Recently, a friend of mine asked me where was the best place to advertise her book? At first I had no answer, sure I had written a blog post years ago called, ‘Cheap Advertising For Indie Authors’ but that was outdated. And to be honest, most of the places I once advertised at are now defunct like, Pixel of Ink, whereas places like Fussy Librarian, have changed their rules because of what has been dubbed, The Amazon Purge. We all know about BookBub, but not everybody can afford that, so where are the best places to advertise now? I decided to go on a mission and find out.
Before I go on, I have to give the obvious disclaimer: Advertising of any kind isn’t going to guarantee book sales. In fact, I met an author whose book sales went down while doing a BookBub ad, imagine that! Also, I am not affiliated with any of the sites or services mentioned.
Trends In Book Advertising: Social Media & Amazon Ads
Thriller writer Mark Dawson, started a Facebook advertising course that was very popular among indie authors looking for a cheaper alternative to BookBub. However, not all authors saw success, for example, YA and children’s authors didn’t seem to get the results that romance authors do.
Then a year later, Amazon ads became hot and this made more sense. Instead of luring people to Amazon from Facebook, why not advertise to people already on Amazon? Chances are they’re at Amazon to buy something so why not entice them with a book? Indie author Brian Meeks, created a course on Teachable for those looking to master Amazon ads, it has a $500 price tag but if you can’t afford that, he also has a book available on Amazon for $9.99 here.
If you’re not sure which one you want to try, Amazon has weekly free webinars for beginners and Facebook has courses that are also, 100% free. Also, Dave Chesson, of Kindlepreneur has a free course on Amazon ads.
The Obvious Problem:
The biggest barrier for most authors is the learning curve, it requires authors to study copywriting, keywords and graphic design. Not all authors are capable or willing to learn these things. Many indie authors work 9 to 5 jobs or have personal obligations and this is just another hurdle in the publishing world. That’s where discount newsletters like BookBub become a Godsend. You just give them the money, and they handle the rest but as I said previously, not everyone can afford it.
Alternatives To BookBub: Those ‘Other’ Discount Book Sites
Believe it or not, BookBub is not the only discount newsletter geared towards readers. There are others and though, many of them don’t have the reach of BookBub (which has 3.4 million subscribers in crime fiction alone) they are cheaper and some of them reach hundreds of thousands of readers. Like BookBub, many of them charge according to the popularity of the genre as well as the type of ad such Deal of the Day type of ad or a simple slot in the newsletter.
Below I only listed those that feature book sales and not freebies sites:
- Kindle Books & Tips: Reaches 600,000 people on their two apps and 150,000 on their email list, social media and blog, they cost around $25 – $125.
- Book Gorilla: Reaches 350,000 followers over a range of platform such as apps, social media as well as email and costs around $40 – $50.
- Kindle Nation Daily: Connects with 288,300 readers and costs around $119 – $139.
- Ereader News Today: Has 200,000 subscribers as well as 500,000 Facebook followers and costs around $40 – $150.
- Robin Reads: They have around 194,000 members and cost around $45 – $85.
- Fussy Librarian: Has 160,000 subscribers and costs around $18 – $35.
- Bargain Booksy: Reaches 150,000 people through all their channels and costs around $40 – $200.
- Book Sends: Has 120,000 subscribers and costs around $20 – $125.
- Red Feather Romance: Has 120,000 voracious readers and cost around $125 – $100.
- Read Cheaply: Has 70,000 engaged newsletter subscribers over 23 genres.
- EreaderIQ: Has around 47,000 email subscribers and cost around $10 – $40.
- Book Barbarian: Has 54,000 hardcore sci-fi & fantasy subscribers to their daily newsletter as well as 19,000 Facebook fans and costs around $30 – $50.
- Book Runes: Has 30,000 active readers and costs $25, they also do combo promos with Booksends.
- EbookSoda: Has 22,000 subscribers and 40,000 Twitter as well as 12,000 Facebook followers. Their prices range from $9 – $20.
A Tip For A Stress Free Experience
The first thing I would recommend an author do before putting down any money is to read the rules of these sites carefully. Several of them have requirements regarding; reviews, covers, and pricing. Also, some of them offer refunds while others do not, so author beware. The author I mentioned earlier, said he got a partial refund from BookBub but isn’t allowed to discuss the details. Go figure.