80 sites to advertise your book – update

I finally got around to updating my list of book advertising sites. Dead links were removed, and some more sites added. HTH!

James Calbraith

kindleThis is a list compiled from various online sources, most notably – Rachelle’s Window (go there and thank her! 🙂 she also lists Alexa rankings for the sites) and my own research. As of posting this on August 10th 2014, all the links below are working. Note that I can’t guarantee that the sites themselves are still working, that the forms lead anywhere, or that you will actually get anything for your money.

Majority of these sites advertise books when they’re free, as part of KDP Select or Smashword promo. If you want to advertise a paid book, you usually need to pay extra.

The spreadsheet behind this table is available here. If you think I’m missing something, let me know in the comments.

.URLFree AdPaid AdComments
.100 Free BooksGuaranteedno longer accepted
.Addicted to eBooksGuaranteedregistration required
.Ask…

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90 sites to advertise your book

kindle

As far as I’m aware, this is the most comprehensive list of book promo sites anywhere on the internet. The list was compiled from various online sources, most notably – Rachelle’s Window (go there and thank her! 🙂 she also lists Alexa rankings for the sites) and my own research. As of updating this on April 17th 2016, all the links below are working. Note that I can’t guarantee that the sites themselves are still working, that the forms lead anywhere, or that you will actually get anything for your money.

Majority of these sites advertise books when they’re free, as part of KDP Select or Smashword promo. If you want to promote a paid book, you usually need to pay extra.

Don’t forget you can also promote your tweets and Facebook posts on Twitter and Facebook, though that is known to be not very effective unless you know what you’re doing.

Also, make sure to follow Lindsay Buroker’s blog, as she always has the most up-to-date notes on what works and what doesn’t in advertising.

If you think I’m missing something, let me know in the comments.

As always, you can express your gratitude by purchasing one of my books 🙂

URL Free Ad Paid Ad Comments
100 Free Books $75-100 $75-100
Amazon KDP Advertising CPC min $100 CPC min $100 Amazon’s own marketing
Armadillo eBooks Guaranteed Guaranteed $25 boost available
Addicted to eBooks Guaranteed registration required
Ask David  $15 one-time “promotion pack”
Author Marketing Club Membership + listing
Awesome Gang Guaranteed $10
Bargain eBook Hunter – now Hot Zippy Guaranteed
Best Indie Books $8-$30, free to premium members Requires registration
Book Butterfly free option also available various options, $50+  (reportedly not working, see comments)
Book Deals Daily $5 $5+
Bookpinning Guaranteed “Pinterest for Books”
Book Daily Membership + samples
Book Goodies Guaranteed
Book Goodies $5
Book Goodies $25
Book Goodies For Kids Guaranteed Children only
Book Matchers Listing + search service
Book Tweeting Service (now Tweet Your Books $59+
BookBrowse $2-7 pm
BookBub Various options. $60+ probably most effective right now. Novels only.
BookGorilla $40+ May also post deals from other sites
BookSlut $175-$450
Daily Free Books Guaranteed $7.5
Digital Book Today Not guaranteed 4 stars minimum
Digital Book Today Various options, $15+
eBookSoda $15 Flat Fee
eBooksForFree $12
eBook Daily Deals Guaranteed
eBookLister Not Guaranteed Not Guaranteed
Eat Sleep Write Book plugs from $50+
eBook Impresario $20+
eBooks Habit Guaranteed
eBooks Habit $10
eFiction Finds Guaranteed $5+
eReader Girl Guaranteed $20
eReaderIQ various options, $25-$180 BookBub model, claim 150,000 subscribers
eReader Cafe Guaranteed
English Books XTME $9-$30 No longer guaranteed. For Amazon.de
EReader News Today Not guaranteed Various options Very limited selection, 4 stars minimum
Fiverr $5 per service individual people advertising your book
Flurries of Words $4+
Free Books Hub $10+
Free Books Guaranteed
Free eBooks untested
Free eBook Dude Guaranteed
Free Kindle Books&Tips Not guaranteed,$25 $30+ 4 stars minimum
EReaderUtopia (Free Kindle Fiction) Not guaranteed Needs registration
Free Kindle Giveaway $10+
Freebooksy Not guaranteed $50
Frugal eReader Tweet package $15+
Frugal eReader $50+
Frugal Freebies $3-$8
Fussy Librarian Guaranteed
Get Free Books Not guaranteed
Good Kindles $10-$20
Goodreads custom budget largely ineffective
Hot Zippy Not guaranteed $15 own several other websites
Humanmade Guaranteed Boost your listing – prices vary
iAuthor UK £0.6 per click
Ignite Your Boook Guaranteed
iLove Ebooks various options, $25-$300
iLike Ebooks $0.99-$9.99
Indie Author Anonymous $5 $10-$20
Indie Book of the Day Not Guaranteed
Indie Book Promo Guaranteed Four options, $25+ or small options, $8+
Indies Unlimited Freebie Friday, 99c Thursday
International Book Promotion $30 a month social media burst One-off promotional events
Jungle Deals Guaranteed
Just Contemporary Romance Romance only various options, $10+
Kindle Book Promo Guaranteed
Kindle Book Promos Various options
Kindle Book Review Not guaranteed $5+
Kindle Mojo Not guaranteed $25+
Kindle Nation Daily Guaranteed
Kindle Nation Daily Various options, $100+ number of options, effectiveness reduced lately
Kindle Romance Review various options, $25+ Romance only
KUF Ads various options, $7.50+ several websites, incl. DailyFreeBooks
Kindleboards various options, $35+
Lendle various options, $35+
Lovely Books KDP Guaranteed, Permafree $7.99
Many Books $25
My Book and My Coffee Guaranteed On Hiatus
My Book Buzzing Guaranteed Requires registration
New Free Kindle Books Free only $5
Pixel of Ink Not guaranteed Very limited selection
Pixel Scroll – NOW HOTZIPPY $5+
Reading Deals Not Guaranteed $15
Reddit Guaranteed On the day. Must have account.
Robin Reads $25
Snicks List Guaranteed On the day
Writerful Books Free Manuscript assessment and reviews
YA Book Promo Central Same as Indie Book Promo YA only

