As the timer ticks down on my most recent Goodreads giveaway, I thought I’d share some of what I’ve observed and learned. Hopefully those of you considering a Goodreads giveaway in the future will take something away from this.
Here are the details on the two giveaways I’m referring to:
Here are the variables I played with to see how they impacted the results:
- Time: I varied the duration of both giveaways (14 days for Cloudstone and 7.5 days* for Peregrine).
- Status: The Peregrine Prophecy giveaway coincided with its public release (December 14; was ‘pre-released’ on December 10). The Cloudstone Key giveaway was for a book that had already been listed on Amazon for over three months.
- The ‘new release’ vs ‘existing title’ didn’t have a noticeable impact on my uptake. I averaged around 90 to 110 entries per day over both giveaways.
- While the duration is an important consideration, I don’t think it’s what really drives success (read: getting the most people to sign up that you can). Instead, having a great cover and compelling copy are the two more prominent variables. And when I say “copy”, it isn’t necessary that you copy and paste what your Amazon description verbatim. In fact, I advise against it. What I went with instead (thanks to some excellent advice from Emlyn) is a very brief summary of your synopsis – make it punchy – along with a smattering of reviews/what people are saying.
- Given that the duration for Cloudstone was approximately twice as long as the duration for Peregrine, I am expecting to see the final count for Peregrine somewhere around half of what Cloudstone was (or ~750). As of 10:41PM PST (just over an hour left) there are 671 people requesting. So… I’m almost there.
- Mention up front (i.e., at the beginning of your description of the giveaway) that they are ‘signed copies’ (read: you must sign them). This is a good idea. A really good idea.
- Schedule your giveaway to start on Wednesday or Thursday and end on an “unpopular/unimportant” date in the future. Also, try to avoid spanning any major holidays. I overlapped US Thanksgiving on my first and bumped up close to Christmas on my second. Not a big make or break factor, just something to be mindful of.
I hope that helps… and good luck with your Goodreads giveaways!
* I “inadvertently” derailed the giveaway window for Peregrine for almost two days by making an edit to the description on a Saturday morning. KEY TAKE AWAY: do not make changes to your listing while it’s active – ESPECIALLY ON THE WEEKEND – Goodreads will automatically take it down for approval (I should have read the fine print on this one… consider yourself warned)