In this article I am going to share the step-by-step launch strategy I used to market my most recent book, Lifestyle Business Blueprint, to #1 Bestseller status on Amazon Kindle.
I have tried my best to be as transparent and detailed as possible. My hope is that by doing so, you will be able to experience similar results be implementing these steps in your next book launch. That being said, I am sharing these steps with you under the following assumptions:
A successful book launch definitely does not happen by accident. There is a lot of preparation and a lot of very specific decisions that are made behind the scenes to ensure the launch is successful. Before I walk you through the exact steps I followed to launch my book, I want to give credit where credit is due. Here are some of the resources I utilized to piece together my launch strategy:
Okay, here we go…
I’m dividing my overall book launch strategy into 3 different phases: pre-launch, launch (5 day free promotion), and post-launch. The steps I took during each phase are listed below:
1. Upload your book to Amazon Kindle 1-2 weeks before your official launch date
Choose your launch date and then upload your book to Amazon Kindle 1-2 weeks before that date. There are a few reasons why this is important. Firstly, you want give yourself enough time to download your book and make sure it is formatted correctly. If you notice any formatting errors, you have time to fix them and upload a revised version of your book. Secondly, you want to give yourself enough time to collect some positive reviews (Step 4) before your launch date.
Don’t upload your book to Amazon Kindle more than 2 weeks before your launch date. You want to give your book a chance of being featured in the Hot New Releases section of your book’s category. If you leave your book on Amazon for too long before you start promoting it, you risk missing that opportunity.
2. Write a compelling description that sells
The book description is one of the most under-utilized opportunities to encourage potential readers to buy your book. When you upload your book to Amazon, you are permitted to include a book description of up to 4,000 characters. My advice: use as many of those characters as you can.
Think of your book description as the “sales page” for your book. A well written description should give potential buyers a very clear understanding of what they will learn if they read your book and persuade them to purchase it. You may even want to hire a copy writer to write your book description for you.
It is also important to include specific keywords in your description. Just like Google, Amazon is a search engine. A lengthy and well written description that includes keywords that book buyers are using to search for your topic will help your book rank higher in Amazon’s search results.
When I wrote the description for my book, I strategically included several different keywords that I wanted my book to rank for on Amazon. Some of those keywords include: lifestyle entrepreneur, online business, and make money online. The screenshot below shows a portion of my book description. As you can see, there are several keywords throughout the description, placed strategically in the headers (the orange font) and in the paragraphs. As a result, my book ranks on the first page of the search results for many of these keywords.
3. Choose your book’s categories
As you’re uploading your book to Amazon, you will be asked to select 2 categories to list your book in. Since there are bestsellers lists for every book category on Amazon, I recommend selecting 2 very specific categories rather than broad ones.
For example, Business & Money is a very broad category. To rank #1 in that category is extremely difficult. If you niche down a few levels, to a category such Home-Based Business, you will have less competition for the #1 spot.
When your book launches, you want it to have the highest chance of claiming the #1 spot in its category, so my advice is to pick a category that makes sense for your book but that also doesn’t have too much competition. After checking the competition in several categories, I decided to categorize my book in Home-Based Business and Internet Marketing.
4. Enroll your book in KDP Select and schedule your free promotion days
As you’re uploading your book to Amazon, you’ll be asked whether or not you want to enroll your book in their KDP Select program. By doing so, you agree to sell your book exclusively on Amazon for a period of 90 days (you’ll be asked every 90 days if you want to keep your book in the program). During that time, you will not be permitted to sell your books from any other websites, however you will be given 5 “free promotion” days to use per 90 day period.
Since I wanted to launch my book with a 5 day free promotion, I chose to enroll it in the KDP Select program. Research shows that Amazon book sales spike on the weekend, so I decided to schedule my free promotion to start on a Saturday and end on a Wednesday. Remember to schedule your free promotion to start 1-2 weeks from the day you upload it to Amazon.
