Listen to this! Audiobooks are BOOMING

According to Forbes Magazine, United States audiobook sales reached nearly $1 billion in 2018 (final 2019 figures aren’t in yet), which continues a 7-year double-digit growth since 2012. One can only assume the sales will be even higher in 2019, and now in 2020, even higher still.

Is your book an audiobook yet? If it’s not, it should be, especially if your book falls into one of the following categories, which, according to Amazon, are the top-10 best-selling audiobook genres:

  1. Mystery & Suspense — narrators are particularly good at being spooky!
  2. Anything on the bestsellers list — surprise surprise!
  3. Science Fiction & Fantasy — during these pandemic times, is this really a surprise?
  4. History & Biographies — narrators have a knack for sounding knowledgeable
  5. Business & Self-Improvement — who has time to better themselves? Oh, yeah! I have a 1-hour commute!
  6. Children & Young Adult — who knew children like having books read to them?
  7. Inspiration & Religion — now your listeners can join those who hear God speak to them
  8. Erotica & Romance — is this really a surprise to anyone?
  9. Sports — now people can play fantasy football while they watch football AND listen to football!
  10. Westerns — Giddy-up! Listen, cowboys and cowgirls, it’s time to publish YOUR audiobook right now

 

Mermaid Eclipse by N.E. Carlisle

Author N.E. Carlisle is taking her latest book Mermaid Eclipse on tour — a Virtual Book Tour, that is, with Outskirts Press! Technology has created a wide variety of ways to reach audiences all over the world. All it takes is a little thinking outside the box, and nowadays you can market a self-published book in a variety of affordable and impactful ways. Virtual book tours, for example, are a great way to connect with readers from all corners of the globe, all from the comfort of your own home. Join N.E. Carlisle and Mermaid Eclipse as they appear in features and interviews (such as the one below) in the weeks and months ahead!

Technology has created a wide variety of ways to reach audiences all over the world. It just takes is a little thinking outside the box and you can market a self-published book in creative, affordable, and impactful ways. Consider book tours! Tours are a great way to connect with your readers and technology has made them easier and more cost effective than ever!


Luckily for us, N.E. was kind enough to answer a few questions as the tour was getting started so that we can give you a sneak peek into the mind of the creator of Mermaid Eclipse.

OP: Tell us a little bit about Mermaid Eclipse. What is it about?

N.E.: Twins Muriel and Morgan and their mysterious family curse.

OP: Why did you decide to write this story?

N.E.: I love everything about mermaids and the ocean. It was a story that I wanted to read.

OP: How did you get your book published?

N.E.: I chose to self-publish through Outskirts Press.

OP: What types of readers would be interested in this story?

N.E.: Young adult readers and anyone interested in mermaids, family curses or mysteries.

OP: What is special about your book?

N.E.: It takes an ancient theme but shared with fresh twists.

OP: What differentiates it from other books in the same category?

N.E.: This book is less about what is means to be a mermaid and more about what it means to be a twin.

OP: Have you published any other books?

N.E.: Yes, non-fiction.

OP: Do you plan to publish more?

N.E.: Yes, Mermaid Eclipse is the first book in a series.

OP: Thanks for your time, N.E.! We look forward to learning more about you as you visit other bloggers!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

N.E. Carlisle was born by the coast and loves everything about the ocean, especially its lore. She has written several non-fiction books, but Mermaid Eclipse is her debut novel. She spends her days surfing, writing, and playing with her three dogs.

For more information or to contact the author, visit https://www.outskirtspress.com/mermaideclipse

This author purchased the Virtual Book Tour marketing option, which allows self-publishing authors to connect with bloggers and harness the power of the blogosphere by taking their book on the “virtual road.” Learn more about this service by visiting your Publishing Center and reviewing the available marketing options.

Are you an author looking for help to market your self-published book?

