Tips for Self Promotion, Sales, and Advertising discussion

820 views
Self Promotion Tips > Giveaways-- what's your take on them?

Comments Showing 1-32 of 32 (32 new)    post a comment »
dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Amy (new)

Amy Rohde (amyrohde) | 9 comments Have any of you done a book giveaway on Goodreads? How did it turn out for you?

I'm doing one for the fun of it, but I hope of course that I get some sales or at least publicity out of it.

For anyone who has done this, can you please give me some idea of what to expect?


message 2: by Rowena (new)

Rowena (rowenacherry) | 334 comments Mod
I have, Amy.

Here's how I looked at it. Put the book up for a month (or as long as the system allows). Give away one book each (a physical copy... do not do e, ever) to each national market in which your book will sell.

Take your time and write the best possible blurb. The blurb is the thing, because this is free advertising to a concentrated audience of readers.

When your winners are chosen (by GR) let them know that the book is in the mail, and mail it promptly. Hope for a good and timely review.

Know that some winners will thank you for the freebie and add it to the bottom of their towering TBR pile (but at least, because it is a physical copy) they will not "share" it.

Some will follow the spirit of the program, read it immediately, and write a review. Some won't... but for the cost of a book and postage, you've had great advertising.

Be very careful about contacting anyone other than winners. Some authors have, and some have had good results offering a consolation prize of a discount on a purchase. The info is available to you if you wish to do that.

Probably, that works best for self published authors. Otherwise, you are paying for a discount that might be more than your share of the royalties on a sold book.

Good luck!


message 3: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Jarvis (screalwriter) | 54 comments I'm doing a giveaway of my new book, "Buying Murder" right now. It's the third book in the Regan McHenry Mystery Series. I didn't try a Goodreads giveaway with the first two, so I'm anxious to see how it goes. I'll let you know.
Nancy Lynn Jarvis


message 4: by Amy (new)

Amy Rohde (amyrohde) | 9 comments Thank you for all the good info, Rowena. You've given me a great idea of what to expect. I suppose some people are really interested, and others? Well, they just want something free, regardless of whether they are actually interested.

Nancy, it's nice to know someone's in the same boat as me. We can be giveaway buddies! :)


message 5: by Nancy (new)

Nancy Jarvis (screalwriter) | 54 comments I like that idea, Amy. What's your book's title? I'd like to look it up and see what it's about.


message 6: by Amy (last edited Jul 28, 2010 07:59PM) (new)

Amy Rohde (amyrohde) | 9 comments (shameless self promotion ahoy!)

It's The Katrina Diary, adapted from a journal I kept as a New Orleanian during the summer of Katrina. :)The Katrina Diary


message 7: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Conway (tracyconway) | 3 comments I did the giveaway twice, the first time I heard nothing from the receiver of the book, which was fine, albeit a little disappointing to not hear feedback. The second one earned two bad reviews, of the two, one at least described the reasons, the other 'review' was given by one of the four friends of the person who received the book and wrote only three words, one was explicitly profane and goodreads refuses to removoe that one. Even Ebay will not allow profanity in feedback. To say I'm disappointed in Goodreads and the entire giveaway process is a huge understatement.


message 8: by Ottilie (new)

Ottilie (ottilie_weber) I am thinking of doing one for my new book, so i'm curiuos by all of this.


message 9: by Ottilie (new)

Ottilie (ottilie_weber) I am thinking of doing one for my new book, so i'm curiuos by all of this.


message 10: by Tracy (new)

Tracy Conway (tracyconway) | 3 comments I'm sure someone has had a good experience. It does offer good exposure to your book. All I can say is that Goodreads is not on your side and will not protect you from vulgar language, they even say so.


message 11: by Ottilie (new)

Ottilie (ottilie_weber) that's really sad because it's a great site! I might try it with one and see what comes out of it before the second.


message 12: by Devon (last edited Apr 15, 2011 06:03PM) (new)

Devon Ashley (devonashley) My first one just ended. I've sent out 5 books. I was hoping for 800 entries for the span of 1 month and was tickled pink when I got 1600. I'm about to run a second offering 1 signed copy.

Hopefully I'll get people that offer reviews...guess we'll see. At the very least, almost 400 people added it to their 'to-read' list so I think the giveaway was worth it just based on that.


message 13: by Claude (new)

Claude Brickell (claudebrick) | 10 comments Devon, that sounds like an incredible accomplishment, your free book offering. Did you place that on Goodreads or on Amazon? I'd be interested in doing the same thing. Can you give me details? Claude (claudebrick@gmail.com)


message 14: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Clausen I have done book giveaways on both Goodreads and Librarything. Can anyone recommend another site to do giveaways on?


message 15: by Devon (new)

Devon Ashley (devonashley) @Claude...sent you a message.
@Daniel: do you have a blog or website? Blog Hops are organized by certain bloggers several times a year. The one's I've seen always have more than 200 blogs participating where everyone offers some type of book or gift card. You could either join the hop yourself or ask another blogger to include your book in their giveaway. I've noticed that the type of books offered is pretty eclectic. Scan some blog book reviewers in your genre and see if you can find a hop coming up.


message 16: by Claude (new)

Claude Brickell (claudebrick) | 10 comments Thanks, Daniel, for your blog advice!


message 17: by Daniel (new)

Daniel Clausen Devon wrote: "@Claude...sent you a message.
@Daniel: do you have a blog or website? Blog Hops are organized by certain bloggers several times a year. The one's I've seen always have more than 200 blogs particip..."


