Archive for eBook

Another Fresh NEW Book from One of Our Valued ClientsLynn Serafinn interviews naturopathic doctor Doni Wilson ND about how therapists (and patients) can benefit from their writing a book on alternative medicine.

Our team at Spirit Authors have been supporting authors since 2009. Over that time, the vast majority of our clients have been what I would call ‘holistic service’ professionals, i.e. coaches, consultants, therapists, alternative medical doctors, etc. Most of them are working on a book (or have already published one) in which they share a specific area of their professional expertise.

One example is our client Dr. Doni Wilson, ND – a naturopathic doctor. Known on Twitter as @GlutenFreeDoc, Doni has written extensively about the advantages of a gluten-free diet. But Dr. Doni’s primary passion is to educate the public about the damaging effects of STRESS in our modern world, and how it is responsible for a plethora of chronic health issues.

For that reason, in 2013 Doni published a definitive 340-page manual on the subject called The Stress Remedy: Master Your Body’s Synergy and Optimize Your Health. This month, Doni also released a short eBook called Stress Remedies: How to Reduce Stress and Boost Your Health in Just 15 Minutes a Day, which she says is a ‘practical companion’ to her larger book. She’s selling it on Amazon for only 99 cents.

As so many of our readers at Spirit Authors are what I would call ‘practitioner authors’ (or are aspiring to be one), I thought I would share part of a recent conversation I had with Doni on Skype, when I asked her about why she wrote her books, and her thoughts on the value of practitioners putting their expertise into words.

LYNN: Why do you think it’s important for alternative therapists to write books?

DONI: Alternative practitioners have a unique voice and knowledge. However, busy practitioners are often so caught up in serving their patients that they don’t have time to spend writing. But unless they make the time, there is no way to bring the collective voice and knowledge of alternative medicine to the rest of the world. I believe it’s important to bring their voice into the written form, so it can help more people than they can reach through their individual professional practice.

 

LYNN: Apart from the difficulty of finding time to write a book, what other challenges did you face when writing your books? What encouragement can you give other practitioners?

DONI: Well, when I started, I didn’t know anything about putting a book together – writing, publishing, promoting, etc. It was all a big, daunting mystery to me. I had to find people to help me, and TRAIN myself in how to make it happen.

It’s understandable that a practitioner might feel mind-boggled at the prospect of writing a book, and thus not entertain the idea seriously. But the more alternative practitioners who publish books, the more people can access naturopathic medicine. This will give more people the tools for preventative medicine instead of one that simply focuses on treating symptoms of disease.

 

Dr  Doni Wilson, ND.

Dr Doni Wilson, ND

LYNN: How has writing books helped you professionally?

DONI: First of all, I want to say that some practitioners mistakenly think writing a book will result in people not needing them anymore, and patients won’t bother to come to them because it’s all explained in their book. But actually, the opposite is true. I get more patients since being an author than before I wrote my books.

And it’s not just numbers. The quality of my patients has improved because they are more educated before they even pick up the phone to book an appointment with me. Potential patients know my philosophy and professional approach before they meet with me. They come to their appointment with much more clarity about what they need and what they want. This makes communication between us easier when we start to work together, as they already understand the language and the rationale behind what we will be working on together. That makes my job so much easier.

It also helps attract the ‘right’ kind of patient to me, as it establishes a link between us. Let’s say someone reads the book and they feel it validates their intuition about their health AND it backs it up with science and informed advice. Well, that person will already be pre-disposed towards my professional approach. They will be more likely to reap the benefits of treatment, as they will be more committed to it at a personal level.

Finally, having a book makes it easier for the practitioner to speak with patients without having to explain every little thing. If a patient reads my book, it means I won’t have to say the same thing over and over again!

 

LYNN: Why did you write this shorter eBook Stress Remedies? Didn’t you cover it all already in your larger book The Stress Remedy?

DONI: I see the two books as complementing each other. They are both about stress, but they approach the subject from different angles.

