Just published my very first Kindle eBook (short erotica). How can I get sales?

35 replies
How would you recommend getting sales? This is my first eBook. Short erotica, written under a pen name. How would you go about getting sales?

It's on KDP Select right now. The book is about 4,000 words.

How can I get sales? Keep publishing? Make an "author website"?

Regarding social media, I do not want to be associated with writing erotica. What should I do?

Any good tried and true methods that you can recommend?
#ebook #erotica #kindle #published #sales #short
  • Profile picture of the author vishwa
    You can try Amazon to sell your kindle.
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  • Profile picture of the author deekay
    1. Take advantage of 5 dayFREE promotion under in KDP programs.
    2. Get some reviews to your book.
    3. Also take advantage of sites where you can promote your FREE promotion.
    4. Try paid traffic if you can afford, to start some traction.
    5. Promote on related forums, blogs, FB groups, tweets etc...
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    • Profile picture of the author deessell
      Keep publishing. You really need the 'dirty dozen' before you start seeing some traction. Make sure you are in the right categories, check your keywords etc.

      Each book is a brick in your success!
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      • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
        Originally Posted by deessell View Post

        Keep publishing. You really need the 'dirty dozen' before you start seeing some traction. Make sure you are in the right categories, check your keywords etc.

        Each book is a brick in your success!
        Interesting, I have 4 books and one doesn't sell very often, but have "traction". I don't care about keywords.

        Do you think fiction writers should care about keywords?
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        • Profile picture of the author quadagon
          Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

          Interesting, I have 4 books and one doesn't sell very often, but have "traction". I don't care about keywords.

          Do you think fiction writers should care about keywords?
          I suppose it depends upon your target audience. If I was writing a murder mystery using the vechile of a locked room mystery I would probably target locked room rather than crime, murder, detective story.

          With regards the op I feel that you've probably left it late. I'd always advise that you start building your audience up even before you release your book. That way when you launch you've built up credibility and authority in your market and can create some momentum behind the book release.
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          • Profile picture of the author Kay King
            The book is about 4,000 words.
            That's a book?
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            • Profile picture of the author AnniePot
              Originally Posted by Kay King View Post

              That's a book?
              M y thoughts exactly Kay, but you said it first LOL
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              • Profile picture of the author Drewdude1991
                Originally Posted by AnniePot View Post

                M y thoughts exactly Kay, but you said it first LOL
                It's a short. Is that a problem considering its erotica?

                I love writing and I'm working on a larger project that will end up being 150 to 200 pages. However, these erotic works are purely for a little cash. Is an erotic work as short as mine a bad idea? Should it be longer although it's a short?
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                • Profile picture of the author quadagon
                  Originally Posted by Drewdude1991 View Post

                  It's a short.
                  Surely it's a quickee

                  You might have more luck with a compendium.

                  What have you done so far to promote the book?
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                  • Profile picture of the author Drewdude1991
                    I'm not sure exactly how to go about promoting. It's on KDP select and the free promo is coming up.

                    I agree on the compendium. I am going to write more shorts, all erotic, and all based in the same location, then I will make that into a book, which I'll sell for about $5
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                • Profile picture of the author Kay King
                  No interest in the erotica market so perhaps that genre is different - but I'd never buy a 'book' or a 'short' that I could read in less than 10 minutes.

                  I know Kindle is currently trying to find a way to market these "shorts" but it doesn't seem to be catching on well. It's something I've noticed in many of the "written-for-Kindle" books in all genres - paqe lengths of 50-175 seem to be common. True - I can buy these for .99 to 2.99 all day long...

                  OR - I can buy a top selling author's just released 400-800 PAGE ebook for $8-15.

                  Not trying to be mean or rude but if you are going to spend time marketing a book trying to get sales - seems like the first step is write something with at least the pretense of substance.
                  Signature
                  Saving one dog will not change the world - but the world will change forever for that one dog.

