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My KDP Select Experiment

My KDP Select Experiment

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Published by Ingrid Ricks
Thanks to KDP Select, more than 4,000 people downloaded Hippie Boy: A Girl's Story in one day!
Thanks to KDP Select, more than 4,000 people downloaded Hippie Boy: A Girl's Story in one day!

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Published by: Ingrid Ricks on Dec 12, 2011
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05/13/2014

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My KDP Select

EXPERIMENT
By Ingrid Ricks

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I opened
my Kindle dashboard on Thursday morning and saw the announcement for KDP Select, Amazon’s new eBook Lending Library program that gives participating authors a share of a monthly $500,000 pot of cash. But as soon as I saw that the package included the ability to launch a free eBook giveaway on Amazon, I knew I had to give it a try. Despite more than thirty rave reviews on Amazon and various blogs since my memoir, Hippie Boy: A Girl’s Story launched as an eBook on October 1, I’ve been struggling to figure out the magic formula that enables me to exceed two to three eBook sales a day. Along with the sponsorship ads I had recently started exploring on sites such as Kindle Nation Daily, launching a free Hippie Boy eBook giveaway sounded like a great way to build exposure. I wasn’t crazy about the idea of pulling my eBook out of the BN Nook store to meet the 90-day exclusivity required to participate in KDP Select. But since my Nook sales have only represented about 10 percent of my overall sales, I figured it was worth the gamble. I enrolled Hippie Boy in the KDP Select Program on Friday and scheduled my first one-day free eBook promotion for the following day. To ensure that my promo got noticed, I paid $25.99 for a small spotlight ad that Kindle Nation Daily just launched in order to help authors draw attention to their free eBooks.

RESULTS I woke up Saturday morning, logged onto my Amazon dashboard and noticed that 91 people had downloaded a free eBook of Hippie Boy. By mid-afternoon, that number totaled more than 2,000 downloads. That’s when I discovered, thanks to friend and fellow author, that Hippie Boy was also being featured on Pixel of Ink, a large web site/e-Newsletter devoted to quality bargain & free eBooks. I wasn’t even aware of the Web site until Saturday, but Pixel of Ink has more than 94,000 Facebook followers and I know—along with Kindle Nation Daily —played a huge role in Hippie Boy’s eBook promotion success. By the end of my one-day promotion, more than 4,000 free copies of Hippie Boy

were downloaded—landing Hippie Boy at #1 on the top 100 Memoir bestseller “free” list, and #28 overall on Amazon’s Top 100 Bestseller “free” list.

THE DAY AFTER I was thrilled with the promotion’s success. But I wasn’t sure if any of the momentum would hold once the promotion ended. I told myself that it would be a dream if I could sell a hundred eBooks in a day. And at the end of my first twenty-four hour “post” promotion period, I exceeded my goal by eleven eBooks. I don’t know if these sales figures will continue to hold in the short-term. But for me, the KDP Select Program has been a gift. It’s given me the opportunity to get my memoir into the hands of 4,000 new readers I otherwise wouldn’t have known how to reach. Now it’s up to Hippie Boy to do its job and resonate with those readers. If it does, I know that eventually, the book sales will follow.

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Ingrid Ricks is a Seattle-based writer and speaker. She recently published her memoir Hippie Boy: A Girl’s story, a compelling true story about a feisty teenage girl who escapes her abusive Mormon stepfather by joining her dad on the road as a tool-selling vagabond – until his arrest forces her to take charge of her life. For more information, visit www.ingridricks.com

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