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I ran a Goodreads giveaway for a book I published a while ago, Savvy Stories. (We recently discussed the importance of Goodreads in your marketing strategy HERE and HERE) Did I sell a lot of books during my promo? Well, that’s not what this particular giveaway was supposed to do.
Most promotions are done to bring awareness to a product. That, my promo did. Big time.
RECON: A quick review of Goodreads giveaway promos showed that most are new releases and most get about 900 or so people to register to win the book being given away. That’s impacted by several things: how many paperbacks are in the giveaway, how long the promo runs, and how well known the book or author is. For books similar to mine, 900 seemed average.
But Savvy Stories is not a new release; it’s been out for a few years. It’s not by a well-known author, unfortunately. Hugh Howey and Stephen King still have better name recognition than I do. And I did a 9 day promo, not 2-3 weeks like several of my friends suggested (some GR promos go for a month or more).
“This is a test.”
- Test your promotions when possible. Since I want to have good success with my new book The Navigators when I roll it out in March, I want to test the marketing waters with some other stuff first. It’s just as important to know what works (to do more of it) as what doesn’t work (to do less of it).
- Set realistic goals. If a new release that runs for a longer period of time gets 900 people to register to win 2 copies, I figured mine should do about half or less, and I ballparked it at 400.
There are two categories, people who register to win the book, and people who put the book on their to-read list. About half (44%) of the people who registered also added it to their to-read list. That’s a good thing. Remember that; we’ll come back to it.
I was also told most people would sign up on the first day/first few days of the contest, and a lot at the end of the contest, with a substantial drop in the middle. (And that’s exactly what happened. Most signed up the last day. Remember that, too.)
- Do your homework. Did a friend do a GR promo? Did they give the link on their blog or Facebook page? Click it now and it’ll show you the results of their concluded promo. Do what they did or change things to suit your needs. Don’t reinvent the wheel or rely on their bad memory.
- Help your promo IN YOUR AUTHOR PLATFORM. Good thing I have that!
Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and the blog ALL played a small role in getting the word out. That’s the benefit of a platform: people can find out about the promo in different ways.
My giveaway ran from February 6 through February 16 – which was (oops) during Valentine’s Day weekend and also President’s Day, a three-day weekend in some places in the US and A. Remember our marketing calendar? Savvy Stories isn’t a Valentine’s Day-type read, and I wouldn’t have run the promo over a three day weekend had I paid attention – or at least I’d have run it a week longer to get stats during a non-holiday times. But, oh well. It’s better to make these mistakes now instead of when I’m running The Navigators promo.
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Dan Alatorre is the author of several bestsellers and the amazingly great upcoming sci fi action thriller “The Navigators.” Click HERE to check out his other works.