Pay What You Will E-Book Promotion Wrapup

For 48 hours starting Friday, I ran a "pay what you will" promotion on my book, Show Networks and Control Systems.

There were 420 total downloads (391 in the US and Canada, and 29 in the UK and Europe), and 59 donations. So that means that 14% of people who downloaded the book donated.  I'm not sure, however, what that really means, since I had to run the Kindle free download on Amazon, and the donation part here on my website.  Amazon doesn't give me any referral/download/purchasing information (although you know they have it), so it's quite possible that a lot of those downloads were people who found the book free on Amazon somehow, and didn't even know about the donation possibility.  This whole thing started, too, as a way to give the Kindle edition to those who already had the print edition, so that might account for some of those numbers. 

For those that donated, thank you!!!  39% donated $10, 20% donated $20, 14% donated $5, and 7% donated $30 (the regular download price).  Two people gave me $1, and I'm not really sure what to make of that (especially since after Paypal, I got 67 cents).  Paypal's take varied from 4% to 33%, averaging 7% in total (I really hate that aspect of Paypal--it's always difficult to figure out what they will charge in advance).  If you wanted to donate but forgot, the donate button on the link is still active!

The best part of the whole thing was the comments I got on some of the donations.  One said he was unemployed and could not afford the full price, and another said he was a college student and really appreciated the break. One person gave me $25 just because he liked the pay what you will idea.  I recognized 13 of the names on the donations, which is 22%.

I think this was a fun experiment In the end, and it was worth it since over 400 people now have the book that didn't before.  But as a business model I'm not sure it's a solution.  Fortunately, through print-on-demand Createspace, I've now made more in royalties than I did on the previous two editions with a publisher, and I've had a hell of a lot more fun!  (It's still a lower hourly rate than working as a Local 1 stagehand, though.)