5. Collect several positive reviews
Reach out to your personal network (friends, colleagues, other authors, etc.) and ask them to download and review your book. Having a few reviews for your book helps it get more downloads during the free promotion period (the launch) because people are more likely to download a book that has already been enjoyed by other readers versus one that appears to have not.
I priced my book at $0.99 so that the people I reached out to didn’t have to spend much money to download the book, and those downloads counted as paid sales (paid sales also help to show Amazon that there is demand for your book). I used Facebook to send out about 30 requests. This resulted in 10 5-star reviews before my official launch date.
6. Upload a paperback version of your book using CreateSpace
Most self-published authors will agree that the majority of their book sales on Amazon are in Kindle format. However, having a paperback version of your book is beneficial for a few reasons. Having both prices displayed (Kindle price and paperback price) helps make the Kindle version of your book look like a good deal when compared to the price of your paperback version.
I priced my paperback version at $18.99. As I write this post, my Kindle version is priced at $3.99. Amazon will often calculate the difference between the two prices and display a “savings amount” when the Kindle version is purchased (in this case, the savings amount is $14.99). This helps encourage potential buyers to buy the Kindle version.
Another benefit of having a paperback version of your book is it makes your book look more professional. Many book buyers still do not perceive eBooks to be “real books”. If you have a paperback version, anyone who does not like reading eBooks can order your paperback version instead.
To make your book available in paperback format, set up an account on CreateSpace and upload your print-ready book files (cover and interior). Once approved, Amazon will connect your paperback listing to your Kindle listing so potential buyers can choose which format they want to purchase.
7. Submit your book to book promotion websites
There are dozens of book promotion websites that can help spread the word about your book to their respective audiences. I honestly have no idea how effective this strategy is, but since it only takes a few minutes to submit your book details and promotion dates to these websites, it is worth a try. Not every website will promote your book, and some of them will charge you a fee to guarantee that they will.
I sent my VA (virtual assistant) a list of book promotion websites, and she spend about 3 hours submitting my book to approximately 30 websites that accept submissions for free book promotions. Make sure you submit your book at least 1 week in advance of your scheduled free promotion dates so that these websites have enough time to review your submission and schedule it into their promotions, should they choose to.
The list of websites I gave to my VA can be found on this article: www.sarkemedia.com/free-kindle-book-promotion/
8. Increase your Kindle price before launch day
The night before your book launch, I recommend increasing the price of your Kindle version to an amount that is equal to or higher than what you plan to eventually sell it for long term. This tactic increases the perceived value of your book during its free promotion, which encourages more people to download it.
For example, if a book is priced at $0.99, then a free promotion isn’t as appealing to an Amazon customer, since the amount of money they save by downloading it for free isn’t significant. I increased the price of my book to $4.99 the night before the launch. The people who downloaded the book during the free promotion therefore perceived a savings of $4.99.
9. Bonus “Case Study” strategy
This step only applies if you feature other people in your book. In Lifestyle Business Blueprint, I featured 12 people as case studies in the book. I sent each of them an email about 2 weeks before the book launch date, requesting that they share the link to the book with their audience during the launch to help maximize the book’s exposure. I provided them with the link to the book and a few images to use for posts on social media. Not all of them ended up sharing the link with their audience, but I am definitely grateful to the ones that did. The exposure to their respective audiences likely helped the book get more downloads during launch week.
There are two types of book launches. There are free launches and paid launches. There are benefits and drawbacks to each strategy, but for this book, I chose to do a free launch. I chose this strategy because I wanted the book to reach as many people as possible, and I was willing to forego royalties from paid sales to make this happen. Also, since I featured several people as case studies in my book, I wanted those people to be able to invite their audience to download the book during the launch without asking their audience to buy it. I assumed their audiences would be more receptive to a free gift than a sales offer.
