Book Marketing Blogs

by Penny Sansevieri
Four Tips on What NOT to Say (or Pitch or Do) to Get Your Book Reviewed: Tip #34 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
December 10, 2014by: Penny Sansevieri
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Welcome to Tip #34 of our 52 Ways to Sell More Books! I hope you’re enjoying these tips and they are helping you sell more books.  Want the complete book of tips? Get it here!

Four Tips on What NOT to Say (or Pitch or Do) to Get Your Book Reviewed

Tip 34If you want guarantees, you won’t find them in book reviews. Death and taxes, yes – but the book review process is a sea of unknowns, from how many review requests you’ll get to who’ll actually post a review to whether they’ll even like your book at all.

When you’ve got people reviewing books mostly as a labor of love, the reality is, that review you expected this month may be delayed by a couple of months. Or, they may not love your book and be pretty blunt about it. Life happens. It’s fine to check back with a reviewer if you haven’t heard anything and had been given a review timeframe. It’s fine to correct a factual error in a review, but it’s not appropriate to start a fight with someone who has fairly reviewed your book and just decided it didn’t work for them.

What else should you keep in mind during the review process?

Be a Pro. It probably seems unnecessary to state that being professional at all times is important, but there have been so many author-initiated blog brouhahas online that we can’t take anything for granted. Ask nicely when requesting a review; be gracious if the answer is no. It’s not personal. If you’ve done your homework you may know going in that a particular blogger – who you’ve identified as a key blogger for your book – is overwhelmed with a review backlog. Perhaps the blogger is up for a guest post, and if you see the blog often includes them, be prepared to pitch some ideas. Maybe it’s a good site for contests – again, be ready to suggest a contest and terms. Pay attention to what the blogger does on his or her blog – it’s most definitely not all reviews, all the time – and see if there is anything you can contribute to either complement a review or in place of a review.

Be appreciative. I can count on both hands, with fingers left over, the number of authors we’ve worked with who have bothered to thank reviewers. Do it. The authors who do take the time to email the blogger to say thanks are usually rewarded by developing relationships with the bloggers they thank. If that blogger enjoyed the author’s book they usually ask if they can review the author’s next book, and so on. What was originally a one-time situation now becomes an ongoing relationship in which the reviewer follows the author’s career and the author has additional opportunities for book reviews, interviews and more – and not only with that blogger; chances are the blogger’s peers who like the same kind of books are going to take notice.

Never burn bridges. Even if a review you receive is unfair, or not the quality you expected, there is only so much you can do. If there is a factual error, by all means alert the blogger immediately with the correction. Otherwise, if you just don’t like the review, let it go. Just remember that whatever the review says, you never know how readers will react and I’ve seen many cases in which the lukewarm review caused others to say they wanted to read the book for themselves. You’re getting free publicity and you have to realize that everyone may take away a different perspective from one review. And you should still thank them, nicely, for taking the time to review your book.

Take the long view. Also understand that the Internet has brought together hundreds of book lovers (aka book bloggers) as never before, and not only do they share their love of books, they also discuss problems, issues and more. Angry authors have gotten plenty of bad coverage this way, with the result being that a multitude of reviewers have sworn they will never review any work by that author. Ever. There’s an adage about never getting into a fight with someone who buys ink by the barrel – a reference to newspapers and magazines – but the reality now is you don’t want to get into a fight with someone who has a blog with hundreds (or more) of followers, plus Twitter and Facebook accounts and the ability to broadcast bad news far and wide. Don’t let that be you!

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AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – December 8, 2014
December 8, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to Author Marketing Experts’ Blog Carnival. This week features posts on social media, and book marketing, that we hope you’ll enjoy. Thank you to all of the contributors!

