7/27/2013

How to Market Your Book Online - In Spite of Amazon

time-machine
time-machine (Photo credit: midwestjournal)

Getting your book published without begging for reviews - a web-guy's approach

Just as a matter of record, something I'd like to bury in a blog post somewhere, but so I can say "I told you so."

Most of the theory of this is found over in "How to Build Your Own Honest Online Business." This also builds on what I laid out in "Just Publish! Ebook Creation for Indie Authors." Having spent a few months sorting out the various fictional narratives which are sold as Gospel for Authors to market their own book (see my Storify posts), I can proclaim with impunity that Amazon's review system is an arbitrary hoax and a time-burner.

The question comes: what do you use instead?


And the preface is that you aren't depending on all your sales from Amazon (or just set this article down right now and go back to your Kool Aid.)

I come from an SEO/Web Design background - so I figure that you need to rank on the first page of Google to be worth anything, although you don't want to get dependent on just that traffic source either.

The simple strategy is to publish on as many platforms and as many ways as possible. Writers write, and self-publishers publish.

While this is the broad strokes, it's worth telling:
0. Have a web page which your book links to.
1. Publish your book.
2. Create a text of about 500 words which describes your book, and is good promo with plenty of hooks.
3. Record that into audio (500 words will give you about 3 minutes.)
4. Create a slideshow of images which accompany that audio.
5. Marry those two up as a video.
6. Post the audio to internetarchives.org, the slideshow to slideshare.net, and the video to YouTube.
7. Link all of those into your book's web page, and embed them all.
8. Create a blog post (on Blogger) with embedded content that pitches your book (benefits, not features.)
9. Promote hub page, blog post, audio, video, and slideshow on G+ and through social signals, using onlywire.com and synnd.com
10. Publish that same blog post to multiple other blogging platforms (tumblr, wordpress, blogetery, blog.com)

Then get back to writing your next book.

This will give you social signals, lots of authoritative backlinks, and traffic to prime the pump. One trick (among many I don't have time to tell here) is to set up that blogger blog as a subdomain on your main site (which hosts your book's web page) and so gives you more credibility and authority. Set this up to integrate with your G+ books page (not your own profile) and then share that books page via your profile. You can also have your G+ books page share your links to the video on YouTube, the audio, and the slideshare slideshow - so your G+ followers can find them.

Now this doesn't replace the fact that you need to be engaged daily for some time on G+ and/or Goodreads involved in discussions. And we don't take up here that you publish in multiple formats via Lulu, and also on Kobo, Smashwords, and yes, Amazon so you have your book all over the place (Lulu will publish to iBookstore and B&N for you.)

But then, I mentioned that "Just Publish! Ebook Creation for Indie Authors" already, didn't I? ;)
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