The Stress Remedy goes into great detail on topics such as diet, supplements, cortisol testing, etc. But what I didn’t cover in much depth were ‘daily stress remedies’, which are part of what I call my ‘Stress Remedy Master Plan’.

Rather than make The Stress Remedy longer than it already was, I thought it would be a great idea to write a short (and hopefully ‘stress-free’) practical, activity-based guide to balancing stress that didn’t involve changes in diet or supplements. So, in Stress Remedies, I help people understand the health benefits from specific activities, so they can choose the ones that work best for them and optimise the natural rhythms of their own healthy body and mind.

Some people might wonder what having a 99-cent eBook could possibly bring a practitioner from a business perspective. They might wonder why they should bother to put effort into something that has little promise of high profit. Well, I believe a small eBook is more likely to encourage those who do not know me or my work to read what I have to say on the topic. They will be more willing to take a chance on me, as spending 99 cents to read a short eBook is a much smaller commitment of time and money than buying (and reading) a 340-page book. Hopefully, if they like what they read, they might visit my website or check out my book The Stress Remedy. If they continue to follow my work, perhaps one day they will also contact me as a patient or make another purchase on our website.

Basically, the Stress Remedies eBook is another doorway to meeting and greeting new people, and sharing my passion for the naturopathic lifestyle. I strongly recommend other practitioners to build their own doorways by sharing their wisdom in a book.

eBook - 'Stress Remedies' by Dr. Doni Wilson

Dr. Doni’s eBook Stress Remedies
is available on Amazon Kindle for only 99 cents at
http://doctordoni.com/dr-donis-new-kindle-ebook-stress-remedies-just-99-cents

If you’re a practitioner who has a book (or you’re hoping to write or publish one in the near future), feel free to contact our team here on Spirit Authors to see how our platform building packages, business mentoring and other packages might suit your needs. Just drop us a line via the contact form on this site and request a free 30-minute consultation.

 9 Dec 2014
Lynn Serafinn


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Lynn Serafinn

Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC

LYNN SERAFINN, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing — How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell and Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market their Business Ethically. She is listed in the Top 20 of the Top Marketing Authors on Twitter by Social Media Magazine and was a finalist for the prestigious Brit Writers Awards. She also received the eLit Book Awards Silver Medal in Humanitarian and Ecological Social Affairs, as well as the Bronze Medal in Business and Sales.

Lynn’s eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. Her innovative marketing campaigns have produced a long list of bestselling non-fiction authors through her company Spirit Authors. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project CIC, a not-for-profit social enterprise created to train, support, mentor and inspire independent business owners to market their business ethically, serve society and planet, and restore all that is best about humanity.

Twitter:

@LynnSerafinn   @SpiritAuthors @7GracesMarketng @GardenOfTheSoul

Facebook:

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eBook reader on book shelfE-book author Erica Martin interviews book marketer Lynn Serafinn about her top marketing tips for authors with a small (or non-existent) marketing budget.

Next to writing a great e-book, effectively marketing your e-book is probably the  most crucial step to getting sales.  But many people, myself included, don’t have a lot of money to spend on e-book marketing.  That’s why this week I’m excited to publish a guest post by e-book marketer Lynn Serafinn, where she answers some of my questions about e-book marketing on a budget.

Erica: How did you get started in e-book marketing?

Lynn: First, I just want to clarify that I don’t just work in eBook marketing, but in online book marketing in general. I actually got started (as many who do book marketing do) by learning how to promote my own books. I attended many seminars, both online and in person. I learned the best and rejected the worst (least ethical) ways to market a book. Then, in 2009, I launched my first (paperback) book using the online marketing strategies I had honed and it became a bestseller. Soon after, someone asked me to write an article about my process on their book marketing blog. From that, I got my first book launch client. I got her to #1 bestseller status. After that, I had a steady stream of clients coming my way, all wanting to use my services. Since then, our company has grown and I have a team of 6 others who help me create book launches. We also offer other services such as online platform building for the author just starting out. Lately, a lot of authors have also been hiring me to write the copy for them that goes on their online book pages (on Amazon, etc.).