                  You should always be yourself...unless you can be a Unicorn. Then you should always be a Unicorn.
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                  • Profile picture of the author Drewdude1991
                    It seems to me that erotic shorts tend to be really short, which is why it was 4000 words. At least, from what I've read. Erotic stories at 30000 words tend to be overkill, don't they?

                    Since I'm on KDP select, that means my short is available to KU users for free. Granted, payment is now based on pages read, but since there's so few pages, wouldn't that mean the maximum KU payout for my story will likely hot its max as it does not take long to read?
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                    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
                      You may be right - it's not a genre I'm familiar with. I could be totally wrong about what people want to read in that market.
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                      Saving one dog will not change the world - but the world will change forever for that one dog.

                      You should always be yourself...unless you can be a Unicorn. Then you should always be a Unicorn.
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                      • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
                        I remember a time when airport newsstands carried a selection of "erotica" on their top shelves (found one on a plane, it was straight up porn). These "books" could be read in an hour or so, minus any extracurricular activities. They seemed to sell pretty well.

                        I do think there's a market for erotic shorts. And I think the change to the KU payouts will discourage a lot of the pure "made for Kindle" out of that market. Many of them weren't worried about anyone actually buying or reading their trash, they just wanted the payment for the "borrow".

                        Kind of like the shakeout when Adsense decoupled the content network rates from the search rates. It knocked a lot of the MFA kids out of the market and sent them looking for greener pastures. Unfortunately for legitimate writers and content marketers, they found Bum Marketing.

                        The idea of a compendium of these shorts is a good one. Short story collections have been around for years. I was stuck in a literature class taught by a radical feminist back in the 1970s, and one of the required books was a collection of "erotica" shorts by Anais Nin.
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  • Profile picture of the author Jason Kanigan
    Join the Kindle subforum right here on WF.

    Inside are step-by-step instructions on how to do everything related to writing, publishing, and marketing your book. Loads of detail. Proven methods. Active people doing the same thing you are doing, to share your experiences with and get feedback from.
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    • Profile picture of the author deessell
      Originally Posted by Jason Kanigan View Post

      Join the Kindle subforum right here on WF.

      Inside are step-by-step instructions on how to do everything related to writing, publishing, and marketing your book. Loads of detail. Proven methods. Active people doing the same thing you are doing, to share your experiences with and get feedback from.

      Jason, keywords are part of the top four: cover, blurb,look inside and keywords.

      How will people find your book? Amazon is a search engine just like google.

      ETA: sorry used the wrong quote of yours and no time to correct...you know which post i'm responding to.
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    • Profile picture of the author beckham319
      Wow, didn't know about the KIndle forum, thanks!
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  • Profile picture of the author JeffreyMichel
    As deekay here said, take advantage to what's available freely to you and get the ball rolling
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  • Profile picture of the author agmccall
    There are blogs and forums dedicated to selling this type of book. I would seek them out via google

    al
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  • Profile picture of the author sdingram
    Hi DrewDude,

    Congratulations on your first book!

    The above advice is great. I wanted to add a couple of points as well.

    Definitely, your main focus should be getting reviews, which can be tough when you don't want anyone to know that you wrote the book

    Create an author Facebook page under your pen name and post regularly to that. Although it is "tied" to your personal facebook account, no one will know that it's the real you. Know your audience. Is it mostly male or female? If female, post pictures of hunky men and pull quotes from your book (nothing too racy).

    Once you start to build a following on Facebook, do a KDP promotion and let everyone know your book is free for the next 2 days (or 3 days) and ASK THEM FOR A REVIEW. Don't ask for a positive review or a five star review, just ask for a review. Make sure that your book is priced at $2.99 or higher before you do your free promotion so that when the promotion ends, anyone who buys it will buy it at that price. I hope that makes sense. What I mean is if it's priced at 99 cents before you run the free promo, when the promo ends, you are going to make sales at 99 cents. It's better to have those sales at $2.99.

    If you have a budget, I would run a campaign on Facebook for Likes to your page and specifically target women who like romance novels, etc. You can do this for $5 a day.

