Bookstores have always been a great resource for authors wanting to self-publish their work. But one of the trends that we’re starting to see at Ingram is one where bookstores are developing their own publishing programs. And not just bookstores, but public libraries as well. With the tools now available through a service like IngramSpark, launching a publishing program has never been easier. Since libraries and bookstores have always been a community’s window into the publishing industry, it was just a matter of time before they took on the roles of advisor and publisher.
Bookstores have always been a great resource for authors wanting to self-publish their work. But one of the trends that we’re starting to see at Ingram is one where bookstores are developing their own publishing programs. And not just bookstores, but public libraries as well. With the tools now available through a service like IngramSpark,…
I understand the need to use data to improve my book sales, but I definitely don’t enjoy spending my time with categories, keywords, spreadsheets and ad results.|
I’d rather spend my time researching obscure artefacts in dusty museums, writing more books, or just getting on with life.
But recently, I’ve been co-writing sweet romance with a (much-loved) family member, and I want the launch to go well.
So I am starting again in a new category which I don’t know very much about – except that it is extremely competitive. (Just to be clear, my co-author DOES read in this genre but is not the publisher, so I need to upskill in order to do the best I can for the brand).
This is a new author name that won’t be blogging, tweeting or even emailing much. We will be relying on the books themselves, as well as Amazon and Facebook advertising to drive traffic and sales. This new author will not have an author platform.
So I was faced with a problem.
How do I research this niche without driving myself crazy-miserable in the weeds of data?
As authors, we often don’t spend enough time crafting our bios.|
Most of us write up a quick “about me” and never give it a second thought. There’s a problem with this tactic: it’s the wrong way to drive sales on Amazon and other sites.
If fact, as I look over author bios, you might be surprised how many are lackluster. Sure, they talk about the author, but mostly about their hobbies, where they live, and how they like to pass the time (when they aren’t writing). If you feel like this describes your bio, then this article is for you! It’s time to make your Amazon bio into a killer sales driver on Amazon. Here’s how!
PS thanks Chris for the edit!
In this increasingly social world, where the effectiveness of your book marketing can seem to be a matter of metrics—hits, shares, likes, re-tweets, re-pins—shareable content is, or should be, the goal for all author bloggers.|
All these ways social media gives us to comment and pass on each others’ work depend on one thing: great content to share.
Although video has exploded as a favorite form to share across social networks, a huge amount of the content that lies behind the links that fly by on Twitter and other social outlets still lead to text-based articles.
This is especially true when searchers are looking for authoritative information that will help them with a problem they’re trying to solve.
Thinking from the point of the searcher—the person who is typing in a search bar right now, trying to formulate a way to find what they are looking for—is the best way I’ve found to create content that people will really want to share.
Like anyone blogging for a number of years, I’ve tried just about every kind of content creation I could think of, or that I saw other bloggers using successfully on their blogs.
I said in the last article on content creation that the content you fashion for your side, no matter what format it’s in, embodies your strategic goals for your site.
Content isn’t created in a vacuum; there has to be a need for it to exist. Why else write it?
For subject-matter experts, this often involves demonstrating their expertise in a way that helps others solve problems.
For newcomers, it might be sharing what you learn on your journey.
Other writers provide news or entertainment. There are so many kinds of sites, it’s hard to generalize.
But every day, some content rises above the seething mass of new articles, videos, podcasts, and blog posts. What makes some content irresistible?
The qualities that make something irresistible to readers include content that is:
One of the biggest problems plaguing both readers and publishers–from the major household name to the individual self-published author–is discoverability.|
To put it mildly, there is simply too much to read for books to automatically standout, which is a great problem for book lovers to have. The result, though, is that content owners spend vast amounts of time and money trying to promote their work to avid readers, or risk languishing in the high-millions for book sale rankings.
Amazon, ever the careful retailer with a lot of technology at its disposal, has a new feature aimed at helping readers find great content. Thanks to Amazon Charts, you can now sort your search by “most read” (as in, the books with the highest percentage of page views on Kindle and the longest amount of read content on Audible), and the books that are the “most sold,” meaning the books that have sold the most copies, although this doesn’t equate to those books necessarily being read and enjoyed.
When I do marketing posts, they tend to freak my loyal readers out. Sometimes, the posts freak me out too. What writers want from marketing blogs are simple suggestions that boil down to this:
Do x, y, and z, and you’ll get these fantastic results!
Only it doesn’t work that way. Or rather, it doesn’t work that way for everyone. I’m writing this on Sunday, after our weekly professional writers lunch. We have writers of different levels at the lunch, including writers who’ve worked for decades, and writers who are on their third or fourth year as full-time professionals.
We discussed Amazon ads, which we all jumped into at roughly the same time, using the same or similar methods. We all have had stunningly different results. Those of us who’ve been in the business longer haven’t seen the uptick that the newer authors are seeing—which makes sense, since the ads are about information and discoverability, and we’re better known.
Besides, the hot new thing in indie publishing marketing is only the hot new thing for a few weeks or a few months. Then everyone jumps on the bandwagon and the hot new thing becomes tepid. The innovators move on to other things, hoping some of those things will become hot, and everyone else waits for the xyz instruction on what to do next.