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How Local Media Marketing Can Make Your Book Skyrocket (even while self-isolating)

If you’ve done any sort of local media marketing yourself, you know it is often easier said than done. Success typically comes down to perseverance. But success also depends upon contacting the right people at the right time.

Every city has its share of radio stations, and each of those radio stations have on-air personalities for designated blocks of time. Some radio programs are geared exclusively to music. Others, exclusively to news. And still others exclusively to a mash-up of music, entertainment, and listener engagement. Media marketing involves identifying the appropriate people to contact and making those in-roads.

Since you’re a local author in their area, they’re exponentially more likely to be interested than if you send an unsolicited pitch to a national or global program.

Other than radio, every major city also has its fair share of local newscasts and entertainment programs on television. These program producers are constantly on the prowl for unique, original programming featuring someone, or something, of local interest. In much the same manner you located and pitched the radio stations, you’ll identify and pitch the television producers, too.

Do you want more than radio and television exposure? How about city-wide newspapers and/or community leaflets or fliers. Almost all commercial areas from the suburbs to the major cities harbor newsletters, newspapers, coupon periodicals, and the like. And what do you think the chances are that your local community newspaper will write an article about a local author with a published book? We’re betting pretty good! In fact, your local community newspapers should also be one of your very first steps on the road to marketing, but the success rate is so high.

If you’re thinking this sounds like a lot of work, you’re right. But the results can make it worthwhile if you have the patience to do it right. And nowadays, much (if not all of this) can be done remotely via email, chat, and the telephone, making it an effective and safe method of marketing your book, even during COVID-19.

Want even more good news? Outskirts Press offers a Media Marketing Blitz option that does all this for you, and more. Throughout August our authors can receive an instant 10% savings with promo code: mediamarket

 

Amazon Featured Book of the Week

Now available on Amazon.com!


RowBoat Robbers 2nd Edition

by Winston B. Philpott

Price: $14.95

Winston B. Philpott’s “RowBoat Robbers 2nd Edition.” As two teenage boys came out of high school, wondering what to do to make money and live, they came up with a plan. They would act as fishermen and row around the Bay and rob stores. They had a good living for a short while, until the Law began to close in on them. They served their time, came out of jail, fell in love, got married and began to raise a family. It became the best love story of its time.

 Learn More 

 

Please note that product prices and availability are subject to change. Prices and availability were accurate at the time of this posting; however, they may differ from those you see when you visit Amazon.com.© Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Amazon, Amazon.com, the Amazon.com logo, and 1-Click are registered trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon.com, 410 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109-5210.

 

Would you like your book featured here? Buy Now

 

Tips for Using Video to Promote Books

It probably isn’t news to you that video is an important tool in your toolbox as a self-publishing author, and a critical part of your ongoing marketing strategy. So what videos should you be making, and how do you put those videos to work to sell more books?

The Outskirts Press Book Marketing Resource Center offers the answers to these questions (and more) by way of a new flip book titled Using Video to Promote Books. This is just one of the many eBooks addressing aspects of book marketing in the Book Marketing Resource Center and this library of eBooks is FREE for all authors who publish with Outskirts Press.

Here are three tips for getting started with video promotions, inspired by this new flip book:

1. Different audiences call for different videos.

When people put “book” and “video” in the same paragraph, the kind of video they’re usually talking about is a book trailer. And yes, a book trailer is fantastic for helping to generate buzz in the lead up to a book’s publication. It is not, however, the only kind of video worth making! Fans and followers gravitate to “how-to” and “behind-the-scenes” clips as well, and as safe distancing becomes a part of daily life, short clips of you reading excerpts from your book can help you connect with readers in lieu of a live and in-person reading. The key is to ask for each of your social media platforms: What kind of video would have the most effect right here and right now?

2. Upload your video

Creating a YouTube channel is free, and it happens to come along with a bundle of customizations. It’s easy to look up templates and tutorials using YouTube’s own search function. Making your YouTube channel beautiful is secondary to making people aware that you have one, so make sure you not only upload your video, but that you promote it too.