Erica: What are your thoughts on using fiverr to find someone to do e-book marketing? Is it potentially a good resource or can an e-book author do it themselves for cheaper?

Lynn: Honestly? I’ve never used these services and any time one of my clients has hired via these types of sites they often get ‘budget’ quality support. For me, ‘doing e-book/book marketing’ is about designing a strategy and developing a regular practice with it. I think budget assistants can help you implement the ‘legwork’ of your strategies, but they cannot ‘do’ marketing for you.

When I work with an author, I work with them to find out about the heart and soul of the book they are writing. What is the message? Who is most likely going to want to read it and why? Who is the author as a ‘brand’? What else (besides their book) does the author have for their audience? What is the bigger aim of the author’s business? Is it just about writing books or is there something else? How can we make this a long-term sustainable enterprise for them? These kinds of considerations are what distinguish successful authors from struggling ones, even if they are self-published.

Based upon the answer to these (and many other) questions, the author and I then build an online marketing strategy. At that point, and only then, when we are really clear about what needs to be done, you might approach hiring Virtual Assistants to help you.

From experience, I know that looking for the cheapest price can often end up costing you more in the long term. I’ve had several clients who chose to hire ‘budget’ assistants from sites like fiverr or eLance thinking this was the best way to go. They see a price of $4 an hour as opposed to $50 an hour and think it’s a bargain. But honestly, I have never seen budget hires actually save money (or time) for my clients, because while they might understand basic graphic design or basic social media principles, they don’t understand marketing at all. One of my clients paid hundreds to get her website designed by a budget hire. It looked very pretty but it was completely non-functional from a marketing and customer experience perspective. She ended up having to spend a whole lot more to get it sorted out. Another hired a budget assistant to work on getting her followers on Twitter. When I looked at her followers, about 50% either didn’t speak English (which was my client’s language) or were inactive accounts. It took me weeks to clean up her account and rebuild. Another client hired a cheap assistant who immediately got her account ‘stuck’ by following too many people too quickly, and she had no way to help my client to undo the damage. The stories go on and on.

I think the best ‘budget’ marketing is to learn as much as you can yourself, either by spending a little more to hire a marketing strategist who comes highly recommended to guide you. You should also read as many articles and books on book marketing as you can, and attend webinars on the subject. Know that you do NOT need to use everyone’s ideas if they don’t resonate with you. The best and most natural marketing is when you combine the best ideas of others with your own style and make it feel good to you.

Once an author knows how to create a good marketing strategy, he/she can then direct their hired help to implement it. But if you rely upon cheap hires to create a marketing strategy for you, you will only end up wasting your time and money, and are likely to get discouraged.

Erica: Everything I’ve read says that the most important tool for marketing a Kindle book is the Kindle book page – what tips can you give for writing a good book description?

Lynn: Writing a great book description (sometimes called a ‘wholesaler description’ or ‘wholesaler blurb’) is extremely important and, again, it’s a marketing issue. I have many clients who hire me JUST to write their book descriptions (called ‘copy writing’). It’s often difficult for an author to be objective about their book, and see it through their potential reader’s eyes.

This is a big subject, so rather than diving deeply into this here, Erica, I’d like to direct your readers to an article I wrote on this very subject called ‘How to Write Good Blurbs and Back Pages for Your Book’. In that article I go step-by-step through the process of writing a good book blurb that speaks to the audience rather than from a subjective perspective.

Your readers can find the complete article at http://spiritauthors.com/news/how-to-write-good-blurbs-and-back-pages-for-your-book/

Erica: Do you have any tips or suggestions for e-book authors with a small (or non-existent) marketing budget?