    Like someone else mentioned above, do a Google search for writers' forums that are geared towards erotica or romance books. Get active because the people you meet can be very supportive. Check for Facebook groups as well.

    People are usually surprised at just how much marketing you have to do to sell books. Just take it one step at a time and make sure you do at least one thing every day.

    All the best to you!
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  • Profile picture of the author Frank Donovan
    Originally Posted by Drewdude1991 View Post

    It's on KDP Select right now. The book is about 4,000 words.
    Most publishers would consider 4,000 words to be a chapter or an essay. Not a book.

    How can I get sales? Keep publishing? Make an "author website"?
    I'd suggest you change your approach. Short books are rapidly falling out of favor with Amazon so you'd likely be wasting your time publishing a bunch of similar titles.

    Regarding social media, I do not want to be associated with writing erotica. What should I do?
    That's why you have a pen name.

    .
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    • Profile picture of the author Drewdude1991
      It's a short, not a book. Sorry about mixing up the terms. It's priced at 99 cents. Is 4,000 words too short for even a short?
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    Drive traffic to it. Put it on your own site and sell it. Simple. How erotic is your erotica books, and what price do you plan on selling it at?
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  • Profile picture of the author Elvis Michael
    When it comes to erotica, publishing 4,000 words is quite normal and acceptable. Just make sure you disclose the word count on the book's description so that buyers know what to expect. This also helps prevent some bad reviews from those who wanted to read actual novels.

    Question: How many sales do you get per day/week right now without doing any promotion? I ask because, from experience, I tend to get some sales without promoting at all.

    If you really want to see decent or serious sales, you want to keep writing a few more so that you can eventually publish "Bundles." That is, you will be able to compile all these short stories together into one entry.

    I publish stories like yours often, and have been doing so since 2011. They still sell relatively well (granted, some books will bomb and won't sell at all). But no big deal - keep publishing.

    The more bundles you have, the more sales you will see - especially when you finally publish that "50-book bundle" and a few others.

    Feel free to read some older articles I have on my blog (EpicPassiveIncome.com) where I get into more detail.

    Good luck.
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    • Profile picture of the author Drewdude1991
      Should I keep publishing then when I get enough, make it into a compilation? Or hold off on publishing the shorts and after I finish writing 5 or so, make them into a compilation and stick with selling that?
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      • Profile picture of the author quadagon
        Originally Posted by Drewdude1991 View Post

        Should I keep publishing then when I get enough, make it into a compilation? Or hold off on publishing the shorts and after I finish writing 5 or so, make them into a compilation and stick with selling that?
        It's really up to you. Just be aware that writing a book is only part of the overall equation when it comes to book publishing. As things stand (I assume) no one knows who you are or why they should read your book. You are, hopefully, relying on your bookcover and keywords to be found.

        You need to look for your audience and find out where they already meet and become apart of the discussions there.

        As an example a client of ours created a sci fi/horror trilogy about zombies. There is broad market appeal and his writing was of a decent standing. We mind-mapped everyone we could think would be interested by looking at other books, authors and films around the subject matter.

        So as a quick indication I am Legend (film) lead us to I am Legend (Book) which lead us Richard Matheson. Along the way we also had Omega Man and Last Man on Earth as other film adaptations of the book.

        We ended up with a big network of competitors in our market.

        The next step was to find out where fans of zombie literature (literature about zombies not by zombie), zombie movies and zombie culture mass.

        The next step was to build up credibility in the that market. For us we had the author take part in the forums and put his writing out there. I have a theory that writers write and the more writing you do the more you are known.

        When we came to promote the book we agreed on a three step process for the book

        The first book would initially be done using the free days of kdp select and we would use every resource to get people to download the book for free. PPC, Youtube, Free websites everything was targeted to those days.

        One the reasons we concentrated on this is that we wanted as many people to read the book as possible. Why? Well at the back of the book is the first chapter of the second book and that chapter finishes on a cliffhanger.

        Book two you could only get by going to the authors site where you got it for free for signing up to the mailing list. We also ran a limited time and amount offer for physical copies of the book

        Book three was launched as a self published book and kindle @ a top price.