On the first day of my book’s free promotion, I sent an email to my list of subscribers (mainly people who listen to my podcast). I simply let them know that I had a new book on Amazon and that they could download it for free. Judging by that email’s click-through-rate (the number of people who actually clicked on the link to my book), about 100 people went over to Amazon to download the book.
You don’t need a huge list for this to work. Even if only a few dozen people download your book from Amazon in a short period of time, that should be enough to get your book ranked in the Top 100 of its category. Once it’s there, it will be exposed to hundreds, maybe even thousands of Amazon customers who browse that category and will see your book. Making it into the Top 100 of your category will help to create some momentum over the next few days. Because I chose very specific categories with less competition, I was able to rank #1 in those categories almost immediately.
Day 1 Results:
On the second day I started to promote my book on social media (posted on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google +, and Instagram). I also tagged the people who were featured as case studies in my posts. Here is a screenshot of my post from my personal profile on Facebook:
I also started sharing the link to my book in various Facebook groups that allow people to promote their book’s free promotion. I am not sure how effective this strategy is, but it’s worth a try.
Day 2 Results:
On Day 3 I kept posting on social media about the book. I remember sharing some screenshots of the book climbing the bestsellers list to help entice people to download a book that lots of other people were already downloading. That was about it. By this point I was relying mostly on organic downloads from Amazon customers who were looking at books in my categories.
At this point, since my book already claimed the #1 spot in its categories, I decided to take a shot at claiming the #1 spot in other, more broad categories. I logged into my Amazon KDP account and changed the book’s categories to Entrepreneurship and Small Business. I figured this would help expose my book to Amazon customers that were browsing those categories instead of the book’s current ones.
Day 3 Results:
I sent another email to my list that basically said “this is the last day to download my book for free”. This created a bit of urgency, and gave the people who didn’t download it the first time I emailed them a second chance to get it. About 60 people clicked on the link in the email to download my book from Amazon. I also shared one last post on Facebook, which you can see below:
You’re probably wondering why I would tell people that the 4th day of the promotion is the last day to download my book for free when in fact I scheduled 5 free promotion days. I was actually testing out a specific tactic that I learned, which I will outline in detail on Day 5.
Day 4 Results:
Day 5 (Transition Day)
Day 5 of the launch is what I refer to as “Transition Day”. This was the day my book transitioned from free to paid. The reason that I marketed Day 4 as the last day of my free promotion was because I knew that the transition from free to paid was going to happen on Day 5. I didn’t want to tell anyone that the book would be free on Day 5, have them go to Amazon, and then discover that it was no longer free. So as far as my audience was concerned, Day 4 was the last day of the free promotion.
Day 5 Free Promo Results:
The first thing I did when I woke up was change the price of my book to $0.99. Then, at around 11:00 am Pacific Time, I logged into my Amazon KDP account and manually cut off my free promotion. This resulted in a 1-2 hour window where my book was still being displayed on the bestsellers list for free books, but was actually listed for $0.99 (Amazon Bestsellers lists are updated hourly, hence the 1-2 hour window), as seen in the screenshot below:
The theory behind this tactic is that if you do not manually cut off your free promotion mid-day, then it will expire at midnight on the last day of your free promotion. As you can imagine, not many people are busy shopping for books on Amazon at midnight, so your exposure during your transition period from free to paid is minimal. Manually cutting off the free promotion in the middle of the day ensures more exposure and therefore gives you a better chance of climbing the paid bestsellers list immediately after your free promotion ends. Thanks to this tactic, I received over 100 paid sales @ $0.99 each, which was enough to help my book climb the paid bestsellers list in multiple categories and get featured in Hot New Releases.
Day 5 Paid Results:
Launch Week Review
The screenshot below shows the overall download numbers from the launch week. The green line represents the free promotion downloads. As you can see, the biggest spike occurred on the 4th day of the free promotion (I marketed this day as the last day of the free promotion to create urgency).
On the 5th day of the launch (February 25) can you see that there were both free downloads and paid sales. This was transition day, so technically speaking my free promotion was actually 4.5 days long. On Day 5 of the launch, I sold 155 copies of my book, and the day after that I sold an additional 97 copies before increasing the price to $2.99 on February 27.