Selling my soul to the devil

Last week I’ve chosen to enroll “The Shadow of Black Wings” to Amazon’s KDP Select program. Now, there is some controversy among the indie community as to whether this is the right thing to do for an author. It supports Amazon’s monopoly, they say. It limits your marketing and distribution opportunities. It doesn’t work as well as it used to.

These are all good and valid reasons, but here are my equally compelling reasons to join the program:

1) Other platforms weren’t worth the effort.

Over the last two months, all my non-Kindle sales combined amounted to less than 5% of Amazon sales. Now admittedly, I’ve based most of my marketing efforts on Amazon.com, but that’s part of the problem: with all the hard work involved in writing, marketing and social networking, I just couldn’t focus on other platforms. Every time I had to change something in the manuscript or product description, I had to do it on several websites. Every time I wanted to advertise, I had to post several links. This might have worked if the sales weren’t so poor on those other channels, but the way it was going, it just wasn’t worth it.

This might have been a self-fulfilling prophecy of sorts: focus on Amazon, and only Amazon will bring profit. But  as a fresh starter, I really needed to focus on something. Establishing a reader base is a difficult enough process as it is. Some more experienced authors reported that releasing their books on Kobo was, for them, a worthwhile investment – but they took their already made fan bases to Kobo with them. I don’t have that – yet.

2) A part of the series may have a greater chance than a standalone.

Select and free promos may not be working that well anymore for standalone works, but “The Shadow of Black Wings” is just volume one of a greater series. My reasoning is simple: give the first one free, and hope they will come for the rest. It works for everything else, so why not for books? 🙂

This part is the greatest gamble I’m undertaking. Will anyone want to continue reading the series after getting the first book for free, or will the Select promotions just take a huge bite out of my potential readership – and leave me with nothing to show for it? We’ll see…

3) It’s only three months.

In the end, if nothing works, it’s just 90 days – and then I can change my mind. That’s not much. The Select enrolment period for Transmission is almost over, and it feels like it’s been yesterday that I’ve reached #1 on UK bestseller list for sci-fi anthologies.

With luck, in three months I may be in a better position than I am now. I may have people actively looking for me on other platforms, disappointed that I’m not there. There may be other opportunities showing up – when I started out in June, Kobo Books was just a rumour; who knows what will happen between now and December?

But until then, “The Shadow of Black Wings” is exclusive to Amazon, and free to loan for all Amazon Prime members. Stay tuned for further announcements 🙂

Digital thoughts

Marketing 2.0

So more and more indie digital publishers – including the best selling John Locke – are saying that the traditional marketing methods are not as useful for them as they should be – and that word of mouth, direct referrals and good old quality offering is more important as a sales driver.

This does not really surprise me. I’m no marketing expert, but I can guess what’s going on here.
In the old days of brick & mortar stores, a lot of marketing was based on so-called passive brand awareness. This meant that once you got into the bookstore or cd store looking randomly for a purchase, you would spot a name and associate it with something. To that end, saturating the market with your brand presence, whether through interviews, posters, signings etc. to the point where your name just popped into your readers’ brains at random, was a desirable thing.

Not so with the Amazon model. You can’t really ‘browse’ Amazon. You have to know what you’re looking for. The most impulse purchase you can count on is through the recommendations and ‘other customers also bought’ box, and that’s a far cry from the passive brand awareness you would have strived for in the olden days. Thus, traditional marketing must fail if your only presence is a digital one.

Digital friends

With the onset of digitalized books, music and movies, we’ve finally come to the situation where our real life acquaintances must know less of us than our online ones.
If you visit a house like mine, you will never know what kind of person. There are no books on the shelves, no CDs by the stereo, no DVDs by the TV (and no TV). My flat is a blank card. The only hints you could get are about what kind of furniture design I prefer and what alcohols I drink, if I let you into the kitchen.

But if you were to subscribe to my online information feed, you might (if I were inclined to share these with you) learn instantly all my cultural tastes. Well, this may not apply yet to me personally – I’m not using seamless sharing on Spotify, and I’m not the most prolific Goodreads user, but you know what I mean.

For the sharing-savvy citizens of the internet, the term ‘real life’ is quickly becoming meaningless. Off-line is not where the ‘real life’ happens. Certainly not its most interesting part.