        I honestly think that it takes about 6 months to a year to do the ground work of promoting a book. For my next book I am promoting it now and its not made its way out of my head. I also know how i will promote it and are setting things up now so that when its time you have this perfect storm of attention, desire and interest.
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  • Profile picture of the author RayAcevedo
    Have you tried to run any paid ads on it?

    Have you found any affiliates to do the promotion?

    Those would be the first two steps I wold take..
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    • Profile picture of the author yazooda
      Originally Posted by RayAcevedo View Post

      Have you tried to run any paid ads on it?

      Have you found any affiliates to do the promotion?

      Those would be the first two steps I wold take..
      I heard a lot "Did you find affiliates?", do you mean affiliates get founded by me or some websites provide it like ClickBank? If yes where to find an affiliate? Is ClickBank the best for beginner who didn't work with affiliates before?
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  • Profile picture of the author TexasSteve
    Kindle usually does marketing for you. However, the way to have massive success with books like this is to build a loyal following. You'll have to pay for it at first through PPC, media buys, or your time...but once you build the foundation, it will snowball.

    Get a good following and create incentives for them to share. If you're a good writer, you'll take off.

    Good luck.
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by TexasSteve View Post

      Kindle usually does marketing for you. However, the way to have massive success with books like this is to build a loyal following. You'll have to pay for it at first through PPC, media buys, or your time...but once you build the foundation, it will snowball.

      Get a good following and create incentives for them to share. If you're a good writer, you'll take off.

      Good luck.

      Amazon will only do the marketing for you, if you have a proven track record for sales.

      They promote books they believe can make them the most money, and those are typically the books with strong sales without Amazon's help.
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  • Profile picture of the author Webkingseo
    Great advice's here , As they say Kindle usually do marketing for you , But try to get as many reviews as you can, Make Authors profile in every social media platform its very helpful.

    Thanks
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  • Profile picture of the author mirbaharbd
    Originally Posted by Drewdude1991 View Post

    It's on KDP Select right now. The book is about 4,000 words.
    It is a good decision that you are on the KDP. It is in the latest position. Thanks for choosing the right place at the beginning time.
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  • Profile picture of the author Khondoker
    Join Author Marketing club and pay $5 to appear for cover page advertised there for 5 days!
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  • Profile picture of the author seowiz
    There are some great Kindle promotional gigs on Fiverr that take advantage of targeted traffic from social media and reading blogs. This in conjunction with your KDP free days can be a powerful tool to increase your ranking in Amazon's search engine. Make sure you have a few reviews first to maximize your sales during your promotion period.
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    • Profile picture of the author Shana Walters
      My advice to you is this, don't just depend on one short story to make you a heap of money.
      It can happen and I have seen it happen for a few Erotica authors.
      But they are certainly not the majority.
      And with the new KU 2.0 streamlined, you are not doing yourself or your readers any favors by having only one short story.
      You need to write more short stories.
      This method is one of the best ways to market your books.
      Depending on how much time you have on your hands, the length of the short stories you wants to write and your creativity, you can write and possibly publish at least 3 - 5 stories in a week.
      It all depends on you.
      And if you can write in a series even better.
      Like right now Stepbrother Romance and Erotica books are a hot trend.
      If you ventured into this genre you can possibly write a

      Stepbrother Erotica book series of say 20, 000 words in length and make 6 books in total.
      I'm just going to throw a title out there, Captivated By My Stepbrother.
      Now if can make the first book permafree, even better.
      That way the readers can freely sample your first book and if they like the characters and the story, they may just go on buying and reading your other five books in this series.
      Don't take my word for it.
      Check out Holly M. Ward's The Arrangement series and you will see just how powerful a series can be.
      Even though so many of the reviewers say they are not going to buy one more book in that series, they just can't help themselves and they still go on to buy the very next book when it comes out.

      Best Regards,
      Shana Jahsinta Walters.
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      Write until my fingers fall off. LOL!!!
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