Lynn: In my experience, marketing is not just a monetary issue for authors; the truth is, they don’t really want to spend time on marketing. Many also imagine that if they can get a publishing deal, their marketing woes are over. This is a gross misunderstanding. Most publishers these days won’t sign you unless they see you already have a strong marketing platform established. The reality is that the modern authors simply must take ownership of their marketing, and build marketing into their business routine and their budget. That said, online book marketing doesn’t have to cost a fortune or take up all your time IF authors are willing to study and learn how to do it themselves, or learn just enough about it to direct their assistants to support them.

For me, the best, cheapest and most long-term book marketing strategy is to:

  1. Develop a large body of great blog and/or video content
  2. Drive traffic to this content through social media
  3. Develop a consistent, ‘do-able’ social media strategy
  4. Syndicate your content to article directories and other relevant blogs
  5. Watch your stats and make sure your site’s SEO is working for you
  6. Develop business relationships and build collaborations with others you meet on social media

Of course, there are other things you can do like organise virtual blog tours, radio tours and big book launches. I do these things for many clients. But these are far more expensive marketing choices because they require the help of other people (and these people need to be experienced). You don’t necessarily need these glossier marketing strategies if you devotedly focus on the ‘slow burn’ instead of the ‘big flash’, and are willing to wait for the results.

If you aim towards developing a consistent, continually evolving, long-term reputation, you will eventually see a tipping point where your books start to sell consistently. Your older books will experience an increase in sales every time you bring out a new title, and you’ll start to make a steady income from your books. The key is to stick with it. In my experience, most authors start to make real money after they’ve published their THIRD book. Keep writing. Keep building.

Erica: What other marketing resources can you suggest for e-book authors who are on a budget?

Lynn: I have dozens of free articles on book marketing on my Spirit Authors website at http://spiritauthors.com. I try to publish a new article every Wednesday (although with my busy schedule, that can get tough sometimes!). Authors can subscribe for free and receive these info articles via email every week. They can even get Spirit Authors articles delivered directly to their Kindle for 99 cents a month.

Authors may also wish to check out my book Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market their Business Ethically, which is available in paperback and Kindle (other eBook formats coming in September).

The can also get loads of online book marketing ideas from my free 90-minute Twitter marketing class at http://tweepelicious.com

And, of course, if authors are looking for some guidance, we offer a platform-building package for authors. It’s not a ‘budget’ package, but we really do provide a great service. Your readers can read about this at http://spiritauthors.com/hire-us-for-your-book-launch/ and then drop me a line via the contact form on the website if they’d like to discuss it.

I hope this information was helpful to your readers, Erica. Thank you for inviting me to speak with you today.

This article originally appeared on Erica Martin’s blog ‘My eBook Journey’ on August 6th, 2013 at  http://myebookjourney.com/ebook-marketing-getting-the-word-out-on-a-budget/


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LYNN SERAFINN, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach, teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and author of the number one bestseller The 7 Graces of Marketing — How to Heal Humanity and the Planet by Changing the Way We Sell and Tweep-e-licious! 158 Twitter Tips & Strategies for Writers, Social Entrepreneurs & Changemakers Who Want to Market their Business Ethically. She is listed in the Top 20 of the Top Marketing Authors on Twitter by Social Media Magazine and was a finalist for the prestigious Brit Writers Awards. She also received the eLit Book Awards Silver Medal in Humanitarian and Ecological Social Affairs, as well as the Bronze Medal in Business and Sales.

Lynn’s eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. Her innovative marketing campaigns have produced a long list of bestselling non-fiction authors through her company Spirit Authors. Lynn is also the Founder of the 7 Graces Project CIC, a not-for-profit social enterprise created to train, support, mentor and inspire independent business owners to market their business ethically, serve society and planet, and restore all that is best about humanity.

