From the Mail Room: How Do I Know Which Book Promo Sites Are Legit?

mail-room-author-emails-office-899351_960_720A reader sent in this question:

I was wondering if you could please help me. My 5 free days with Amazon KDP Select is up, so I’m still way within the 90 enrollment period.

There seems to be many ‘book promotion’ sites, where the bought Kindle can be advertised through their website, tweets, etc. However, most of these do not specify that it is a one-off fee. My hesitation is submitting my book details to lots of them which are affordable, but having extra taken out of my account on a monthly basis, when as far as I’m concerned, it has only been a one-off payment.

Are such book promotion places generally legitimate? I have used the Facebook campaign ads, but so far with no real success. I’m trying to decide what my next step should be.

Many thanks.

Here’s the answer from our awesome team of authors:

Thanks for contacting Indies Unlimited.

Running promotions on sites external from Amazon doesn’t really have anything to do with being in KDP Select, so I’m not sure why that is a concern – other than the fact that you won’t be able to run your books for free since you used up those days. You should still be able to price your book at 99 cents and take advantage of the many promo sites that are out there (and some of them are free). If you’re unsure about how to go about purchasing promotion, this article covers that.

I’m not certain which promotional outlets you’re looking at, but most places have you pick a day or a range of days. They only charge you for the day(s) you sign up for.

If you go to our site and click on the tab “Book Promo Sites” – while we do not endorse any particular site, those sites have been vetted and used by at least some of our staff. We would not list them on the site if they took advantage of authors. We cannot state that any of them perform a certain way, so you may or may not have success, but they are not known to scam authors.

If you are unsure of a site, we recommend the following:

·         Check their Alexa Ranking.

·         Search to see if they have complaints against them by Googling the sites name along with the word “complaint” or “scam”.

·         Learn How to Spot a Scam.

·         Ask for recommendations based on your genre(s) in author groups or even in our Facebook Group.

I hope this answers your question.

All the best,

The Minions at IU

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8 thoughts on “From the Mail Room: How Do I Know Which Book Promo Sites Are Legit?”

  1. This tactic of hooking a buyer into recurring payments is not restricted to book review sites, and seems to be on the rise. My advice, having been caught up in it once, is read the fine print, and if there is even mention of a recurring or automatic payment, immediately log off that site and stay away from it. The only people who profit from such tactics are the people running the sites.

  2. I would stay away from external sites that charge you recurring payments for advertising. I think there are some sites that work as “clubs” or membership “groups” that offer a range of benefits for a recurring fee, with advertising being one of the benefits of the group.

    I would say that if a company wants to charge you a recurring fee, to put the date the fee is to be charged in your calendar, and maybe two days before that, in your calendar put a big note, all caps, LAST DAY BEFORE CHARGE, so you can remember to stop the service if you no longer want to participate. That way, if the advertising isn’t working, you can minimize your payments.

  3. One site I would like to warn people about being a scam is Choosy Bookworm. I recently paid $150 for their read and review program, which guarantees 40 interested readers. I received 10. No refund. No response to my emails. I took the initiative to email other authors in the program and they are having equally dismal results. Choosy Bookworm’s read and review program is a fraud. Avoid if possible.

      1. I also heard good things about the program years ago, but it’s clear that it’s no longer effective. An author I spoke with even contested it on her credit card because it did not in anyway deliver on what was promised. I was most disappointed by the lack of response when I complained.

  4. My favorites are Robin Reads, Ereader News Today, and Bargain Booksy. Having said that, it’s always interesting to me how some authors have fantastic results with sites other authors see no action from. I think it really has a lot to do with genre, and what the subscribers of a specific site are looking for.

  5. That’s too bad about Choosy. I had good luck with their read-and-review program, but that was quite some time ago, when he had just started it. Maybe life caught up with him, as it does with so many of us.

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