The industry of self-publishing has continued to register a rapid growth as more authors continue to throw out new information. This information is also constantly upgraded and what a certain author says today might be considered wrong in a month according another expert or author’s opinion.

The prices of self-publications keep fluctuating as competition continues to tighten. However, self-publishing makes it easier for you to publish your own work whether fiction, non-fiction or collections of short stories.

Here are what I believe to be the best tips for self-publishing a book:

  1. Successful self-publishing is value oriented. Don’t just write to make money, but aim at providing entertaining and useful information to people, and to influence their lives in a positive way. A publication that does not benefit the reader is likely to fail.
  2. Most successful self-publishers supplement their work with a blog or a website (please contact us for that, we can help). Ensure that you prepare a blog in advance and use it to introduce your book long before you actually release the publication into the market.

This creates an audience and connects with potential customers who will most likely want to buy a copy of the book, depending on how you have marketed it.

Providing free but useful information to your audience on a blog will convince them to return the favor by buying your book. Furthermore, blogs are among the biggest determinants of successful self-publishing in the current era.

  1. Stay connected and available. Some authors just disappear into thin air after the publishing of their books making it difficult for readers to reach them. If readers send you emails about the book, make sure you are in a position to at least respond to 90% of them. Avoid acting like a celebrity-author and be more of a friendly writer.
  2. Create an attractive book cover for your publication. It is important to remember that the cover is what greets the eye when a potential reader sees your book, and if it is not catchy, the publication may not sell well.

Although you might not have the resources to design the cover, there are a lot of options to design a great cover for less than $200.

  1. Readers might tolerate grammatical and prose mistakes, but most readers hate typing errors and it makes your publication appear unprofessional. Therefore, before releasing your book into the market, pass it through a copyeditor for proof reading.
  2. Consider sending free samples to friends and welcome any type of comments. We offer one of the best proof reading services available on the market, don’t be afraid to reach us.

To ensure that your book sells in the long term, avoid parsimony with millions of review copies. Despite the size of your audience, always release an adequate number of review copies to prepare the reader for what to really expect in the book.

Giving review copy works great for non-fiction if done right in order to get leads.

  1. Set the appropriate price for the book. Selling the book at a price you think is appropriate may lead to a miserable failure of the publication. Find out what similar books are selling for and the price the market will bear. This may help you understand what readers are willing to pay.

Remember, readers don’t really care how much you want to make with the publication, they just want a good book at a good deal.

  1. The self-publishing industry is greatly affected by piracy. However, fighting it affects the reader more than it affects the pirate. Applying passwords on each of your PDF files is a good way of protecting them from pirates, but this irritates your readers in return.

With the available amount of technology, it is almost impossible to stop piracy, and attempts to do so will make your audience feel like you care more about the money than their experience.

The only way to reduce the effects of piracy is to make your publication available in all the available outlets. Outlets such as Amazon, Smashwords and Createspace are important tools as far as counteracting piracy is concerned. Don’t let your readers search on Google for pirated copies of your own book.

Another way of preventing piracy is ensuring that your readers  This could be done by providing much of the information for free through newsletters and blogs.

For instance, if you provide as much as 80% of the work for free to the customer, they will probably return the favor by buying the original book for the remaining 20% instead of buying a pirated copy. The point here is to seek to satisfy the customer’s reading desire, and the money will come as a reward.

  1. It is important to promote your publication, but too much promotion will affect its sale. Avoid the mention of the book in every status update on Facebook or Twitter. If you have a big list of followers on Twitter or a huge amount of traffic to your blog, it doesn’t necessarily mean those people want to receive advertisements.

Only promote your book every once in a while, unless you are releasing it for the first time. Provide a link to the product on your blog and then leave the rest to the audience; otherwise you are going to repel most of them.

  1. Maintain an active blog about the book. Although this point is mentioned in tip number two of this list, it doesn’t do any harm to stress its importance.

Even when your book fails to sell as you anticipated, continue providing information for the audience on your blog, and use the book as a secondary part of it.

The competition in today’s publishing industry is brutal and you must be persistent to attain the amount of success you desire. Your publication will probably die off if it lacks adequate support by a blog.

If your book makes decent sales on Amazon, it may find its way to the “Popular Books” section, to your advantage. Books that appear on the popular list are more likely to sell even more to people who know very little about the supporting blog because of its visibility.

  1. Although writing is quite rewarding, relying on one book for a living may not be enough. Therefore, start working on the next release each time you finish the current one.

Promote the next publication at the end of the current one. This way, people who have read your previous work and found it interesting and useful may consider buying other books from you thus increasing your sales.

  1. When writing their first book, many authors feel that they might never have the material to write the second one. Set short and achievable goals such as publishing one book every year.

The way books are sold today is not the way they were sold some years ago. The ancient publishing styles involved writing a book on paper, and taking it to the bookshop.

These methods have changed and you must stay abreast with the current modes to remain competitive. A few years ago, for instance, authors used the PDF as the market standard for their work. But the PDF is quickly being overtaken by other publishing formats such as MOBI and EPUB. Most modern readers will opt for the book written with the latest the formats.

  1. People will probably like you as much as they like your work. For instance, the book “Bang Poland” was bought by many people who have likely never been to Poland. Such a situation could be attributed to the readers’ love of that author’s books.
  2. Write about something that is directly useful to the reader. It is more challenging trying to sell memoirs and fiction nowadays since many people prefer informational products with a direct benefit to their lives.
  3. Appreciate every support by your audience. When a reader posts a comment about your book, make sure they know you have received and read it by saying thank you.
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Radu Balas

Radu is the Founder of Publishing Addict and author of "Sell More Books Using Your Author Website | The Easiest Way To Brand, Build, Market, and Manage Your Authorship" Soon available on Amazon.