3. Get social

Fans accessing links to online videos from Twitter and Facebook tend to finish videos more frequently than those who stumble across your book trailer via a search engine due to the simple fact that social context means everything to readers. After uploading your book trailer to YouTube and your personal website, tweet about it! Post it to Facebook! Most importantly, ask people to like and share your video. Spread the word across all of your social media platforms: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Snapchat, Tumblr, and everywhere else you have a digital presence (even TikTok!). This will serve as part of your promotional strategy for raising awareness about your book video trailer, but it also will serve as a boost to your overall digital footprint.

When you are ready to write, publish, and market your masterpiece with the A+ rated and #1-rated self-publishing company according to the Better Business Bureau and Top Consumer Reviews, respectively, visit OutskirtsPress.com. And if you have already published with us, make sure to check out this and all of the other fabulous flip books available through your FREE Book Marketing Resource Center.

 

Congratulations and Good Luck to the 2020 Outskirts Press EVVY Award Nominees!

This year, Outskirts Press has an impressive 79 EVVY Award nominees to thank for their dedication and high-quality work as self-published authors. The EVVYs are an acclaimed annual book award program sponsored by the Colorado Independent Publishers’ Association (CIPA), which recognizes superior independently published books. The EVVYs are judged by a panel of professionals on a qualitative scale of merit in dozens of distinct book categories.

Each year, Outskirts Press nominates a small percentage of the books published during the year for submission to the EVVY Awards. Since a nomination is the first step toward the Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year Award, the standards are high and these nominations represent the very best of our publications as determined by our executives and members of our production teams.

Outskirts Press official nominees and winners receive additional exposure for their books in featured Outskirts Press marketing channels, including our blog, social media networks, and in our email newsletters. We will be announcing the EVVY Award Finalists and Awards Ceremony details soon on Self-Publishing News so keep an eye out for the blog post and email.

Congratulations to this year’s Official Outskirts Press EVVY Award nominees, presented here in no particular order:

Technical Awards – Cover Design and Illustrations

What’s next?

As a result of being nominated for the EVVY Awards, these Outskirts Press authors have taken the first step toward the coveted Outskirts Press Best Book of the Year Award. Three of the nominees above who subsequently win an EVVY Award during the CIPA banquet will be selected as semi-finalists for our annual Best Book of the Year Award and its $1,500 Grand Prize. Visit the blog often for updates.

All of these books, along with other Outskirts Press titles, are available from the major online book retailers like Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Powell’s, Books-A-Million and others, and from the Outskirts Press bookstore. To learn more about our products and services, as well as upcoming and current promotions, visit our website or call us at 1-888-672-6657 to speak with a Publishing Consultant.

 

5 Ways Social Media Can Help Self-Publishing Authors With Book Marketing

With the exploding popularity of social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Pinterest, it’s easier than ever to connect with people all around the world. But, if you’re not sure how to get started or are unsure about how to make connections with your target audience, don’t worry! Here are 5 easy tips to help you!

1. Determine what your goals are.

  • Increase awareness? The average person spends nearly two hours on social media every day, and therefore social media is one of the best places to grab a reader’s attention.
  • Drive traffic to your book? Drive visitors to your author webpage or to your listing on Amazon.
  • Generate new leads? These are people who have indicated interest in your book in some way, shape, or form, but haven’t yet purchased it.
  • Build your royalties? You can use social media to turn your audience into paying customers.

