As you’ve figured out, I’m hitting hard on email list marketing these days, because with a solid subscription list, you can do so much more than simply going blind in this endeavor.
For one, you can garner a successful launch with only a few hundred subscribers. Already have a series that hasn’t sold well?
You can relaunch it.
Or, if you’re like me and decided to write a trilogy before making moves to build a list of subscribers, you can offer some lucrative discounts and deals, such as awesome price promos (buy Swords of Destiny today for 99 cents and get Missing in Columbia, the Epic Conclusion to Trilogy I, free). But hurry, the offer ends in 48 hours before the price rises to $2.99 and $4.99, respectively.
Needless to say, I’m sure a lot of readers would love to get their hands on three books (including Northern Knights) for the price of just 33 cents per book.
Need a review team?
When you attain a solid number of subscribers, just create a page on your website stating you’re recruiting a launch team to your website, and the first 200 signees not only will get Advanced Review Copies (ARCs) for your next release, but anyone who leaves a review will remain on the list and get every single new release for free.
While some may take freebies and discounted promos as loss leads, the works will gain traction in the Amazon store and other retailers. In other words, running such promos or offering free books to a select group of readers will cause Amazon’s algorithms to point your works in readers’ directions. Especially if it’s a series with lots of reviews.
Let’s take an in-depth look on what a powerful email list can do for you.
Promos, Promos, Promos
Have a new release?
Why not set it to 99 cents for the first seventy-two hours and let your email list in on it?
Create a sense of urgency and oh, everyone who leaves a review will be automatically entered to win a signed paperback copy of your latest book.
When you announce the giveaway, do so pre-launch while also disclosing the special price that will be available for only a limited amount of time. This creates a sense of urgency with readers to hop on the price immediately. The giveaway will encourage them to leave a review.
For instance, I can say something like this:
Go grab your copy of Raven’s Flock for only 99 cents and if you leave a review by (this date), get in contact with me at this address stating you left a review AND leave the full name you used on the review page so I know it’s you.
Remember, everyone who leaves a review and informs me in this email will be entered for a chance to win a signed copy of Raven’s Flock.
So, head over to the Amazon store right now, get your copy, leave a review, reply to this email, and you’ll automatically be entered. But hurry, this offer ends on Sunday at midnight and you have until (this date) to leave your review and reply to this email.
This will do several things. One, it’ll spike your sales and two, it’ll get you some much-needed reviews. Both of which are the lifeblood to the indie author, or any author. And two, it’ll provide some visibility to your backlist. If Amazon notices just one book in your series picking up steam, it’ll increase its rankings and expose your other books as well.
Now, bear in mind this will take time to build a subscriber list: I’m still building mine as I write this. The reason behind this is because many readers, especially those who subscribe to lists seen on outlets like Freebooksy and other locations, tend to download works in bulk. They will get to your book, but again, it might be a while.
Meaning more sales for you and it’ll increase the likelihood that you can Ditch Corporate America.
Free Books Equals Reviews
I know authors hate giving works away for free, but I’m actually not talking about setting your works for free, because readers will just assume they’ll get each of your paid works for free.
Not the case.
I plan on writing thirteen books in Lord of Columbia, where Northern Knights is perma free and I’ll be running some (very) rare buy one, get one free sales as I mentioned in the example above.
However, this only pertains to my email list and something they and only they will know (and you, since you’re reading this article) is that I plan on creating four more additional books in Lord of Columbia which encompasses its expanded universe, with five total.
I’ve mentioned The Skyehawk Chronicles in the past. That’s Book I of the expanded universe. Only one group of people will ever get that book for free, however, and it’s my email list. If you go on any other site, it’s listed at $5.99, which every single one of my expanded universe titles will always be listed to entice subscribers.
The email list gets these expanded works for free and better yet, another giveaway to entice readers to leave reviews is the way to go, but you have to be careful with this strategy. Incentivizing reviews can be penalized by Amazon, however you can get around this by simply mentioning such incentives only in your email list. In other words, other than your subscribers, this is kept on the down low.
Which Amazon can’t do anything about.
But the more reviews the works get, the higher Amazon will rank them to other readers, and by pricing them higher than your other paid works, those who aren’t part of your subscription list actually buying these expanded works will grow your profit.
I don’t typically call these books part of the Lord of Columbia Series itself, instead it’s more of an expanded universe.
Relaunch Your Existing Titles
The first people to hear about wicked discounts is going to be your list of subscribers. So, if you take my promo toward the beginning of this article where I can sell Swords of Destiny for 99 cents then list Missing in Columbia for free for a limited time, I’m creating a sense of urgency for my subscribers, telling them to hop on this awesome deal now while they still can.
Oh, and if you haven’t downloaded Northern Knights yet, this is your opportunity to do so.
Now, if you already have a review team in place, they’ll already have their review copies so this doesn’t quite apply to them. In fact, they should be leaving reviews already, which will bolster your works through the rankings.
But the rest of your list can also get their hands on a massive discount if they act within the next 72 hours.
And maybe they’ll be enticed to leave a review as well.
An email list is a very powerful tool. It’ll help you garner sales, get reviews, and will grow over time. As I’ve stated before, all you need is a book you’re willing to give away for free to get started, and you don’t even have to make it free at online stores; only those subscribing to your list will get the work for free.
What this will do is build a nice little fanbase for you which you can use later as a leverage tool with every new launch. Plus, the review team will have their reviews ready for launch day, so when the book is launched, they can upload their reviews onto Amazon and any other site of their choosing, if your book is there, obviously.