After going into the costs and income from my books yesterday, I thought I’d go into Dave Higgins and my most recent marketing plan on Greenstar.
So, to start off with, neither of us has a massive following. We have some people following us on our blogs, social media and email lists, but not the kind of numbers that would launch a book to the top of the charts. At the same time, neither of us was comfortable with just spamming anyone that is following us, shouting, “Buy our book!” over and over.
We decided that the best thing to do would be to come up with fun things that we could share, all Greenstar related, that might encourage people to check out the intro pack for free (Which you can still do by clicking on the book cover on the left). The things we came up with were: images with funny quotes; diary entries from the crew; short stories for our email list and Gumroad pack; videos on collaboration and our favourite moments from the season.
Neither of us were sure what kind of effect these things would have, but we felt more comfortable sharing things of value, rather than just spamming. We also emailed our list, of course, to let them know everything that was available.
Every link we shared was trackable, so we could find out what worked and what didn’t. The thing is, it all did. I, at least, was expecting one thing to be successful and the others to be less so, so we could concentrate on one thing in the future. However, all of the trackable links got followed. There were less links clicked later in the week, but that’s understandable and the clicks were still in the double digits.
All of this has made me interested to try something similar when Hard Vacuum 2 comes out, only different. Greenstar is a comedy series, so funny quotes and diary entries make sense. They don’t make sense for a hardcore action sci-fi book, so I need to come up with other ideas. However, at least now I know I need ideas for marketing.
In terms of numbers, the marketing push made an 80,000% difference to the launch of the intro pack versus the launch of my other series starters. That’s right, that’s not a misprint. Eighty-thousand percent more intro packs were downloaded than other free series starters were previously downloaded.
Granted, the numbers were low before, but I haven’t gained many more followers since last time. So with my following plus Dave’s, we managed to massively increase the numbers of people trying our book.
In terms of time investment, each thing took approximately the following amount of time:
Short stories – 18 hours;
YouTube videos – 4 hours;
One liners – 4 hours;
Diary entries – 4 hours.
So, if we were going to cut anything, the short stories might go. However, we also want to give added value to our email list and Gumroad purchasers, so they’re likely to stay too, depending on interest.
I would encourage any author out there to try doing the same type of marketing. Write some supplementary materials around your book and plan a launch. It worked well for us, it could work for you too.
By the way, if you missed the opportunity to buy Greenstar Season One for half-price, it’s still available on Story Cartel for the cost of a review: https://storycartel.com/books/greenstar-complete-season-1
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Bytarend is fast, fun fantasy that'll have you on the edge of your seat. Hard Vacuum is hard-talking, violent science fiction and my tribute to 80s action movies.
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