I'm about to take the leap with these two services and was wondering what everyone's thoughts and experiences were. Discuss!

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I have used the KDP select programme on some, not all, of my children's ebooks. It does help to give exposure to your books, but has to be used in moderation.

If customers see you are in the 'Select' programme, they can be inclined to wait until you run a free promotion in order to get that book.

If you have more than one book however, it can be a good tool. If people liked your first 'free' book they might go on to buy your next.

You have to find what works for your specific books.

Paula

Children's author and illustrator at:
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Paula-McBride/e/B005IQ4UMA
www.tothewillowgarden.co.uk

Hi Paula, thanks so much for your thoughts on this. I'm trying KDP Select because I want to get as much exposure for my book as quickly as possible to try and build some buzz around it. So I'm starting with a Free Father's Day promo that's starts the and runs for three days. I believe I have until the 15th to quit KDP Select so if this doesn't immediately generate a lot of downloads I'll pull out. If it does then I'll ride it out for the 90 days, but I don't see any reason to renew. 

Creating a buzz can only be a good thing! Put a link to your book here when it's up and people will be able to check it out for you. That way you may earn some reviews too.

Paula

Children's author and illustrator
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Paula-McBride/e/B005IQ4UMA
www.tothewillowgarden.co.uk

Thanks Paula. How do you add the links on a signature like you have done? I looked at my settings and I couldn't find anything that automatically adds a signature.

I have used KDP Select and I won't do it again.  Hundreds of people will download the book (maybe) but you'll only get a five to seven percent return in buys of your other books if you are lucky.  I was one of the lucky ones but I've read posts of other authors who had hundreds of free downloads and only sold two or three books.  If you have written a lot of books I'd suggest putting one of them on sale for 99 cents rather than give it away.  I think we are just training people to expect we'll give our work away.  Patience and consistent marketing are the way to go as far as I'm concerned.  Work at marketing and some day you may be "an overnight" success.

Thanks Michael. I joined but I'm pretty nervous about it. I started out with my free giveaway tmw, and if it doesn't show a lot of action I think I'll opt out.

I signed up with KDP when it first became available in December and my book sales exploded.  As other people began to sign on the return quickly became dimished because all of a sudden Amazon was flooded with free books on a daily basis.  I have to admit that it did help put my books out there and gain exposure, but if you use it, do it in moderation.  Give them a taste, but don't keep giving away your work for free.  I hope you find this helpful.

Irina Shapiro

www.irinashapiro.com

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Irina-Shapiro/307374895948375

Thanks Irina. I'm counting on my book cover to draw the attention -- and the reviews are very strong. Hopefully that will give it some initial traction.

Good luck.  I am sure that will help a lot.

I would only recommend the Select Plan for authors with multiple books, preferably in the same genre as the one they are offering for free.  I offered my latest Matt Davis Mystery, Twice Bitten, for free on Super Bowl Sunday and had 4,172 downloads.  However, I did not see the corresponding bump in sales for the other books in the series that I had expected.  I DO like the borrow feature, however, since we get paid for books that are borrowed.

As for the Amazon Advantage, I don't see any need to participate unless you are an independent publishing house.  I publish my paperbacks through Createspace (a division of Amazon) and with its expanded distribution, my books are available to schools, libraries, and bookstores that wish to purchase them.  I never have to worry about shipping or inventory, since the books are P.O.D.  If I'm doing a book fair or book signing, I can order as many as I need for that purpose.  

Thanks Joe, that was very helpful. The only reason I wanted to do Advantage was to gain access to my Amazon book page so I can customize it. I wrote Amazon about it also and they said I should use Author Central. But I can't see anything in Author Central that gives you that option. Am I missing something? Is there any other way to get access to your book/product page?

It is a learning process for the user.  My fourth go-round with this program was unbelievably successful with over 8000 downloads from three counties on my free days and continuing sales, more than I have ever had, (But slowing down daily) and a few cross sales.  I used the five days in a chunk because I had limited success with breaking them up, but people swear by breaking them up.  I could not believe that after so many downloads, eight people paid for it the very next day.  I am going to continue to rotate my books through it.  You have to figure out the timing, the best places to promo the freebie, etc. You always have to be relentless about promos if you self-pub, and it is a pain.

Lots of stories about the experience on Goodreads.

The exclusivity bothers me cuz I always did well at Barnes and Noble and Smashwords in general, so I always just do the 90 days.

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