Pricing is one of the most valuable ebook marketing tools you have at your disposal today. Whether you’re looking to launch a new book, reinvigorate sales for an old book, expand your audience, or hit a bestseller list, strategic pricing can help.
BookBub has worked on thousands of limited-time price promotions with our partners. Unsurprisingly, we consistently see enormous spikes in downloads and sales for the titles we feature while they’re discounted.
However, our partners report that price promotions have helped them achieve several other book marketing goals as well. In this post, we’ll outline the four most common ancillary benefits we’ve heard from authors and book marketers who have worked with BookBub.
1. Boosting Full-Priced Sales
Discounted books featured on BookBub regularly sell hundreds or even thousands of copies in just a few days, and free promotions frequently result in tens of thousands of downloads. But let’s be honest: you’d rather be selling all these books at $4.99 or $9.99, right? So you might wonder whether discounted sales and free downloads are actually costing you full-price sales.
In fact, our partners report that after they feature a book with us, full-price sales for that title are usually higher than they were before the promotion. On average, sales increase by about 70% for free books and 20% for discounted books during the first month after they’ve returned to full price. This data varies per book, but the general trend suggests that discounting can boost long-term full-priced sales due to the extra exposure from the promotion.
2. Generating Buzz and Visibility
More than 70 percent of authors surveyed by BookBub reported that measures of exposure — including reader reviews, Facebook likes, email list signups, and appearances in retailer recommendation algorithms — increased noticeably after their price promotion. Several of these authors landed on bestseller lists like the New York Times and USA Today, and the Amazon ranking for virtually all the titles they featured with BookBub surged by at least 80-90 percent, exposing readers beyond the BookBub audience to these books by increasing their visibility.
Since readers are more inclined to purchase books with reader reviews, critical acclaim, and other third-party accolades, the exposure and credibility generated by a sudden burst in sales can pay off in the long run by making your book more appealing to consumers.
Of course, old fashioned word-of-mouth buzz helps sell books as well, and more than 60 percent of BookBub subscribers we surveyed said they’ve recommended a book they found in our email to a friend.
3. Selling Related Books
Over 70 percent of BookBub partners report that in the aftermath of a price promotion, sales increase not only for the book they’ve discounted, but also for other books on their backlist. This phenomenon is especially apparent when the discounted book is part of a series. Offering the first title in a series for free or at a steeply reduced price is a great way to ‘hook’ new readers through a low-risk entry point.
More than half of the BookBub subscribers we surveyed said they have gone on to purchase other books by an author they discovered on BookBub, so price promotions help many book marketers find new audiences of devoted fans.
4. Promoting a New Release
Of course, one of the most important “related books” you may be trying to promote is a new release. By discounting a backlist title in the lead-up to a new release, you’ll introduce a large number of readers to an author’s work. Assuming they love what they read, they’ll be eagerly awaiting that writer’s newest book.
Many of our partners have used a backlist price promotion to help push a new release, and they report that it has proven to be an effective launch strategy. What better way to get readers excited about your next book than by getting them excited about one of your older ones?
It’s important to note that simply making your book free for a day won’t necessarily lead to the results we’ve described here (which vary dramatically from title to title), since your price promotion could get lost amidst the numerous other discounts happening at any given time. The data we’ve used in this post comes from titles that were featured in the BookBub email. BookBub helps you stand out by alerting a large number of readers (we have almost two million subscribers) to the fact that your book is discounted, so you can ensure the news is getting out to your target audience and maximize your ability to achieve your marketing goals.
Interested in using BookBub to advertise your next price promotion? Submit your book here.
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