Book Marketing

Sarah Bolme submitted Visibility posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “Without contacts or glasses, my visibility is really poor. I can’t read things on my computer screen from a normal distance without these visual aids. Without visual aids, what I see on my computer screen is still visible, just fuzzy and unreadable. Many books suffer from a fate far worse than poor visibility. Many are invisible.”

examining laptop with magnifying glass

Hazel Longuet submitted Writing Tips: This Week’s Most Popular Writing Articles posted at A Novel Experience, saying, “I’m serving up this week’s portion of collective genius – articles on writing, self-publishing and marketing books, as decided by the actions of my social media followers. They’re a discerning bunch and have selected some great articles this week. So kick-back and jump into the tasty world of writing…”

Social Media

Erica Verrillo submitted 15 Reading and Writing Communities That Can Boost Your Platform posted at Publishing… And Other Forms of Insanity, saying, “Reading and writing communities can be a great way to get feedback on your writing. They also host competitions for the most popular stories, which are then publicized. On some of the larger sites, notably Wattpad and authonomy, there are tie-ins with media, publishing houses, and, in the case of WEbook, a service that helps writers pitch directly to agents.”

That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/



Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of December 1, 2014
December 5, 2014by: Paula
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Gain some great advice and ideas from these book marketing tweets to guide you, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include 15 reading and writing communities to find readers, 6 ways to jump on holiday sales, a writer’s guide to mental health, and more. Happy marketing!

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* 6 Ways to Jump on Holiday Sales

You’ve still got a chance to get some sales for the holidays:

http://writersinthestormblog.com/2014/11/6-ways-to-jump-on-holiday-book-sales/

holding out a gift

* What Authors Should Know About Amazon Book Categories

Did you know Amazon has a separate setup for print books and ebooks? You can select two categories per book, and here’s how you should choose:

http://marketingtipsforauthors.com/2014/10/authors-know-amazon-book-categories.html

* Where the Readers Are: 15 Reading and Writing Communities that Can Boost Your Platform

You may not have heard of some of these sites – like Scriggler, WEBook, Critters – but they could be great places to find readers:

http://publishedtodeath.blogspot.com/2014/12/where-readers-are-15-reading-and.html

* Frazzled, Overwhelmed, Swamped? A Writer’s Guide to Mental Health

It’s easy to get caught in the trap of trying to do everything. Here’s how you can talk yourself down:

http://annerallen.blogspot.com/2014/11/frazzled-overwhelmed-swamped-writers.html

* How to Optimize Your Pins for the Pinterest Smart Feed

If you want additional exposure on Pinterest, learn how to use the smart feed:

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/pinterest-smart-feed%E2%80%8B-optimize-pins/

* How to Sell More Books to the Right Target Audience

Ask yourself these key questions so your book will be noticed by the right people:

http://thefutureofink.com/target-audience/

* 10 Ways Authors Can Make Crowdfunding Work

You can use crowdfunding to raise money for your publishing project, and also collect pre-orders and market your book pre-publication. Here’s how:

http://marketingtipsforauthors.com/10-ways-make-crowdfunding-work

* Tips for Making Sure Editors Don’t Skip Over Your Email Pitch

Research reveals that email is the best way to pitch editors; and your subject line is what really matters:

http://www.mediabistro.com/prnewser/tips-for-making-sure-editors-dont-skip-over-your-email-pitch_b102912



12 Ways to Create a Mailing List That Will Sell Books: Tip #33 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
December 3, 2014by: Penny Sansevieri
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Welcome to Tip #33 of our 52 Ways to Sell More Books! I hope you’re enjoying these tips and they are helping you sell more books.  So, ready? Here we go!

12 Ways to Create a Mailing List that Will Sell Books

We’ve all heard this: capture email addresses on your website so you can market to them again. So we do, we capture email addresses and then we wonder what to do with them. What if you don’t really have news? Do you mail the list anyway? How can I monetize my list, and how much is too much?

We’ve had The Book Marketing Expert Newsletter for over eight years now and the newsletter, bursting in content, is one of the best promotional tools my company has. We’ve never done a single piece of advertisement for my firm; all of it has come from word of mouth, online, and our newsletter.

The key to a good newsletter list is simple really and the biggest piece of this is you’ve got to have something useful to say. While your friends and family might enjoy hearing about your latest book signing, people who happened onto your site and subscribed to your ezine might become bored with this information and unsubscribe. If you have a list or are considering starting one, consider these tips to get you going and help you maximize your newsletter.

Tip 331. Timing: How often you send the newsletter will really depend on your crowd, but I don’t recommend anything less than once a month. I know some people who send a quarterly newsletter and that’s fine if you don’t really have much to say, but if you’re looking for content so you can send the newsletter more frequently, then read on; I have some ideas and ways of maximizing the use of content for your newsletter.