Twitter:

@LynnSerafinn   @SpiritAuthors @7GracesMarketng @GardenOfTheSoul

Facebook:

LynnSerafinn SpiritAuthors 7GracesOfMarketing 7 Graces Global Garden (group)

At long last we have reached that prophetic (if not hyped up) year of 2012 so many of us have been awaiting. According to many futurists, this year will mark the beginning of unparalleled expansion of awareness and global consciousness. And based upon the explosion of social media over the past few years — and most especially its evolution in 2011 — we do indeed seem to be ever-increasingly expanding our potential for awareness of our world. How many of our grandparents could possibly have imagined being “friends” with people from every corner of the planet, or having possibly tens of thousands of “followers” who know your name, what you do, and what you stand for?

But with our expanded capacity for connecting with others, we also find ourselves with an information overload. Sometimes there is just too much coming at us all at once, and we can get overwhelmed. We’ve all tried different ways to organise both our incoming and outgoing data. When it comes to organising our social media, integration and automation seemed like “the” solution, but we find ourselves yet again in an information overload situation. There are just so many different options on the market that we often find ourselves asking, “Isn’t there one RIGHT way of delivering and filtering through my social media information?”

In my work, I help business owners (primarily authors and holistic professionals) set up their social media integration and automation, and train them how to use it. But the induction process into the world of Twitter, Facebook and the like can often shake up many emotions and challenge many beliefs. Some people who are new to social media might have a pre-conceived idea that automation takes the “social” out of social media, and therefore eschew the convenience automation has to offer. These people end up working harder rather than smarter, and risk burning out on social media before they reap the rewards. Others, who don’t really like the idea of social media at all, but see it as a “necessary evil”, want to automate everything and don’t want to bother connecting with their audience. As a result, these kinds of people frequently become convinced that the lack of response they are receiving from their audience means, “Twitter (or whatever) is simply a waste of time!”

Yes, I’ve heard it all before.

Regardless of whether you recognise yourself as being similar to one of these two personality types, or you are already an enthusiastic social media devotee, let me assure you, social media can have a massive impact upon the success of your business. My own business was utterly built upon it! But in order to make it work “smart” for you, and to ensure you receive all the benefits it has to offer, you need to understand that BOTH automation AND interpersonal connection are EQUALLY important to running an efficient and effective social media platform because:

Automation is needed to deliver your content.

Interaction is needed to build relationships.

Learning the balance between these two can be a steep learning curve for many of my new clients. As demonstrated in the previous examples, those that depend upon one and fail to implement the other tend not to reap the results they seek.

But what makes the learning curve even more challenging is that to stay on top of things, you need to get used to changing your strategies all the time. This is because the social network platforms themselves (i.e., Twitter, Facebook, etc) are always in a state of evolution, and the plethora of third-party applications available to support these platforms are also always in a state of continual change.

The plain truth about social media:

Sometimes clients come to me expecting to learn the definitive system for social media. And while I tend to do things in a systematic way for myself, the truth is: there is NO magic “one size fits all” way to “do” social media. Your situation is not the same as mine. Your business is not the same. Your communication style is not the same. Your audience is not the same. Sure, there will be many similarities, but if ANYONE out their claims to be a guru, and tells you they have “the” one-stop solution for your needs, you’d be pretty safe to bet it’s a scam. Don’t spend your money on such claims (I’ve lost more than a few quid on such false promises back when I was a newbie).

But the fact that there are so many variables is not the only reason why there is no end-all magic bullet for social media. It is also because all the social media tools out there are all continuously changing, sometimes for the better, sometimes not. And as they change they create a butterfly effect upon each other. So you really have resign yourself to the fact that social media is a fluid system, and that there will be a continual process of learning involved. Even a Rubic Cube is easier to figure out, because the cube is a stable system that doesn’t change.

