AudioBook Boom

audiobookboom logo Have you converted any of your books into audio books? Supposedly audio books are the “next big thing,” although I’m not sure who decides that. In any event, I have been converting quite a few of my books to audio and have been having a lot of fun in the process. I’m doing this through ACX, and I’ve written here before about how that process works.

One thing that I particularly like about ACX, as well as the meeting place they provide so authors and narrators can hook up, is that they continue to send promotional ideas via email. One such email introduced me to AudioBook Boom.

Here’s the deal. When you complete an audio book through ACX, you get a bunch of free promo codes that you can give to potential reviewers. Generally, they’ll give you 25 to start, and the codes are good for either the US or the UK (or you can request for both). I always get both. When you visit your sales dashboard in ACX, there’s a tab for your promo codes. It looks like this:

acxpromocode2
Click images to enlarge

If you click on the purple “Get Promo Codes” button above, you’ll be taken to a table where all the promo codes are listed (I’ve obscured the one below). You can see what codes are available, what marketplace they apply to (US or UK), and you can click on the “copy” button to copy the code for insertion in an email or message to your targeted audience. You can also download the table as an Excel file if you want to keep it on your computer.

acxpromocodes2

Now that you’ve got your codes, it’s up to you to parcel them out to friends, bloggers, reviewers, whoever you like. Those people will then redeem the codes for a free download of your audio book and, if your luck holds, review it.

So what’s the most productive way to do that? Well, AudioBook Boom has an idea for that.

If you sign up with AudioBook Boom, you’ll see that they charge $12 for their service. This includes a listing for one title in their newsletter along with an image of your cover, a 75-word blurb which you provide, the author and narrator names, the book’s running time, star rating, and genre. Their webpage states that they have 7000 subscribers on their mailing list, and since subscribers must double-opt in, there are very few bots and scammers. They say they have a 20% open rate: not bad when you’re talking 7000+ listeners.

When your book title runs in the newsletter, people opt for it and AudioBook Boom sends you an email with a list of requesters. I’ve found that I get a notice with a slug of requesters on the first day, but then a few more may trickle in over the days to follow. What’s great is that you have access to an online spreadsheet of each requester’s name, email address, and a link to their Audible profile. This is important because you can check their stats and see how many books they’ve reviewed, and what kind of books. The thing is, you may get a lot of requests for the free codes, but not all of those requesters may be a good fit for your book. You are not obligated to send codes to all of the requesters (or any of them), but if you see a profile where the listener has reviewed many books, and many of them are in a genre similar to yours, this is one you probably want to send a code to. If someone has reviewed 1,000 books, mostly novels, you’ve got a better chance of getting a review for yours than you might from someone who’s only reviewed six books, all of which are cookbooks.

listening to audiobooks girl-1990347_960_720Okay, so now you’ve got your free codes from ACX and you’ve got your requesters from AudioBook Boom. The rest is up to you. You send an email to each requester with their own unique code, a link to the place to redeem it (AudioBook Boom supplies that to you), and a note that they need to add some kind of disclaimer, similar to this, to their review: I was given this free review copy of the audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review. Make the email friendly and encourage the requester to leave an honest review. So far I’ve had very nice responses back from some of these people, and it’s always a good thing to be able to connect directly to readers (listeners) and potential new fans.

One thing I would stress is to keep track of what codes you send and to whom. On ACX, you can copy a code from your dashboard, then slide an indicator to “shared” from the original “not shared” position, just so you don’t give the same code to two different people. On your AudioBook Boom spreadsheet, you can also make your own notes like when you emailed them, when you heard back from them (if you did), or other responses (email bounced, requester changed their mind, etc.). I make pretty specific notes, since I’m sending emails to several people and it would be easy to forget who got what.

If you’re lucky and all the codes you send out are redeemed, Audible will send you more. You never have to worry about running out.

What happens next? It’s up to you to check Audible to see if reviews show up; no one will notify you about that. Obviously you need to give the people time to listen and time to review, but when those reviews start rolling in — woo hoo! That’s what we all like to see, isn’t it?

In addition to all this, the folks at AudioBook Boom post their newsletter on the Audiobook Boom Facebook page and the Free Audio Giveaways Facebook Group. Combined, these two groups have over 5000 readers/listeners. Authors are welcome to post their own ads offering the free promo codes as well.

An added benefit, and one that does not appear on the AudioBook Boom page, is that a week after my book was featured in their newsletter, it also showed up on AudioBookBay, Audiobooks.cloud, and was tweeted out as well. While I could not find a direct correlation between these sites, I am guessing there is some connection somewhere. And you know how it is: we’ll take all the promotion we can get!

After the fact: I’ve now promoted three books through AudioBook Boom, and I’m very happy with the results. I’ve gotten many nice reviews and, even better, I’ve had people sign up for the second or third book after listening to and reviewing the first. I call that a win/win if they liked the first book enough to come back for more. Well worth the $12.

Author: Melissa Bowersock

Melissa Bowersock is an eclectic, award-winning author who writes in a variety of fiction and non-fiction genres. She has been both traditionally and independently published and lives in a small community in northern Arizona. Learn more about Melissa from her Amazon author page and her blog.

16 thoughts on “AudioBook Boom”

  1. Thanks for the information, Melissa, I narrated my first audiobook, that of my latest novel, Sunflowers Under Fire. I had no idea how much work it would be. I wrote a blog post about my journey.

    And I’m curious about the benefit of the promo codes. We need the reviews but I’m wondering if the free promo codes impact on possible sales. I signed an exclusive with Audible and didn’t realize that made my audiobook ineligible for Overdrive or Libby or one of the library resources. So, for a year, I won’t be able to get my audiobook into any library. Thoughts?

  2. Diana, I have also thought about doing my own books, but I think it would take a lot of effort to set up a good recording space, plus the time involved in the work itself. I think my narrators have it all down pat, but I have a feeling a newbie’s first time might be a real complicated learning curve.
    The interesting thing about the free promo codes is that they are recorded as sales–and you get your full royalties for them! I noticed they showed up on my sales dashboard, but had a hard time believing they really counted as sales until I got my first check. Very nice! I don’t how Audible does it, or why (maybe they think it’s worthwhile to give books away and “hook” listeners who will come back for more), but you know darn and good and well they aren’t losing any money on it, so it’s a win/win. At the end of your year of exclusivity, you can certainly widen your reach, but in the meantime, you can reach a lot of people with the free codes.

    1. Thanks, Melissa. Yes, narrating the book and recording was a huge learning curve but I learned a lot and hope to do the other two as well in the new year. As mentioned in my blog post, I thought about setting up my own studio at home but it proved to be too difficult. I was fortunate to get to use the recording studio in the North Vancouver library. I’m wondering how many libraries across Canada and the USA offer that service. There was no charge. All done through my library card.

  3. Okay, Melissa. Last time you talked about audio books, I said, “I’ll have to try that.” Now I REALLY have to get down and do it. “Don’t know how” is no longer an option. Thanks, I think.

  4. Melissa, you mentioned two different Facebook groups where you can post about promo codes for audiobooks. Since they both seem to be run by Audiobook Boom, did you pay the $12 US to both? Thanks.

  5. I have 5 books (mysteries) on audio through ACX with the 6th in progress. Definitely worth it (I do royalty share with a professional narrator) and I love Audiobook Boom. Always earn back the $12 and I’ve gained a very loyal following and have gotten a lot of reviews on Audible, Amazon and Goodreads.

  6. Thanks for this. I’m just listening to my narrator’s product, with a view to release early int he new year. This sort of information is a real boon! Thanks for the boom!

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