Free or not free

I enjoyed reading this interesting and unique perspective on free books. There have been several posts going around lately that discuss the other side of the argument, and like Jane stated in this post, most authors comes out on the side of “no freebies.”

I’ve gone back and forth on this issue several times since publishing my first book. I know several authors who have had great success with free promotions. I’ve run a couple of free promotions that have boosted sales tremendously. So, while I think some readers now refuse to pay for ebooks as a result of all the freebies floating around out there, I also think a free promotion can be a valuable marketing tool. If giving away the first book in a series results in sales for subsequent books, that’s a win.

In a perfect world, all authors (indies and traditional) would band together and agree to a “no more freebies” policy. In a perfect world, readers would pay top dollar for quality books and would place tremendous value on the books they enjoy. Unfortunately, this is not a perfect world, and as Jane pointed out, it is not fair either. There will always be freebies. And there will always be readers who refuse to pay for books. As authors, we have to do what is right for us. That might mean running a free promo, giving away the first book in a series for free, or joining the Kindle Unlimited program. I’m certainly not going to judge you for whatever it is you decide to do.

Jane Dougherty Writes

Free or not free

That is the question. Or one of the questions exercising authors at the moment. Most of the arguments conclude that authors should not be giving their work away because all work should have its just rewards, and an author who does give his or her books away on Amazon is tossing another shovelful of earth onto the coffin of indie book sales. Just to be cussed, I’m going to look at the opposite argument, that the possibility to give away oodles of books is a great promotional tool.

First of all, I don’t think anybody would ever argue that giving away your one and only book makes any sense. None of the people who downloaded it while it was free are going to, you know, download a second copy once it goes back to full price. Not unless they are very strange people. The authors concerned…

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One thought on “Free or not free

  1. Thanks for reblogging, Tricia. Like you, I’ve struggled with the question and come down on the side of going with the flow. I don’t think it’s possible to stop the huge freebie thing, but maybe we shouldn’t even want to. The readers with a staple diet of Amazon free promotions, who actually read and enjoy some of the dross that circulates in the perma free section, wouldn’t necessarily enjoy what I write—I’d like to think not anyway. It’s a new and different market—book collecting, not reading. Those people aren’t book buyers or book readers. They’re not lost sales. If a free promotion gets me a few real readers I’m all for it.

    Liked by 1 person

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