Expert Publishing Blog

authors, podcasts, marketing, sales

How Podcasting Helped One Author Find Her Marketing Happy Place

Launching an indie book can be a daunting endeavor. An author has so many options for marketing activities that it’s practically impossible to do all of them. Author Jenny Blake tried. But all that work took a toll. “I crashed three weeks before the book came out,” she said. So for her second book,...

indie authors, ebooks, bookstores

8 Tips for Indie Ebook Authors to Sell Print Books at Local Bookstores

Online stores are the most common venues for indie authors to sell their books, whether in digital or print format. And while digital publishing gives authors access to readers around the world, many self-published writers are also eager to get their books into neighborhood bookstores. So if you’re an indie author interested in getting...

authors, social media, twitter, facebook, sales

4 Steps to Selling More Books with Less Social Media

When I ask new email subscribers to tell me their number one book marketing challenge, the answer is overwhelmingly the conundrum that is social media: it takes too much time, and the results are difficult to measure. I agree. Without a solid understanding of how social media does and doesn’t work, authors resort to...

authors, libraries, books

6 Tips for Authors to Create Engaging Library Programs

Libraries are community service powerhouses. A peek at any library’s calendar of events reveals one tough fact: author programs are a small fraction of a library’s lineup. Patrons often shun author programs in favor of knitting classes, business improvement courses, and movie nights. Why? Many modern library users see libraries as one-stop community centers....

publishers, self-publishing, authors, amazon, marketing

How Publishers Can Build on Self-Publishing’s Victories

In recent articles, I have pointed with optimism to the green-shoots of recovery for the book industry after a bruising and challenging seven years. Print sales are on the way up, or at least finally not falling, depending on whom you speak to. Consumer ebook sales are dropping, but likely to be stabilizing against...

amazon, rapids, ebook, app, reading

Amazon Rapids and the Dumbing-Down of Reading

At first I thought it was a “Saturday Night Live” parody about ebooks for kids. We’re so addicted to info-snacking, seemingly less able to (and interested in) focus on long-form reading, so let’s create a new platform that helps foster even shorter attention spans for our kids. Amazon Rapids is nothing more than a series of...

ebooks, apps, reading, games, books, audiobooks

Do We Really Need to Innovate the Reading Experience?

Reading a book used to be considered a fairly straightforward experience. You opened the book (it was a print book) and you started reading. Today we have ebooks and audiobooks, which, to varying degrees, have changed our reading experiences. With an ebook, we can read that same print book on our phones, on our...

book publishing, publishers, books, ebooks, subscription services

How the Film Industry Could Change Book Publishing

Since 2005, multiple business models have been flourishing in the Scandinavian ebook market. With Storytel’s acquisition of its Danish rival subscription service provider Mofibo earlier this year, the large Northern European player is leading the way for the next generation of subscription services in the book industry. However, as seen in the music industry,...

publishers, books, ebooks, sales, retailers

It’s Time for Publishers to Think Outside the Market

Over the last 12-18 months, after a challenging, industry-evolving 5-7 years, there is a growing sense of cautious positivity in many parts of the book world. Print book sales are rebounding (or at least not still sliding, depending on whom you listen to), and ebook sales are now on a more predictable, if slower,...

publishers, sales, retail, genre fiction, apps

Fixing the Broken Experience of Genre Fiction Retail Online

For years, the numbers have been telling us that digital adoption among genre fiction readers is at least double that of the general and literary fiction reading audience. In fact, a recent report shows that romance, for example, makes up only 4.4 percent of print sales in the US, but a whopping 45 percent...

data, big data, publishers, books, sales, customers, readers

Big Data Is Coming to the Publishing Industry

Publishers are increasingly using big data to help them sell their book rights internationally. As the ebook market has grown over the last few years, so has the amount of data available to online retailers and publishers. Traditionally, though, publishers have not been able to get exact user or reader statistics. The digitization of...

curation, publishers, books, readers, consumers

The Power and Limits of Curation

We’re all drowning in content. From long-form writing on LinkedIn and Medium to snackable content in our Twitter and Instagram feeds, to the explosion of self-published books, we’re inundated with options. Eliot Peper said it well: Blogs made everyone a journalist. Self-publishing made everyone an author. YouTube made everyone a filmmaker. Itunes made everyone a...

google, google play, ebooks, data, amazon, kindle, apple, ibooks

Google Experiments and Fails with Book Discovery

Even though you probably never stray from Amazon’s Kindle reader app, I’d like to encourage you to expand your horizons. It’s a good idea to keep an eye on Apple iBooks and Google Play, for example, to explore other platforms and keep Amazon honest. After all, Amazon’s need to innovate diminishes if ebook platform...

