Recently, I used KDP Select’s new Kindle Countdown Deal for one of my books: The Orin Chronicles Volume 7. While I was optimistic about the program, I found the results to be less than satisfactory. Previously I have used KDP Select’s free promotions and those would always elicit some type of a response. Even with no outside promotion, your first free promo deal is sure to bring in ~100 new downloads of your book at a minimum. That minimum is something I find to be important because, as someone with a rather small platform and ability to spread the word about my books, it matters very much knowing I can get at least this much out of the program.
Now, for Kindle Countdown deals, there is no minimum response. I found 0 people purchased my book as it moved from 99 cents back to its original price. What this makes clear is that a lot more effort needs to be invested in a Kindle Countdown deal than a free promotion, likely because sale prices aren’t as attractive as getting something for free. So, if you aren’t prepared to support your Kindle Countdown deal, I highly recommend against using the program. I think it’s likely I’ll use this program in the future, but not until I’ve reached a wider audience and have a greater ability to self-promote my own books.