With having a new release coming out soon (a project that aims to help indie authors learn how to maximize their sales efforts and sell more books at live events) I stumbled onto a resource that authors might find interesting. There are a number of programs out there which will allow authors to set up a table and connect with readers, usually in order to sell books. Search my blog archives for programs within Barnes and Nobles and on how to do book signings. Plus, there are ways to set this up with Costco and other big box stores as well, although the process is very involved, enough that most authors simply don’t attempt to do it.
The program I just learned about takes care of all that for you, and provides tons of opportunity—click through to get details and see where it’s offered.
I use Bookfunnel and StoryOrigin to arrange group promotions. Because I get lots of applicants to my promos (and I always verify share/click stats from applicants) I get to look at a lot of data and metrics. Minutes ago I looked at one author who had a good swap history with good clicks on her promos, except every other month she had certain promos returning 0 clicks. 30-50 clicks on everything else, and then goose-eggs.
Her subscribers didn’t want to click on certain kinds of promos. Which ones? Each of those promos were advertised as “All Genre” or “multi-genre” bundles. I know I never join these kinds of promotions. The targeting is all wrong. Authors think they are going to tap into some major lists of whale readers by putting their Urban Fantasy or Science Fiction in bundles alongside Reverse Harem and Christian Bible Study books.
But zero clicks. 0. Nada. Nothing. And that result is common. Readers know what they like and what they are looking for. Not all “cross-pollination” is worth spending your time on.
There’s a deep marketing principle to be learned here: don’t expect to harvest turnips in a bean field. It sounds super Zen, right? (I just made that up… but it’s totally true.) Readers aren’t known for making great leaps across genre lines. They cross when it’s convenient, interesting, or by fractional degrees. They also dislike endless scrolling to see if there is something that they do like in a giant mix of things. Ask yourself this, if you want to eat M&Ms do you buy a bag of trail mix and then spend the next fifteen minutes sorting out all the M&Ms or would you rather just buy a damn bag of M&Ms? I know… very Zen of me. Readers feel the same way, and so do paperback buyers.
Today, we’re talking about relevance and targeting your audience properly and why it’s important to know your audience. If you can nail this, two things will happen. 1) You’ll meet the needs of your readers and better connect with them. 2) You’ll make that glorious cheddar.
If you’re new to the writing scene (or even relatively new) you may have seen indie authors with books set up for pre-order purchase and for both ebook and paperback. For authors who use KDPprint (Amazon’s publishing service) this seems like a mystery. (If you need an example, here is an amazon link to my upcoming Oct 2022 release, Sell More Books at Live Events.)
How does an author do that? KDPprint does not allow a paperback to collect presales, only ebook versions. There are reasons why which we could spend time speculating on, but that would be a waste. The big question is: how can an indie set that up?
Early May… at a mid-Iowa Renaissance Festival. It always rains at renfest. At least for a few minutes. A quick shower gave me a moment to sort out the larger bills from the smaller ones. It was only the first day, but I was doing pretty well. Enough that a random kilted man sees my cash and says to his buddy in the pirate outfit, “Dang, man. I’m in the wrong business. I’ve gotta write me a book.”
Seeing how the sausages are made is not always a fun experience… but that analogy isn’t true of the Print on Demand book industry. Some of the folks at an Illinois KDP Print warehouse did a virtual tour and explain the process of how a book is made walking you through what happens once a customer clicks Buy. Watch the video:
I recently had a reader email me questions about printing color in books. Their question/complaint was along the lines of “Is having color in my book an industry no-no? Are interior color images useless in a +500 page book? I don’t understand this book selling industry and the absolutely crazy costs of this type of publishing!!!”
The frustration is understandable—especially since there are some things a person might want to try, such as including a few color images inside the book. This might especially be true if you are writing nonfiction and have a handful of images you might wish to include—something common in travelogues and other types of books…
Hey everyone! I’m not quite homeless, but if I was a hobo would you give me $1? Would you buy 17 books from me for $0.99? What if some of the books in that fat stack of fiction were by a few bestsellers?
Check out this huge book bundle I’m in and buy a copy of 17 books for just .99. It will seriously help prevent me from becoming homeless! Plus you’ll get like $150 worth of books for one fifteenth of the cost of the last coffee I bought at Starbucks… just click here or on the graphic!
My Post-Apocalyptic SF/Horror has just released and it’s just 99c through Halloween. This story is my baby. Please pick up a copy and tell the world!
Dr. Swaggart must race against time, failing lights, and a leaky oxygen tank to save his new family: the last remnant of mankind who dwells in the underground bunker Ark 1. If he fails, the monster infecting his friends will finally succeed in destroying humanity once and for all!
Nanowrimo is coming up. It’s okay if you’re not participating, but if you’re an author (at any stage–maybe you’re just dabbling or considering your first story) this bundle of tools might be an amazing find for you. you can get the full load of books from folks who know a few things about the Indie world. You can pick up all the books for just $20 or 4 of them for $5.
I can tell you that I bought some of these books for full price and have used them in my own writing career. You’ll find books by Kevin J Anderson (Dune, Star Wars,) Craig Martelle (20booksto50k,) Joanna Penn (The Creative Penn,) and yours truly!
It also includes a massive discount on Jutoh3 if you’re looking to get away from standard word processors (I use Scrivener which this Jutoh has been compared to).