Authors and publishers now have the ability to run Kindle Giveaway programs on GoodReads. Goodreads randomly chooses winners and automatically sends the Kindle ebooks to their preferred devices and Cloud accounts. This is the first time the company has introduced a digital program, in the past they only ran print giveaways.
Kindle ebook giveaways will initially be open to Goodreads members in the U.S. During this beta period, Goodreads is working with Amazon Publishing to host Kindle ebook giveaways, but once out of beta, the program will be open to any author or publisher – whoever owns the digital distribution rights for the book – who sells their ebooks on Amazon.
The cost of listing a Kindle book giveaway is $119, which allows you to offer up to 100 Kindle ebooks. Listing a print book giveaway will continue to be free. Why the difference? Both types of giveaways give authors and publishers a powerful way to market their books, reach lots of new readers, and drive buzz. With a Kindle ebook giveaway, we give you the opportunity to offer a large number of free books, reaching even more readers. We also save you on both costs and hassle. No more printing books, hauling them down to the post office, filling out address labels, and paying to ship them off to winners (which can cost hundreds of dollars for a 100-copy giveaway). No more delays in getting your books in winners’ hands. The readers who win your Kindle ebook giveaway will get their Kindle ebook instantly and will be able to start reading right away, which means you can get readers talking about your title faster than ever.
Authors and publishers have come to count on Goodreads print giveaways as a key part of their marketing plans. They are a powerful way to raise awareness of an upcoming book or reignite interest in a previously published book, and they generate the kind of engagement that makes readers take note. Giveaways are especially useful before a book is published, building the buzz and word-of-mouth excitement – through pre-release reviews and friends seeing their friends adding the book to their want to read shelves – that help successfully launch books.
Why should I run a Goodreads Giveaway?
The primary benefit of running a giveaway on Goodreads is generating excitement for your book. Many giveaway winners review the books they win, meaning that you can build word-of-mouth buzz early in your book’s life. The ability to offer up to 100 copies of a book will greatly increase your chances of receiving a good number of reviews.
Additionally, when a reader enters your giveaway, a post appears in all of their Goodreads friends’ and followers’ newsfeeds, which in turn, creates more entries, more people adding your book to their Want To Read shelves, and more awareness. That’s something you won’t get anywhere else.
Giving away 100 books or more is the technique that large publishers have been using for years with great success on Goodreads. For example, Riverhead Books has said that Goodreads played a major role in helping The Girl on the Train break out to early success. To help drive early reviews, they gave away 100 copies on Goodreads (case study). In total, they printed more than 4,000 advanced copies of the debut novel, as they knew that getting the book into a lot of readers’ hands was a key way to help make it a breakout hit.
Will I still be able to run print book giveaways?
If you love our print book giveaway program, don’t worry; it’s not going anywhere. Print book giveaways will remain free to list (though you are responsible for the costs of printing and shipping the books to the winners).
I’m an author and I want to run a Kindle book giveaway. What do I do?
For this initial beta, we are working exclusively with Amazon Publishing, but you’ll be able to list a Kindle ebook giveaway soon. We will open up Kindle ebook giveaways to all publishers and KDP authors with an ebook in the Amazon store in the near future. Stay tuned for more!
When will Kindle ebook giveaways be available outside the U.S.?
We’re starting off with the program in the U.S. Our goal is to make sure that we offer all of our features in other markets, but we do not have any timing on this.
My book isn’t published yet. Can I offer ebook ARCs?
You can run a giveaway for a book that has not yet been published yet. The only requirement is that the ARC must be in a Kindle ebook format and loaded into the Kindle store before you list your giveaway.
How are these giveaways different from Amazon Giveaways?
The two programs are completely separate. With Amazon Giveaways, you purchase each copy of whatever book you want to give away. With Kindle Ebook Giveaways, you pay a flat listing fee to give away up to 100 copies of your book. Additionally, Kindle Ebook Giveaways are available for pre-publication titles, while Amazon Giveaways are not.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.