5 Unexpected Lessons I've Learnt From Self-Publishing

A lot of people always ask me how did I self-publish my book and how the process was. The process of self-publishing was fairly easy for me and didn’t take much time. I decided o self-publish because everything I would have paid a publishing company to do; I had already did it myself. There are a few things I wish I would have known before self-publishing or known more details about. So I am going to share those five things with you today.

1. Network and Build Relationships BEFORE the Book Release

I went about this process backwards. I networked after the release of the book. I had a few relationships built before my book release but they were more personal. You should build strong relationships BEFORE your book release so when the book comes out they are the first people buying your book and hopefully helping you spread the word about your book. It is important to go to networking events if possible and get the word out months in advance. Have business cards on hand and have a strong social media presence. One thing I did do was post snippets of my book months in advance and use hashtags to grab people’s attention. Those same people who shared the post and showed genuine interest ended up buying the book. Make a action plan and figure out the right people you want to reach.

2. Amazon Pricing and Royalties

Before self-publishing I thought you get all of your royalties and money. This is true if the buyers are buying the book directly from you or your personal website. When people buy your book from Amazon you are not even getting half of those royalties. It is a very small amount. My book is listed as $23.00 on Amazon. When people buy it from Amazon I get around $6.00 maybe. I know it sounds weird right? But when Amazon is the company pushing the books out and you are using their platform you basically get nothing. I strongly encourage people to buy my book from me because I worked hard on it and I get all the money. Amazon Kindle royalties are better then the paperback versions (Create Space). I get almost all of the royalties from the Kindle version, so that’s a good thing. When dealing with pricing and royalities really figure out which company best fits your needs. They wont be perfect, but different things work for different people.

3. Marketing Strategies (Social Media Posting at Specific Times)

Social media is very helpful when promoting a book. I use it everyday. I created a separate page for my book and promote it on my personal page as well. What I’ve learnt is to set specific times when you post on social media. There is nothing worst then posting something promoting your business and getting no likes. It could be a followers thing, but it could also be the time you post it. I had to learn a strategy of figuring out when people are mostly on social media and use common hashtags to grab people’s attention.

4. Building a E-mail List (Subscribers)

I watched a webinar for young self-published authors that explains some things you could do as far as marketing and learned about the art of a e-mail list and subscribers. For my blog I have subscribers that get automatic emails every 2 weeks of when the new blog is posted, but I don’t have that same list of people on a e-mail list on my website. A e-mail list is similar to subscribers but it is a list of people you have networked with and have their contact information, so when you need a favor or help in certain areas you can depend on that list. I don’t personally have a e-mail list; I am working on that right now. But I do take people’s business cards and make it my business to keep them in a safe area for future reference.

5. How Hard It Would Be To Get People To Post Reviews

Before releasing my book I didn’t know how hard it would be to get people to leave reviews for the book after they have finished or while they are reading. I don’t know what a good strategy for this is because I am still figuring that out. I have plenty of people who have brought and read the book but getting them to put reviews on Amazon or my Facebook business page has been a challenge. What I have been doing is just tagging the people who have brought the book and reminding them to leave reviews. I have gotten a few reviews on Amazon and the Facebook page, but the goal is to get everybody that buys a copy to leave a honest review.