Friday, July 29, 2016

5 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT KINDLE UNLIMITED, by Penny C. Sansevieri

5 THINGS YOU SHOULD KNOW ABOUT KINDLE UNLIMITED
Amazon’s subscription service, Kindle Unlimited, is essentially a new way to read a number of books (limited to books enrolled in this program) for one monthly fee. You’re limited to ten books at a time. If you want more, you have to return a book or two before the system will let you add more to your library.

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When it comes to nonfiction, Amazon’s subscription service is not so great. At least my nonfiction books aren’t doing great. It makes sense, though, because Kindle Unlimited speaks much more to the fiction reader, in particular the genre fiction reader, than it does to anyone else. This doesn’t mean your book won’t do well if you’ve written nonfiction, but there are some things to consider.

Fact #1: Kindle Unlimited (KU) appeals to the avid reader.
This means that if your book is genre fiction, you’ll do well here. Hyperfast readers often fall into this category because they can save money with this subscription service. Consequently, some of the highest sales are coming from these readers.

Fact #2: In order to be a part of the KU community, you must have a book enrolled in the KDP Select program.
That said, I wouldn’t recommend having all of your books in the program at once. In fact, I recommend rotating them in and out of KPD Select. If you have a series, this becomes even more crucial because with KU, if all of your books in that particular series are in the Select program, they will all be relegated to the subscription shelves. Granted, this can work in your favor, but it’s smart to keep just the first in the series in KDP Select with a link, letter, or some blurb at the back of the book pointing readers to the next book in the series, and then the next, and so on. Depending on how many books you have in a series, you could conceivably rotate two or three in and out of the program. You’ll want to experiment because not all genres (even in fiction) respond the same.

Fact #3: Shorter books AND longer books rock. 
It used to be that short books performed better than longer books on Kindle Unlimited. While it's true that avid readers still love a quick read, and read a lot, longer books are gaining traction with Kindle Unlimited users. Additionally, since the roll out of Kindle 2.0, Kindle Unlimited authors are paid by the number of pages read (instead of once 10% of the book has been read). 


Fact #4: When I tested this across a few titles, I found once again that themes matter.
Check out this video I made about themes: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/new-keywords-amazon/. Surprisingly, though some are using themes, not everyone is. It may be hard to let go of one or two of the keywords you upload to the Amazon system, but trust me, it will make a difference. In a recent test, I deleted all of the theme keywords taken from the back of a fiction book. The book’s sales plummeted, going from eighty-four per week to one. When I reentered the theme words into the keyword area, the book bounced back up again and has returned to almost normal status. It’s not yet clear why themes matter as much as they do for KU books, but it’s definitely wise to take advantage of them.

Fact #5: Bonus content makes readers happy.
An editor will often cut sections from a book. When this happens, authors can create a “director’s cut” of the book with the additional pieces either in a separate edition or as separate books on Amazon. Having additional content to drive a reader’s interest to your book can be an effective marketing strategy, not just for the KU program, but across the board. If a reader likes your writing, they will likely read everything you’ve written, and they’ll likely tell their friends. Bonus content, director’s-cut content—whatever you want to call it—can keep your readers coming back for more as well as pull in new readers.

The bottom line is, Kindle Unlimited can be a great tool in your book marketing arsenal, especially if you write fiction and can spend a bit of time identifying your themes and keywords. Be sure to watch for our next newsletter with more great tips on book marketing!


Reprinted from Author Marketing Experts, a full service book marketing and publicity firm. Find out more at: www.amarketingexpert.com 

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