It’s one thing to follow a manual outlining perfect procedure for Kindle publishing: It’s another to actually do it and realize there are all these little tips and twists to tweaking your Kindle Marketing even further.
Here are thirty of the best tips for marketing your Kindle ebook.
Start with a Unique, Exceptional Product
If you don’t have a well-crafted product, properly optimized, correctly formatted, and full of original fascinating content, you will not get the most out of any marketing strategy.
Make a Plan
Don’t market haphazardly. Create a plan – and remember to time your plan components so that each maximizes the other. For example, have posts ready to blitz your social media, the instant your free promo begins.
Wait before Announcing
After you’ve finally uploaded your book, wait before rushing to announce its release. It can take up to 72 hours before your book is reviewed by Amazon and appears in the listings. Plus it’s nice if your book can get at least a couple of consumer reviews under its belt before you send the world to its doorstep.
Don’t Put Pricing or URLs on Your ecover
Amazon wants its Kindle books to display tastefully, so avoiding promotional material of any kind on your ecover will help advance your Kindle ebook on its way to approval.
Don’t Leave Initial Reviews to Chance
Have your book club, writing group or forum primed and ready in advance, so that when your book does go live, they are ready to jump in and write your first reviews.
Remember that the Title and Cover of Your Book are Vital
It doesn’t matter how great your book is: If people aren’t intrigued or arrested by the Title – and if your cover doesn’t look professional (“like a real book”) – you won’t get a chance to impress them with reviews, content peeks or your description.
Make Sure You Include a “Look Inside”
Being able to read a few pages of content will not only encourage more people to buy the book, it will pre-qualify your market exactly. If Amazon doesn’t add this to your book within the first few days, be assertive. Contact support and ask them to add it for you.
Consider Offering a Free Promo
Allowing free downloads for the first few days can be a good strategy for a new author, particularly if your book does well. (Plan your free promos and publicize them in advance!)
If you choose the KDP Select program, keep in mind that you can use your five free promo days at any time during your three-month KDP Select contract.
Join the free Author Marketing Club
This is a ridiculously easy way to submit your book to top review and listings sites – and it works!
Join KDP Select
If your book has any activity or sales, consider signing up for KDP Select and letting it be offered for a free period to Amazon Prime members. You won’t make direct sales from the Amazon Prime library, but you will still continue to make regular sales. And do remember that each time your book is borrowed Amazon reads this as a sale. Your visibility – and royalties – will increase.
Promote Your Book before Signing Up for KDP Select
Before joining KDP Select, make sure your book is polished, has some sales and has been well promoted. Books with active visibility perform better, and KDP Select can keep your books visible between promotions.
Create Follow-up Promos
Don’t worry if you did everything wrong for your first free promo, and it was a bust. Depending on the KDP options you’ve chosen, you will most likely be eligible for five days of free promo again in three months.
You can spend that time tweaking your book, tweaking your price, tweaking your cover and planning a dynamite promotion campaign for the next round.
Meanwhile, concentrate on getting top reviews.
Realize That Negative Reviews can be Your Best Friend
Nobody ever wants to see a bad review – but if you find you are gathering a few of these, pay close attention to what they have to say. You will always get people who don’t know what they are talking about, people with axes to grind, people who don’t like the fact that you are not an author they prefer, and people who love to pick things to pieces to the –nth degree. Ignore them.
Instead, look for stuff you can use – for example, someone noting that an open tag has made your book hard to read, or who says that Step Five isn’t clear enough.
Fix these complaints – then release your book as a new, updated edition.
Create a YouTube Book Trailer
Do this exactly as you would for a movie: Meaning dramatic lighting, strong graphics, atmospheric soundtrack and memorable taglines: All focused on getting the essence of your book across.
Check out this book trailer for the graphic novel Nowadays to see how it’s done. (Warning: Apocalyptic Zombie Violence. And lots of blood.)