But the good news is, the more you know, the easier it is to adapt to this ever-flowing sea of change. For that reason, I thought it would be a good idea to write an eBook, going through some of the currently most popular social media tools for distributing your content:

Buy Kindle edition on Amazon US/Canada for only $1.97

Buy Kindle edition on Amazon UK for only £1.28

A FEW CUSTOMER REVIEWS ON AMAZON

5.0 out of 5 stars
Personal Insights from an Expert

“This is a must read for anyone who wants to simplify the technology of building a platform and creating “raving fans” and supportive friends. Not only is this ebook comprehensive, it is personal—you feel like you are getting the inside scoop from a best friend. Lynn knows her stuff and I especially enjoyed reading the history of her personal experience from using each of the tools.
~ Michelle Lynn Casto, soul coach, author
San Antonio, TX

5.0 out of 5 stars
Must read for anyone trying to create a Social Platform
Lynn’s knowledge of social media is astounding. This book will help me reach my 2012 goals of building my platform to over 50,000 on FB, Twitter, and YouTube. Not only is her approach straightforward and easy to read, she shares the pitfalls as well as the highlights of several popular platforms. I never knew it could be this easy to reach so many people providing a consistent stream of useful content.”
~ “Desert Networker” (aka Renee Baribeau) author, healer
Paradise, California

5.0 out of 5 stars
Social Media Tools – Which are best for me?

“I am certainly no computer geek or guru and have not utilized social media fully because I didn’t know how. Lynn Serafinn has given us non-geeks some “tool tips.” She has rated five of the most popular social media tools and given us tips on how to utilize them effectively to increase our presence on the Internet. If you have a magnificent web site and the best possible product but no one sees it, what good does it do you? “Social Media on AutoPilot” will help you make good choices on programs and make these programs work for you. It is a clear, concise, honest and very helpful book which details the strengths and weaknesses of each tool – Ping, TweetDeck, Twaitter, HootSuite and TweetAdder. Yes, she uses some “computer speak” but you can handle it and it will definitely be to your advantage. Anyone who wants to be found on the Internet and/or increase their Internet presence can benefit from ‘Social Media on Autopilot’.”
~ Irene Conlan, radio host, writer, blogger
Phoenix, AZ

5.0 out of 5 stars
How to Handle Social Media Auto-Apps — Demystified & Humanized
Like many bookish, word-centric types, I am not naturally attracted to social media’s many techno-centric, third-party apps that allow you to speed up your Twitter management process, and bulk-feed useful information to your followers. I tend to prefer the simpler, slower approach: going directly to each SM site and responding to followers from there. But Lynn Serafinn’s new book changed my mind. Not only does it demystify five of the main automating apps, it includes many not-so-problem-free experiences that the author has had with most (thereby winning my complete confidence — because of her complete honesty).

Brilliantly, I think, Serafinn ensured excellent balance in reviewing these auto-apps by creating a three-part evaluation process — listing the “Nice” qualities, the “Necessary” qualities, and the “Nightmarish” . . . results. So you, as a result, learn exactly what to avoid, what aspects of each to circumvent with a judicious SM two-step, and what to more or less wholeheartedly embrace…one of the most useful aspects of this book, for me at least, is a smattering of social-media-app stories (both Serafinn’s own stories and those of her clients) that help to illustrate how SM apps can be used successfully with quite astonishing results.

For someone who, like me, would prefer to just go ahead and use techno tools without having to investigate their many complex innards first, this book is a terrific timesaving guide that will help you leap over the techno chasm and get to the good stuff: connecting with people who matter to you and your business.”
~ Laurel Marshfield, developmental editor, ghostwriter
Philadelphia, PA

‘As a business mentor and a serial entrepreneur, it is important that I stay on top of the latest marketing tools and strategies. I also believe in simplifying and streamlining your life as much as possible. What Lynn Serafinn has done with her new book, Social Media on Autopilot, is truly genius. Not only has she saved me hours of time to learn all of these great social media tools, but she clearly explains how to keep an authentic connection with your followers and potential clients, which is very important to me. And, in Lynn’s great writing style and entertaining sense of humor, she gives us the Nice and Nightmare insights so we know what to expect.