2. How often should you post?

  • Facebook – Two or three times per day
  • Instagram – Once or twice per day
  • Instagram Stories – Eight to 16 Stories, twice per week
  • Twitter – Three to ten times per day
  • LinkedIn – Once or twice per day
  • Pinterest – Five to ten times per day

3. When should you post?

  • Twitter – 1-3pm weekdays
  • Facebook – 1-4pm weekdays
  • LinkedIn – 7-8:30am and 5-6pm Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday
  • Instagram – 5-6pm weekdays and 8pm on Mondays
  • Pinterest – 2-4pm and 8-11pm weekdays with weekends being the best
  • Google+ – 9-11am weekdays

4. What should you post?

  • Facebook – Post videos about your book, live videos of you talking about your book or at book events, photos of you and your book, blog posts and curated content.
  • No matter what type of post you’re sharing on Facebook, the copy you add alongside your content can be key in how it performs.
  • Instagram – Post hi-res photos (your cover, your author photo, any images or illustrations within your book), behind-the-scenes photos of your book events, quotes, user-generated content (sharing other photos, such as attendees at a book signing) but give credit to the original creator (known as a re-post), and Instagram stories. Captions are limited to 2,200 characters, and after three lines of text, they become shortened with an ellipsis (those 3 dots you see on posts). You want to grab the readers’ attention with your opening line or two.
  • Twitter – Post news about your book, blog posts, photos of you and your book at events, curated content and images. The type of copy in your tweets can drive huge improvements in your results.
  • Pinterest – Images are the best thing to post on Pinterest. Post hi-res photos of your book, the cover, book events, step-by-step photo guides and infographics.
  • LinkedIn – Post professional information about your career as a writer. Since LinkedIn is a professional networking platform, the most suitable content will revolve around you as an author. Share news about your book and milestones on your LinkedIn page, particularly if the book involves career advice.

5. Automate, engage, and listen

  • Automate posting of your social media content. A tool like Buffer is great for automation. It allows you to create all the content that you want to, all at once, and then place everything into a queue to be sent out according to whatever schedule you choose.
  • Social media requires engagement. When people talk to you, talk back. Set aside time during your day to follow up with conversations that are happening on social media. These are conversations with potential customers, references, friends, and colleagues.
  • Don’t forget, the ultimate purpose is to sell copies of your book. So always be polite, helpful, and generous. Book sales will follow.

For more information on marketing your book, log into your Publishing Center for a complete list of marketing options and to access the free Book Marketing Resource Center.

 

How Book Videos Help Self-Publishing Authors

Did you know that video is the fastest growing segment on the internet, and that YouTube is the second most popular search engine (second only to Google)? In many ways social media has become a largely video-centric world. Consumers of news, pop culture, marketing and other information are digesting a growing percentage of all their information in video form. For self-publishing authors, it’s never been more important!

That’s not to say the written word is dying out – books do, and will, remain a popular form of entertainment – but Internet users looking for a quick bite of magazine-style information are turning to video in greater numbers. Videos offer a number of advantages over the printed word to both the communicator and the consumer.

Consider this: It is fairly easy for a reader to glance over a page and skip to passages they wish to read, possibly ignoring other vital information in the process. That’s less likely to happen with video, which disseminates information in a linear fashion and often in an entertaining way, making viewers less likely to skip around. With video, the communicator has the power to control what information the consumer gets, and when. That’s a powerful tool!

Introducing Outskirts Press Author Jeanne Blanchet’s Book Video for Kamikaze

So, if you don’t have a book video that promotes your book and is available to view from YouTube and from your own personal Facebook page and/or author webpage, now is the time to start, by clicking that big button.

 

Amazon Featured Book of the Week

Now available on Amazon.com!


Busted: Wheelin’ N Dealin’

by Thomas Frederick Mills

(4.5 Stars – 53 Customer Reviews)

Price: $23.95

Thomas Frederick Mills’s “Busted: Wheelin’ N Dealin’.” Sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll helped fuel Big T’s decision to take a risk and make the big money he’d always dreamed about… But he didn’t predict that the drug business would cost him over 20 years in a prison cell with nothing but his passion for success in an unforgiving world. Told from an outlaw’s point of view, this book is a baby boomer’s anthem. Infused with author’s own childhood experiences with music, movies, books, and TV, this is a story everyone in his world-changing generation can relate to.

