How to Stand Out from The Crowd When You Publish Your EBook

Once you have done all that hard work actually writing your EBook the next step is how you make sales. There is a huge demand for EBooks, but the market is crowded. You have to do something extra if you want to stand out from the crowd. Here we look at some ways that you can distinguish yourself from the competition.

The Cover Can Make or Break Your EBook

If you have a bad cover for your book this is the easiest way to make sure that you only sell copies to close family and friends. Your EBook is judged on its cover. It will make an instant impression of either something that is going to be terrible or something that has the promise of being great. You know which one you need to choose.

Unless you are really good at design do not attempt to make your own cover. A homemade looking cover really isn’t going to make you stand out from the crowd. A decent quality design is not going to break the bank. There are many services online which can provide you with a decent looking EBook cover for an affordable price. You have put a lot of work into your EBook – don’t destroy your chances of making good sales simply by not having the right cover.

Pick a Great Title for Your EBook

The title of your book really does make a difference. You have to capture a reader’s interest from the start or they will simply move on to the next book. This is the first thing that potential buyers will see when you publish your EBook and it is very important to get it right.

Don’t worry about your title from the very start – you do not have to think of what you are going to call your book before you start writing. This can lead to serious avoidance and procrastination! You will probably have a much better idea about good titles when you have been immersed in your subject matter writing your EBook.

Give The People What They Want

Your EBook is never going to stand out if it is something that people don’t want to buy. Always do your market research to see that there is a demand for the book that you want to write. You may be very passionate about a subject, but if no one wants to read a book about your chosen subject you are never going to be able to sell it.

Think of Ways to Market Your EBook That Others Are Not Doing

Many writers publish their EBook and expect sales to suddenly start. It doesn’t take long before they realize that the strategy of doing nothing doesn’t bring in sales. You are not going to be able to give up your day job and start selling EBooks full time if you do not learn some marketing skills.

You have to spend some time marketing your EBook. There are many ways to promote your book. Don’t just confine your marketing to after the book is published. You should have a launch strategy to maximize the benefits of your campaign.

Another very effective way to market your EBook and stand out from the others is to use video. It is undeniable that people love video content. If you learn how you can apply this to your EBook marketing strategy you will be ahead of what most writers are doing.

6 Mistakes You Must Avoid When You Create and Publish Your EBook, Part Two

4) Thinking Editing Means Running Spell Checker

Editing is an essential part of the EBook publishing process. It does not just mean pushing the spell checker button and correcting the spellings whilst you watch television. Editing is a serious business and it really needs to be done properly if you are serious about publishing EBooks. Readers are smart and they will soon call you out on reviews if your book needs proper editing. If enough people say this in reviews it can be enough to sink your book without trace.

The ideal is to have a professional editor look at your EBook. Unfortunately, this is a luxury which many can’t afford. You can ask friends and they will most likely get some of the errors. Joining writer’s groups can also help as many people will be prepared to proofread things for others in the group, providing you are willing to reciprocate.

You can also look at finding an inexpensive editor on an outsourcing site such as fiverr. This can be a great way of finding inexpensive editors.

5) Forgetting That a Picture is Worth a Thousand Words

If you are going to spend money anywhere on your EBook it has to be on the cover. Unless you are good at graphics you really should get a professional to design your cover. This is your only chance to make a first impression and if your cover is not eye catching and professional, it does not matter how great your content is, readers will just never buy your book.

You do not have to spend a fortune on an EBook cover. There are plenty of online services out there which will provide you will a pre-designed cover for an affordable price. This option is not as great as the custom design, but when you are publishing your first books you will not have too much money to spend. Set a budget and spend as much as you can afford on a cover. It will make all the difference.

6) Publishing Your EBook and Expecting it to Sell

If famous authors publish a book they will sell many copies just because readers liked their previous books. Authors such as J.K Rowling, Dan Brown or Jodi Picoult would still sell books without ever spending another second on marketing. We are guessing that you do not have that kind of advantage. You are going to have to do something to market your EBook. It isn’t enough to write a great book. You have to promote it.

Big publishing houses have big marketing budgets. You can’t compete with that, but you can make an impact. You are going to have to learn some marketing techniques. There is plenty of information out there about how to use the internet and social media to promote your book. You will have to be a writer and a marketer if you want to make sure that your EBook has a chance of being a success.

6 Mistakes You Must Avoid When You Create and Publish Your EBook, Part One

It is very easy to publish an EBook these days. Gone are the times when you had to get the approval of a publishing house to get your book published. Now, anyone can publish their own book. There are many great things about being able to publish an EBook so easily, however there are some pitfalls to avoid. Here are some ways to avoid the common mistakes which many writers make when they publish an EBook.

1) Not Being a Good Writer

This is a really obvious point, but one which is sadly overlooked by many people who publish EBooks. We have all seen some truly shocking EBooks which would never have made it over the first hurdle in a publishing house. Just because you can publish a book doesn’t mean that you should. Ask yourself the fundamental question of whether your abilities as a writer are actually good enough.

We don’t mean that you have to be perfect. No one is. Even bestselling authors admit that there are things that they have written which they would rather forget about. Take the time to learn your craft. Don’t let the drive for perfection hold you back, but if writing really isn’t your thing you should rethink the whole idea.

2) Writing Something That No One Wants to Read

You may be passionate about your collection of antique candlesticks, but does anyone else want to read about it? Do your market research and find out what people actually want to buy. Check out the bestseller lists and see what sells. Do not be afraid of the competition. There are some niches which are incredibly popular and there is still room for growth.