The day after my book promotion ended (February 26), my friend Jesse Krieger included my book in his publishing company’s Buck Books promotion. This exposed my book to their list of email subscribers who opted in to receive notifications about books that are on sale for $0.99. I sold 97 books that day, so I assume some of those came as a result of that promotion.
1. Reduce the price to $0.99
On the last day of my book launch I changed the price to $0.99. This low price point gave my book the best chance of climbing the paid bestsellers list in its category. Once Amazon gave my book the official #1 Bestseller Status in its category, I took the screenshot for proof and then increased the price a few days later.
2. Add testimonials to your book and book page
I actually started to do this during launch week, and some more after the launch was over. I added testimonials that I had collected directly into the first few pages of the book, and uploaded that revised version to Amazon. I also added testimonials to the book page under “Editorial Reviews”. You can do this from your Author Central account, and they will automatically appear on your book’s sales page on Amazon, as seen in the screenshot below:
3. After a few days, increase your price to $2.99
At $0.99, Amazon only pays a 35% royalty on unit sales. Once your book has climbed the bestsellers list in its respective categories, I recommend increasing the price to at least $2.99. At this price point, you will earn a 70% royalty on each sale. So even though your book sales will likely decline, you will make more money than if you leave it priced at $0.99.
I increased the price of my book to $2.99 on February 27 (2 days after my launch), and then I increased it $3.99 a few weeks after that. I may test a higher price point again shortly, but I have a feeling that $3.99 is the sweet spot for this particular book. Right now, one month after the launch, my book is averaging about 10 sales per day, resulting in a passive income of about $500-1,000 per month.
This may not be a significant amount of money to some people, but keep in mind that there are many other benefits to publishing a book other than book royalties. I’ve now got more people visiting my blog, more people on my email list, more people listening to my podcast, more invitations to speak and be a guest on other podcasts, and more coaching clients too. Overall, it was definitely worth the time and effort it took to write and market the book.
If you made it all the way to the end of this post, congratulations. I don’t normally create blog posts this long, but a lot of people were asking me about how I launched my book so I decided to reveal my strategy in as much detail as possible. I hope that my transparency will help you to achieve similar results in your next book launch on Amazon Kindle.
If you have any specific questions that I did not answer with this post, feel free to ask them in the comment section below or reach out to me directly.
Tyler Basu is a Content Creator and Marketing Strategist that specializes in helping business owners create educational content to attract and retain more clients online.
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I shared this with my author group.
I’d love to know what happens after the free promotion effect ends.
Do sales go down to nothing?
Glad you found this helpful! This past week, one month after the free launch, I am averaging between 5-10 sales per day at $3.99. In the weeks after the launch, when it was priced at $2.99, it was averaging 10-15 sales per day. So yes, there is a bit of a decline. I may write another post in a month or two to share post-launch results and post-launch marketing strategies.
Crushed it! Congrats Tyler!
Did you keep changing your categories that your book was listed under?
Yes during the free promo period I started off in a very specific category and once I reached #1 in that category I changed to a broader category. Repeated that process until I reached as high as I could in the overall Business & Investing category on Amazon. After the free promo I went back to the specific categories it was originally listed in.
thanks so much, I listed my book in self help, personal growth. Is this a good choice? I want to make sure I do this well. Here is the link to my book. Or would you suggest something different? http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0154X7EYC?*Version*=1&*entries*=0 http://www.amazon.com/Greatness-Ordinary-Extraordinary-Part-Your/dp/0692478892/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1441816004&sr=1-2&keywords=eric+rios Thanks for any help you can give,
Hi Eric, congrats on publishing your book! If it is a new book and you’re doing a free promo for the first time, I would suggest categorizing it as specific as possible (ie. several categories deep, not just broadly categorized as self-help or personal growth). If your promo efforts are able to help your book climb the rankings in that category, it will get good exposure, and other Amazon customers will likely download it. That momentum will help carry it onto the rankings in broader categories but if you start broad it is harder to rank. Hope that helps!
