Student Examples: Distribute & Publish
Welcome back to how to write and publish your e-book. We've just been talking about-- well we've been talking about some community building with Sarah J. Bray and how to start gathering the people around the publication of your book. In this step specifically, we've been talking about, actually how to get your book up on the web in a way that people can buy it. And we looked at the pros and cons of both publishing on your own site and publishing on Amazon. Of course, the good news is is that you do not have to choose. There's no choosing in e-book publication (laughs). There's just lots and lots of options and lots of different ways to take advantage of all of the technology that's available to us. All the different reader experiences that are out there. All the different ways to engage with the people that you want in your communities. And so to get some different examples of what's going on, in step four I showed a lot about my particular sales strategy and how I decide how I'm gonna...
publish my books. But I wanted to invite some of our students up as well to talk about how they want to distribute and publish their books as well. So let's switch over to student examples. Shanon if you wanna come back on up to the hot seat. Yeah, now I'm gonna give you another opportunity to introduce yourself. So tell us who you are and what you do and then tell us what your book is about.
Sure, so I'm Shanon Doolittle and I'm a fundraising mentor that works in the nonprofit space. And I teach non-profits how to raise more money by taking better care of their supporters or as we call them donors. And my working title now for the book is "Think It Forward."
Oh, we have a working title now?
Oh, no, no, no! Yes, yes we do! I thought-- you were like, "Wait, already?" Oh, yes, I have a working title, "Think It Forward" because hi, that makes so much sense.
Hashtag, think it forward.
Hashtag, well that's the whole thing. I think I need to start a movement around this.
The whole idea is teaching organizations or showing organizations how to engage their supporters through gratitude as a way to help them to raise more money so they can do more great things in the communities they serve.
Fantastic, so one thing that Sarah talked about was putting people first.
So the first question I have for you in terms of thinking through the thought process, thinking through the process of deciding how you're gonna distribute and publish this book is you've got a very unique, ideal reader. It's a very specific set of people, do you have any idea how they prefer to consume content?
Absolutely so I actually think that when I look at my ideal reader and who I poll as an audience, they tend to be a younger fundraiser just because they typically they respond well to my personality. More so than maybe a 65-year-old dude that's been fundraising in the university system forever and ever. I've changed my mind, this particular lesson is just-- my minds blow up because I've listened to all the other cool people and I'm like, "Oh no, I wanna do that, and now I wanna do that." and I'm just trying to zero in because again for me my whole thing is around really, again, I'm at a space where people are asking me, "Where is your book?" I get on stage in these large conferences in my industry and they're like, "Where's the book? I don't have a book so for me it's about publishing that darn book, and I think getting on Amazon or getting on Barnes & Noble realizing that you and I are probably working at different book sellers at the same time-- yes, yes we were-- back in the day, 'cause I was at VNN. I know--
I got to wear jeans to work.
I know you did! (laughter) I had to wear the elf costume at Christmas, one time.
It was horrible. Just nightmares. But back to this idea of just wanting to have a book that they can go to, that they can get. So the idea of publishing it first on the Kindle platform and then maybe, like Brett talked about, in terms of doing a print piece later. Because a lot of my speaking gigs, part of the negotiations in terms of the fees is they will buy the book.
So they'll say, "We've got a 100 people so we'll buy your book, "at a 100 people, plus your speaking fee." That's how you negotiate that, in our world. It just makes sense to have that darn book.
That is such a great point and I am so glad that you brought that up. Although, I bet you could... Print, yes, I'm all for print. I bet if you got creative I bet there would be a way for you to do that digitally, as well. One of the things that I had done that was really successful with, the art of earning and this was a complete brain-fart of a great idea (laughs) was, you know MOO cards? MOO business cards
Yes, oh yeah, who doesn't know MOO cards?
Okay, excellent so you know how you print up the front of it but on the back of it it can be all sorts of different things. So I made MOO cards specifically for my book that had just a URL that went straight to the book. Then on the back of that I had different quotes. So when I would speak at conferences I would, in my workshop area or whatever, go around and just put a card at everyone's place. And it almost turned into this little fortune-cookie thing because it was sort of a money mantra that you could assume for the day or the week or however it was. I got so many compliments on that. Another thing that I've done with MOO cards is actually print up-- I did this for Pioneer Nation, Chris Guillebeau's event because they were willing to put my book in gift bags. And I was willing to give my book in gift bags. I would have been very happy to do that but I totally let the printing deadline go. Because, duh print, it takes time. I'm not good at time (laughter), planning, yes and no. Anyhow, what we did was actually print up postcards that looked like just like the cover of the book. Had a little bookmark icon on it that said, "Free copy." Then, on the back of it it said exactly how to get that free copy but I bet you could do the same thing. Invoice the conference for the number of those books, at wholesale, or however that works out. Then, put those postcards together for people so that they could get the book on their Kindle, or on their PDF, on their computer, or however, even the audio book. So in the meantime while you're getting things together you get this first book published, or that first edition published, like Sarah talked about. Then you can work on making it better from there.
