Saturday, May 12, 2012

How and Where to Advertise Your Free E-Book Promotion

This is the second in a series about how to have a successful Amazon free giveaway promotion.  Check out the first post for tips and advice to help organize a successful free promotion.

If you are ready to give it a go, you can have a potentially successful free book giveaway if you target three main venues for letting people know about your event: 
  • Websites and blogs that feature free Kindle books 
  • Twitter
  • Facebook 
But first...

When Is The Best Time to Hold Your Free E-Book Giveaway?

Plan your promotion day(s) for when you have the time to spend sending and tweeting notices. The general advice I had gotten was that a Tues/Wed or Wed/Thurs were the best days to go free, because people tend to buy on the weekend, and you want your ranking up high for the weekend. Luckily I don’t work Wednesdays, so I was able to devote the entire morning and some of the afternoon to free book promotion for On the Road to Death's Door.

How to Schedule an Amazon Free E-Book Giveaway Promotion

To schedule your promotion days, go to the KDP dashboard. Click on BookShelf.  Check the box in front of the book you wish to promote. Click on Actions. Click on Manage Your Promotions. Follow the directions for scheduling your free days. 

TIP: I recommend you create a record keeping system of sites to contact, tweets to send, and Facebook pages to notify.  I used a simple grid, and checked off what I did and when I did it, and had room for notes. I put links to everything in the grid, so that all I had to do was CONTROL-CLICK on the link and then paste my pre-made notice into the appropriate place on the page or site.

Where To Promote Your Free Ebook

Here is the meat of what you are likely looking for. 

DISCLAIMER: I cannot promise that the success we experienced with our book will happen to you and your book, even if you follow all my advice and how-to’s. For one thing, genre likely plays a huge part in the success of any given book. As does the look of the cover and phases of the moon (for all I know).

Whom to Notify Prior to the Free Days
There are several sites you should notify about your free book several days, even weeks ahead of the actual date:
There are likely other good sites, but these are free and still in operation as of the time of this posting; and (with the exception of Pixels of Ink), all promoted our book giveaway.

What to Do on the Day of Your Free E-book Promotion

1) Tag your book on your Amazon book page with the words "Kindle Free," "free ebook," and "Kindle freebie."  You add it as a tag on your actual Amazon book page, just like any other tag.

TIP: don’t forget to untag your book on Amazonit at the end of the promotion.

2) Start sending out Twitter notifications. Stagger these, sending only one or two tweets every fifteen minutes or so. If you send them all at once, you'll get in trouble with the Twitter admin folks for spamming. Tweet the group you want to retweet your news using @nameofgroup. Provide a short pithy announcement using hashtags, something like this:
@nameofgroup #FreeKindleBook name-of-your-book today & tomorrow only link-to-your-Amazon-page-shortened Pls RT!
Be sure to shorten the link. Leave room in the tweet for add-ons by those who do retweet you.

I have to be honest, as far as I can tell of all the accounts I tweeted to, only a few actually appear to have retweeted for me (but it was obviously enough). Maybe including the site’s name with a hashtag would get it noticed (I only did that in one instance).

Here is the list of accounts that promote free books. There may be even more than what are on this list by the time you read this; and of course, some may already be defunct.

  @kindlenews on twitter (over 20,000 followers)
  @Kindle_promo (use #kindlepromo)

3) Notify blogs and websites about your free e-book.

  • Snicklist (this can only be done while the book is free!) 
  • Book Bazaar on Kindle Boards, on the Free thread 
  • Post to your individual book thread in the Kindle Boards Book Bazaar 
Again, there might be others, but these are the ones I used with good success.

4) Post a notice on the following Facebook pages, with a link to your Amazon page:

As always, there are likely other Facebook sites that you can access as well.

It's a bit of work, contacting websites and blogs, Tweeting, and notifying Facebook.  But it will pay off in getting the word out about your free-for-the-day e-book. 

What To Do After the Promotional Day(s)

There are some things you can and should do immediately following your free e-book giveaway days that can have a direct impact on your sales go. As this blog post has already gone on too long, you'll need to check the next one for that bit of advice: What To Do To Increase Sales After a Free E-book Promotion. 

And if you have suggestions of other places to post to, please feel to leave a comment and let us know.


  1. Additional place to list a free book:

    If any of the sites are no longer functional, please leave a comment. Also, if you come across new sites, let us know!

  2. @kindlenews and @KindleEbooksUK seem to be defunct.

  3. For authors who want to be able to easily get more exposure for their KDP Amazon Fee book promotions, or to promote their $.99 or less books, offers daily, free, simple and automatic promotional listings for its authors. Once a book is added, UniverseIndie will daily check to see if a promotion is running for that book, and add it to the appropriate promotional page.

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