Lynn Serafinn was the master mind behind the launch of my book, Blast Off! The Surefire Success Plan to Launch Your Dreamsinto Reality to No. 1 in the US and Canada. She has a very unique talent of combining her uncanny tech savvy capabilities with her ability to incorporate it all into the big picture plan of a marketing campaign. Not only will this book help you demystify the social media maze, but also teach you how to utilize it to grow your business. I plan on recommending it to all of my clients.’
~ Allison Maslan, president Blast Off Business and Life Mentoring,
#1 Bestselling Author and Online Television Show Host

Don’t own a Kindle? You can download a FREE Kindle Reader App for PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, Windows Phone 7, Blackberry or Android (and new ones being added regularly) from Amazon:

Amazon US/Canada: http://amzn.to/FreeReadingAppsUS

Amazon UK: http://amzn.to/FreeReadingAppsUK

In Social Media on Autopilot: Nice, Necessary or Nightmare? [Kindle edition], I bring you 5 details product reviews intended for business owners on five of today’s most popular social media applications: Ping, TweetDeck, Twaitter, HootSuite and Tweet Adder. Each product is evaluated on virtually every feature it offers, and ranked in terms of its usefulness, reliability, automation capabilities, interaction capability and mobility.

Accessible reading even for the “newbie”, this report and help you find out how the pros use Twitter, Facebook and other social networks without selling their souls or spending every waking hour at their computer. At the end of this report, you will also find some useful bonus materials covering options for integrating your media, and some ideas for using social media apps on your mobile phone.

I have helped dozens of authors and online business owners reach the top of their field through social media. Nearly all my learning has come the “hard way” by spending countless hours at my desk, trying to find products and figure out what was best. For a mere $2.99, this detailed report (at 15,770 words, it would have been about 50 pages if I had printed it in paperback format) you save yourself months of research and trial and error.

There are even a few free gifts for you at the back of the eBook.

I hope you find this booklet useful. If you do, please do come back and leave a comment below (or better yet, post it on Amazon!). Also, if you have any suggestions for eBooks you would like me to write, please let me know that too in the comments below. That would be REALLY helpful to me!

And do please subscribe to the Spirit Authors blog for more info and insight into the world of writing, publishing and book promotions.

Enjoy going on autopilot!


Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach and teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and bestselling author. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. She is also the creator of Spirit Authors, which offers training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. Passionate about re-establishing our connection with the Earth, she supports the work of the Transition Town network in her hometown of Bedford, England.

Lynn’s other books:

International #1 Bestseller in Business Ethics, Marketing and Communication (Dec 2011)

Spirituality Bestseller (2009):

The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self (2009)

To contact Lynn for coaching, campaign management or media appearances, please fill in the form at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.

A short intro to digital media for authors who haven’t got a clue from author, coach, book marketer Lynn Serafinn.

I’m a fairly techie person. I’m on the computer so much, sometimes I think it would be more practical to have a microprocessor implanted directly into my brain so I wouldn’t have to sit at my desk all the time. But although I’m pretty expert with the Internet, social media, WordPress, web pages, etc., there are two areas in which I’m a bit of a late bloomer. One is mobile technology (I’ll be talking more about that in a later issue). I only just got my first “smart” phone (a Blackberry) less than 6 months ago. And while I work with authors ALL the time, the second area to which I am admittedly a late bloomer is the world of digital books—eBooks.

Actually, these two things (mobile technology and digital format books) are very, very much related, and if we authors do not have a clue about them, and how they work together, we are quite likely to miss out on half (if not more) of our potential book sales. In fact, my good friend Tony Eldridge from “Marketing Tips for Authors” recently became a #1 seller SOLELY because of his digital book, and only last week my own new book The 7 Graces of Marketing hit #1 & #2 in Kindle shops on both sides of the Atlantic.

I used to think an eBook was just a PDF file that was pretty much a duplicate of your print book. And up until a few years ago, that was true. Then, along came the Kindle, and a whole new market opened up. But THEN, “smart” mobile technology, such as iPhones, iPads and so many other formats entered onto the scene. It’s a confusing quagmire of technology, and it’s VERY easy to get overwhelmed with the options.

