SPQ Podcast LaunchAlmost a year ago, I started a series of blog posts called “Kindle Publishing Questions.”

The idea was to answer the questions I often get from readers.

Unfortunately, I gave up on this idea because it limited my writing time. I felt that every hour I spent on blog posts was an hour I didn’t have to write my Kindle books. (Honestly, I can only write a few hours each day without my mind turning into tapioca pudding.)

Things changed when I started doing podcast interviews on a weekly basis. Whenever a host asked me a self-publishing question, I could rattle off a detailed response. I didn’t have to think about “the right way” to answer the question (like I do when writing). Instead, I simply described what works for me.

From this experience, I’ve realized there is a market for a short-form podcast that answers the questions authors have a on a regular basis.

That’s why I’m launching a podcast called “Self-Publishing Questions.” (Clever name, right?)

Here’s a brief overview of what I’ll cover and how you can get involved. [click to continue…]

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Amazon recently launched Kindle Unlimited.  Does it help authors? Or will it kill your sales?  Check out these 12 thoughts to learn about the long-term results of this program.

It’s been over a month since Amazon launched their Kindle Unlimited (KU) program, which gives readers unlimited access to 600,000 titles and audiobooks for the price of $9.99 per month.

During this time, there has been varied opinions on what this program means to both authors and readers.

On one extreme, there are people with the “Chicken-Little-the-sky-is-falling” mindset who feel this is yet another example of how Amazon is destroying books.

And on the other end, there are the people who praise every change that Amazon makes to their publishing platform.

Also during this time, I’ve had a number of people email me, asking my opinion on Kindle Unlimited. Did I see an increase in downloads for my habit books? Or am I seeing a negative impact on sales?

To be honest, I have mixed feelings about KU. While I love the idea, I do think there are some negatives to this program that might hurt authors in the long term.

So in today’s post, I’ll go over 12 thoughts I have about KU—both the good and the bad. Plus, I’ll cover a few strategies you can use to get the most out of this program.

Let’s get to it. [click to continue…]

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work-smarterMany Kindle authorities claim that launching a book for free no longer works (I’ve definitely said this recently.)  Fortunately people like Nick Loper (the Chief Side Hustler at SideHustleNation.com) are proving me wrong. 

With the right amount of effort and smart work, you can parlay a free book launch into a profitable stream of income.  In today’s guest post, Nick details that exact strategies he used to get over 20,000 free downloads and create a lifelong asset. 

So take it away Nick…

Last month, I released my latest book project, Work Smarter, into the world.

The book actually started out as a blog post idea, but as the text grew past 10,000 words (eventually totaling 20,000), I figured it would be better suited for book format.

The project is all about the online tools and resources today’s entrepreneurs are using to get their work done. I’m always excited to learn about new tools, and I know other people feel the same way.

There’s a joy in discovering something that can make your life easier or make your work more efficient — and that’s what Work Smarter intended to do.

(And based on the feedback, it did. If you missed it, I guarantee you’ll find something new, novel, and useful among the 350+ resources — or your money back.)

Here are some of the hard numbers from the launch:

  • 20,215 free downloads
  • 559 contributors
  • 1247 paid downloads (so far)
  • $427.83 in royalties the first week, and over $1400 in the first month
  • 413 individual emails sent to contributors (183 responses, 44% response rate)
  • 378 resources shared
  • 334 new email subscribers (out of 580 visitors – 57% conversion)
  • 246 emails to featured companies sent (64 responses, 26% response rate)
  • $208.23 in “production costs”
  • 200+ retweets and a social reach in the hundreds of thousands
  • 156 borrowed copies (Borrows on Kindle earn about $2 each)
  • $108.43 in affiliate commission (explanation below)
  • 79 Fancy Hands requests (more on this below)
  • 70 5-star reviews
  • 3 guest post opportunities, including one on EntrepreneurOnFire.com
  • 2 podcast guest appearances on shows much bigger than mine
  • 2 free t-shirts, including this one from Buffer.

In this post I’ll share the step-by-step process and methodology I went through to create and market the book, including which tools I used most from it to get it done, what worked best, and what mistakes I made along the way.

(Including why I changed the title mid-launch, what I could have done better on social media, and how the first 17,000 readers got a hard-to-navigate version of the book.)

Ready? Let’s do this. [click to continue…]

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Authority Traffic and Income ReportWelcome to the fourth update of the Authority Internet Business Traffic and Income Report.

