“I have a very ethnic name. Should I consider changing it to something more Americanized to help influence sales on Amazon? If I’m trying to brand myself as a writer, author, and entrepreneur, should I just leave my name the way it is and hope people focus more on the quality of my content than the ethnicity of my name?”
A reader asks: “You come out against Kindle keyword search programs, but I would have thought that they would enable an author to more accurately find those precious seven keywords that Amazon allows? Surely these programs would offer more accurate results, and therefore more sales, than human opinion and guesswork? There are a number of programs on the market claiming to be able to identify the most effective Kindle keywords. As you suggest using the Google keyword tool, which is designed to help with Google searches, not Amazon searches, I don’t follow your logic on this point.”
Steve’s opinion on this topic is pretty controversial, and a lot of authors and marketers actually disagree with him. He says keywords aren’t all that important for selling books. You want to find a good keyword for your main title and spend a bit of time finding seven keywords to use on Amazon, but keywords aren’t very important otherwise. Continue reading
Jo is interested in using price pulsing. She wants to know how it works and how authors can use it to their advantage.
Pulsing refers to dropping a book’s price to get more sales and increase visibility on Amazon. This isn’t necessarily a great strategy for generating revenue, but it is a good strategy for helping you increase awareness of your books. Many authors price their books at 99 cents during this type of promotion. Continue reading
A listener wants to know why Steve recommends Pretty Links instead of Bit.ly for shortening links.
It’s difficult for people to remember URLs with a lot of slashes or dashes. Shortening links makes it easier to direct people to specific pages on your website. Pretty Links and Bit.ly both shorten links and track clicks, but Steve prefers Pretty Links for several reasons. Continue reading
Is it better to sign up with KDP Select or make a Kindle book permanently free? Find out in this episode of Self-Publishing Questions.
Antara wants to know Steve’s opinion on whether it is better to make a Kindle book permanently free or sign up for KDP Select and run free promos every 90 days. Steve has only used the “perma-free” strategy once, but a lot of fiction authors do it successfully. There is a way to get Amazon to list a book for free, but it does take a little bit of work. When publishing the book on Amazon, do not sign up for KDP Select. Set the price to 99 cents on Amazon; then publish it on Smashwords and other platforms.
Here’s the process for creating a perma-free book…Set the book’s price to free on other platforms. Once your book is live, tell Amazon the book is free on another website. When Amazon sees that your book is free elsewhere, it will match the price for Kindle readers. It will take a few weeks before the price match goes into effect. KDP Select allows authors to give their books away for free for five days during every 90-day period. Continue reading
There are many advantages to publishing on the Kindle platform, but is it better for some authors to sell directly on their own websites? In this episode, Steve discusses the advantages and disadvantages of selling on Amazon versus selling directly.
T Alan is a traditionally published author who is interested in turning his paperback books into ebooks. He has no Web presence or online following and wants to know if he should sell books on Amazon or sell them directly, as recommended by Pat Flynn.
Kindle does have some major advantages. It is a mass-market platform, so authors have access to a bigger audience there than they would if they sold via their own blogs or other platforms. People trust Amazon, so they are more likely to buy books and other items there than on unknown websites. The Kindle platform also gives authors the opportunity to run free promotions and Countdown Deals. All of these things make it easier to build an email list for marketing. Continue reading