Friday, March 4, 2011

Pricing and Marketing a New Kindle Title

Since posting about my efforts at marketing my two Kindle titles and the next title seemingly to be ready by mid-March, I have spent even more time considering approaches to launching a new Kindle, but old POD title.

The idea of selling a book at a greatly reduced price to launch it is not one I embrace for print titles. Please note, when I discuss pricing strategy to launch a new title, I am referring to sales on Amazon. I have adopted the sales strategy advocated by Aaron Shepard in his excellent book Aiming at Amazon. Simply summarized, this strategy advocates driving all sales to Amazon. The more the book sells on Amazon, the more Amazon's computers promote the book. It has the added benefits of Amazon collecting the funds and handling fulfillment of the order as well, reducing costs on my end.

For some reason, changing a price of a POD book does not result in a quick price change on Amazon and it can have a negative impact on the amount of the discount Amazon provides for the title. On the other hand, when I changed the price of my Kindle titles the price change went into effect quickly and since neither of the two titles was discounted it had no impact on the level of discount offered by Amazon.

This leads me to believe introductory offers of a new Kindle title with an announced short life span might be an effective strategy to drive early sales of a new Kindle title. Readers who are interested in the topic or genre of the book are encouraged to make the impulse purchase knowing the low introductory price is only available for a short period of time. A good amount of early sales will help to drive the search results in the Amazon computer's in a positive direction, resulting in better long term sales results.

My quandary is should this approach be used for the introduction of a Kindle title that is my best seller in POD format and already has an excellent ranking in search results?  Why is this an issue when this marketing tactic worked effectively for my other titles? The answer is those two titles were not selling in the POD format. Kindle sales are what has driven the improvement in POD sales. This title already sells well and in the back of my mind I have concerns the Kindle version might rob the POD sales. 

The linking of the Kindle version with the POD version will take place fairly shortly and should help drive early Kindle sales as well.

When I reach my final conclusion, I will share it with the readers of this blog and I will also share the results of my initial marketing efforts in terms of sales.