Don’t Compete in Over-Saturated Niche Categories
Find a category where you have less competition. That will leave your book with more chances to become a Best Seller in that niche. (If you are just starting out, under 100 entries in a category catalogue is a good way to test the waters.)
Get Your Book in the Right Category – Even if it’s Not Available
If you’ve noticed that your direct competition is in a category not available when you upload, designate your book as “Non-Classifiable”. Go ahead and publish it anyway.
While it is being reviewed, go to the Self-Service menu on the right-hand side of the publisher Help page and click the yellow “Contact us” button.
- Select “publish your book”
- Click on “adding or changing book categories”.
- Simply tell them the category name(s) you want your book to be in
Dedicate Enough Time to Create Your Book Description
Your book description is arguably as important as your Title and Cover. Once readers have been attracted by these, the next step they may take is checking out your description. Set aside an afternoon or morning to work on creating the perfect, dynamic, keyword-optimized description. Don’t rush yourself – and what ever you do, don’t scramble to write one at the last minute, during upload!
Study the Pros
Immerse yourself in studying and analyzing how best-selling Amazon authors do things. The best lesson is seeing a strong example. Make notes of tactics and tips that work well on you – then see if these would work well for your own books.
Have Your Cover Page Created as Soon as Possible
A finished Cover page can be used in pre-release promotions and posts.
Create a Facebook Page for Your Book
Even if you already have a Facebook Author Page, dedicate a separate page to your new book. And don’t wait until your book is published to do this.
- Run pre-release contests
- Release “sneak previews”
- Share progress reports
- Create a buzz
Create a Custom Sign-up or Contest App Canvas for Your Facebook Page
Interactivity is a proven way to increase interest and memory retention about your new book. And you don’t have to jump through hoops – use incentives like a free sample chapter when it becomes available or simply notification of the book’s release.
Don’t Just “Set and Forget”
Marketing your Kindle ebook is not a static process. You need to be doing things like tweaking prices.
The simple formula for this is:
- Raise them when your book is selling really well
- Drop them when your book is slowing to a stall
Either way, you can use the new price as yet another opportunity for promotion.
Create an Author Account and Dynamite Profile on Goodreads
You can advertise there if you wish, list your book giveaway and participate in its groups and forums.
Be sure to watch the SlideShare presentation at the bottom of the sign-up page.
Create an Author Website!
If you don’t have an author website – or any type of relevant website at all – you are shooting yourself in the foot.
It doesn’t matter whether or not you have a main website. Dedicate one to your writing career – or even to your book, if it’s going to be a signature work.
Be Sure to Include Your URL in Your Kindle ebook
Another missed opportunity for many Kindle authors: Forgetting to include at least one Website URL in their front or back pages.
That’s literally leaving money on the table – by throwing away sign-up opportunities.
Announce Your Book on Amazon’s Forum
Another opportunity that people – surprisingly – miss: Announcing their book on Amazon’s own, free “Meet Our Authors” forum.
Just be sure to pick the right category. (E.G.: “Non-Fiction Authors” or “Western Romance Authors”.)
Price it Right
Pricing is a highly individual thing, but knowing a few tips can help you better assess your market.
- The hotter the topic, the higher the price you can command
- The more exclusive the information, the higher the price you can command
- The more professional your visual production, the higher the price you can command. (Make sure the interior lives up to the promise, however!)
- The better your book is selling, the higher the price you can command
- The more books you have on the Best Seller’s list, the higher the price you can command
And finally, recognize that pricing is as fluid as your market. Keep actively pricing to sell. (Intelligent pricing leads to more successful marketing!)
Join an Active Writing Group
This works both with online and offline groups. Be sure to choose one where supporting each others’ published works is simply part of the mandate. That way, you’ve got instant reviewers ready to roll!
If you want reviews, write them for others – especially for members of your writing group.
And don’t forget to participate actively in forums and networks such as the Amazon “Meet Our Authors” forum.
It’s a case of the more you give, the more you get.