Posted by A.S. Chung.
Award-wining author of children’s picture books A Brand New Day: about divorce and Wishful Wedding: about LGBT equality and same gender families. Creator of Pigeonhole Books and blogs about self-publishing, writing, online book marketing, peer bloggers and illustrators.
HOW TO USE AMAZON GIVEAWAYS
ONLINE BOOK MARKETING TIP
In February 2015, Amazon introduced Amazon Giveaway, giving indie authors yet another means of promoting their books.
WHAT IS AMAZON GIVEAWAY?
Amazon Giveaway is a self-service tool available via Amazon.com to host a giveaway of any product available on the website. Hence, it is a great opportunity to run a sweepstake on your self-published book that is available on Amazon. Currently, this tool is solely accessible for print editions of your book and is only applicable in the US.
HOW MUCH DOES IT COST?
The giveaway is at the retail cost of your book on Amazon, including postage and handling. The actual set up and running of the giveaway is free. You will have to pre-pay the cost of your giveaway. Any unused giveaways when the competition concludes, you will be given a refund.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The process is actually quite simply and only takes a couple of minutes of your time.
Step One – Select Your Book
- Go to your book on Amazon. Make sure it’s the print edition
- Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on “Set Up Giveaway”
Step Two – Select Your Giveaway Type
- You have 2 options to select from
- “Lucky Number” option. Example, every 100th person wins a book. This is perhaps the better option for authors as it enables the giveaway to last longer and also you are able to gain more followers. Don’t underestimate how many people will enter so stretch it out. I did every 75 entrants for 10 books and it only took a couple of days!
- “First Come, First Served” option. This creates a greater sense of urgency but it would mean your giveaway would end extremely quickly!
- Once you have decided which type, decide how many giveaways you are putting up for the sweepstake. So, if you select every 100th entrant for 10 books, you would attract 1000 entrants in total
Step Three – Grow Your Audience
This was the clincher for me when deciding if I should spend money on this giveaway. Every entrant must follow you on Twitter before they are permitted to enter the competition. My Twitter account made excellent headway and I gained a few hundred followers in a couple of days.
Important to note however that followers DO NOT translate to an audience. It is merely a prerequisite for the entrants so expect at least a 25% drop off in the subsequent days. It did however increase my follower count and I don’t care what anyone says but it creates the perception of a valuable Twitter account. 1000 followers sure looks better than 56!
Make sure your Amazon account has your right Twitter handle.
Step Four – Design Your Giveaway Page
- Here you get to design a simplistic giveaway page
- Add a giveaway title
- Add a welcome page when users are contemplating entry
- Create a win message for the lucky winners
- Create a lose message for unlucky entrants
Step Five – What Happens Next
- Once the above is completed, proceed to checkout
- You will receive an email stating that your giveaway is now live
- You will receive a link to your giveaway
- The email also contains pre-written share options on Twitter, Facebook and via email. Just click the large icon and it automatically goes to your social media
- The email also gives you a suggestion of what exactly to write for marketing purposes
- The email also comes with a “View Giveaway” button where you will be taken to the page to see how your giveaway is tracking
Step Six – Market Your Giveaway
#AmazonGiveaway is all you need on Twitter. Check it out for yourself and see how many competitions are running at one single time! As you only have a short period of time, make sure you marketing it consistently to capitalise on the competition.
Well, there you have it. This is a very simplistic look of what it is and how to use this tool. If you have entered an Amazon Giveaway, I would love to hear your experiences! I am sure it warrants further analysis and discussion but that’s a post for another time!