices available all in one place. I wish you all success!

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx

Love of darkness and light…

success-lincoln-quote

Success is a relative term that we all have to define for ourselves. When I started my publishing journey I had to learn about a lot of new things that I hadn’t considered before. Ironically, the easiest part of this whole process is the writing! Yes, that’s the part I find myself retreating to when the rest of this experience becomes too much.
Has my writing style and process changed since I released my first novel? Yes. You have to let it be organic. Every new experience adjusts our perspective, so our writing will always adjust to compensate.
But what I didn’t do was make a concrete assertion of what “success” would look like. I suppose we all have a vague idea of what it would look like to achieve our dreams. But when you start on the path to try and realise your ambition the whole thing takes on a new configuration.
I’m not actually here to talk about writing, but as I previously stated, writing is my go to place when I’m struggling elsewhere. So why am I here? I’m not really sure, to be honest. I sat staring at the empty post for a while… and that’s not like me. I’m one of these strange people who love the white, blank page. It doesn’t intimidate me, it excites me, because it lies there ready to absorb the adventure, to record the comedy and drama woven in the words.
But I sat and I stared… I could write about writing. I could write about publishing. I could write about process. I could talk about opinion. Today, I’m vexed by a challenge that I can’t overcome. I can’t think my way out of it. I can’t write my way out of it. With those two avenues exhausted I sit and I stare.
I can write full-length romantic fiction. I can publish novels in various digital formats and in paperback. I can create and maintain websites. I can blog. I can interact on social media. Other than the first, these are all things that I’ve had to learn since I started this publishing journey. What can’t I do? Find a way to encourage readers to engage with me as a writer.
I don’t know if it’s me. I don’t know if it’s my novels. But no matter how much I talk to and question people, and generally try to encourage dialogue, readers are reluctant. Why is that?
So I do what any sane person would do, I consult the plan for achieving my goal… hmm… What does success look like? Goals in writing can be severely narrowed… “I must edit this many chapters this week…” “I must reach this word count.” “I must write the blurb, description, design a cover…” “Come up with a character name…” the list is endless. But because it can be divided into so many segments it’s easy to focus on each task and ignore the big picture.
At first it’s just a wonder to see your book on Amazon! Then it’s amazing to see the red line on your sales dashboard graph move at all. All of these little feats become cause for celebration. Mastering the tasks in themselves can feel like climbing mountains and reaching summits. What do you do when you’re over the mound of learning, and comfortable enough in the process, then realise that you’re lacking?
You try to find a task to complete… but there isn’t one. You can’t achieve a task toward a goal when you don’t know what success looks like. I do wonder how other indies measure their success, is it in sales? Maybe its in monetary terms? Or maybe it’s the number of dedicated fans that they have?
Success is relative, but I still don’t know where it stands in relation to me… could it be hiding around the next corner? But if you’re standing on the road alone, when is it time to accept that you’ve taken a wrong turn?

Good luck on your adventures,

Scarlett

Explicit Instruction

shifte

I studied business at college. A large part of business is marketing, so is economics. Here it is.
Books, in most varieties, would be classified as an “elastic” product. What this means, in its simplest form, is that as the price goes up demand will go down. Books are a “luxury” item, you don’t have to buy them.
If the price of your favourite author’s next book suddenly jumped to $900 the chances are you’re not going to run out and buy it on launch day. Whereas if an author you’ve never heard of offers a book for $0.01 then you might be willing to give it a whirl.
We can all agree that supply of ebooks is covered from every angle. If you look at the market as a whole then we know there are choices abound. Even down to the individual author, we don’t have a problem supplying a specific book. The costs to produce are minimal. Time is the greatest factor in creating our product.
Fixed costs are likely covered by our personal bills, as are the variable costs. Again, the only exception to latter would be labour, but every author going in knows that time will be required and it is usually just our own. Further down the line there may be costs accrued for editors or cover designers, etc. but realistically you can’t claw that back by inflating the cost of your novel. You would need to project exactly how many you may sell and if you’re a new author that’s virtually impossible.
When you publish through Amazon they can chose to alter the price of your books without reason or notice, which makes it very difficult for us to control sales of our product. CreateSpace is just crazy because they dictate the minimum price your book can be sold for (which is always an extortionate rate) meaning that a lot of authors are lucky to make more than a couple of pennies for sales of paperbacks. It’s the author who is judged for setting a high price – but we didn’t!
So you’ve written your book, you’ve published it, you may have set up the paperback set up too. Then comes the next big task, promote your book!
I brought up the business thing because I spend a lot of time thinking about pricing, even though it’s sometimes outwith my control. I’ve witnessed the truth of my economics professor’s words on my KDP sales dashboard. I’ve watched the coloured lines go up and down. I’ve watched the royalties go up and down too.
I want to say here that I recently read a blog post about KU and whether or not the number of the books borrowed were added to sales figure, and as such influenced rankings. I can’t find the blog post again. But if there’s anyone out there who is interested, the answer is, no. The number of units borrowed in no way contributes to your book’s rank. I’ve worked it out. Sales alone dictate the rank.
If the economics theories are correct, the next focus is factors that affect demand. So I’m certainly looking forward to winter because summer is a bummer on book sales! Especially with the glorious weather we’ve been having, lol.
But because I have been considering pricing, and marketing strategies, I want to let all new authors in on a little secret. The vast majority of promotion opportunities out there don’t do squat for you. The price for some of these advertising campaigns is nothing short of daylight robbery. I’m still new to this publishing thing too, which is why I wanted to let you know not to part with your money. It really upsets me that websites claiming to make you the next big thing prey on those eager to carve out a writing career. It’s a passion but it can leave author’s open to being taken advantage of. There are some good sites out there with reasonably priced offerings, seek those out first!
But, I’ve gone and done it again with the rambling. I’ll try to pick up this thread again soon because I have lots of views on the promotion machine, and some personal experiences I’d like to share. For now…

Good luck on your adventures,

xSx

homer-excited

Today is going to be a quick one because I’m in a rather philosophical mood. In other words if I start typing I won’t stop! I hope you are all enjoying Father’s Day with your loved ones, and enjoying the weather – if you have it.
I just wanted to remind everyone that The XY Factor is free today! That’s right free! For one day only (June 15) :p

New cover for The XY Factor!

It’s free, so why don’t you check it out:

The two of them may have grown up in the same town but their ways couldn’t have been more different – he was the rebel and she the invisible princess. No one knew of the chance encounter between Darcy and Sloan on his last night in town almost a decade and a half ago.
But when Inverquay needs money Darcy steps up to take part in her worst nightmare – a TV talent show. Things don’t go to plan and she ends up under the glare of the media spotlight. In the big bad city she’s alone, and to a small town girl that’s inconceivable; but no one knows why she’s there so Darcy has no one to rely on.
Sloan swore he’d never go back to Inverquay and after thirteen years he’d rid himself of the town that had forsaken him. Until he stumbles upon the girl he met only hours before he roared away from Inverquay on his bike, and she trusts him… now why in the hell would she do something as stupid as that?

Good luck on your adventures!

Scarlett

Excerpts available here.