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Old 07-27-2011, 06:48 PM   #1
MichaelKaufman
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Technical questions on How to Give Away eBooks to Selected Readers

I'm converting my out-of-print books into eBooks and I'll be publishing some new ones as well. They'll be for sale in all the usual formats.

But I also want to offer free copies to subscribers to my blog. I don't want to make them generally available for free. Rather, when each book comes out, I'll notify my readers they can choose what format they want and download a copy.

My questions:

- What is the best mechanism for offering free eBooks to a selected audience? Download from a hidden page on my website? Or from an e-commerce site? Some other site?

- If my subcribers download it this way, is it complicated for the regular person with no technical skills to then get it onto their Kindle or IPad or whatever?

- I've heard that Kindle etc. trawl the internet for prices on eBooks and will lower prices to match the lowest. If I'm trying to sell them on Amazon, I don't want them being given away there. So: Do I need to do the giveaway before it is published by Amazon, Apple, etc. etc.? That is, give them away only as advanced copies?

- Am I missing something here?


[Self-Promotional material deleted - MODERATOR]

Last edited by Dr. Drib; 08-18-2011 at 04:18 PM.
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Old 07-27-2011, 07:08 PM   #2
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I think the easiest thing to do is to keep the file on your website (or host it somewhere else), and provide a download link not on your website, but via email.
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Old 07-27-2011, 08:17 PM   #3
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Ditto what pigeon said. If your email subscription numbers are high, you might want to use a free file host service, to save on your site's bandwidth.

I think you can do password-protected posts on wordpress, which your site looks to be on, if that appeals to you.

On sites where I've seen this, the post won't be entirely invisible (the content of the post won't appear without the password, but people without the password will still see the title of the post). It would say something like 'Password protected post: Free download of x book'.

You'll probably get better feedback on the logistics of uploading to vendors in the author section of this forum. I could be wrong, but I think you can't have a permanent $0.00 price on Amazon and B&N.
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Old 07-27-2011, 08:53 PM   #4
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Smashwords gives coupon codes for any percent off or free. Whatever expiration date you set. Used tactfully, I don't think it has any effect on Amazon pricing.
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Old 07-27-2011, 09:15 PM   #5
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Several options...

1) A link on your site that you have to login with one of the selected accounts to use (prbly best option)
2) Coupon on Smashwords
3) A link to a dropbox, SkyDrive or other free file host that you email out
4) Get snail mail address and and email cd's with your collections on them (hey it IS an option... )
5) A password protected link, and then email out that password and link to your selected audience.

Thats at least what I think of off top of my head. I like #1 best because it could discourage people form posting the link some place, while any of the other methods people could do that extremely easily.
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Old 07-28-2011, 12:49 AM   #6
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If you have there email address you could just email it to them and not have to pay for any bandwith.
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