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Kindle Countdown Deal – The Results

kindle-countdown-deals-bannerIt has been a busy week, filled with forum lurking, promotion posting and twitter blasting. The Kindle Countdown Deal has now officially ended and as promised, below are the results. But first, a little introduction on how I approached this week:


  • Reach the ROI (Return of Investment) point for the paid promotions
  • Sell as many books as possible
  • Enter the paid top 1000 on Amazon for my main genre’s (Adventure->Fantasy, Fantasy -> Epic)
  • If above successful: Enter the paid top 100 on Amazon for my main genre’s
  • Sell enough books for the Amazon algorithms to kick in, meaning the scrolling bar “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” fills properly.
  • Increase overall exposure for my book/series/author name
  • Stimulating amount of KindleUnlimited pages being read

Promotions involved:

To bring my book in front of people, I invested in two paid promotions. These are mailing lists that are send to people on a daily base, highlighting the discounted books of that day. There are TONS of such promoting list, are varying in size, costs, genres, etc.. Some show 20+ books per mailing, others only 4. Some mailing work beter for romance books, others horror. The amount of subscribers run from a few hundred to a multiple hundred thousands of people receiving the emails. And on top of all those choices; some have minimal review numbers and star rating requirements, before you’re allowed to make use of their promotion. They often call Bookbub the Holy Grail of promotional mailings with over 2 million subscribers. However, it is very costly and they are very strict in who they choose to promote. Bookbub seemed a bit (okay, A LOT) overkill for myself at the moment, so I decided to actually spread out my promo week across two paid promotions and as many free promotions as I could qualify for. The following promotions ran:

  • 20-05-2016: My Bookcave—FREE—was the first to highlight my book on their website, Facebook and Twitter.
  • 21-20-2016: The eReaderCafe—PAID ($30)—was my first paid promotion. Windcatcher was the “Deal of the Day” and had good position (2nd book shown) in the mailing list.
  • 22-05-2016: ReadingDeals—FREE—included in their mailing list, but positioning was poor somewhere far down the list, but no costs, so who am I to complain.
  • 23-05-2016: BookGorilla—FREE—included in their mailing list, but positioning was poor somewhere far down the list, but again no costs, so thanks!
  • 24-05-2016: Author Interview on Infamous Scribbler, Rachel was kind enough to put an interview online adding some exposure to the promotion week and even bought a copy herself. Two thumbs up! Go check out her blog if you have some time.
  • 25-05-2016: eReader News Today (ENT)—PAID ($30)—second paid promotion with excellent exposure, shown 2nd on the list.
  • 25-05-2016: A second Author Intreview came online. This time on Kyra Halland’s Blog. Naturally with both being so closely released together, I tried to keep them both interesting and divers.
  • 26-05-2016: Last day of promotion. Entire week I already promoted heavily in Goodreads groups and Reader Forums like SFF World and KUForum, as well as the occasional post on Reddit. This last day was focused on finalizing these promotional threads and some Twitter oriented promotion.

As I did not want to make myself bankrupt (as well have a viable goal to reach my ROI) I chose two of the paid promotions that were in the middle ground of costs. Together they are good for reaching 280.000 people, thought the total amount of Fantasy readers is less, around 40% (estimated on numbers received from the promotional lists. Windcatcher is normally $2.99, which is really not a bad deal for a full epic fantasy read, however with so many other books trying to be seen, discounting your books is one of the few ways to (temporarily) jump out above the masses and get noticed (until you get super famous, have a following of a few million people, at which time you can pretty much price your toilet paper scribbles however you like and it will sell). For this promotion Windcatcher was discounted to $0.99, giving a royalty of about $0.70 per sale. So, to reach the ROI point for this promotional I had to sell at least two times 43 books (43 * 0.70 = $30,10 which is the price of one paid promotion in this case).



Amazon provides handy graphs to track the sales and ranking of your books. So it is fairly easy to track the progress of your efforts. Above shows the total number of sales during the promotion. Upper graph is 20 sales per line, lower graph 200 KENP pages read per line. Sales were as following in order of day: 7, 13, 18, 4, 7, 56, 18 and 2. Making the total of sold books: 125! Now I do not know if this is a lot or not, but it means (hopefully) that 125 will read and enjoy my book, which is very exciting. With 125 books sold, I have achieved my ROI goal, which is very satisfying and I even gained a little bit of “profit” to set against the initial costs of editing and other costs involved, but I expect it will be a while before I have earned back all those costs. So, how about the other goals?

author rankExposure can not really be measured, but the promotion had an excellent impact on my author rank (showing here on the left) on Amazon. At the beginning of the promo week it shot upward and raise steadily, to reach the highest ranking of 11.498 on Friday the 27th of May. Now, normally higher ranked authors give the reader a sense of quality, so this should help convince other people to try out Windcatcher if they come across it. I’m sure this ranking will start dropping again over the next few weeks, but for now I’m hoping it will stay up there for just a while longer.

book rankMy Book ranking also made an incredible jump (see right graph). It quickly became apparent that the top 1000 goal would be reach early in the week. But it took the 2nd promotion to get near the top 100. Near, you say? Yes near…although I would have loved to break through the top 100 on Amazon on my genres, it was not yet meant to be. The highest I got was #105 in the genre of Action & Adventure -> Fantasy…so close yet so far away. Overall ranking came as high #4302 of all paid books in the kindle store. With more than 8.000.000 books online in the Kindle store, I believe that is a very decent result.

After the promotion ended, multiple people have started reading the book on KindleUnlimited (see picture overview of sales), which is a delayed effect of the promotion itself. Which means another goal successfully reached. To which I can add the goal of Amazon algorithms as well, as the scrolling bar “Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought” is now nicely filled with 11 pages of other book suggestions. Which means that for those books, Windcatcher is also displayed in that place, again providing additional exposure.

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Overall, I’m really pleased with the results of the promotion. Would I do anything different during the next promotion? I’ll probably try other a different mailing list (many force to wait 90 days, before promoting again). And I’ll also turn back the self-promotion on Goodreads and the Forums somewhat (not all moderators were happy with the amount of posts I did, even though I tried to keep them differs and limited to one per day).

What else? I want to thank those that put up my book in the mailing lists for free, those that re-tweeted and shared, as well as Rachel and Kyra for the opportunity of being featured on their blog. And, of course—if you’re reading this and you’re one of the people that decided to buy a copy—thank you for your purchase. Enjoy the story and please don’t forget to put up a review if you like what you read. If anyone has any questions about the above, feel free to leave a comment below. 🙂

– A.J. Norfield


1 thought on “Kindle Countdown Deal – The Results”

  1. Thanks for posting your results and congratulations on selling 125 books. I think that is a LOT and it’s definitely something to be proud of! I would also be doing a happy dance about getting to the rank of #105 for your book. Good luck and keep writing! Grace

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