Anatomy of a Kindle promotion

brain-anatomyI recently conducted an experiment – I took a title that doesn’t sell many copies (The Golden Daemon) and set it for a zero price promotion for three days. I then didn’t advertise it, just left it to see what might happen. The results are interesting and might change how I promote in future.

I did this both to get some insight and also ahead of planning my promotion for an upcoming title, The Marylebone Magician.

If nothing else I will do some more experiments!

The results

Anatomy of a Kindle PromotionThe results can be seen in the graph to the left; a spike on Day 1, some take-up on Day 2, nothing on Day 3 then a blip on Day 4. I will take these in reverse order.

The Day 4 blip

This confused me for a second. I know it isn’t a sale as it is in green (if you haven’t used Kindle Direct Publishing, the green line is promoted copies. There are other colours for bought or borrowed.

How did a free copy go out the day after I stopped? Easy! You have to remember Kindle (and Amazon) are US centric – any promotion starts midway through the day in Europe and then ends an exact number of days later.

The Day 2 total

Without getting the details, it seems to me that some (or all) of the Day 2 total is actually overspill from Day 1 due to time difference. The contribution of Day 2 is relatively minor, if any!

Day 1

It’s all about Day 1 – this matches my memory of giveaways when I have advertised; the only thing that matters is Day 1.

It also teaches me that (a bit like Field of DreamsIf You Build It, They Will Come. All these people took a punt on my short story simply as it was free (and has a couple of reviews).

Strategy going forwards

Amazon allows you five free promotion days in a period – this strongly suggest they should be spread out. I see no benefit from running a long promotion, though this may change over a holiday weekend.

Thoughts – what are your experiences? Let me know!



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