As I have mentioned in previous posts, I know very little about advertising or marketing. That said, I will continue to share things I'm trying and the results I get. Perhaps this will help guide someone in what they should or should not try.
I am using Amazon's Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) for my book. Say whatever you want about Amazon, good or bad, but this service has been extremely helpful for me. One of the things it offers is to put your book on special or on sale. I decided to give this a try with my first novel, Sigmund Shaw: A Steampunk Adventure. You get to have the sale for a total of 5 days during each KDP period (3 months or so).
I decided to offer my book for free as I am still very much in the phase of getting my book read by as many people as possible. I think it was a good choice. In the 5 days of the special, 145 people downloaded a free copy. To put this in some context: in the year or so that my book has been available, I have sold around 40 copies. 1 Year, 40 copies. 5 days, 145 copies. Yep, very glad I gave this a shot!
I have already scheduled a free special for my second book, Whispers of Bedlam Asylum, and am curious how that will go (starting June 10th).
Another thing I am in the middle of trying is a goodreads giveaway. If you don't know goodreads.com, then stop reading this article and go there now. Every author should be familiar with this wonderful site!
Goodreads is just starting to experiment with ebook giveaways, but the normal for them is for an actual hard-copy giveaway. Being that I have access to hard-copies of my book, I thought I would give it a try. The giveaway is free (you do have to provide the book or books and the shipping of the book to the winner or winners). To keep it reasonably priced, I decided to give out 3 copies.
Today is day 2 of the giveaway and 150 people have already entered. Over a hundred of those was on day 1. The giveaway goes for around 30 days, so the end number should be interesting.
If your goal is to get your work read, then I highly recommend these two avenues.
Side note: Coleen Hoover is the first self-published author to reach the New York Times Best Seller list for an ebook. I read some of her interviews to see how she went about getting her work known and, among other things, she had done these two exact giveaways!. Not saying that I (or you) will have her kind of success, but it does not hurt to try! :)