It’s Free Promotion Week for The Lafayette Campaign

The-Lafayette-Campaign-800 Cover reveal and PromotionalOver the last several months I’ve been trying, and reporting on, my success with various paid promotions. This week I’m running a blitz of promotions with the book available for free. Why not download a copy right now here? If you’re so inclined, I’d be most grateful if you would also Tweet the news or otherwise spread the word to your book reading friends. Here’s more on how the promotions will run, and on what I hope to achieve.

As a rule, I don’t really believe in free promotions, so this is by way of an experiment whose results are (in my mind) very much in doubt. The concern with free, as compared to discount, promotions is that people who sign up for free book daily emails and visit free sites tend to download masses of books that they never get around to reading. On the other hand, those that pay for a book – even if it’s only $0.99 – are likely to download fewer books and read more of those that they do.

The counter argument is that a free offer may result in ten times (or more) downloads, and that the reduced percentage of reads will be more than offset by the much higher number of downloads. My hope is that by doing a blitz of promotions that at least some of the dominos that fall over will start chain reactions.

Since I’ve already done a number of paid promotions and observed the results, I’ll be able to get some idea of whether that happens – as well as which sales after the week is up seem likely to be attributable to the free reads, higher rankings in the listings, possible promotional support Amazon’s algorithms may give, and so on.

My first promotion (through Book Butterfly) is running today, and several additional ones will run through October 1 (and possibly 2). Unfortunately, I made a major mistake six weeks ago when I failed to realize that my KindleSelect period will end on September 29, and that I will not be able to reset the price to zero until 10/1. My two strongest promotions, of course, are set to run on 9/3o, and will cancel if the book is not at $0.00 that morning, so I’m trying to reschedule those dates now.

The moral to the story is that before setting a free promotion date for a book in the KindleSelect plan, be sure to check your renewal date first, even if you have your participation set to automatic renewal, because you are not allowed to schedule a promotional day for the following period. Since you have to set a promotional day, at the latest, on the day before, that means that the first day of each 90 day participation period will never be available. Argh.

Oh – you wanted the free download page again? Well of course – you can download The Lafayette Campaign here right now. If you don’t already have the Kindle app on your mobile device, tablet or computer, you can download it here.

About Andrew Updegrove

I'm a cybersecurity thriller author/attorney that has been representing technology companies for more than thirty years. I work with many of the organizations seeking to thwart cyber-attacks before they occur.
This entry was posted in My Writing, Promotion, SelfPublishing and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

16 Responses to It’s Free Promotion Week for The Lafayette Campaign

  1. arjaybe says:

    It must be because I don’t have a Kindle and don’t have any experience with Amazon books, but the procedure turned out to be too complicated for me to download your book. I expect this will not be a problem for most people, though.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sorry for the difficulty – I shouldn’t have assumed that everyone would already have the Kindle app on a device. You don’t have to actually own a Kindle, as Amazon makes an app available for free that will run on any mobile device or computer you own. You can download that software here: When you then download your free copy, you’ll be able to access it through that software.


      • arjaybe says:

        Thanks, Andrew. Unfortunately, the process failed. I gave them an email address, they sent an email with a link, the link took me back to the same page you sent me. It probably wouldn’t have worked anyway, since I use Linux, and I don’t have a tablet or a smart phone. Not your fault; I run into this all the time. I’m just a naif, wandering in the forest of closed, proprietary software.-)

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Marcus Case says:

    Thanks for another interesting post, Andrew. How many free downloads are actually read? Exactly. I couldn’t agree more. The habit of some reviewers to download unmanageable quantities (thousands in some cases) of free books also concerns me. Anyway, good luck with this promotion and I hope it goes well (although, for whatever reason, it is indeed heartbreaking to see such excellent work being offered for free).

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks very much for the kind words, Marcus. Giving away books that never get read is just wasted electrons, and if some do get read and sales tick up as a result, I’ll be satisfied, so no heartbreak at my end.

      While I don’t expect the results of this experiment to lead me to repeat it, I will get the benefit of first hand experience and data, and a base line to use for trying the same experiment again, this time with a discount offer instead of a free offer. After that, I’ll be a much more able marketer.

      Until, of course, everything changes again. Which, (again) of course, it will.


  3. arjaybe – I feel your pain (I’m a long term advocate of open standards, open source, open data, etc., and also legal counsel to the Linux Foundation). One last thought: Kindle purchases are also stored in a personal cloud, so I assume that you should still be able to “download” a copy to your Amazon account, and then read the book on any device using whatever browser you may be using.


    • arjaybe says:

      Well, I do have an Amazon account of sorts. I had to use it to support a Musopen Kickstarter campaign. Kind of like PayPal I think. Thanks for making the effort, but I think it’s all beyond me. Maybe some day I’ll understand it. Too bad Amazon is so uptight. I might have enjoyed your book. Maybe even given it one of my mini reviews.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Actually, I’m not a member of Gravatar. If you can send me a link I can open without having to sign up for another service,. that’s fine.


    • arjaybe says:

      Okay. I can’t find your email address, so I’m arjaybe at

      You mean people can’t view my Gravatar without having one of their own? I didn’t know that.


      • Sorry; didn’t realize I didn’t have my email address here somewhere.

        If you have a live Gravatar name link, I can click on it and it will open your Gravatar profile. But your tag above isn’t such a link, so I assume the only way I can find your profile would be to go to Gravatar, and to do that I have to sign in. I assume then there would be a search box I could fill in to open your profile.

        And the PDF should be arriving in your in box right about now. I hope you enjoy it.


      • arjaybe says:

        When I click my avatar I get my Gravatar profile. I get similar when I click your avatar. But my user name appears to be “dead” here. And I should have remembered that I could get the email associated with Gesmer.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Hi Andrew,
    I’m trying to purchase your The Lafayette Campaign in digital form. I see it’s only in Amazon Kindle format. Unfortunately that page is showing “This title is not currently available for purchase” for me (from Malaysia). Any other way to purchase it?
    BTW, I’ve been following you since early OOXML issue period. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks very much for trying to buy my latest book, and also for following what I’ve been writing for so long (and that is a long time). I currently have TLC in the Kindle Select program, which means that I can’t offer it as an eBook through any other service. However, that will expire on December 28, and after that, I plan to upload it to B&N, iStore, Kobo, etc.

      It will probably take me a week or two do that, though, so if you’d like to send me an email at that I can respond to, I’ll be happy to send you a Kindle version.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Pingback: Do Free Book Promotions Work? (Part I) -

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