If, after reading my last two posts about advertising a KDP Select free book (the first one and the second one plus additional information here), you're thinking that this is a beautiful upward curve toward guaranteed results...well, we're both wrong.
Not that I thought the results would be guaranteed to continue their upward trajectory, but I didn't realize I could have such a terrible bomb when things were going well.
Using the same book, Little Miss Lovesick, I made my third 5-days-free promo during my third 90-day KDP Select period on October 21-25, 2015. I paid for three ads (fewer than before), but I forgot to sign up for all the free newsletters until after it was too late. (You need a 7-day lead time for the sites I've been using. I remembered 6 days before.)
In May 2015, my 5-days-free yielded 7312 downloads.
In August 2015, the same five days gave up 8108 copies.
Looking great, right? My October results came to only 662 copies. Did you see that - 662!!!
I honestly think there is a lot more owed to those free-to-list-in-our-free-book-newsletter emails than I realized. Forgetting to sign up with the 30 or so that I did all the other times was the only real difference in October.
Interesting, huh? Of course, there could be any number of other factors that I didn't realize. But I think not signing up for the free sites was a big factor.
So when you're thinking about how to advertise your free book, and wondering how much you can spend on paid ads, keep in mind that all of those free newsletters might be enough to get you a good start!