Thursday, October 15, 2020

Jingle Balls is a USA Today Bestseller!!


Remember a few weeks ago, I wrote a back jacket hack job about the JINGLE BALLS charity anthology? We made the USA Bestseller List for our debut week!!!! Super cool, right? And the coolest thing is that we didn't set out to make a list. 

JINGLE BALLS was a charity anthology first and foremost, with all proceeds going to benefit the Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation. We had talked early on about whether we wanted to try to hit a list and all twenty of us decided we didn't want that pressure. 

Then, JINGLE BALLS went live. We had a lot of preorders, which was fab for our fundraising. And then it just sort of snowballed. On Friday, the organizer of the anthology messaged all participating authors and said, based on sales numbers, she thought we had a great chance of hitting the USA Today Bestseller List, but we would only attempt it if everyone was in. No question - everyone was definitely in!

Admittedly, because this wasn't something we'd pre-planned for, the weekend was a bit chaotic. There was a lot of last-minute graphics making, wrangling Facebook ads and messages back and forth about opportunities for additional exposure. A few of the members of the anthology had hit the USA Today list in the past so they guided us in how much promotion was needed.

Spoiler alert: it was a lot!

We participated in Facebook parties, posted in author groups, and made sure JINGLE BALLS was in front of as many eyes as possible. Total credit goes to the three organizers of the anthology who kept everyone updated and created graphics on the fly for cohesive branding. Then Monday came and after we all breathed a collective tired sigh, we waited.

The USA Today list is published in the print version of the paper on Thursday, but available online on Wednesday. Being in the UK, I started checking way too early but the news that we made the list didn't come until about 6pm my time. I was in the middle of cooking dinner and it's amazing that the pan didn't go flying!

All of us hopped onto Zoom to share a virtual celebratory drink - and to make plans for our next anthology next year! 

Key elements to our success:
  • Strong leadership and organization
  • Facebook - love it or hate it, we had a ton of exposure on Facebook through both advertising and reader groups
  • Specific advertising targeted to readers on different vendors vs. universal links
  • A strong supportive team of authors - definitely no divas!
JINGLE BALLS is available through the end of October and then it's gone forever if you haven't snagged your copy yet.

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