Are authors giving away too many free books?

Promoting is one of the biggest challenges an author has in my opinion. I think most writers would readily agree with that. One promotional tool is offering free books. It’s a tried and proven method of marketing. What company doesn’t offer a free trial? The idea is that if the customer likes it, they will return for more.

Does that work the same way with readers?

The market is getting saturated with free reads. If you like reading e-books, you can download free books all day long. So, is this still an effective marketing strategy for authors? Yes? No? Maybe? Sometimes?

I honestly don’t know. As a writer, I want people to read my work. But, I also want to make money to pay my bills. If I give away too many free reads, am I making it impossible to make money in this business?

I have two reasons for pondering so much about this subject. First off, readers expect free reads now, and they want more than just a sample. They want the whole book for free. I know this because they tell me so. Secondly, as a reader, I download more free books than I buy.That’s shocking to me, because I really want to support my fellow authors, but hey, I’m human. I’m not made of money and I love free stuff!

Ideally, giving away a free sample should be a great marketing tool. I’m worried it has gotten overused. So, are authors giving away too many free books? I would love your opinion.

Published in: on March 3, 2015 at 11:14 am  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I think it can be a problem in the long run. Of course readers want us to give away our books for free, but if we continue to do that, we make no money to enable us to keep writing them. It is a conundrum indeed. If there’s a solution to it, I’d love to know what it is myself lol.

    • True. I see a lot of times where the first book of a series will be out there for free. That seems pretty smart to get readers interested in the rest of the series. But, usually, if I wait a little while, the second book will go up for free, too. Lol. I’m not judging. I do the same thing as an author. I wish there were easy answers.

      Thanks for commenting! 🙂

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