2. Distribution: How will you send your newsletter? If your plan is to email it, forget it unless you have less than 100 subscribers. Anything over that and you should consider using a service like Aweber or Constant Contact. These places will handle your subscribes and unsubscribes for you. If you start mailing to a list larger than 50 from your email service, you run the risk of getting shut down for spam.

3. Easy Opt In: Make it easy for people to sign up. Make sure there’s a sign-up on your website, preferably the home page and then a mention of it again on your most popular page which, for most of us, is our blog. The opt-in will take new subscribers to your welcome page (which we’ll talk about in a minute) and handle sending your new readers right into the mailing list.

4. Ethical Bribe: So what will you give readers to get their email? It might not be enough just to tout that you have this fabulous newsletter; in fact, often it isn’t. Have something that they’ll want, a key item: e-book, tip sheet, whatever will entice readers to sign up for your newsletter. Here’s a hint: give them something they’ll have to keep referring to again and again so that your name and book stays in front of them.

5. Free: There are some folks in the industry who try to charge for their newsletters. Listen, I get it. A newsletter is a lot of work, but if done properly, it is a key promotional tool and therefore, should be free. Magazines can charge for subscriptions, you can’t. Make it free. Don’t even put a value on it. I know folks who do this, too. I think the value of the newsletter should be evident in its content, not in the price you chose to put on it.

6. Welcome pages: After someone signs up for your newsletter, what will they see? A simple thank you page on your website is a waste of an opportunity. Make sure there is a welcome page that shares their freebie (the ethical bribe) and tells them about one or two of your products. It’s also a great idea to offer a special on this welcome page as a “thank you” for signing up to your mailing list.

7. Check your facts: The quickest way to lose subscribers is to publish a newsletter full of factual mistakes. Do your fact and link checking prior to it going out. Seriously. It’s important not just to the credibility of your newsletter, but to you as well. I mean who wants to buy something from someone who can’t even be bothered to check their facts? Also, please get your newsletter edited. I’ve seen some newsletters with a disclaimer that they are unedited. If you aren’t an editor and can’t afford one, see if you can get it done for free and then blurb the person in your newsletter as a way to reciprocate. Remember, everything is your resume. Would you send a CV to a potential employer that was full of typos? I didn’t think so.

8. Promote: This is key because once you decide to do a newsletter you’ll want to promote it. You can do so by adding it to your signature line in email (“sign up for my newsletter and get a free …”), you should also never go to a book event without a sign-up sheet, and add your newsletter info to the byline of any article you write that gets syndicated online.

9. Collaborate: If you’re strapped for content and time, why not open up your newsletter to other collaborators? Our newsletter, The Book Marketing Expert, is a collaboration of a lot of voices. We have publishing tips, website tips, social media tips, and the main article. It’s a great way to let others have a voice in your newsletter, which helps to promote them – and the best part of this is that if you have a collaborative newsletter you can all promote it to the different people you touch in your travels. This will help increase your sign-ups exponentially because you’re hitting that many more people. Your collaborators should be in the industry, but specializing in different areas. This will give your newsletter the flavor and interest it needs. Don’t worry about sharing your newsletter space with others, we’ve done it this way for years, and it’s a great way to build lots of useful content.

10. Be generous: Give lots of good information. By giving away good information people will want to read it, and when they read it you will build a readership and loyal following, not just for your newsletter but for your books and products as well.

11. Balance:  The key to a good newsletter that will not only get read, but passed along, is balance. By this I mean balance giving with selling. My general rule of thumb is 95% helpful information and 5% selling; while that number may seem low, trust me, this is a great balance. Yes, you can offer specials and offers to your readers, but that’s the 5%.

12. Content creation: While it may seem daunting to have to write content for a newsletter every month or every two weeks, you can use and reuse this content because not everyone will find you in the same place. What I mean by this is that some folks will find you on your blog, others might find you on Twitter and still others will find you by searching online and happening on an article you’ve syndicated. Once I create content for The Book Marketing Expert Newsletter, that content is then redistributed and reused in places like our blog, my Twitter account (@bookgal) our Facebook Fan Page (http://www.facebook.com/pages/Author-Marketing-Experts-Inc-AME/43882181670?ref=ts) or on my page at The Huffington Post (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/penny-c-sansevieri). Use and reuse your content, though not too much. I generally will use my articles in one or two other places and that’s it, but the point is that they can be used again.