This was really helpful. Thank you for sharing!
Tyler, I really appreciate this step by step description. I really wanted to do the 5 day free but hadn’t found info on how! Q: Did you sell any paperback books during this time period? When buyers go to the Amazon Kindle page, can they see the paperback version available for purchase as well? Thanks! 🙂
Hi Jennie. Yes I did have a paperback available for sale. You cannot give away a paperback version for free, but it will always appear alongside a Kindle version if you have both versions available on Amazon. My experience with creating a paperback version is they help position your Kindle version as the “better deal” because potential buyers will see both price points, plus having a paperback tends to give your book more credibility than just having a Kindle version. I sold a few copies of the paperback version, but not enough to get excited about.
Awesome post Tyler—exactly what I needed to read prepping to launch my first eBook.
Quick question: when you update a Kindle file in the store, does that automatically update for those who already purchased your book?
Hey Kevin, I’m glad this was helpful. When you update a Kindle file, the only time that people who already purchased it would get the update is if they manually select the option to update the version they purchased, or if you make enough changes to the book and then send an email to Amazon and ask them to inform your existing readers of the major change. Other than that, only new buyers of the book will get the updated version.
Thanks for the advice!
We will be donating $1 to cancer care & research for every copy of our new book ordered
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Reached #8 in my category (Christian fantasy) at one point, and still fluctuating in the first 15 bestsellers on that list! Thank you for this advice, Tyler.
That’s awesome Benita! Well done! I am glad this post was helpful for you
The lowest I can price my book on Kindle is $1.99 at 35% royalty and $2.99 at 70% royalty. Is this new since you wrote this? If not, how did you get around it for the purpose of pricing at .99 for family and friends to download during the period where you asked for reviews?
Hi Marissa, as far as I know books can still be priced at $0.99 on Amazon. That being said, your book may have a higher distribution cost (does it have a lot of graphics or images in it?) so they are forcing you to charge a minimum of $1.99. You could also try emailing their support team to find out what is happening.
I do have quite a few graphics. I will email them to inquire. Thank you for this helpful info and your quick response!
I’ve read a lot of research lately about KDP select and it seems to NOT be the ticket anymore as people are just looking for a free book these days and have no intention of buying. I have a Prince Harry superhero book that has built in marque value, any thoughts?
Hey Jon, the purpose of a free launch is to get your book into the hands of as many people as possible. The idea being that you end up getting positive reviews from some of those readers, which in turn encourages Amazon to rank your book higher in the search results & lists in your categories (so you sell copies of your book after the free promo ends). Most people who download your book for free would not have purchased it anyway, since they don’t know who you are and they probably would not have found your book unless it ranked well or you promoted it to them outside of Amazon. I hope that makes sense!
Hi Tyler.Is it possible to promote my book for free for a few days after it’s already been launched on Amazon? I’ve sold about 30 copies in person so far but need reviews.Thanks
Yes, just enroll your book in the KDP Select program and you’ll be able to schedule up to 5 free days every 90 day period.
Hi Tyler, thanks for that detailed guide. With the two 99 cent windows before and after the free promotion, do you know if it’s possible to do that without removing the book from KDP select? I thought that KDP Select was only available with the higher prices associated with the 70% royalty rate?
As far as I know (unless Amazon changed their rules) you can have a book in KDP Select regardless of its price. You can even change its price while its in there.
Excellent – thanks for the pointer
Thank you so much for detailing your launch strategy! It’ll still be a couple years for my YA fantasy release, but I’m a bit of a marketing addict and read anything I can get my hands on! I’m not a fan of Kindle Select since the changes they made in 2012. I was planning on making one of my books perma-free by making it free elsewhere and emailing Amazon so they’d have to match the price. However, seeming as we plan to release five books at once, there’s nothing wrong with testing it with one of the books. Something I’ll have to consider when it comes closing to the date. Thanks again for sharing! I’ll probably use a few of these tips in my launch strategy!
