If you’re an indie author, you probably market your own books – unless you’re lucky enough to afford someone to do it for you. This means, unless you’re a little crazy, you probably experience a bit of hair pulling and a whole lot of sighs.
Marketing isn’t easy, especially for authors who’d much rather be creating the books that eventually need to be sold.
Then audio-books come into the picture. How the hell do you move those? The only answer anyone seems to have is that those will sell when you market the ebook.
Hopefully. Not always.
I am someone who has had a lot of trouble moving audio-books despite having absolutely brilliant narrators and pretty well-received stories. One of the problems is that the audio-book market is still in it’s infancy. Yes, they’ve been around for quite a while, but not in download form and not for indie books. This means the market isn’t developed on it’s own. It hasn’t separated itself from the book/ebook market yet.
People buy audio-books because they hear about the book. End of story.
With the ACX production branch of Amazon growing so quickly, an audio-book market is trying to start. It’s sputtering a bit, but there are some tips and advice that every audio-book author/producer should know.
First is that ACX is the branch of Amazon that will bend over backwards to help you. Does that seem strange? It does to me because KDP, the ebook branch, is trying to control their authors more and more and it seems to be harmful to indies. There are so many rules for Amazon published ebooks that the “anything that works” approach to audio-books is a breath of fresh air. It won’t always be like this, but it’s nice at the moment.
ACX WANTS you to trade free audio-books for reviews. The very thing that KDP is trying to stamp out. They even provide you with 25 free audio-book codes to hand out.
Tip 1: ACX may not send you the codes right away. If you email them and ask, they are very pleasant and send them promptly.
Tip 2: Run out of codes? No worries – ACX will send you more. Last time I asked for an extra 10, they sent me 75!!!
Before you get your codes, you have to have an audio-book, right? Well, I don’t have that many tips for you here except that you don’t have to accept the first person that auditions. If you don’t get one you like, or get any at all, go looking for a narrator yourself. I did that for each book in my romance series and found the perfect voices. I had to wait for them to be available, but getting it right is more important than getting it fast.
Back to marketing! (Everything underlined is a link)
Ok, so you have your codes, all your friends hate audio-books, how do you find people that don’t?
Include them in a giveaway – the easiest thing you can do. Your newsletter subscribers and Facebook followers love when you host giveaways. When a blog accepts your audio-book for review, offer to provide a gifted copy for them to giveaway to drive traffic to their site (and their review of your book). Join with other authors to do larger giveaways. Stop worrying about giving it for free. Get as many audible reviews as you can in order to compete with the big boys and girls.
Audio Book Boom – They will find people who will request gifted copies in exchange for review. It costs $15 and there are diminishing returns each time you use it. For each of my books, it was only worth it the first time.
Books with a Groove – The jury is still out on this as it is a new service, but one that is growing. It’s inexpensive price tag makes it worth a shot.
Auda Voxx – There are two free options here. You can donate up to ten codes per book to be used to give your book as a subscription gift to their members. They try to match the book with listeners who enjoy the same genre. The second option is submitting your audio-book for review. Do both.
Blogs – Find blogs that love audio-books and post on audible as well as their sites.
These blogs below accept submissions for review of audio-books depending on the genre. Make sure you read their preferences before submitting. They may or may not respond depending on their reviewing schedule.
The Guilded Earlobe
Elsie’s Audio-book Digest
I am, Indeed
Bookish Things and More
The Audio Bookworm
Swept Away by Romance
eargasms Audio-book Reviews
Lost in Literature
Oh My Shelves
Kris and Vik Book Therapy
Under My Apple Tree
The Reading Date
Book Lover’s Life
There are many other things you can do. Facebook/amazon ads may work for you. Many of the bigger audio authors and publishers utilize radio ads. There are sites and magazines that only cost your first born.
But this is a start!
It wouldn’t be very prudent of me to write about audio-books without plugging mine (wink, wink). Dawn of Rebellion, Day of Reckoning, and Choices are all available. Eve of Tomorrow, Promises, and Dreams are coming soon! Click on the images to find the audio-books.