Tricks and Techniques Selling Your Books
As a rookie indie-author, I’ve been exposed to much misinformation when it comes to selling my hard-written books.
Of course, much misinformation is concocted by con-artists just looking to entice you into buying something like a marketing package promising to sell you millions that probably doesn’t even work.
Trust me, you get the spam letters daily from spammers purchasing your email. Some might be book reviewers promising awesome sales results in exchange for paying $75 for a book review (who’s paying $75 for a review?) and all sorts of other traps new authors might fall into.
So, after weaving through the gauntlet for over a month I finally found awesome ways for authors to sell their work and no, I’m not making any money off these techniques I’m about to share.
In fact, almost everything I’m going to mention to you is free, so indie-authors, rest assured, you won’t have to break the bank if you want to gain a few sales.
Funnel and Magnet Books
After selling zilch over my first three weeks of having Northern Knights on Amazon, I read an e-book called Reader Magnets from Nick Stephenson. Stephenson swears by what he calls reader magnets.
Here’s how reader magnets work:
Write a book and sell it for free. Yes, free. I know, books are hard to write, edit, copyedit, proofread, and find a fitting cover but this is worth it.
In fact, it doesn’t have to be a book. It can be a novelette, as I write. Take this novelette and set it for free on all the major outlets like Nook, Kobo, iBooks, Google Play, Scribd, and any other outlet you can imagine.
For Amazon, set it to any price you want and bug them to set it for free. This is the stage I’m in but sooner or later, they’ll give in and set your book to perma-free. You might have to email KDP support.
This is what I’ve done with Fighting Tyranny and Fighting Treason, two novelettes in the same series, but you only need to do this for one book.
For me, Fighting Tyranny is the prequel series to my first full-length novel, Northern Knights. Doing this, it may entice the reader to buy Northern Knights after reading Fighting Tyranny and Fighting Treason. You can do the same, or create a story or two about the main characters in your current work.
Back to the reader magnets. Inside this free novelette place an incentive for joining your email list. It can be another novelette, as I’ve done, or it can be anything of value to your readers. Either way, give them a freebie to sign up for your email list.
My freebie is The Eurean Kingdom, the prequel to Fighting Tyranny. Plus, I plan on creating an entire free novella series which will in time become my magnet for attracting readers to my email list.
You can do anything of the sort.
Build an Email List
This might take some time but it will occur faster as your author name gets out there more and your free novelette rises through the rankings on all the bookstore sites.
Head over to an email provider like MailChimp which is free for up to 2,000 email addresses, but by that time, you’ll have a solid enough fanbase to where you can pay a small monthly fee.
You can also place your freebies on Prolific Works (formerly InstaFreebie) and you can connect MailChimp to the site. I’ve done this with Fighting Tyranny and it’s already garnered me a couple-hundred downloads.
The more emails you have on your list, the easier it is to sell books. All you have to do is let your list know when your next release is and bam, they’re buying your work. It’s also great to communicate with your list weekly and give them updates on your newest works and when they can be expected to be released.
This is one I’ve recently discovered and am dedicating a lot of time into it. You can build a niche website focused on writing, your book themes, or whatever. Drive traffic to your niche site, and use affiliate links within the site to sell your work. I do this on My Freedom Flame with Northern Knights as you can see in the sidebar.
If you’re unsure how to start an affiliate site or to drive traffic, I recommend you look into Wealthy Affiliate. Here, you’ll find training videos on becoming an online entrepreneur and you have access to the first ten lessons for free before deciding whether you wish to continue.
The program costs $49 per month to host up to twenty-five sites, so it’s a great deal. You can have two or three sites in the writing niche and even more sites in anything you’re passionate about, creating affiliate links with over hundreds of companies like Amazon, earning small commissions each time a customer clicks through to buy one of your products.
It’s rather unknown in the writing field and something I learned from being part of Tom Woods’ email list.
Free and Paid Book Promotion
Free and paid book promotion will do wonders. When I first ran my free promotion through Amazon’s KDP Select, I garnered a little over one hundred sales; not horrible for a first-timer…until I discovered I could’ve done much more with paid promotion.
I did a lot of free promos but the paid promos will guarantee you spots on an email list, some of which reach six-figures.
How’s that for generating downloads?
I recommend paying for book promotion if you’re running a free day with Amazon’s KDP Select if you only have one or two books for sale.
Sure, it’s a loss but if you pay for promo with something like Freebooksy you’re going to generate hundreds or thousands of downloads. This will lead to one thing: reviews.
The more reviews your work has, the more likely the chance Amazon pushes it through the rankings.
Go on any website and it’s a tried and true tactic.
These are all free and low-cost ways to promote your work. If done properly, you’ll not only build a readership, but also a fanbase. There are so many indie-authors under the guise of publishing and watching royalties kick in.
It’s a one-in-a-million chance.
More often than not, the royalties won’t kick in for us unless we get proactive in building a readership and a fanbase.
By implementing the above steps you’ll be surprised at how much traffic you’ll get to your blog and how many readers will click-through to at least read your book description.
Until next time, keep working toward earning your readership.