Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Mini-Promo Trainwreck

This has been an interesting month in terms of writing.

I have a short story collection all ready to go, but the cover isn't quite done yet. So I thought I would try to come up with an innovative way of getting some of the content out there anyway before the holidays. Here was the plan I came up with a couple months ago:

1) Publish three of the stories on iTunes, B&N, and Amazon. Set one story free on iTunes and B&N ("Firebugs") and enroll another in KDP Select on Amazon and set it free once in a while ("The View From Under the Bridge").

2) Release a story or two in audio format on my main site. All the stories have been recorded in audio format, but some were stronger than others.

3) Build interest for the full book release which would occur sometime in January or February.

Here's what actually happened:

1) The stories made it out to Amazon and iTunes. B&N? Apparently there is some sort of logjam with their publishing process right now so the stories aren't out there yet. So only Firebugs is free on iTunes right now.

2) I enrolled the View story into KDP select and set it free for a day. For hours and hours the story showed no sales rank, even though behind the scenes several copies were going out. In the early afternoon the sales rank appeared, but by that point it put a major dent into the totals. In the end, only thirty copies were downloaded.

3) The audio stories went online several weeks ago. From what I can tell, only a couple of people have actually listened to them.

So, um, yeah, that's where things are at. I'm hoping to actually do something in the next few weeks which could help, however. In short, I'm planning on advertising. This isn't a new idea to me, but I really have done a poor job of helping people find these books up until now. So I've started to put together a marketing plan for 2013, which will have to rely on creativity and unique ad placement. Having a shoestring budget is an understatement...but we'll see how things develop.

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