Mistakes of Self-Published Book Authors
The Self-Publishing Balancing Act
The mistakes of self-published book authors can be overwhelming: A collective cheer rang out among aspiring authors when self-publishing emerged, removing the gatekeepers and approval barriers of traditional publishing. Finally, anyone could become an author on their own terms! The possibilities seemed endless, and writers everywhere dreamed of effortless success.
However, most soon faced a rude awakening. Merely publishing a book does not equate to sales and fame. In their haste, many new authors skip a crucial step – actually marketing effectively. It’s a brutal mistake, as quality writing alone rarely convinces readers to buy your book when faced with millions of options.
Without a publisher’s PR machine, self-published authors must painstakingly build an audience themselves. It requires grit, strategic planning, budgeting time and money for promotions, leveraging connections, and never-ending persistence. Far from the illusory overnight success stories of lore, it’s a balancing act to incrementally earn loyal readers.
But here’s the silver lining – with some business savvy and the right marketing foundations, determined self-published authors CAN compete with traditionally published bestsellers. The resources exist to tread the path independently, if you avoid the missteps of overestimated potential and underestimated effort.
It won’t be easy, but staying grounded in reality makes the self-publishing dream achievable on your own steam. Step one? Let’s talk marketing tactics…
Mistakes of Self-published book authors
A harsh but necessary truth – self-publishing without an author website spells almost certain failure in today’s oversaturated book market. It represents a fundamental misunderstanding of what compels book sales in the internet age.
While your meticulously honed words may seem to carry mystical influence, most readers will never know they exist among millions of works on Amazon without proper context. You must become your own publisher, publicist, and platform builder.
See it from a reader’s perspective – browsing book listings without links offering deeper insight into the author and their work, why take a gamble? It signals credibility issues, lack of marketing savvy, even disrespect for the reader’s time and attention.
In contrast, authors who actively court readers through websites and social platforms have thriving engagement, visibility, and sales. The personal connection and trust built entices more purchases and organic word-of-mouth interest.
So if you believe in your book but aren’t equipped to dedicate yourself to off-platform promotion, reconsider self-publishing altogether. Because virtually no one will discover a great book without an author website anchoring its online presence in today’s ecosystem.
The uplifting flip side? Authors wholly committed to showcasing their work through owned platforms can indeed thrive as independents. It just requires embracing book selling’s modern rules.
Craft a Compelling Cover or Kiss Book Sales Goodbye
Let’s be frank – in self-publishing, an amateurish book cover screams “skip this book” to readers and squanders your sales potential. Yet far too many authors sabotage themselves by neglecting cover design.
In an overcrowded marketplace, an unprofessional cover signals your book isn’t worth a reader’s time or money when more polished options abound. We’re talking sloppy graphics, clip art monstrosities, mismatched fonts – covers better suited to decade-old PowerPoints.
But in the digital age when books are literally judged by their covers, you must invest in polished design that entices scanning eyes to linger. The stark reality is readers have no patience for subpar presentation when one click brings a bounty of beautiful books vying for their attention.
So if you truly believe your words deserve to be read, respect them enough to package them invitingly. Commission a cover designer versed in your genre’s visual language. Because a brilliant book obscured by an amateur cover might never get another glance before readers move on.
The good news? Once you nail that vital first impression, you grant your book – and yourself as an author – instant legitimacy. For now, your words can shine as readers crack open your self-published stories, transported from compelling cover to immersive first page and beyond. But that mystical reader journey begins with a cover that sells what your book is worth.
The Twin Pillars of Self-Publishing Success: Platform and Polished Prose
Aspiring authors, let this vital truth be your guiding light – the path to self-publishing prosperity rests on twin pillars: an engaged platform and excellence of the editor’s pen.
Without hungry fans eagerly awaiting your latest work, even the cleverest turns of phrase launch as forlorn whispers lost in the din of millions. Build your base through blogs, social media, guest articles – nourish the soil for your books to bloom within a community curated for your voice.
Yet a robust platform alone cannot shield books with lackluster writing from quickly fading into obscurity. Respect your devoted fans; reward their attention with prose honed to precision by editors who understand your genre and style intimately. For every breakout indie phenom like The Martian, an entire team stood behind, polishing rough Potential into diamond Brilliance.
The formula is proven across countless success stories: establish your niche, grow your eager readership, craft your manuscripts to shine flawlessly, retain fan engagement. This is the narrow path to self-made bestsellerdom.
Yes, the pillars require immense effort to erect. But once raised, your stories have a stable foundation to change lives and lift you to prolific author realms beyond your wildest dreams. And it all starts with a website to call your own.
Promotions are then key
Congrats, self-published author! Your book is live on platforms, available to eager readers around the world. Now to sit back and watch those royalties roll in, right?
Not so fast. Unlike traditional publishers who market new releases, the onus falls entirely on self-published authors to promote their own books. And sadly, many fail to allot proper time, budget, and elbow grease for marketing.
The mistaken logic goes: “I wrote the book – my duty is complete. The quality will speak for itself and drive word of mouth.” But with over 5 million ebooks on Amazon alone, quality gets drowned out without active promotion. Readers cannot buy books they never hear about in the first place.
Similar to any consumer product, books must be intentionally positioned in front of target readers to drive sales. Self-published titles even more so, lacking distributors placing them in stores and libraries.
That’s why successful indie authors dedicate months of prep work to launch marketing campaigns, leveraging mailing lists, influencers, promotions, and advertising to share their work. They continue nurturing awareness post-launch through blogging, social media, and speaking events.
In other words, writing THE book was only step one. Now comes step two: relentless marketing and audience engagement to ensure its survival. So steel yourself for the challenge, self-published scribe! Thriving independently requires embracing business savvy, not just creative brilliance. Let’s strategize your launch marketing plan.
Every Writer can help. We promote your book for free. After you have it published, submit it to us! Please leave us a comment!