 Learn More 

 

Please note that product prices and availability are subject to change. Prices and availability were accurate at the time of this posting; however, they may differ from those you see when you visit Amazon.com.© Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. All rights reserved. Amazon, Amazon.com, the Amazon.com logo, and 1-Click are registered trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Amazon.com, 410 Terry Avenue N., Seattle, WA 98109-5210.

 

Would you like your book featured here? Buy Now

 

Resolutions Every Author Should Have for the New Year!

Structured and manageable goals are important to those of us who consider ourselves works in progress. Well, it’s that time of year when we all start thinking about those goals — in this case, New Year’s resolutions. They’re especially necessary to moving a book from an unknown publication to a chart-topper. It’s a big project!

But, whether you’re just starting to figure out marketing or already a best-selling author, there are simple things you can resolve to do in 2020 that will make you an even better at selling … or simply a better you. Here are resolutions for published authors or anyone bent on self-improvement.

  1. Set goals. “Wait, I thought a resolution was a goal!” Well, yes, it is, in a sense. Ideally, your New Year’s resolution is the culmination of your goals throughout the year. It’s important — and ultimately more productive — to make goal-setting a habit, not just a tradition we do once a year and promptly forget. So set lots of small, attainable goals rather than one insurmountable to-do you never actually do. For example, if your resolution is to sell 2,000 copies, break it down into smaller goals. Resolve to promote one giveaway in January, schedule a book-signing in February, then a book fair in March and so on for the entire year. Or, set a goal to schedule 20 book-signings next year and average 10 sales per event. Way less intimidating, right?
  2. Facilitate goals. If you’ve resolved to sell big in the new year without so much as a marketing calendar in the house, you’ve not facilitated your goals or your year’s resolution. Remove barriers to progress and instate conditions that help you achieve. Buy an entry-level PC for getting on social media to promote or gather a list of bookstores you can call to set up events. Then, resolve to reach out until you get the bookings you need to fulfill your resolution.
  3. Make marketing a priority. Once you’ve divided your marketing resolutions into smaller goals, it’s much easier to give them top priority. Knock out those little to-do’s first thing in the morning!
  4. Read, read, read. Top-notch authors are always top-notch readers. Get to know your genre not just by practicing it but by being an avid consumer of it. That way, you’ll get to know your audience and what appeals to them.
  5. Master the basics of social media. No matter what your stripe, there’s are many others with similar interests on social media. Facebook “friend” other authors and readers, and learn from them. Follow publishers. Rub elbows with book clubs. You’ll find kindred spirits in the virtual world who can enlighten you with real wisdom. Use that wisdom to refine how you communicate with potential readers.
  6. Try something new. Make 2020 the year you branch out. Start a blog. Meet new people with similar interests. These new experiences will all enrich and inform so many other aspects of your life. At the very least, you’ll be a more social and well-rounded person. Hey, you might even discover a whole new audience for your book!
  7. Just do you. Yes, you should be reading a lot, meeting people and making connections that pay off in sales. Ultimately, you’ll assimilate all these influences into a voice that is uniquely yours, and you’ll find your true audience. Don’t fight it — feed it.
  8. Consider “cheating” a little. Many of us are afraid to ask for help. It feels lazy, like we’re cutting corners. Let us put your mind at ease: It’s not cheating to ask for help reaching your marketing goals! In fact, it’s pretty smart, if you ask us. And, if you’ve tried new things, delved into social media and checked off other goals, you likely have crossed paths with new people who may be able to help you get past the hump. Reach out to friends and family to help you get the word out or purchase inexpensive marketing service options to help you reach the goals you set on the road to your resolution. (Even full-time professionals parse out their duties from time to time.)

Whatever your resolution, the important thing is to keep moving, to take whatever steps necessary to move you toward fulfilling the great things you planned for your life.

Need help moving toward your New Year’s resolution? Consider hiring a Book Marketing Specialist for 5 hours of expertise and a Custom Marketing Plan. You can log into your Publishing Center to see what book marketing options are available to you or chat with us using the live chat option on our website (www.outskirtspress.com).