Bookbub isn’t the only game in town, but it’s close. It’s what’s working right now. So my thought this morning was, should I write content tailored to getting picked by Bookbub just so I can win the game?

Here are the things I’d consider if I did this:

  • Structure – Bookbub prefers full length novels, which it defines as 150 pages or more. It also prefers standalones to series, even to first-in-series.
  • Genre – some genres are easier to get selected in than others. For example, historical fiction gets few submissions on the freebie side (or so I’ve read). So if you could find a way to tie your story to both the historical fiction genre and the type of books you write (say you write fantasy and you come up with a cool historical fantasy idea), you might be able to easily score Bookbub ads plus promote your other similar stuff through cross sales.
  • Distribution – Bookbub prefers limited-time free deals on Amazon above any other combination of special pricing you can put together. Unfortunately, this basically means KDP Select, so you can control your pricing and timing on Amazon.

On your end, you also want to do some optimizations to protect yourself and your business.

  • Standalones in a series – while standalones are Bookbub’s preference, they probably aren’t yours. I would recommend standalones within a series so you can still get immediate sales spillover on other books. A great example is J.B. Salsbury’s The Fighting Series if you aren’t sure what it’s about.
  • Books that you can write off as a marketing expense – since you’ll be putting them on sale often and all. Some authors make their money back on their promo books, but the major goals are visibility and discoverability, rather than sales.
  • Books that are still “you” – it doesn’t make sense to chase a Bookbub ad unless you can convert those readers to readers of your paid titles. So if you’re in romance, do a pseudo-historical romance that’s still in your style, similar enough to your contemporary that people might read through.
  • Books that you’ll love after Bookbub goes away – I personally see Bookbub sites going the way of Groupon in a few years, but *shrugs* we will see. Anyway, let’s assume Bookbub might at least fall off it’s pedestal someday the same way Pixel of Ink, eReader Today, and that other one—I can’t even remember it’s name—the original one did. The books still need to fit your catalog and long-term goals. Your books are forever even if Bookbub might not be!

Would you write books tailored to Bookbub? Leave your thought in the comments.

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