The idea behind a good newsletter is one that not only brings your readers in, but keeps them interested. It’s the marketing funnel we marketing people love to talk about so much, once you get someone to sign up, stay on their radar screen with helpful content. Once you do, you’ll find not only loyal readers, but loyal buyers as well.

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AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – December 1, 2014
December 1, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to Author Marketing Experts’ Blog Carnival. This week features posts on self-publishing, and book marketing. Thank you to all of the contributors!

Book Marketing

Hazel Longuet submitted Book Promotion: Networking for Introverts posted at A Novel Experience, saying, “These days authors must self-market their books for any chance of success and that involves a huge amount of networking – for those introverts amongst us that is painful but it needn’t be. With these simple steps even the most introverted can participate in the marketing field comfortably.”

book typewriter key

Erica Verrillo submitted How to Build Your Own Author Platform – From Scratch posted at Publishing… And Other Forms of Insanity, saying, “You must start building your platform well in advance of contacting an agent or publishing your book. Achieving a following takes several years, But even if your name is not a household word by the time you publish, you can set the stage for future fame.”

Self-Publishing

Sarah Bolme submitted Indecision: A Success Killer posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “You can find articles on mistakes authors and publishers should not make all over the Internet. Here is one that is often not talked about.”

That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/



Making the Sale: How to Sell More on Your Website: Tip #32 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
November 25, 2014by: Penny Sansevieri
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If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my years of marketing, it’s that no matter how much authors love what Amazon can do for them, they’d rather sell books on their own site than share a cut with the giant online e-tailer. Doing this, however, can be tricky.

It seems that every time we turn around, some big chain is admitting that they were hacked. If you were one of the millions who shopped there, your information could be in the hands of God-knows-who. With so much attention on shopper security, it’s leaving a lot of shoppers even more hesitant to shop online.

Last year, Baymard Institute released a staggering statistic: 67.89% of shoppers abandon their carts before completing the purchase. That translates to around $1.79 trillion dollars in product or services purchased online. Why does this happen? Well, there are a lot of theories on this. According to Shopify and the image shown below, this is a list of the top reasons that people abandon their purchase with you:

post1

Though I don’t disagree with this per se, I would take this a step further, because not only are security concerns at an all-time high, there are a variety of additional reasons you may be losing people. Also, how to get shoppers and keep them varies by industry so let’s look at the ones that will matter to authors and publishers:

Tip 321)   Overall Look of Site: There’s a high trust factor with a site that looks professional. I don’t want to buy from a site that looks sketchy. Would you? If you want to sell from your site, you’ll need to have one that’s professionally designed. I would say that this goes even before we start the shopping cart discussion because you won’t get anyone to even entertain buying off of your site if it doesn’t look like a place they’d want to shop.

2)   Checkout Process: I see a lot of authors (and even business owners) who make the shopping process difficult. I’m not sure why they do this or why their web designers recommend this. Every click you make someone do can cost you 5% of your traffic, meaning that if you require several clicks just to get an item into their shopping cart, you’ve now lost 20% of your traffic. Make the buying process easy. Put “Shop” or “Store” or (if you have one product) “Buy Now” on the home page so folks immediately know where to click. Visitors won’t take the time to figure it out. If they can’t find it on your site, they’ll go elsewhere and in the age of Amazon they’re likely to just default back there.

3)   Site security: Showing shoppers that their purchase is secure is also very important. Buyers want to know you’re taking care of their personal details so showing security messages – even things like “Secure checkout” make all the difference. In fact, according to a recent Entrepreneur Magazine article, adding security messages can increase a buy by 16%.

