I was pretty much indifferent to the much talked about free books for the sake of promotion. Until I settled on permanent book covers and changed the titles of two of my books. I also did some text editing. In addition, I put all four books up for free for a week. I was astonished to see that 245 units were chosen. That may not be much for some ebook writers, but for me it was a surprise.
There is, however, a caveat to the free books promotion. I would say these readers pick up as many free books as they can in the genre they read – in my case, the paranormal. One of the other books is mainstream fiction. What happens is the usual purchasing phenomena. Just as a woman will try on several outfits and settle on one or two to keep, a reader will read into several books. The book that keeps the reader satisfied will be read. Those that do not satisfy will be discarded after a few pages. So regardless of how many units are moved during a free books campaign, there is no way of knowing if your books are being read through, or discarded.
The only possible benefit to a free books campaign is when the satisfaction of one of your books leads to the choice of another, and will that choice be made as a purchase after the free offer expires?
If there are more sales of my books in the near future, I’ll write a follow up to this.