You’re welcome Angel, I am glad this was helpful for you. If you have a series of books, then yes, the perma-free strategy is a good one. Good luck with your books!
Hi, Tyler, great advice, tremendously useful, thanks for sharing,
Question: Did you request reviews (via newsletters, social media etc) during your free promotion period? I am trying to encourage my future readers with a discount/free offer (bait) before book launch (through my website and then asking them to sign up for early bird discounts). Any advice please help thanks.
Thanks Pamela! Yes, asking for reviews (however and whenever you can) is always a good idea. I reached out to several people personally before and after the launch to request reviews.
How do you request reviews before the book is launched? Like do you upload it and send your email list the link to read some of the book and leave a review? I guess I’m confused about the reviews before launch 🙂
Tyler thank you so much for your detailed step-by-step article. I am an aspiring author and this post gives me so most life! It’s some fantastic content! I have a couple questions I’m hoping you can clear up for me as I am also looking to use KDP select.
#1: I see that you recommend having an email list. Does it make sense to do this if I only have one book and no products? How can I start one if I don’t have any content?
#2: Can you tell me if I understand your pricing strategy correctly? Thanks!
1) Make the book 99 cents and have friends buy and review the book. (1-2 weeks before release date)
2) Post a paperback version for a lot more money to encourage people to get the ebook (ex. $14.99)
3) Raise the price the night before launch date (ex. From 99 cents to $4.99)
4) Then do the 5 day KDP select free promotion
5) Post on social media and email list that the promotion ends on Day 4
6) On the morning of Day 5, change the price to 99 cents
7) At 11am you manually cut-off the promotion
8) After a few days increase the price to $2.99
9) A few weeks later increase the price to $3.99
Building an email list is a pretty big topic, and yes I would recommend building one before publishing your book, simply so that you have some people to promote it to. Another option is you use your book to help build your email list, so when you have another book ready (or some other product or service), you can promote it to them.
Here is a pretty detailed blog post about building an email list: http://blog.thinkific.com/how-to-build-an-email-list/
And yes, you summarized my pricing strategy very well!
I am only publishing 1 book and I was wondering if the strategy is slightly different to your one (which is built on series and future books)? What’s your view on 99p or is free days better to boost ranking and hence boost sales? Also if I kept the book for about a month cheaply then raised the price this won’t really work for the Amazon algorithms? And my book is non-fiction. Any advice will be great, thanks.
Hi Pamela, my book was not part of a series. And I actually haven’t published any new books since this one. What is your goal for your book? Maximize revenue? Maximize reach? Generate leads? Write more books? If you give me an idea of why you published a book I will be better able to provide some advice =)
My book is non-fiction. The goal is to maximise revenue. I wrote the book as I am an expert in this topic but don’t really enjoy writing but spent a lot of time, money and effort to make this work and so I think have a quality piece.
Thank you for the awesome information. My book was recently submitted to Kindle Scout to win a publishing contract, however, it wasn’t selected. The great advantage of this campaign was I received excellent exposure. My two questions are:
1. Should I still wait two weeks to launch on Kindle?
2. Should I do the 5-day free promotion?
I asked those question because I had over 1200 views to my campaign page and I have a nice buzz going on now about the book. I’ve been posting on my social media coming soon. Two weeks isn’t long but I don’t want the buzz to die down too much. As far as the 5-day free promotion there are people ready to buy the book. The campaign allowed them access to the first four chapters of the book so they received a snippet of what’s to come.
I was thinking of:
Offering a $0.99 special for a couple of days as an appreciation for my campaign voters and then increase the price.
Thanks in advance for your assistance and I look forward to hearing your response.