4)   Sign in/Sign up: I don’t know about you, but the minute someone wants me to create an account before buying an item, I’m usually gone. If you want folks to sign up on your site, have them do it after they’ve made a purchase. Studies show that conversion rates can increase by 45% if you allow buyers to shop as “guests” throughout their visit.

 post2

5)   Unexpected Costs:  We all know that Amazon has pretty much ruined us for shipping costs. Thanks to things like Amazon Prime, and other free shipping opportunities, most of us abhor these added costs. If you feel charging for shipping is something you have to do, consider offering free shipping as an incentive instead of a guarantee. Staples, for instance, offers free shipping when you buy a certain dollar amount. Other e-tailers have free shipping days, or, if you want to further incentivize site sign-up, you could offer free shipping to members only which would encourage them to join your site so you could remarket to them later.

post3

 

6)   Cart abandonment: Window shopping happens, even online. SeeWhy did a study last year and found that 99% of people won’t buy on their first visit to your website. This is why having an email newsletter, or some other benefit-driven giveaway, is not only important, but mandatory if you want to make the sale. Email newsletters allow you to remarket to your visitor. No, they may not buy on the first try, but a helpful, content-rich newsletter will remind them who you are and encourage a buy for later. It is a lot of work, yes, but so is building a store on your site that no one buys from. Alternatively, you could also consider pop-ups or sidebar messages that show up during the purchase process, offering customers 5% off.

7)   eCommerce options: I know many folks who have extensive eCommerce options which are great but also costly. Being able to take credit cards, especially if you are small, is an added cost you may not want to incur but, you may not need to. When we switched from our extensive pay system to just offering PayPal, we found that our shopper conversion almost doubled. Also, PayPal no longer requires users to register with their system so you can give your shoppers the peace of mind of using a secure system, without having to register.

 post4

8)   Love the Love: People like what other people like, which is why for most (if not all) retailers, you’ll see reviews and customer feedback right on the page. Most authors don’t have the bandwidth, time, or money to create a sales system that’s quite that elaborate, so adding reviews to the sales pages is very helpful. Adding reviews with a picture adds even more credibility to the page. Remember that your customer can, with one click, meander over to Amazon and buy the book there so give them a reason to stay.

9)   Pricing: If you’re going to keep shoppers on your site, you’d better up the ante on your pricing. We already know you need to ship for free (at least on certain days or with minimum orders) now let’s consider your “offer.” Maybe you just wanted to offer the book. Sure, that’s fine, albeit a tad boring. Sorry, but they can get the book on Amazon, too. If you really want to lure folks to your site and make the sale, you’ll need to give them a slam-dunk deal they can’t resist. As an example, when we changed the offer on our store page from 3 books for $20 to four, sales doubled. Keep in mind that there is only one print book that’s mailed, the rest are digital and delivered as soon as payment is taken so there’s nothing else for me to do. Digital product is easy to add on because there are no hard costs with it, beyond the initial creation of the product. So what else can you add onto your book to help entice shoppers? What about offering the eBook with the print book so they can have one for their Kindle and a print book in hand (something a lot of readers still enjoy)? Maybe you could pair your book with someone else’s e-product. When you take some time to brainstorm, the possibilities are endless.

In the end, what you really need to do is think of your website as a brick and mortar store. If you created any of these roadblocks at Macy’s, or a Barnes & Noble, you’d really hurt your sales process. Authors often assume that a website store is different. It’s not. We want easy, we want fast, and we want the best price. If you can bring all of these elements into your website store, you’ll increase sales considerably.

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Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of November 17, 2014
November 21, 2014by: Paula
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There’s a wealth of information from these book marketing tweets to guide you, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include asking for book blurbs, creating Facebook holiday contests, implementing a social media strategy, and more. Happy marketing!

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* The Importance of an Author Marketing Plan

Developing a marketing plan to guide you will ensure that your marketing will have focus and be quantifiable:

http://marketingtipsforauthors.com/2014/11/importance-author-marketing-plan.html

* 4 Surprising Twitter Features Every Marketer Should Use

There are some really great features on Twitter you may not have discovered, such as embeddable timelines and advanced search. Learn how they can help you:

http://sproutsocial.com/insights/4-twitter-features-need-using/

* 5 Facebook Holiday Contest Ideas to Boost Your Sales

Yes, time is short, but these ideas are really easy to implement:

http://www.jeffbullas.com/2014/11/13/5-facebook-holiday-contest-ideas-to-boost-your-sales/

marketing plan envelope

* 7 Ways to Make Pimping Your Book for a Blurb Less Weird

Authors cringe at the idea of asking for blurbs, yet the endorsements can be valuable. Take some of the stress out of the process:

