January marketing update – Choosy Bookworm and BookHearts disasters, plus other fun facts

Hi, everyone, just a quick update on the book marketing companies I’ve tested in January. It was only a few, since I wanted to make sure that the results I was getting were due to a specific promo and not an overlap.

First off, let’s have a look at the sales. As you can see, Shizzle, Inc (Isa Maxwell escapades Book 1) is back with Kindle Select, and can’t be happier about the additional action:

January sales

As usual, I’ve updated my Super-Duper, Exhaustive and Comprehensive List and the January highlights are below:

  1. BookHearts, a subsidiary of Choosy Bookworm, had a second chance on 9 January, but something went wrong and I only got 2 sales. I’d contacted them and they agreed to run the promo (whether the first time or again, not sure) on 18 January. See for yourself- I got 5 sales. The cost was $5, which is not much, but the result is still disappointing. What was even more dissapointing is that I’ve tried to contact Jay from Choosy Bookworm/BookHearts a number of times, and never got a response  OF ANY KIND. Makes me want to start a “blacklist”.
  2. On 14 January  it was BKnights via Fiverr turn. I paid $5, even though I saw mixed reviews. I got 4 sales and didn’t bother to ask why.
  3. On 16 January it was Choosy Bookworm. I got the “Guaranteed Feature” on sale for $19. Sold 11 copies. I contacted Jay, just like I did for BookHearts – no response. I can’t be more disappointed – blacklist it is!
  4. 19 January – I screwed up and did 2 giveaways. I will need to re-run and re-test Buck Books – the link is to their policies, but to apply to advertise you actually need to contact Jennifer directly on jennaputt@gmail.com. Claim to have 42,000 subscribers. Cost – $12. I also did eReader News Today again, at $30. Total sales were 44 on the day, plus about 2,000 pages read in the next few days.
  5. 31 January – Betty Book Freak. Cost: $12. Sales – zero (if you don’t count the pages read). To give Betty credit, she promptly refunded my money.
  6. 2 February – eBook Soda. Cost: $15. I got one sale. Once again, they refunded my money, so I will leave them in “try for yourself” category.

I have not scheduled any other promos yet, a bit burned out (it takes a lot of time) and also, this month I’m playing with Amazon pay-per-click promos. Ever wondered if it’s worth it, what to set as per-click price, and whether to use categories or associations with other products?

Results in a couple of weeks!


Filed under Self-publishing and marketing

36 responses to “January marketing update – Choosy Bookworm and BookHearts disasters, plus other fun facts

  1. This is really useful information. Thank you!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Hi, Ana. Thanks again for sharing the process. It is INDEED a process. I have a question about the stats: I do not understand the one about KENP read. Is it accurate? My report seemed different from what I know to be read pages and when they were read based on feedback from people who bought the book.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Carole. They are “standardised” pages, which I never really figured out. To be honest, I’ve stopped worrying about it, since it’s in a category of “can’t do anything”. I put all my energy into marketing instead.


  3. I admire your energy, and find your reports very useful! I haven’t tried any paid promos yet, but it looks as if it might be worth doing.
    You might want to report the company that you’re blacklisting to Writer Beware or Preditors and Editors. It’s helpful to all of us to know what you’ve learned!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m a little weary of reporting them, as a different book may perform well with them – they did do what they said they would, my only concern would be that they overstate their social media reach. But nothing stops me from sharing my personal experiences, which I will continue to do…


    • Oh, and thank you 🙂 Just wait, my 5 months of leave starts in a week…I will be a hurricane…


  4. I used to sale 200-400 books with ENT promos, but those days are over since FB changed the way you see posts. I’ve never thought to ask for money back on smaller outfits. Wasted a lot there. My last promo with ENT netted 54 sales. Thanks for sharing. I’ve heard to check with Alexis before trying sales on sites, but seriously, none of the sites get the traffic of BookBub and ENT. And they charge accordingly.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Thanks for the information. It’s very interesting even though I haven’t finished a book yet.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Great information. Thanks for being so transparent about sales!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Hi Ana: Chris Mullen did a series a while back, when Amazon just started with their ads, about it. I’m not sure if he’s updated it recently but you might want to have a look. https://chrismcmullen.wordpress.com/2015/01/30/how-to-assess-your-ad-campaign-at-kindle-direct-publishing/

    Liked by 1 person

  8. He does have a series of links to marketing and those include a few on Amazon advertising… https://chrismcmullen.wordpress.com/index-of-marketing-posts/

    Liked by 1 person

  9. I’m not in a good mood about the whole thing of promos. I just got turned down by BookBub because my novel wasn’t a good enough fit for their readers’ current tastes. In other words, it blatantly cross-genres and they can’t categorise it. Same old same old… sigh D: I’d really hoped to get some promotion going alongside the Kindle Countdown that I have planned. I’ll be interested to see your feedback about the pay-click promo.
    I also signed up recently with the Independent Author Network on Twitter, hoping to up my sales, but so far no difference. Up-to-date, I would say that most of my sales have either been through my blogging contacts, through word of mouth in my home town, or flyer distribution.
    Will keep trying…

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Reblogged this on Kim's Author Support Blog and commented:
    Thank you, Ana, for the promotion verses sales information.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Thanks Ana for the information. Being new at marketing, you gave me a lot to think about. I really liked your blog on book trailers. I’m checking into that also.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I adore that you are updating us with your progress – you’ve been working your butt off and we are pretty darn lucky you’re willing to share. Thank you 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I don’t pay for advertising as my publisher does, but I know some authors who are big time into marketing and they same Amazon marketing isn’t worth it. You will get better ROI from FB ads than you will through Amazon. Just any FYI.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Nancy Glynn, Author

    Thanks for sharing, Ana. Robin Reads and ReadCheaply are my faves. I’ve also had disappointing results with the others you’ve mentioned. When I get enough reviews, I’ll try for a BookBub.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Thank you so much for sharing. Now I’m back I’m off on the promo run soon, and this info is so helpful 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Pingback: January marketing update – Choosy Bookworm and BookHearts disasters, plus other fun facts | Graham Writer

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