BookBub Alternatives – What’s The Second Best Email Book Marketing Service?

When it comes to driving readers to your free or discounted eBooks, BookBub is currently the undisputed king of email book marketing. We continue to hear good results from writers using BookBub to promote books in the mystery & thriller genres, as well as other genres. The feedback is more or less consistent:

Writer at Typewriter

BookBub Pros:

  • Predictable results – Amazingly, BookBub’s projected sales based on genre seem to pan out most of the time, which is an incredible accomplishment.
  • Easy – If you can get accepted, there’s very little work to do for the promotion.
  • Open to Indie Authors – Much to the chagrin of rejected veteran authors, BookBub makes room for new and independent authors if they feel that the book will perform well.
  • U.K. Reach 
  • Well-Funded Company

BookBub Cons:

  • Price – It’s comparably far more expensive than other book marketing services. But you seem to get what you pay for.
  • Odds of Selection – It remains very difficult to get your book into BookBub.  Reasons for non-acceptance are rarely given, and working with them once is no guarantee that you’ll ever get to do it again.
  • Transparency of Selection Process – It’s very difficult for outsiders to predict what will and won’t get selected for inclusion.

So, can we all agree that in addition to being the most exclusive book marketing service going, that they may also be the most effective? With that out of the way, we can also agree that most writers won’t be selected to work with BookBub. So what other options are there? What is the second best book email marketing service for writers?

We’ve put together a shortlist of options for you, with one caveat: if you’re looking for guaranteed results, then forget book marketing altogether. There is no such thing as guaranteed ROI on any marketing investment (if there was, it would be called “book selling,” not “book marketing.”)

You’ll need to test each service, keeping in mind that factors such as book covers, book titles, reviews and quality of reviews, and many other variables can impact your results.

With that said, here’s the list –

Book Sends – Formerly called “Book Blast,” Book Sends is an emerging player to watch in the book email marketing space, with a rapidly growing list of subscribers and reasonable prices. This thread on the Amazon Kindle boards features writers disclosing a variety of outcomes after using Book Sends.

Pixel of Ink – The good people at Pixel of Ink can help you promote your book for free. It can be difficult to find the author services on this site, so we’ve found it for you here. It’s not quite clear how the good people behind Pixel of Ink promote authors, but they do, and it is free – what do you have to lose?

Book Gorilla – This service appears to be growing fast, but it’s gaining a reputation as being unfriendly to indie authors. The rather harsh copy from their About page says it all: “We’re as tired as you are of emails stuffed with books by authors we’ve never heard of. Ho hum, who needs them? Here at BookGorilla, we’re talking about bestsellers by authors you know and love.”

The Fussy Librarian  – A cleverly designed site with a great name. Results appear to be mixed at the moment, but the site is very reasonably priced, and the people behind it are so nice that we’re going to support it.

eReader News Today – This service is so popular with authors that your spot must be reserved months in advance. So what sort of book does well on eReader News Today? Here’s copy from an email they sent to their author list earlier this year: “Examples of genres that do well are pretty much any type of romance (historical, comedy, western, contemporary), mystery, suspense, drama and sometimes even horror.  Genres that don’t do quite as well are science fiction, fantasy, young adult, children’s books and paranormal. If you want to promote a book in any of the genres that I’ve mentioned that don’t do as well, that is totally up to you but I wanted to make sure to point that out.”

Free Booksy – As the title implies, this service is highly focused on free book promotions. It’s quite effective in generating free downloads, and without it, it’s virtually impossible to get your free book promotion noticed on Amazon.

Summary

There are a lot of great choices, but don’t put your eggs all in one basket. Test several services, and also consider doing more than simply email marketing. Online ads, website listings, social media and pay-per-click are all potentially viable options.

Bella Wright

Bella Wright blogs about books, film and media.

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