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/holly-robinson/7-ways-to-make-pimping-your-book-for-a-blurb-less-weird_b_6146802.html

* 8 Essential Elements of a Social Media Marketing Strategy

If you aren’t sure how to set goals or determine strategy, here’s a guide that will help:

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/essential-elements-social-media-marketing-strategy/

* How to Get Your Blog Post Shared 1000 Times

Learn how you can make your blog posts go viral with this infographic:

http://denisewakeman.com/business-blogging-2/how-to-get-your-blog-post-shared-infographic/

* 10 Reasons Why Self-Published Books Don’t Sell – and What You Can Do to Ensure Yours DOES

If your book isn’t selling the way you hoped, use this checklist to see what you can do to turn things around:

http://thefutureofink.com/self-published-books-dont-sell/

* Getting Book Reviews (so sales can follow)

A look at strategies that can help you get more book reviews:

http://elizabethspanncraig.com/2555/getting-reviews/

 



Five Facts About Kindle Unlimited and How to Make This Program Work for You
November 20, 2014by: Penny Sansevieri
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We’ve heard a lot about Amazon’s big new subscription service, which is, essentially, a way to read books (limited to ones enrolled in this program) for one monthly fee. You’re limited to ten books at a time, so if you want more you’ll have to return a book or two and then the system will continue to let you add to your library.

POSTED 5 KU Facts - blog_post 11172014 People have asked me about results in this program and so far I have to say that when it comes to non-fiction, I’m not terribly impressed. At least my non-fiction books aren’t doing great. That, however, makes a lot of sense. Why? Because Kindle Unlimited (being a subscription service) speaks much more to the fiction reader, in particular the genre fiction reader, than it does to anyone else. Now this doesn’t mean that your book won’t do well there if you’ve written non-fiction, but the program really bodes well for the fiction crowd.

With that in mind. I started to do some experimenting with the system and here is what I found.

Fact #1: Kindle Unlimited (KU) really appeals to the avid reader. This means that if your book is genre fiction, you’ll do really well here. I’ve found that the hyper-fast readers often fall into this category and can really save money with this subscription service. Consequently, some of the highest sales are coming from these readers.

Fact #2: In order to be a part of the Kindle Unlimited community, you have to have your book enrolled in the KDP select program. That said, I wouldn’t recommend having all of your books in there all at once. In fact, I recommend rotating them in and out of KPD select. If you have a series, this becomes even more crucial because with KU, if all of your books in that particular series are in the Select program, they will all be migrated to the subscription shelves. Granted, this can work in your favor, but I would suggest keeping just the first in the series in KDP Select with a link, letter or some blurb in the back of the book that will take readers to the next book in the series, and then the next, and so on. Depending on how many books you have in a series, you could conceivably rotate two or three in and out of the program. You’ll want to experiment with this because not all genres (even in genre fiction) respond the same.

Fact #3: Shorter books rock. I’ve said before that short is the new long, but that applies even more with your avid reader group. They love the quick read, they read a lot, and shorter book-length books tend to do much better on Kindle Unlimited. Also, one of the terms of KU is that you don’t get paid until the reader reads 10% of your book. For this reason alone it makes a ton of sense to do shorter fiction books. Keep in mind that there are people out there trying to trick the system by stuffing books with needless content. Amazon is onto this and their systems measure actual content, not dozens of pages just stuffed in there to fill the book and get to the 10% mark. Content triggers in the Amazon system will queue up your file to start the count at chapter one. Also, these kinds of tactics can get your book(s) yanked from the Amazon system. POSTED 5 KU Facts - blog_pin 11172014

Fact #4: This was a bit of a surprise to me, but when I tested this across a few titles, I found this to be absolutely true: Themes matter. What are themes? Well they are the new keywords Amazon uses to define and categorize your book. I did a video on this here you can see: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/new-keywords-amazon/. I found that though some people are using these, not everyone is, and this surprises me. I know it’s hard to give up one or two of the keywords that you upload to the Amazon system, but trust me, it matters. In a test we did recently, I removed all of the theme keywords from the back of a fiction book. The book plummeted down the KU list, going from 84 sales a week to 1. When I added back the theme words into the keyword area, the book bounced back up again and has returned to its almost normal status.  I don’t know why themes matter more for the KU books, but I’m going to continue to look into this and will update this post as soon as I find more answers.

