Book Marketing and Publishing Tips for Authors–

eZine Issue #09 March 7, 2018
Publisher: Judith Briles

Practical Publishing Advice and Guidance for Authors

In This Issue

1.   The BAD problem of Amazon …

2.   Hot podcasts for the month coming …

3.   Webinars slated through April …

4.   Question of the week …

5.  Book Shepherd “Fun” of the Week …

This Week Under The Book Shepherd’s® Roof: 

This is the weekend that happens twice a year in except in U.S. territories Judith Briles Speaking Unplugged is SOLD OUT. The next one will be held in November. The dates are 9th and 10th and details are on the website under Events. He Author s of Guam, Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, and some sections of Arizona and Hawaii. It’s the switch to Day Light Savings time … meaning that the rest of the U.S. loses sleep as the clock jumps ahead an hour on Sunday.
I’m looking forward to this weekend where the monthly AuthorYOU circles are held on Saturday and I fine tune the workbook for my Speaking Unplugged event with is sold out the following week.

AND … How’s your week going?
The BAD Problem of Amazon …

… is turning into a first-rate mess for we authors. And, in my book, we authors need to stick together. Over the past two years, I have advised them—you—to post POD of versions of books first with IngramSpark for a variety of reasons: bookstores and library purchasing and you were in the Ingram catalog, meaning you were findable to retail bookstores. In this area, books needed to be returnable and at the ongoing whole discount rate. Ingram was respected by all bookstores. Amazon isn’t. It was the obvious solution.

As summer progressed, we saw changes occurring. I started getting calls from clients that orders were coming to a grinding halt from Amazon AND their books were being offered by others who they had never heard of—much less sold books too. What the heck is going on?

First, it’s an Amazon thing … it created the “low bid” button, meaning it would pull the book—yours—from wherever it (Amazon) could get it at the lowest cost. The low bidder is some third party from “who knows where.”

Now that many of the third party online sellers have figured that one out and could reign king and queen on Amazon, they discover that books could be ordered at the deep discounted rate via IngramSpark and then posted on Amazon for resale. Well, rats. It cut out the publisher/author from direct sales to the public. Several of my colleagues tracked sales for clients. Those "bad" orders were being filled by IngramSpark. Jeeze. The bottom line, the author gets less, much less.

I did two things to try and figure some solution.

1.    I reached out to IngramSpark’s Robin Cutler and went over what was going on and asked for feedback and some options. I know that others like me did as well. After two months, she reached out. I don’t know what the solution will be, but the point is to be on alert and please pay attention to your Amazon page “where” books are being offered from.

2.    I advised my author clients to reduce the amount of their discount to wholesalers immediately if they had an IngramSpark account. Instantly, we saw orders increasing from Amazon that was directed to the author-publisher.

I’m now telling everyone: if you are on IngramSpark, change your discounting rate immediately. Instead of 50%, drop it to 35%. You can keep the returnable option if you wish—but it can cost you. I would drop it, too. If libraries want your book, they not concerned about returning them—no having them as “returnable” isn’t a deal-breaker for you. If a consumer wants your book, a book store can order it. And, you do want to be in Ingram’s catalog. Plus, I would encourage you to discover IngramSpark’s Aerio option. It’s cool, and Amazon is out of the picture.

Hot podcasts slated for March.

This AM, book marketing expert John Kremer and I hit the studio to record this Thursday’s podcast for AuthorU-Your Guide to Book Publishing. Last week, my favorite book marketing pro John Kremer and I dug into a variety of tips on what to do for 2018—don’t miss it AND we both shouted out for the #1 think you should be doing—building your email list.

Get ready to dive into an insider’s how-to on creating Amazon Marketing Ads (no, I didn’t make a mistake—I’m talking Amazon … not Facebook. You will hit a homerun with ace Derek Doepker. And later in the month, the new Grabbr will be highlighted with Daniel Langston. Amy Collins has been digging into the ever-changing Amazon Algorithms. Tune in to keep your learning curve enriched.

And, if you have listened, support our podcast and post a review. Thank you!

More Webinars are coming … more Webinars are coming

Hold these dates:

March 13th  5 PM Mountain time - It’s a Pinterest Fest with book marketing expert John Kremer.

Register here:

March 28th Noon Mountain - Soar your Book Visibility and eMail Grabs with Grabbr and its COO, Daniel Langston.

Register here:

April 17th
Noon Mountain - Game Changer Using Amazon Marketing Ads with Amazon expert Derek Doepker.

Register here:

Details are posted for each on our websites. Remember—you will get the replay post the webinar, even if you can’t attend live. Make sure you are registered so you receive it.

Questions of the Week:

Question: How can I sell books and not have to do the marketing?

My answer:
Get over it. The most common phrase out of too many authors is: I can’t market my books. Or, I don’t want to market my books. I just want to write. Get over it. You have to write your books. Oh please, get over your resistance. The reality is, YES … you can!

Here’s why:

  1. If you can write, you CAN market. The definition of marketing is the action or business of promoting and selling products or services. So …. What are you doing when you write? Aren’t you promoting your ideas via storytelling or how to fix or solve something? Yes, you are … and Hello … that’s marketing.
  1. The internet was built for YOU and is your best marketing friend. Designed for the introvert—the internet can take you places that you would need a bottomless credit card to get to. Use it. Find your crowd. Connect with it. And it’s FREE! You already have a head start—you know how to write.
  1. Think of Marketing as a numbers game. Work in the areas in which you feel most comfortable, whether that’s Facebook or Twitter or Goodreads, LinkedIn, Instagram—what? It’s not that you have a zillion connections—what you want is “like-minded” connections.

Then, choose a number. Any number—but make it reasonable—this number is the number you will shoot for to make new connections each day on your social media platform of choice—is it 5, 7, 20, 40 … what?

Most authors got caught up in the HUGE factor—everything they must do is off the charts—it doesn’t have to be. Try it step by step; one connection at a time; and the word—meaning you—goes out.

Using the right social media channels and building on them will do wonders for you and your book. And these connections may turn into your Super Fans. Please, get over your book marketing resistance … yes, you CAN!

Book Shepherd “Fun” of the Week …

Love it when I find a fun shorty—a quick smile, a laugh out loud, a sip of tea … and back to work—perfect. When you think you’ve seen it all … try this: a shower curtain with pockets for phones and tablets so you can stay connected while wet—that would be a

BIG “no thanks” from me. And of course, guess who is selling it?  

That’s my author and publishing news for today … what’s yours?

About Judith Briles, The Book Shepherd

Book Publishing expert Judith Briles, aka The Book Shepherd
® has shepherded more than 1,000 authors and created 500 best-sellers and award-winning books. She knows publishing inside and out from both the traditional and independent sides. Judith is an advocate for authors within her blogs, podcasts and speaking engagements. What’s her pet peeve? Two words: publishing predators.

She hosts the podcast AuthorU-Your Guide to Book Publishing that generates over 100,000 downloads a month. Her website is www.TheBookShepherd, email: and phone: 303-885-2207.

The Book Shepherd® is a registered trademark

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