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A Foray into Novel Promotions, Day 2 Results

Updated: Sep 1, 2019

I’m wrapping up Day 2 of a 3 day promotion where The Reborn – the first part of my technothriller novel series – is free on Amazon. Today, I’ll compare the results of Day 1 with Day 2.

Overall, Day 1 was roughly 2x as successful as Day 2, but Day 2 started with a bang (see the brag-sheet I made above... sorry, I got excited, you'll have to forgive me). Let’s look at some numbers. 

Day 1 Totals (Friday)

  • Total Sales of The Reborn: 4161

  • Free Kindle Rank: 49

  • Free Kindle Technothriller Rank: 2

  • Free Kindle Action & Adventure Rank: 1

Day 1 exceeded all my expectations, with over 4000 downloads, plus a #1 and #2 ranking on two Best Seller lists, and a detectable ripple effect to books 2 & 3. (For the full details about Day 1 and running the promotion, see my previous post.)

Day 2 Totals (Saturday)

  • Total Sales of The Reborn: 2005

  • Free Kindle Rank: 34 - 63

  • Free Kindle Technothriller Rank: 1 & 2

  • Free Kindle Action & Adventure Rank: 1 & 2

I first checked Day 2 stats at 9:00 am, and it was the strongest position yet:

Day 2 @ 9:00 AM

  • Total Sales of The Reborn: 705

  • Free Kindle Rank: 34 (significantly higher than at the end of Day 1 when it was 49)

  • Free Kindle Technothriller Rank: 1 (it had moved up from #2)

  • Free Kindle Action & Adventure Rank: 1

In the late hours between Midnight and 9:00 am Pacific Time, The Reborn had jumped from #49 to #34 on the Kindle free Best Seller list, and hit the #1 slot for free Kindle Technothrillers. Yet it did this with slower sales – roughly 78 sales/hour early on Day 2 versus an average of 173 sales/hour across Day 1. This points to a momentum that Amazon calculates behind the scenes to slow movement in these lists. That’s a good thing – so books take many hours to traverse the lists rather than bouncing all over due to hourly whims of the market, which would create an unintelligible mess (a 7-year-old’s Christmas list comes to mind, where it happens to be composed of everything he saw a commercial for in the past 200 seconds). The ranks of Of Mice and Hitmen (book 2) and The Spiritual Singularity (book 3) had similarly continued to climb in their paid categories of Technothriller.

After 9:00 am, the momentum began reflecting the slower sales rate. Here are the numbers from the end of Day 2:

Day 2 @ Midnight

  • Total Sales of The Reborn: 2005

  • Free Kindle Rank: 63

  • Free Kindle Technothriller Rank: 2

  • Free Kindle Action & Adventure Rank: 2

In total over 2 days, The Reborn has been downloaded nearly 6200 times. I’m incredibly pleased with these numbers, though I’d be happier if the sales numbers were swapped between Day 1 and Day 2. It’s funny how the mind works – the results would be exactly the same, but who wouldn’t prefer to be on an upward trend rather than downward?

I question the slowdown because tribal wisdom has said “2-3 days works best,” usually because Day 1 is a ramp-up to faster sales on subsequent days. Here are my speculations why Day 2 was slower in this case:

  1. Weekday vs. Weekend. Day 1 was a Friday, Day 2 was a Saturday. Perhaps more people are on their devices and computers on Friday, browsing for books from work or taking the day off to prepare for a long Labor Day weekend trip. (Side note: In Facebook Gaming, we see more players during the week than on the weekend – often because people play from work.) (EDIT: I later confirmed this – Saturday is a lousy day for selling books.)

  2. Free Book Lists Exhausted. Perhaps most of the frequenters to the free book lists which I got The Reborn added to (see previous post) saw it on Day 1.

  3. Best Seller Lists Exhausted. Anyone who sees an interesting book near the top of the free list has no reason not to grab it. They don’t need to deliberate about spending money. And so maybe most people get it out of the way and the high ranks on a free list loses its meaning quickly to newcomers that don’t have other strong promotions or awareness behind them.

It’s probably a combination. Let’s see how tomorrow, the final day, goes.

What I’m most curious to see is how the trends for Of Mice and Hitmen and The Spiritual Singularity move. How many of the 6200+ downloaders will read The Reborn? How many will even open it? And then how many will finish it and like it enough to get Of Mice and Hitmen? How long will that take? How long will the next books feel the influence of this giveaway? I had 42 combined purchases of Of Mice and Hitmen and The Spiritual Singularity today, and I can’t help thinking that a handful of those purchases were from readers who had already finished The Reborn from yesterday.

But most importantly… how many readers will smile, be excited, or wonder about the world and the universe because they’ve read these books?

Time will tell.


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