Fact #5: Additional content: We have an author who just finished her book and the editor pulled several sections from the book (as editors often do). I’ve encouraged her to create a “Director’s Cut” of the book with the additional pieces either in a separate edition, or as separate books on Amazon. Having this additional content to drive a reader’s interest to your book can be really helpful. Not just for the KU program, but across the board. If a reader likes your writing, they will likely read everything you’ve written. Bonus content, Director’s cut content, or whatever you want to call it can really help to pull in new readers.

So that’s what I’ve discovered about the Kindle Unlimited program thus far, I’ll keep updating this post or putting up more information as I find out new stuff. We’re always testing and looking for reader input so feel free to share your ideas and findings!

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Fifty Things Under $50 Bucks To Promote Your Book: Tip #31 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
November 18, 2014by: Penny Sansevieri
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Welcome to Tip #31 of our 52 Ways to Market Your Book! I hope you’re enjoying these tips and they are helping you sell more books.  Want the complete book of tips? Get it here!

Tip 31Fifty Things Under $50 Bucks To Promote Your Book

These days it seems like everyone’s book marketing budget is a little tighter. If you’re feeling the pinch, or if you’re just looking for some great free stuff to do on your own, here are some tips that could help keep you on track.

  1. Buy your domain name as soon as you have a title for your book. You can get domain names for as little as $8.95. Tip: When buying a domain always try to get a .com and stay away from hyphens, i.e. penny-sansevieri.com – surfers rarely remember to insert hyphens.
  2. Head on over to Blogger.com or WordPress.com and start your very own blog (you can add it to your Web site later).
  3. Set up an event at your neighborhood bookstore. Do an event and not a signing, book signings are boring!
  4. Write a few articles on your topic and submit them onto the Internet for syndication. You can submit them to sites like ezinearticles.com and articlecity.com.
  5. Check out your competition online and see if you can do some networking.
  6. Do some radio research and pitch yourself to at least five new stations this week.
  7. Ready to get some business cards? Head on over to Vistaprint.com. The cards are free if you let them put their logo on the back, if you don’t they’re still really inexpensive.
  8. Put together your marketing plan. Seriously, do this. If you don’t know where you’re going, any destination will do.
  9. Plan a contest or giveaway. Contests are a great way to promote your book.
  10. Google some topic-related online groups to see if you can network with them.
  11. Send thank you notes to people who have been helpful to you.
  12. Send your book out to at least ten book reviewers this week.
  13. Do a quick Internet search for local writers’ conferences or book festivals you can attend.
  14. Create an email signature for every email you send; email signatures are a great way to promote your book and message.
  15. Put the contents of your Web site: book description, bio, Q&A, and interviews on CD to have on hand when the media comes calling!
  16. Submit your Web site to the top five directories: Google, MSN, Alexa, Yahoo, and DMOZ.
  17. Write a great press release and submit it to free online press release sites like: PR4 – http://www.prlog.org/http://www.1888pressrelease.com/, http://i-newswire.com/http://www.prfocus.com/
  18. Write your bio and have someone who can be objective critique it; you’ll need it when you start pitching yourself to the media.
  19. Schedule your first book event!
  20. Start your own email newsletter; it’s a great way to keep readers, friends and family updated and informed on your success.
  21. Start a Twitter account and begin tweeting. If you don’t think Twitter is significant, think again; it’s been a major part of our marketing strategy for several years now (before anyone even knew what Twitter was).
  22. Develop a set of questions or discussion topics that book clubs can use for your book, and post them on your Web site for handy downloads.
  23. Add your book info or URL to your answering machine message.
  24. Start a Facebook Fan page. Fan Pages are much better than groups because they’re searchable in Google.
  25. See if you can get your friends to host a “book party” in their home. You come in and discuss your book and voila, a captive audience!
  26. Find some catalogs you think your book would be perfect for and then submit your packet to them for consideration. If you’re unsure of what catalogs might work for you, head on over to www.catalogs.com and peruse their list.
  27. Go around to your local retailers and see if they’ll carry your book; even if it’s on consignment, it might be worth it!
  28. Add your book to Google Book Search.
  29. Research some authors with similar subjects and then offer to exchange links with them.
  30. Start a LinkedIn page and make sure it’s linked to your other social media pages where possible.
  31. Make sure your blog is connected to Amazon via their Amazon Author Central program (yes, it’s free).
  32. Ask friends and family to email five people they know and tell them about your book.
  33. Leave your business card, bookmark, or book flyer wherever you go.
  34. Subscribe to Google Alerts and make sure that you are getting alerts under your name as well as your book title(s), brand, and keywords.
  35. Pitch yourself to your local television stations.
  36. Pitch yourself to your local print media.
  37. Work on the Q&A for your press kit. You’ll need it when you start booking media interviews!
  38. Pitch Oprah. Go ahead, you know you want to.
  39. Is the topic of your book in the news? Check your local paper, and write a letter to the editor to share your expertise (and promote your book!).
  40. Stop by your local library and see if you can set up an event. They love local authors.
  41. Do you want to get your book into your local library system? Try dropping off a copy to your main library; if they stock it chances are the other branches will too.
  42. Go to Chase’s Calendar of Events (www.Chases.com.) and find out how to create your own holiday!
  43. Going on vacation? Use your away-from-home time to schedule a book event or two.
  44. If your book is appropriate, go to local schools to see if you can do a reading.
  45. Got a book that could be sold in bulk? Start with your local companies first and see if they’re interested in buying some promotional copies to give away at company events.
  46. Don’t forget to add reviews to your Web site. Remember that what someone else has to say is one thousand times more effective than anything you could say!
  47. Trying to meet the press? Search the Net for Press Clubs in your area, they meet once a month and are a great place to meet the media.
  48. Want a celebrity endorsement? Find celebs in your market with an interest in your topic and then go for it. Remember all they can say is no. Check out the Actors Guild for a list of celeb representatives.
  49. Ready to get some magazine exposure? Why not pitch some regional and national magazines with your topic or submit a freelance article for reprint consideration?
  50. Work on your next book. Sometimes the best way to sell your first book is by promoting your second.