Thanks Devin, I'll try that. I guess I should just try a google search for Blog Hop, correct?


message 18: by Michael (new)

Michael Poeltl (mikepoeltl) If nothing else, the giveaway exposes your work to a considerable group and puts the bug in their ear. I've done two now and waiting on the first to produce a review. THose that win are expected to review your book here on Goodreads.


message 19: by Cypher (new)

Cypher Lx (cypherlx) | 5 comments Can someone explain to me how to do a Giveaway? I am really new to all of this and I would like to get more exposure for my books. Despite everything else I have done, I seem to be having issues generating sales. Maybe this is the trick.


message 20: by Ottilie (new)

Ottilie (ottilie_weber) I am too don't worry Cypher! There is actually really easy step by step process on the giveaway page :) I'm not tech savvy at all so I was thrilled!


message 21: by Patti (new)

Patti Roberts | 51 comments i post giveaways on my twitter page and blog sometimes.


message 22: by [deleted user] (new)

My experience with Giveaways has been okay. I've gotten some sales, and trial and error had opened my eyes to a couple of things. First, make sure that you have a digital copy available-preferably on Amazon because many people will sign up for the Giveaway, and some will search for the title on Amazon to purchase it. Second, sell your digital copy for $0.99 so that you can garner as many sales as possible in that time frame.


message 23: by Karen (new)

Karen Field (karenleefield) | 2 comments Mark wrote: "...Second, sell your digital copy for $0.99 so that you can garner as many sales as possible in that time frame."

This is an excellent idea. Thanks for suggesting it.


message 24: by Reena (last edited May 15, 2011 05:47PM) (new)

Reena Jacobs (reenajacobs) | 66 comments I did a Goodreads giveaway for my novel a couple of months ago. The giveaway lasted about a month, and I offered 1 print book. I received over 700 entries and over 60 people added my book to their reading list. Two or three weeks after the giveaway ended, the winner left a 5 star review.

I've also sponsored blog giveaways. I've found book giveaways are more successful when you offer readers a choice of more than one book. For instance, I have a giveaway going on my blog right now where I'm offering copies of my work along with a book credit at The Book Depository. The prices are competitive, and they offer free shipping worldwide. I love using them for international giveaways.

Part of the problem with offering an item other than the work you're marketing is folks will enter simply for the bonus item while having no interest in the actual book. I'm hoping to counter that factor by allowing individuals to enter the Book Depository portion of the giveaway only and opt out of my work. That way it'll increase the chance of the book going to a person who wants it.

So far I'm very happy with the results.

Also keep in mind, if you find at the end of the giveaway that you didn't give enough books away to make you happy... you can always add more prizes and winners.


message 25: by Lin (new)

Lin Pardey | 14 comments I offered 25 copies of my new book, Bull Canyon, a Boatbuilder, a Writer and Other Wildlife on Goodreads and another 25 on Librarything. My publisher agreed to pay the post. He gave away another 60 to reviewers. Before we sent the copies to the winners of the giveaways I autographed each one and enclosed a letter on nice quality stationary thanking the readers and asking them to email a copy of any review they posted. Fifteen people put very warm reviews on goodreads, one put a luke warm review. Five put five star reviews on librarything. Six of the same folks added their reviews on Amazon. Several did email a copy to me too. Not sure how this will all translate to sales - but the book has just been launched formally this week so watch this space but I definitely think giveaways are a fine idea.

Thanks to any of you who did put a review up for me.
Lin Pardey


message 26: by Jass (new)

Jass Richards | 3 comments Rowena, why do you suggest not doing an ebook giveaway?

I'd like to suggest that authors consider the difference between Goodreads Early Review program and the Free Giveaway program. I did the latter and people felt compelled to write a review, even if they hated the book. I think sometimes we should be careful about who we 'solicit' reviews from (you wouldn't ask an sf fan to review your romance) and with the free giveaway, you can't. You'd assume that only people who probably like your book will request it, given your blurb, but I'm not sure that's necessarily so.


message 27: by Jass (new)

Jass Richards | 3 comments sorry, meant to identify myself -

Jass Richards
This Will Not Look Good on My Resume


message 28: by Ottilie (new)

Ottilie (ottilie_weber) I haven't gotten a review from the giveaway, but so far it was a good experience. I recieved over 1000 enteries, over 200 people added the book to their lists along with my first book to their list. A couple of people dropped the book from their lists when the contest ended but then a couple more then added it! In addition to my first book I'm happy :)


message 29: by Jass (new)

Jass Richards | 3 comments oops, i got librarything's programs confused with goodreads. it's librarything that has both an early review and giveaway, not goodreads.


message 30: by Dr (new)

Dr | 134 comments Dr Paradise | 101 comments Amy wrote: "Have any of you done a book giveaway on Goodreads? How did it turn out for you?
See my comment below,
Dr Robert E McGinnis

If you want to see a good review from a person in France, someone I have never met and see the worth of giving a book to the right person, take a look at this link.
http://fidesgrace.blogspot.com/2011/0...


message 31: by Michael (new)

Michael Smith (Promotional_Products) | 1 comments Corporate Giveaways has long been considered excellent for expanding your business.
http://www.scorepromotions.com


message 32: by Karl (new)

Karl Perera (karl_p) | 7 comments Cypher wrote: "Can someone explain to me how to do a Giveaway? I am really new to all of this and I would like to get more exposure for my books. Despite everything else I have done, I seem to be having issues ge..."

I have done one Giveaway and it was easy Cypher. You just need to have a copy or two physically to give away and then write up the blurb which is quite straightforward just check what others do on their giveaways.

I got many many people to add it to their reading lists and about 800 entries for the one book I gave away. I am still waiting for a review to come from this. My sales did go up during the giveway though!


back to top