This case study was started over year and a half ago, with a goal to show how to build an authority business for a brand new site called DevelopGoodHabits.com (or DGH for short).

In each post, I detail the techniques I use to create reliable, long-term Internet income from a single brand.

At first, I thought the site would make money from a variety of sources, but so far I’ve stuck with Kindle publishing because it’s working really well.

To illustrate what’s possible, I provide a quarterly breakdown of the traffic and income that the business has generated.

If you haven’t read the last three updates, here they are:

Like you, I’m a big fan of the sites that detail the results of their business—warts and all. It’s my hope that you’ll take the lessons from each of these updates to grow your business and learn where to best focus your attention.

Just like in the last couple of updates, there have been a number of breakthroughs (and setbacks) in the last quarter. The income has skyrocketed, yet I made some mistakes that helped me learn a few valuable lessons about what it takes to build a lasting brand. So let’s start by talking about them…   [click to continue…]

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Origin StoryWe all understand the importance of building an email list.

As a Kindle book author, this list can be the #1 generator of sales during a book launch.

The problem?

Many authors struggle with “what” to send email subscribers. They ask questions like: Can I promote my old books? How often should I send email? Should I focus on free content or ask subscribers to spend money?

Honestly, there’s a lot you can do with email, but your primary goal is to build relationships with subscribers.

When subscribers see you as someone real, they’re more likely to check out your books and potentially leave a positive review.

In today’s post, we’ll talk about a simply strategy for strengthening an email relationship. Specifically I’ll talk about why every author should add an “origin story” to their autoresponder sequence.

Let’s get to it. [click to continue…]

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Book Marketing Strategies AnalyzedBy now you’ve probably heard about the 80/20 Rule.

You know, the theory that states 80 percent of your results come from 20 percent of your efforts.

When it comes to Kindle Publishing, I feel this rule has many applications.

Sadly, one of them is that 80 percent of book sales are completely out of your hands. If Amazon “likes” your book, they’ll work hard to promote in places like their search engine results, the “Customers Also Bought” section, top category lists and targeted email campaigns.

It’s awesome to know that Amazon does a lot to market your books. The problem? This means that you as an author can only do so much to increase sales. In my experience, only 20 percent of my unit sales are directly affected by specific marketing strategies I’ve implemented. Everything else is driven by the Kindle marketplace.

The good news?

While your efforts only have a minimal impact on book sales, there are a handful of strategies that can have a significant impact on your bottom line. The trick is to know what actually works and what doesn’t.

Today’s post is a special one. Instead of talking about what works, I will show real-world data on the different marketing techniques I’ve tested over the past year. Each strategy will be analyzed, dissected and given an overall grade. Then, at the end, I’ll provide a couple of recommendations based 100 percent on the techniques I’m personally using in my Kindle business.

Let’s get to it. [click to continue…]

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Authority Business “Traffic and Income” Report #3 [Jan. to Mar. 2014]

April 24, 2014

How much income and traffic can an authority site generate? In this post, we go over the numbers from the first quarter of 2014.

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Traffic Hacking: How to Find (and Focus on) Your Top Sources of Web Traffic

April 1, 2014

Do you know what source of traffic converts the best? Check out this seven-step process to track, identify and focus in on your best source of web traffic.

40 comments Read More Here →

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7 Steps for Building a Team to “Level Up” Your Kindle Business

March 5, 2014

Many bloggers use the phrase “leveling up” when they talk about improving your life, career or business. The way I interpret it is taking something that works and making it even better. When it comes to a Kindle business, one way you can level it up is to build a team around your books. The [...]

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Authority Business Traffic and Income Report #2 [AIB]

January 20, 2014

Welcome to the second part of the Authority Internet Business Traffic and Income Report. This is a series I started almost a year ago. The goal? To show what it’s like to build an authority business from the ground up. The goal of every post is to detail the specific actions I take to grow [...]

90 comments Read More Here →

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Kindle Publishing Questions Answered (Part 4)

January 8, 2014

Welcome to part four of the Kindle publishing series! A few months back, I asked readers to submit any questions they had about writing and selling books on Amazon. In this series, I’ll go through each one and provide specific action items that you can take. Missed a previous post? Then check out these links: [...]

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Kindle Publishing Questions Answered (Part 3)

December 23, 2013

8 more questions are answered about the Kindle publishing process. Topics include Countdown Deals, the disadvantages of using PLR and whether a blog is necessary for long-term success.

44 comments Read More Here →