People often wonder why I give away so many free books, not just online but I also e-mail out free copies to people who buy my books in print. So I wanted to share my numbers with you guys so you know what to expect as authors and why I do what I do.
Building An Audience
On Friday, March 20th I gave away a total of 37 books.
19 of the Proletarian Saga
10 of the Legion Book 3: Broken Arrows
5 of the Corrupter
3 of the Cat Prince
But I also sold a copy of Game of Blood.
On Saturday, March 21st, I gave away only 16 books and had no sales.
On Sunday, March 22nd, I gave away 20 books.
I also sold a copy of Legion Book 1: Magic. This is a carry over sale, probably from the free books. Someone got the freebie and decided to try the series.
But here is the cool thing, yesterday Monday the 23rd, after the Con and promotions were done, I sold a copy of the Legion comic #1 and #2, again carry over sales from the freebies. Someone read the books and wanted to read the comics as well.
Ironically, I sold three more copies of Game of Blood. What that tells me is that people saw my name and were interested in seeing my name of a franchise project like James Bond. Sure, James is a vampire, but I think that is part of the charm of the book.
So although I only had six copies sold over the weekend, those were organic sales, grown directly from the audience I am building with the free books and the con appearances.
five or six sales from fifty or sixty free books means I generate about ten percent return sales. If I can get a thousand people to download free books, I could probably sell a hundred other books. That is why word of mouth is so important ( and reviews!). Because every person that becomes aware of the books might not be a potential sale, but they might a fan through the freebies.
Moving books is the most important part of being an author. The more people you get to see your work, the more your audience will grow. The bigger the audience gets, the more organic sales will grow from it.
And the only people I have to share profits with is Amazon, who makes the whole thing possible anyway. Unlike working on a comicbook project, there is no one else taking a cut, just Amazon off the top for hosting, selling and promoting the books for me.