publishers, customers, data, service

Big Data’s Power to Innovate Content and Enhance Reader Engagement

Consumption habits across industries, spanning different products and services, are evolving dramatically in the digital era. And the book publishing sector is not immune to these winds of change. Like film, music and other forms of content, books, too, are undergoing a major transformation in terms of both development and distribution, thanks to rapidly...

machine learning, publishers, data, metadata, bestseller list

Machine Learning and Bestseller Prediction: More Than Words Can Say

There’s been much recent conjecture on whether book sales can be predicted by text analysis alone. My company, Kadaxis, has dedicated the past few years to machine learning research and product development for the publishing industry. In our early days, we set out to build an algorithm to predict bestsellers, and tested it in...

publishers, bots, augmented reality, amazon, alexa

2016 Trend Report: What Publishers Need to Know

The Future Today Institute has created a terrific, free report summarizing key technology trends and what they mean for tomorrow. I’ve embedded the report below so you can quickly flip through it. I read the whole report and highlighted the most noteworthy elements for publishers below. That leads me (once again) to the topic...

social media, authors, sales, books, facebook, twitter

10 Things Authors Need to Stop Doing on Social Media Immediately

Almost every author has been told at some point, “You gotta get online and promote.” But only a small percentage of authors have actually been coached on social media best practices, resulting in hundreds of authors using social media completely wrong and turning readers off rather than attracting them. If you are guilty of...

libraries, ebooks, app, publishers, authors

Library Loans Are a Double-Edged Sword

Denmark experienced rapid growth in digital lending from libraries between 2011 and 2015. At first this was a welcome source of new revenue for publishers. But by the middle of 2015, the digital lending market had grown even larger than the commercial market for digital book sales. Similar to the New York Public Library...

indie authors, ebooks, bookstores

How Franchise Book Chains Can Survive Disruption

In 2010, the well-known movie rental franchise chain Blockbuster filed for bankruptcy—a sad ending to an otherwise very successful venture that, at its peak, in 2004, had more than 9.000 stores around the world. Unfortunately, some bookstores will suffer the same fate. But which ones will they be? Bookstores face inevitable challenges and changes...

data, big data, publishers, books, sales, customers, readers

Is It Possible to Predict the Next New York Times Bestseller?

The upcoming book The Bestseller Code is getting a great deal of buzz, forcing many of us to ask the question, Can one genuinely predict what kind of book will become a New York Times bestseller (typically considered the most prestigious bestseller list)? The promise of a formula for predicting a bestseller is getting...

data, big data, publishers

The Future of Publishing in a Data-Driven World

From the invention of the moveable printing press, in the 13th century, to the introduction of ebooks, in the mid-90s, there has never been a moment when the publishing industry has not been evolving to catch up to the way people select and purchase books. And yet for the longest time, the decision-making process...

publishers, books, ebooks, readers, content

How Are You Connecting with Your Customers?

From a publisher’s point of view, the people who actually buy and read books are still mostly nameless and faceless individuals. This, despite the fact that there are plenty of opportunities for publishers to establish a direct relationship with consumers. I’m not necessarily talking about selling direct; I’m referring instead to the opportunity to...

audiobooks, authors, books, indie authors

Authors, Can You Afford to Produce an Audiobook?

One of the first questions that indie authors and small- to mid-size publishers ask me about audiobook production is, “How much does it cost?” My answer is always, “It depends.” Producing an audiobook is like building a house: your choices dictate your final cost. Each recording is custom-made rather than mass-produced. When people contact...

seo, publishers, google, search, content

5 Traffic-Growing On-Page Optimization Techniques for Publishers

If you’ve read my previous article on keyword research, you’re probably ready to put your optimization efforts into action. Quite possibly the most important part of SEO is content creation, and the optimization of that content. In this article, I’m going to offer some insider tips on how to optimize your content and prepare...

authors, self-publishing, hybrid author, indie publishing, publishers

What Agents Should Know About Ebooks Made from PDFs

Agents, here’s what you should know about ebooks made from PDFs: they’re not perfect. Knowing this will put you in a better position to protect your authors’ work. While an ebook made from a PDF is almost certainly better than one made from a scan (OCR), don’t fall into the trap of thinking that it...

indie authors, ebooks, bookstores

Why Shop at a Brick-and-Mortar Bookstore?

Do you still shop at your local bookstore? I typically go once, maybe twice a year, and the last time for me was December 2015. This weekend, though, I made a rare summer visit to my local Barnes & Noble in search of books for my almost six-month-old grandson, Jasper. No matter how good...