If you see an area where a lot of books are selling, then there is probably still room in the market for another book. Look at areas where you know that people are actually spending money. Not in places where you think things should be selling, but they really aren’t. This is not the time to guess about what is selling and what isn’t. Learn how to conduct simple research on where the markets are. You will be spending your time wisely in doing some research before you take the plunge and start writing.

3) Writing About Something You Know Nothing About

It is possible to spend a great deal of time on research and write about a topic that you know nothing about., but why are you doing this. The latest hot topic may be “How to Survive a Zombie Attack” or “How to Quit Your Day Job and Make a Living Posting Cat Videos on Social Media”, but if you don’t know anything about it, it’s unlikely that you are going to create a great book about it.

Of course there are people who can write about pretty much anything, but are you one of those people? Be honest with yourself. You may find that you do have this skill, but why make things difficult in the first place? It isn’t as simple just to say write about what you are passionate about, but you do need to consider writing about something that you will enjoy. Writing about things which you don’t find interesting or inspiring is a difficult task. Do not do it unless you absolutely have to.

 

Some Ways to Promote Your EBook That You Probably Haven’t Thought Of, Part Two

Have a Contest

This can be a simple contest which creates attention for the launch of your book. You can offer a free copy of your book – this works best for second and subsequent books where you already have a readership. If you do not think this will be a good incentive, then offer something that is relevant to the readers that you want to gain. If you are promoting an EBook which you are launching on Kindle, consider an Amazon gift card as a prize. If you want Nook readers, then offer a Barnes and Noble gift card. Think about what would motivate your ideal reader to enter your contest.

Be Interesting on Social Media

social media image

Photo from Sean MacEntee

If you are starting to have a following or just starting out, think of ways to engage your followers on social media. Many writers think that it is enough simply to tell readers their book is available. This really isn’t going to make you stand out at all. Sure it may get you some loyal readers, but it won’t go beyond that. Try and think of something that will really capture their interest.

Think about your EBook launch like one of those expensive movie trailers that you have to watch whilst you are waiting for the main feature. They tease content so that people get excited and want to go and see the movie. Think about how you can tell potential readers just a little of the story. Teasing content is one of the oldest marketing tricks in the book, but it is little used in the EBook promotion world. Think of the buzz it created when J.K Rowling told the world that a major character would be killed off in the Harry Potter series. We know she wasn’t exactly short of sales by this point, but the stir it created got people talking. The technique works.

Another technique that you can use with fans is to get them involved with the writing of the story. Or at least think that they are involved. If you already have an established set of characters for your fiction series, you will find that your audience will have strong opinions about them. Ask them questions about what you think a character would do, what you think their favorite food is, what you think they should name their dog. Anything which is going to make your readers feel more involved with the characters. This kind of technique works incredibly well with a fiction book series as readers become very invested with the characters.

Some Ways to Promote Your EBook That You Probably Haven’t Thought Of, Part One

There are many tried and tested ways to promote your EBook, but sometimes it is a good thing to think of something different. Here are some interesting ways to promote your EBook that you probably haven’t ever thought of.

Face Your Fear – Make A Video

You probably already know that video is a great way to promote pretty much anything. YouTube has over a billion users. That’s a pretty big potential audience. However, many people really don’t want to get involved with video and they are making a big mistake.

There seem to be two main hurdles that people think that they can’t get over when it comes to video. One is the technology. Two is that they don’t want to be on camera. Both are very easy problems to deal with.

You need to acknowledge that you do not have to be Steven Spielberg to make some great visual content. You don’t have to create a masterpiece. Technology is so simple these days. You can easily make a video using your phone or some really simple screen capture tools.

If you still think you can’t do it then try explaining that to your ten-year-old and they will show you how they create a great video in minutes. Do not make technology your excuse. If you can’t do it yourself then outsource it. You do not need to pay a lot of money. Get someone on fiverr to create a short video for you and cross promote it on social media. You may be surprised at the results.

Do not make the mistake of thinking that you absolutely have to appear on camera. You really don’t. There are many ideas for a video to promote your EBook that do not involve you actually appearing on the screen. Get creative.  Check out this video:

Once you have made a video there are many ways to cross promote it on social media.

Connect with Influencers

There are few things more valuable than your EBook being recommended by an influencer with a relevant audience. The saying goes that “It’s not what you know it’s who you know,” and this holds true for the digital world as well. There is a very big world of influencers out there. You need to make sure that you make a big effort to connect with them.

Do not be intimidated and think that there is no way that these influencers will be interested in your EBook. People are always looking for great content to promote to their readers. Have the courage to ask and you may be surprised with the results. Take the time to build up the relationships with influential people who are in your niche.

Don’t Forget Your Own Blog

All authors need their own website. It doesn’t matter if you are writing romantic fiction, thrillers, biographies or non-fiction EBooks. If you don’t have this, you need to remedy this immediately. Again, don’t be afraid of the technology. Grab a domain name and put up a simple site. If you can’t do this go to fiverr and get someone to do it for you. It’s not going to cost you very much.

Simply writing blog posts about your book and promoting them on social media might get you some attention, but probably not as much as you need. Think of different ways to promote your EBook on your blog.

The traditional method on a blog is to give away free content in exchange for an email address. This can help you build reviews for your book and to gain a readership. Why not do something a little different? Have a no opt in download of the first chapter or two. Some people have opt in fatigue and will be tempted by this relatively rare technique. Offering a chapter for free will ensure that the reader knows that your product is high quality. We all know that many EBooks are simply not good. This will help you stand out from the crowd.