Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Must reading for self-publishing authors

If you are an independently publishing author, you'd have to be living under a rock if you haven't heard of the stunning success of thriller writer John Locke. Locke has propelled his self-published "Donovan Creed" series into the stratosphere of sales on Amazon's Kindle, becoming the first indie author to achieve the staggering total of 1 million ebook sales.

Now, Locke -- an entertaining-enough author, but a genius at marketing -- has shared his secrets of ebook promotion in a brief how-to guide, How I Sold 1 Million Ebooks in 5 Months. It's a book aimed squarely at writers like...well, like me. As you know, I just launched my own ebook fiction series two weeks ago with HUNTER: A Thriller. And despite all the great reviews it's getting, I was poised to waste a lot of promotional and marketing time pursuing dead ends.

Until I made the great decision to download Locke's manual.

I'm not going to deny Mr. Locke any justly deserved sales for the book by providing any details here. Just take my word for it: This guy must have studied and absorbed all the classic marketing books, including those by Al Ries and Jack Trout, such as Positioning. He's drawn all those principles together and created an outline that will allow the self-publishing indie to take on the giants of the publishing industry and succeed.

And he did it just in time for me to apply to my own thriller. THANK YOU, Mr. Locke.

And now watch your rear-view mirror....


erne lewis said...

I am Erne Lewis, author of An Act of Self-Defense.
Print sales are slow but steady. eBook sales are slow but steady. The eBook price is $9.99. Will dropping the price work to increase sales? Readers love the book but so far I only have about 500.

Robert Bidinotto said...

Erne, thanks for stopping by.

I think the $9.99 price is probably hurting your ebook sales. There is so much available at lower prices that people will browse right past your book. About the only authors commanding those prices are NYT bestselling "names." Even then, I believe their publishers are leaving a lot of money on the table by keeping prices that high.

I don't think you have to go "bargain basement" and price at 99 cents or even $2.99. I put HUNTER at $3.99, and surely that shouldn't be an impediment...IF your Amazon/B&N/Smashwords pages have great blurbs and teasers, and lots of 4- and 5-star reader reviews.

If you have control over your book pricing on Amazon, try dropping the price to $3.99 as a "temporary sale," and see what happens. You'll clear almost $3 per sale, and you may sell many times more books. It's worth an experiment.