Observations on a Kindle Free Promo – Halfway

In my last post, I suggested there may be a link between Kindle free promo success and being listed in one or both of Pixel of Ink and eReader News Today. Now, halfway through my second free promotion, I have some proof.

During my last promotion for “On Unfaithful Wings” (a Fri-Sun run, March 23-25), eReader News Today (ENT from here on out) had me listed in the morning on Friday. By the end of the day, I had about 4200 downloads. I was ecstatic! Over the following two days, another 2000+ people took advantage of my generous nature and I ended my free run somewhere in the neighbourhood of 8400 downloads. I reached #1 in the fantasy category and peaked at #41 on the overall Kindle free list. Wow! Awesome! As I mentioned last post, I saw some residual sales from that. Couldn’t be happier.

This time, things started off slower. I kept track of how things progressed last time (ok, I was actually on vacation then and checked what was going on about every 15 minutes). At about 9am on the first day of my first promo, I’d had over 400 downloads. It was around then ENT listed me and by 10am, I was at over 850. This time? 119 at 10am.

Oh no. I ‘d heard about the ‘second kindle promo curse’, where so many authors on the Kindle Boards lamented how great their first run was and how much their second one sucked in comparison (I rarely go to Kindle Boards anymore — I found too many people were getting whiny). Surely I couldn’t be a victim of the curse, could I?

Nope. At 10:49am (I know the exact time because I texted my wife), I noticed that Pixel of Ink (POI from now on) had listed my novel.  By 11:15, downloads were at 400.  At 3:30 I hit 2100. At 4pm, I saw that ENT also had me listed. I finished the day with 6150 downloads. Last promo, it took me until the end of the second day to get to that number (and that was a Friday/Saturday, not a Thursday). The last time I looked, I was sitting at #1 in both fantasy and horror and #22 overall.

Very happy, and hoping for another rocking day (#1, here I come!)

So what is it that guarantees a successful Kindle free promo? Hammering your tweeps on twitter? Sharing with all your friends on Facebook? Paying a service to tweet for you? How about paying for advertising? I’m going to have a look at the results of a couple of those in my next blog, but from what I can see so far, it’s the listing on ENT and POI that really boosts the downloads. And how do you get there?

As far as I can tell, it’s about luck.

2 thoughts on “Observations on a Kindle Free Promo – Halfway

  1. Good points, Bruce, thanks for sharing them. I agree POI and ENT are incredibly influential. I posted on a whole bunch of sites but it was those two that made the difference I’m sure.
    My second promo wasn’t as successful as my first but it sounds like you’re going to have a great run with yours. Well done! Oh, and great new cover too.

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