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Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of November 10, 2014
November 14, 2014by: Paula
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We’ve collected some informative book marketing tweets to guide you, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include using infographics in your marketing, increasing your Twitter exposure, selling more books on Amazon, and more. Happy marketing!

**************

* Seven Things I’d Do Before I Published a Book (if I had it to do over again)

An author talks about what she learned from her early book marketing experiences and how that affects her book marketing strategy now:

http://writegame.blogspot.com/2014/10/insecure-writers-support-group.html

books in paper bag

* 3 Ways Authors Can Get Exposure for Their Recently Published Book

Here are simple yet effective ways to launch your book:

http://phsolomon.com/2014/11/08/guest-blog-3-ways-authors-can-get-exposure-for-their-recently-published-books/

* How to Increase Your Exposure on Twitter

Twitter can be a great place to market your book if you understand how it works:

http://www.amarketingexpert.com/increase-exposure-twitter/

* 39 Things to Remember While Struggling to Build Your Writing Career

Sometimes you need to be reminded of what really matters so your writing career stays on track:

http://www.yourwriterplatform.com/build-your-writing-career/

* 9 Awesome Reasons to Use Infographics in Your Content Marketing

We’re surrounded and consumed by data. One way to make it manageable and easier to understand is to use Infographics:

http://www.jeffbullas.com/2012/03/07/9-awesome-reasons-to-use-infographics-in-your-content-marketing/

* How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon

Learn the secrets to using Amazon’s back end system to sell more books:

https://soundcloud.com/denise-wakeman/adventures-in-visibility-how-to-sell-books-by-the-truckload-on-amazon

* 9 Email Marketers Explain Why Nobody Opens Your Emails

If you have a newsletter, or use email for marketing, learn how to make sure your subscribers read your emails:

http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/reasons-for-bad-open-rates

* Successful Querying: It’s Not All About the Letter

There’s a whole process and mindset behind querying. These tips will guide you:

http://booksbywomen.org/succesful-querying-letter/





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