Kindle publishing tips you may have heard – What works, what doesn’t
This is an excerpt from my book on Kindle Publishing soon to be released on Amazon. Here are some common misunderstandings when marking an ebook on the kindle.
- Update your email signature – What? Are you a network marketer now? Do you send out 100 mails a day in order for this kindle marketing to be effective? What this advice is missing is that people don’t buy what they don’t want and if I put this book as an email signature, I imagine only my stepfather would buy it out of curiosity and probably no one else. You can hand out a million flyers for your new punk band but if you do it at a Mormon convention you are wasting your time. Rather than link to your book to your email signature, link your website where you might have more offerings if they cared to look.
- Post a notice to your website or blog – Actually, your blog should be entirely for marketing and publishing your book, here is an excellent example of that http://bookmarketingmaven.typepad.com/book_marketing_maven/optimizing_amazon/ But this we don’t need to build such a extensive site, all we need is something simple to start with to get Google’s attention.
- Contact your friends, family, co-workers, and fans – Once again, do they really want it? But if you have fans, this is a no brainer. What I like to do is let my friends/family on FB know that I have a new book and if they would like to support me they can buy it for .99 cents. I also explain a little bit about how every purchase shows Amazon that I deserve a number one position for my keywords. Usually I get quite a few people willing to spend a buck and click that little like button at the top of your Amazon page. Friendly non-pushy marketing goes much further.
- Reach readers with twitter – Unless you have HADD or would like to inspire it, I would stay away from twitter for marketing. It is completely flooded with awful marketers and jaded customers. Plus, like I mentioned above it needs to be maintained and your time is much better spent elsewhere. Once again twitter isn’t going to help with publishing and marketing on the kindle.
- Publish more than one book to create a multiplier effect – Yes, this is true. I am always surprised by how many times people have bought all of my books. Once you have a fan that likes your material they will eat it all up. Now, you just need to retain that fan either through a newsletter and/or a facebook fan page.
- Advertise your other kindle books in each book you publish - Yes, of course you should do this. Possibly give them the address of another site like smashwords.com that carries your books and offer them a discount/coupon. Not a bad way to upsell them to the next book.
- Encourage your Fans to Purchase and Review Your Book – I will cover this in a bit more detail later.
- Participate in Online Forums – Very little purchase return for the effort, however if this sounds interesting to you a lot of forums have a ton of clout with Google and if they let you leave a link to your book and website, can really increase your standings in Google. This is far more valuable than finding new customers on a forum, most marketing like this is seen as spam and more often than not deleted.
- Experiment with Coupons – Unfortunately Amazon doesn’t let you do this, BUT the Amazon engine will do it for you. They really want you to sell as many books as possible so they will adjust the price of your book periodically to maximize your sales, and they honestly know how to sell our books better than we do.
- Write Guest Columns for Blogs – A good way to get quality backlinks (explained later) but a heck of a lot of work for someone else’s benefit. Better to have this material on your own blog, to promote you own site via Google, a very important step in publishing to the kindle.
- Write a blog – An absolute must, and is not as hard as you might think, but it needs to be done a certain way. If you follow my advice, yes this can be a huge benefit to your sales
- Join the conversation on blogs – Weak return for the effort and 99.9% percent of blogs do not allow what is called a “follow” tag. What this means is that Google will ignore your comment and link on a blog.
- Leverage YouTube Videos to Reach Readers – Youtube is just as flooded as Google and runs on the same search engine. Unfortunately, you simply are not going to get noticed as easily as you would with a blog. However, if you are willing to use less scrupulous techniques, you can put that video into a high ranking.
- Encourage your fans to become affiliate marketers of your books – Amazon offers an absolutely pitiful affiliate percentage (The average is about 6%) and while it won’t hurt to offer this, it would take a very powerful website with tons of views to make much of an impact. Once again relatively futile.
- Use Google adwords to send traffic – Ouch! Adwords costs from .25 cents to $2 bucks a click, for buyers that don’t buy nearly as often as an organic Google result. What this means is that if you are number one when someone types in “Kindle Publishing” it pays off far better than if they click on your Google ad. I find that adwords is really only effective for very high-ticket items, and your $4.99 ebook is not that item.