In the wee hours of the morning on 10/10, the first book in my new Charity Styles Caribbean Thriller Series went live on Amazon. At 9am I released the news to my newsletter subscribers. Sales so far today, point to this release perhaps eclipsing the release of the 7th book in the Jesse McDermitt Caribbean Adventure Series, this past July.
This is 100% due to the energized newsletter mailing list I've cultivated. As of this writing (2:30pm EDT), just six hours after the newsletter went out to only 1550 recipients, Merciless Charity has sold over 400 copies. By comparison, Fallen Honor sold 640 in the first two days of release. Honor went live at 9pm and sold 240 copies before midnight and 400 the next day. The result of that release was a debut ranking of #283 in the Amazon store.
I'm hoping Merciless will have a debut ranking higher than that, near #200.
What constitutes an energized mailing list? The golden rule of mass mailing is to avoid the pretense of spam. People hate receiving unwanted emails. To sign up for my newsletter, the reader is informed twice that they will receive two emails every month, with an update on what I'm writing, contests, and recommendations for books by other authors.
Yes, I get unsubscribers. I average less than one unsubscriber per bi-monthly email. I also receive hundreds of responses to every email I send and have cultivated a relationship with these core readers. I know many of them on a friendly basis and we talk about other things of interest. I spend about an hour a day just responding to emails from readers. Those few unsubscribers usually have a very low, or zero, click rate, so it's no big loss.
The relationship I've developed with my core readers is worth it. In just six hours, my open rate is nearing 50%, already double the industry average, in just six hours. My click rate is nearly 30%, EIGHT TIMES the industry average. IN JUST SIX HOURS! These are people who like my work and will buy the next release as soon as they see my email in their inbox.
If you only email your subscribers when you release a new book, two or three times a year, a lot of them have already forgotten who you are and will delete the email as spam.
ETA: Yes, mangroves have a canopy that a boat can go under. And yes, old growth mangroves have large trunks and make for a sturdy emergency anchorage.