Hi there, I’m loving your information. Amazingly helpful. I have a question: you say: I used Facebook to send out about 30 requests. This resulted in 10 5-star reviews before my official launch date.” So when would you consider your official launch date? Obviously not the day you press go. Is it when you go KDP Select?
Hi Tyler! Thank you for sharing all these valuable information. I would just like to ask if all of them are still applicable this 2018? Planning to launch my book this year. Thanks again for sharing.
Hi April, great question! Not much has changed in terms of how books are published & promoted on Amazon, so yes, I am confident that this strategy will still work for you in 2018. That being said, for the most up-to-date training on how to self-publish books I recommend checking out Chandler Bolt’s content and programs at https://self-publishingschool.com/. Best of luck with your book launch!
Excellent article with many gems of advice. I am about to launch my book in a few weeks and your article is ‘gold’!
Thank you Tyler
Thanks Susan I appreciate the feedback! Best of luck with your book launch!
Wonderful article here Tyler.
This will help in my launch come June. Thanks a lot.
No problem, I’m glad this was helpful for you. Thanks for commenting!
Thanks, so much, Basu. Though I’m in fiction and non-fiction this is a whole world to me. I’m just about to launch, The Rainbow Prince, my epic poetry book on fatherland’s dreams about Obama.
Thank you for sharing your inspiring launch story. You did not do a prelaunch? Is this correct? You went straight in free launch then .99 cents…
Hey Dinah, that’s correct. I did not do a pre-launch in this case.
Thanks for the concise info. The post was dated in 2015. As far as you know, has anything changed in Kindle land or in what you would recommend at this point in time?
This was the most specific post I found about planning a launch and I really appreciate it! I am still looking for information about what the timeline is for using Create Space. How long does it take from unloading the book to getting a proof copy and making it ‘go live’?
Thanks, this is great advice
Thank you, I’m glad it was helpful for you!
Nice one im intending to do the biggest best book launch ever called its a big carrot
Awesome, good luck with your book launch!
Thanks Tyler! This is a great article and I will use your suggestions wisely.
No problem! Best of luck with your book launch =)
Very useful article, thanks a lot for sharing!!
Tyler, thank you so much for freely sharing your information with us. It is information I have been searching for. I will definitely utilize.
God Bless! Kathy
Hi, great article! In your opinion, is there a specific date or day of the week which impacts the launch success?
This is very helpful. Everything I needed to know is here. Thank you Tyler, I will exactly do what you’ve said. And, you look great and young.
Thanks Susan! Best of luck with your book launch =)
Thank you so much for this post. I know it will really help me and other self published authors.
No problem, I’m glad it was helpful for you!
How does one upload a book ready for a launch but NOT actually publish it until 2 weeks later? Do you leave it in that orange “Complete” state? Thank you, Tyler, for your valuable insight.
I’ve been looking everywhere for a specific launch plan. THANK YOU for sharing this, Tyler!
No problem, good luck with your book launch!
Very good information. This is my first book and I needed all of that. It was quite comprehensive.
Great article as it is really helping me with figuring out my launch.
Question regarding number 5 in the prelaunch section, how do I get the download to early reviewers if it is still in pre-release on Amazon?
This is the most relevant and useful blog post I found on e book launch. Thanks Tyler.
I’m trying to figure out how you set your ebook cost to 99 cents. It seems like the only way to do that is through a promotion, but then you wouldn’t be able to do the free days as well. What am I missing?
I changed the price of the book to $0.99 on the day that the free promotion ended. The goal was to get as many paid sales (and climb the paid bestsellers list) as possible before increasing the price.
I think what Leah is referring to are the other times you set the price at 0,99, like at “Pre-launch in ‘5. Collect several positive reviews'” as well as several days after your free-promotion, see “Post-launch in ‘1. Reduce the price to $0.99′” (it’s even in the title :D).