Yes, yes absolutely. I love it. I think it goes back to this whole idea around when that diamond that you talked about and how I really want this one to be contained to handwritten notes. And just that idea of having the postcard, which is paper and we love paper. And stationary is a big deal if you're handwriting notes and all that other kind of things. And having a set of postcards or something. I have business cards where every one of them has a little saying because I talk about always opening up a letter with a nice line so I have, "Every tin man wishes for a heart like yours," or these kind of sayings that really just put people in a place of (both together)
awwwwe. So thinking about how I can use those ah moments to, to create an experience to or asking my community to come up with those one-liners that then become-- so I mean, really--
Share your favorite one line
Hashtag, Think It Forward. That think it forward, and then those become part of them. Yeah, I know, this is getting good.
Okay, but I have another idea for you.
I'm so sorry.
Take it. Why are you apologizing?
Because I don't want to get too far away from e-book publishing.
Oh, stop, stop. Stop, Tara, stop.
What if you actually designed a set of note cards-- yes, and again, with the conference thing, you get the free digital copy of the book but all of your people also get this free starter set of note cards.
No, done. I love it. So my other goal in life is to open up my own little boutique paper store.
Oh my, goodness!
So this is totally up my alley
Can you even imagine? (laughs)
Yes, this is totally up my alley so yes.
I love that.
I think you have another course about that I should take.
Probably, yeah. (laughter)
No but this is wonderful, I love it. But I like the whole idea of-- but I'm one of those people to probably like-- you all were-- now you're brain starts to go. And I just wanna remember that I want to get this out quick. I wanna get it out and so I could be in this process for eons thinking about how to do it perfectly but really my goal is to get a book on Amazon so I'm gonna start there, and then build.
Boom. Love it. Awesome. Shanon, thank you so much.
Stacey, why don't you come on back up and we'll talk about your distribution and publication strategy, as well. So remind us who you are, what you do, and what your book is about.
So I'm Stacey Howe-Lott, and I'm a teacher. I work with entrepreneurs to help them create better training. My book is gonna be to show people how easy it is and how easily you can create training that actually gets results with your clients.
To add to their bottom line, right?
To add to their bottom line, exactly.
Let's not forget the money phase.
Yeah, yeah the money. I can help you, I can-- yeah.
Okay, perfect. What are you thinking in terms of distribution publication?
I'm thinking what I wanna use the book for is to get more speaking gigs and to expand my audience. So as a profile raiser so I think Kindle would be a good choice for that, Amazon, to get more exposure.
Yeah, absolutely. Then, from there I think your strategy is all about pitching media. So local media, major media, TV, print, online, whatever but you get that by-line of Stacey Howe-Lott is the author of, it's available on Amazon. Then you take that and then you run with it, right? (laughter)
Because it's not just the book that gets the speaking gigs, although it's often the book that gets the speaking gigs. It's generally that journey of how people actually come to buying the book, right? They see the piece about training as cornerstone of your revenue model in Ink Magazine. They find out who this Stacey Howe-Lott person is, they search her for her book on Amazon, they buy the book, they love the book, they use it. "Oh my gosh, I'm organizing a conference. "I need to have Stacey Howe-Lott. "She's gonna totally bring the house down." That's how it happens. It's this journey piece that someone goes on as they're finding out about you, your ideas, and your book. so I think if speaking is this big goal for you then also major media has to be part of that goal, as well.
Awesome, and then keep in mind what Shanons been saying too which is that she's been at speaking gigs and people are asking her for her book. So be thinking always-- one of the sayings of putting together a book proposal, going the traditional publishing route is you always need to have your next book in mind. Don't ever propose the first book, or the next book without the next book after that in mind. Chris Guillebeau is such a great example of that in the traditional publishing world that man always knows what his next book is going to be. And it's what's allowed him to produce so many books, so many good, thick, juicy, case-study laden books in such a short period of time that are all best-sellers. You can do the exact same thing so again I don't want to get ahead of us here. We are just trying to get that first book out, get it on Amazon, get it on your website or whatever. But I want you to start thinking about what that next book is going to be, as well. Because another thing about speaking engagements is that on your speaking page on your website yes, you're gonna highlight your book, you're gonna show that off as a keynote topic, maybe two keynote topics but you really wanna have at least three keynote topics, on your speaking page. So you can actually use that to start thinking about what that next book is going to be and start
Piloting that content.
testing it out, exactly. So I want you to have that speaking page where you're showing off your book, listing it as a keynote topic but also starting to test that second topic, as well.
That's great. Thank you.
Yeah, thank you Stacey.
All right so we are just about to-- finish things out here (laughs) with step number five. And step number five is all about marketing your book. Marketing is step number five because as I see it marketing your book is a long game. There's the short game of release date and getting as many people reading that book and buying that book on the first day as possible. After that, nothing has a long tale like a book. Nothing lasts like a book. So we wanna be able to create plans and think about marketing in terms of longterm. That, like Sarah said is all about gathering the people and thinking about people first. I've got three different marketing strategies coming up in step five to get you thinking about your people and get them talking about your book. Sound good?
All right, let's do it.