Words have Power, but can they generate an income?
I’ve struggled with this one for many years. The goal of my ‘words’ are to make an impact on readers’ lives and tell the world the stories that dwell inside my head. It seems that if you are an Indie Author looking to live off of your sales and royalties, you are in for a long wait. Not to say it is not possible, but you have to continue on with your ‘other’ career until that time comes.
I myself, have chosen the Indie (self publishing) route, instead of Traditional, because I would hate to have someone tell me how to ‘edit my story’. To be honest, it would feel like a knife through my heart. I want to always hold the rights to My Story.
So, what can we do to sustain and maintain? Here’s a few tips:
- Always remain in marketing mode. I cannot tell you how many missed opportunities I’ve encountered when meeting a new connection and not mentioning my books, for fear of sounding arrogant or boasting, or even too ‘salesy’.
I was finishing up a project with a healthcare client and the other consultant I was working with were exchanging contact info and she just happened to mention a book she was finishing over the weekend. I decided to share my Amazon Author page with her and guess what…she bought every single one of my books! Ebook, Paperback and Audio! She was so excited for my success. Since I really have no family support, this was so overwhelming for me to experience. So, bottom line, even when you are scared to mention your books, do it anyway. What’s the worse that can happen?
- Next, diversify your marketing strategies. You are NOT a big company, so you don’t have established relationships with different media outlets. Work within your budget and diversify but ask around and read reviews from other authors first. There is a great community on Goodreads for Indie Authors that I find helpful, but I’m sure there are plenty more out there. I’ll give you an example….I’ve tested Book Bub every which way but Up and it is just not worth the $ for me, so I moved to a different platform. I find much success with The Fussy Librarian, Bargain Booksy, and making SEO key word improvements to my web site. Which leads me to #3, your web site!
- Be sure to have a professional ecommerce web site because there are no royalties to worry about and you can sign books for readers and ship them out with special promotional items to other books! i.e., bookmarks, mugs, tees. Since I write in multiple genres, it is important to let them know what other books I’ve written that they might enjoy.
I hope this was helpful, and I look forward to next week’s episode of Words Have Power.