I can’t change the price any lower than 1.99, but from another one of your replies (2016) I understand this has probably to do with how you formatted it (ie with images, my ebook is actually the (pdf) paperback version with a nice lay-out, Amazon calls this a print replica). So that I understand now, but it also seems you can’t ‘just’ change the price anymore, in my case at least it means republishing it (it’s now under review again when I just did that and can take up to 72 hours..).
Still very valuable info for me though, helped me a lot, thanks! Monique
Quick question for clarity: You said that during your pre-launch phase, you sent a request to 30 friends on FB and asked them to download your book and leave a review. How were your friends able to download your book before the launch? It is not available on Amazon until the launch day, correct? How could they leave you 5-star reviews on Amazon?
Great question. In my case, “launch day” was the day that my free promotion started. So in the days before that, people were able to purchase my book and leave a review (when it was priced at $0.99).
Thank u so much for this wonderful explanation about how to launch a virtual book.
I`m definitely going to try to follow the same steps u did and taught.
My book is just an entertaining book but i believe in it.
Have it all written but i`m just improving and try to enrich it to make it more appealing for readers.
You said it would be good to have a paperback to go along with the virtual book:
The price i decide to put on the paperback is just a fictional price to balance between the virtual one or can be for real if someone decide to purchase it?
And u would recommend to have first one paperback before even i start the all process online?
Once again thank u!!
I will like to know if Amazon are the one that will put your book on paperwork format if you upload it to the create space?
Wow Tyler, what a great and helpful post, this is exactly what I needed and I can’t thank you enough for your clear and thorough overview!
Thank you very much for this great detailed breakdown. Prepping to launch my first novel (summer 2020) and based on my research so far your plan is a great and still very relevant foundation. Thanks much!
Thanks for such a detailed post which is quite useful and drives straight to the point. All the best for your future releases.
This is a great break down. Thank you so much for putting this together
Very nice information and thankyou for it i was surfing the internet and found this very beneficial, I want to ask you i published book yesterday it says it will take 72 hours to be on amazon and i also enrolled in KDP SELECT. I setted price to 2.99 but after seeing your post what should i do right now? THANKYOU!
Hi Tyler–terrific post; extremely helpful. I plan on following your very detailed plan. My only confusion–your Prelaunch step 5 “collect several positive reviews.” How did you price at 99cents for these reviewers as part of a “pre-launch”? especially if you “launched” as free promotion on day 1 with KDP select?
That was a very helpful article thank you. I’m looking towards my first publication and now I can say some of the fog is lifting! This whole process is like learning learning to speak Sanskrit! Can you clarify one point for me please? In section 8 you talk about raising the price just before launch, then in section 9 you are giving it away for free with over 2,000 free downloads by day 4. What did I miss there?
I’m so glad I found this guide. You’re great. Appreciate it.
From Madrid, just started the Prelaunch phase.
Congratulations on the success of your book! Thank you for sharing your strategies in detail. I find it enlightening and appreciate the helpful information.
I am so grateful for this valuable share on preparing a great launch! Thank you for your transparency and authenticity.
Excellent! Thank you Tyler
Very thorough advice, literally in a step by step dialog. Very useful and informative.
I’m still a bit confused on how people can download the book prior to launch. It would only be set up for pre-order. Plus, reviews cannot be posted until after the launch date. I was hoping to post advance reading copies of my book for free on another site, Book Sirens. Is that okay to do ahead of time? Even if on my launch date I’ve chosen Select? Thanks.
Reading this in 2022 ahead of my upcoming book launch, and I find it is still very helpful. Thanks Tyler.
Hi Tyler. Thanks so much for posting this – it has really helped me to prepare. I was just wondering if you know: would it be in order for me to give a press release to local radio stations? Also would I allowed to organise a book launch event myself? Thanks 🙂
[…] wasn’t until I self-published a book on Amazon that I finally had my own product to sell, at which point I realized that every one of my […]
Thank you Tyler Basu for this very informative post. I am about to launch my book soon, so it will help me very much . I feel quite overwhelmed at this point…what to do when. Interestingly you and I have the same last name.