KDP changed my life and has made my road to publishing manageable. Although many of us are writers, only a
select few have actually taken the plunge and become Indie Authors via
publishing our own manuscripts.
Don’t worry when the day to publish arrives. It’s normal to be apprehensive, but the KDP
program is very friendly and allows novices to walk slowly through the steps
needed. Anyone can do it.
It’s good to research other self-publishing
venues before choosing KDP. The
traditional route is the one most people think of when getting ready to offer
their book to the world but there are many other options available today. Indie groups on Facebook and Yahoo! offer a
wealth of information. People are
friendly, share their knowledge and help make the road to publishing easier for
Amazon’s KDP Select offers authors free
promotion days and advertising that most struggling writers can’t afford. Yes, the idea is to offer the book for free,
but the exposure gained is priceless. Although
it seems that many authors have problems with the exclusive 90-day contract,
there are benefits to be had. Here are
my stats on the first two-day promotion I held:
- Day one I had moderate success.
I decided I’d be happy if I got 500 downloads. My book had been published for two
months and was selling about one copy a day. The count rose and by the end of day one the
book had 5,551 downloads!
- Day two was even better and by the end of the promotion there
were over 10,000 downloads – far more than I ever expected. The book reached number three in Kindle
Free Books in both listing categories.
Afterwards actual book sales soared to four or five a day. There they stayed until a move made me
have to take two weeks off from promoting.
- Since the promotion, Amazon Prime Members have been borrowing
the book, for which I receive a separate stipend.
KDP has been good to me. The results are solid. If you
want to sell books. Amazon, in my
opinion is the leader in the market and will continue to be.
Some authors warn not to go KDP Select until
you have two books published. The
thought is that one helps sell the other.
While that makes total sense, I disregarded the naysayers and went ahead
and signed with KDP anyway.
Here are the things that made my promotion
successful and can help yours be the same.
- Be outgoing and make online friends who will tweet, share, like
and tag your books. Be sure you do
the same for them.
- Don’t run a promotion until your book has a few solid reviews
- Promote heavily on the free days with Facebook groups and book
- Create a Facebook event and invite everyone to join you
- Have a video trailer created – it definitely helped with marketing
in my case
- Use a professional cover designer unless you are very good at
- Have your book professionally edited and beta to be sure it’s
as error-free as possible
- With KDP Select you can go in and correct errors with no change
in status of the book being available for sale
What you can learn from my promotion?
- Promote heavily – next time there are more sites I’ll use to
publicize the free days – let people know you will be running a free event
- Pre-promote – let people know you are getting ready to run a
free promotion a few days ahead of time
KDP deserves my loyalty because it’s been
good to me. Most of us as struggling
writers don’t have the budget for high-end advertising, websites, and all the
bells and whistles. Amazon hands us some
of that gratis for signing on with them.
Most writers cringe at the thought of all
of those books being given away free.
How will you go from an unknown author to bestseller if no one ever
hears about your work? The world is full
of billions of people. Ten thousand or
so is a drop in the bucket, but enough to get the word out. I’d love to have 20,000 downloads for my next
KDP is for me. It may not be for you. Don’t expect to become a millionaire
overnight. It’s probably not going to
happen. Do get involved in groups of
people that include Indie Authors. Pay
it forward – help someone with your knowledge and you’ll feel much better about
accepting help from others. Most Indie
Authors want their fellow writers to succeed and it’s been my experience that
many of them will go out of their way to give aid.
The door has opened for authors to
self-publish. All authors are not
writers, in my estimation. Some don’t
take their writing seriously enough to have it professionally edited and
read. They design bad self-made covers,
forget to spell check and grammar check, and know little about formatting. However, most Indie Authors take themselves
and their writing seriously. They’re
achievers, very professional in attitude and in their writing. They’re avid readers and realize that a book
must be well done or it’s doomed to fail. The reading public will separate the wheat
from the chaff. Readers have a way of
letting the whole world know if they like or don’t like a book. What we as fellow authors can do is encourage
and offer help when asked.
Whether you choose Amazon’s KDP Select or
another route I wish you the best of
luck. Be proud to be an Indie