For information about ebook publishing, let me direct you to the Internet. I got over sixty-eight million results when I did an Internet search using keywords, “publish ebook.” I suggest that you note several links, study the companies, compare them, do additional research on those you may consider and make an informed decision. Here is a directory of ebook publishers including around sixty companies: http://www.ebookcrossroads.com/epublishers.html
Remember, too, that Self Publishing, Inc. offers E-Book Conversion services. You’ll get both the Kindle and the ePub editions when you have selfpublishing.com do the heavy lifting for you.
But what about promoting an ebook? Does an ebook require marketing effort? Or are they selling so well that it’s not necessary? Oh yes, some of them are selling, but only because they are being promoted.
Question: How does one go about promoting an ebook?
Answer: Pretty much the same way you would promote any other book.
Now that isn’t what you wanted to hear/read, is it? You were hoping for an easier path to bookselling success. Sorry. But publishing, no matter what route you take—which publishing choices you make—is a fiercely competitive business that requires your full attention and all of the creativity and energy you can muster.
Now, if you still want to produce that ebook, or you have one for sale, let’s discuss your book promotion options.
1: Certainly, you’ll want to showcase your ebook through your website and, perhaps, at several ebook sites. Ebook Architects provides a good list of ebook retailers and distributors. http://ebookarchitects.com/conversions/retailers.php. Also check out UntreedReads’ new distribution program. They distribute ebooks to nearly seventy-five ebook outlets. http://www.untreedreads.com
2: Enhance interest in your ebook by showing a book trailer at your site, offering an exciting contest to go along with the content of your ebook, creating podcasts for download and, of course, make it possible and convenient for potential customers to purchase your ebook from your site.
3: Have your ebook published in many forms—to accommodate readers with all devices—Kindle, Nook, Neo, Sony Reader, Kobo, etc. This small step will provide big benefits.
4: Get your ebook reviewed many times over, just as you would for a print book. More and more reviewers are reviewing ebooks and self-published books. The key is to do the research and find the reviewers that accept ebooks in the category/genre/topic of your book.
You can do this by researching other ebooks like yours and finding out who is reviewing them. Visit the author’s media page or review/testimonials page at their website, for example. Here are links to a few large directories of book reviewers.
5: Now here’s the ebook promotion suggestion you didn’t think you would see here—the one you have been avoiding, you say, “for obvious reasons.” Yes, I’m going to suggest that you make public appearances with your ebook. Book speaking engagements at venues where your audience congregates.
So how does the author sell ebooks in the back-of-the-room after presenting a workshop or entertaining an audience with stories from his fiction ebook? More and more people carry their readers with them and may actually be able to upload your ebook from your website or from Amazon on the spot. How cool is that?
For those who are not prepared to make a purchase now, provide professional take-aways. Design bookmarks or postcards with the amazing book cover on one side and a description of the ebook content or story and ordering information on the other. (Additional ideas under #6, Reserve Booths at Book Festivals.)
6: Reserve booths at book festivals, flea markets, even the county fair. Here’s another activity that many ebook authors avoid because they don’t have something tangible to put into potential readers’ hands. And you would let this stop you from getting out and meeting your audience? Haven’t you heard that personality sells books? And this includes ebooks.
Here are some ideas for promoting ebooks at a book festival:
- Copy a chapter of your book on CDs or DVDs and hand them out along with your professional promo piece.
- Have your book trailer showing on your computer screen or electronic picture frame throughout the event.
- Offer a three-day book festival special—a discount for those who order the ebook from your site within a certain time-period.
- Have a sign-up sheet and add those names/email addresses to your growing email list. Contact everyone on the list when you get home with a link to your site and a reminder to order the ebook.
7: Consider the advantages of doing personal appearances for an ebook.
- You don’t have books to cart around.
- You can concentrate solely on promoting your book—no sales or autographing to distract you.
- You don’t have to worry about theft. Yes, people will occasionally walk off with a book without paying.
How do you promote an ebook? As you can see, there is little difference from the way you promote a print book. If you produced an ebook so you wouldn’t have to promote, you’re not off the hook. And if you thought your promotional options were limited with an ebook, perhaps you realize now that your obligations and your options are limitless.