I recently had the pleasure to co-present a webinar with Bowker on Self-Publishing: Your Path to Success. Ralph Coviello, publisher relations manager at Bowker, shared copious insights into how the self-publishing landscape has taken shape over the past few years, as well as how it may continue to evolve. From all the great observations and advice, I’ve distilled the three most important lessons to be gleaned for your success in self-publishing.
1. Publish in multiple formats
The more products you have to sell, the more money you’re able to make. Books are no exception. Authors who offer multiple formats of their books sell up to four times more than authors who offer their readers only a single format. To capitalize on this, make your titles available as a softcover, hardcover, and ebook. Readers across all age groups are reading print, so there’s no predicting what format individual book buyers may prefer.
2. Channel surf
Just as the more products you offer, the more you’re likely to sell—the more places you make them available, the more you’ll be able to sell. Get your books into as many online retail channels as possible. Self-publishing success hinges on availability!
The ones that will likely have the greatest impact on your print book sales are Amazon and Barnes & Noble. For ebooks, you’ll want to make your titles available on the Kindle, iBookstore, NOOK, and Kobo, at a minimum. Happily, you can get all of your books into these channels—and many more—with Lulu.com. For free.
3. Press releases are very popular
This is a double-edged sword. Yes, press releases are a valuable tool for building awareness about your book, and you can reach the same journalists who the Big 6 publishers talk to. Yes, there is a ton of news out in the world and it takes a lot to get your story heard. The lesson here? Targeting the information in your press release is critical, and targeting the people you send it to is also key.
You can view the webinar deck on Slideshare.