It’s three and half years later and I am reflecting on the mistakes I made as a first time Indie Author in hopes to help another new author learn from my mistakes. Now, being an Indie Author means you control when you publish, how you market your book, and you earn 100% of all royalties collected on your book.
When you make mistake the first time hopefully you can learn from them going forward. You don’t realize at the time what you are not doing is hurting you until you sit down to look at your books sales against your book expenses. You have to ask yourself two questions Why and How did that happened? The answers are right in your faces with everything you did not do because you were not understanding the business.
What mistakes did I make as an Indie Author?
- Being an Indie Author is a business and you must have a plan of which I didn’t have in place for Deceitful Secrets.
- I didn’t have a marketing strategy in place.
- I thought attending local book events and fairs were better to do over online.
- I didn’t understand how to use Facebook Ads and Instagram Ads correctly so I waisted money that did not hit the correct target audience.
- I didn’t understand how to utilize my “Insights” or analytics for social media
- I didn’t use ARC (Advance Readers Copy) groups for Deceitful Secrets.
- I didn’t use many book promoter services during or after release.
- I limited my voice with other podcasters and bloggers.
- I didn’t maximize my book reviewers requests.
- I stop promoting Deceitful Secrets consistently
- I was not consistent with my Email list that I grew.
- I tried to do everything myself by being the marketer, social media expert, brand specialist, and virtual assistant.
How to Overcome Indie Author Mistakes?
The mistakes I made in 2017 to early 2018 were rookie mistakes. However, I did learn from them over the years after attending workshops about writing and marketing, attended virtual events for book promotion strategies, and one on one consultations with experts for social media. Writing books is a business and once you understand, learn it, and master that then the success will follow.
What did I do different the second time around in 2021 that has been rewarding as a Indie Author? I did my homework over the last year not just to hone my skills, but learn how to market myself as a “authorpreneur.” According to Entreprenuer, they defines the difference between and Enterprenuer and Authorpreneur. The article goes on to say, ” It is an entrepreneur that offers products and services that are based on their book (s).” I learned to treat my books like a business. What does most successful small business have?
Twenty Tips to have a successful book business that I have incorporated.
- I created a short Business Plan for my Books (Summary one page)
- I had to figure out the Vision for my Books.
- I had to create a Marketing & Promotional Strategy.
- I had to create a Book Budget & Book Sales Goal.
- I had to create a social media posting schedule and strategy that required me to audit my social media.
- I had to learn and understand how to use a marketing and promotion strategy.
- I hired a Virtual Assistant, Brand Strategist, Publicist/Social Media experts to help with promotion and social media.
- I am continuing to seek knowledge about growing my book business
- I am taking classes, webinars, and attending virtual events about marketing, social media, and learning how to run ads correctly ads on Amazon, Facebook, Instagram, and Book Blurb.
- I am doing more interviews on podcasts, Vlogs, and magazine features to get my books in front of other audiences.
- I am back to blogging after taking a hiatus for health reasons to reach new and current readers.
- I am working on re-connecting with my email list and sending out weekly newsletters.
- I created a ARC Group to read my short story series prior to release day and post reviews on Goodreads, Amazon, and Book Blurb.
- I am connecting with Book Bloggers and Book Reviewers to review my book series.
- I plan to give away a set number of books each month to help grow my readership.
- I had created a Press Kit for Libraries and Media Kit to circulate to prospective interviewers.
- I asked other authors to help promote my book in exchange that I promote their books on a particular social media platform.
- I asked a my network friends (few bloggers/writers) to promote my book to their audiences on Twitter for a couple weeks.
- I used book quotes and read first chapter for free on website with links to purchase.
- I offered signed autographed copies on my website.
I used a lot of free resources and some paid resources to help me understand the book business. I am still learning everyday. You never stop learning in this business. Especially, as a Indie Author it’s not easy but you can be successful if you master the business. I have seen Indie Authors make the New York Times bestseller’s list. Those authors had a plan and mastered it and you can to. I am working toward that goal myself. Are you working on mastering the book business as authorpreneur or are you just putting books out hoping you break even?