So I thought I’d write a VERY basic introduction to some of the practical considerations for eBook creation and distribution for authors who are self-publishing.

Question 1:
Do you need to bother publishing your book in an electronic format if you have a print edition?

Answer:
ABSOLUTELY YES!!! Amazon actually sells MORE Kindle eBook sales than it sells print books! Can you believe I don’t even own a Kindle yet? What was I thinking? (I’m ordering one next month!)

Question 2:
What eBook formats are there? Which format should I use?

Answer:
There are many formats, but the two you should concern yourself with most are Kindle (a bespoke format from Amazon) and the ePub format, which is used by iPad and other companies.

Kindle is the big leader in eBook sales (having been around for almost 5 years now), but iPad is catching up with currently nearly a quarter of all eBook sales at last count. Also, the ePub format is compatible with many other mobile devices besides the iPad. You should use BOTH formats, as well as PDF.

Question 3:
Where do I have to go to set up accounts for an eBook?

Answer:
My suggestion is to use THREE: Amazon (for Kindle), Lightning Source AND Smashwords for other electronic formats. They all distribute to completely different channels (the only overlap I have found between LS and Smashword Kobo).

For Kindle, go to https://kdp.amazon.com/self-publishing/signin and get started. Be SURE to read all their guidelines before submitting anything. You don’t have to have an ISBN, but I think it’s a great idea to have one.

For Lightning Source, go to http://lightningsource.com. Download their list of “CoreSource” Fulfilment partners (there are probably about 60 of them, including MBS Books, Lulu, CyberRead, The Book Depository, Kobo and many others. They deliver eBooks in Adobe Acrobat ebook Reader, Microsoft Reader, and Palm eBook formats. You WILL need a new ISBN for your eBook version.

If you go to Smashwords at http://smashwords.com you’ll see their distribution partners on their home page as Apple iBookstore, Barnes & Noble, Sony Reader Store, Kobo and the Diesel eBook Store. Again, you don’t need an ISBN, but I think it’s a lot better to use your own, as it associates your book with YOU as a publisher, and not with Smashwords.

Question 4:
How do I get my book into digital format for Kindle and ePub? Do I just upload my PDF of my print book?

Answer:
Nope. Each company has their own formatting guidelines and it’s EXTREMELY important you follow them. If formatting is not your “thing” someone can help you prepare your book for digital format. Smashwords will even send you a list of suggested formatters, who are all quite reasonably priced.

The Kindle Direct site is a bit confusing (I think it’s because their gradually updating their information), but if you hunt around it enough, you’ll also find a of suggested places where you can get your book formatted for Kindle. The one I’ve been using is called “LiberWriter” (LOVE the name!) at http://liberwriter.com/. You can test them out for free, and then if you want to use their services, it’s $25 to use their do-it-yourself conversion, and $50 to have them format and convert for you. They also actually respond to personally to customer service requests (always a plus).

Question 5:
Let’s talk about money. How do I price my book, and what kind of royalties will I receive per sale?

Answer:
The short answer to how to price your book is at LEAST 50% LESS than your print version. So, if your print book sells for $15.95, then price your eBook around $7.95 or less. If, however, you’re using this book more or less as a promotional tool (as opposed to a proper “book”), consider selling for as low as $0.99.

Regarding royalties, it goes like this:

Smashwords
Wholesale compensation = 60% of retail (when sold on sites other than their own)
Example: if your eBook is selling for $7.95, the author would get $4.77.
When your eBook is sold ON the Smashwords site, you get 85%. In other words, if your eBook is selling for $7.95, the author would get $6.76.

Lightning Source
LS take 7.5% taken from net (in other words, the author gets 92.5% of net sales). Net is calculated by taking the list price and subtracting the discount you are giving the distributor. For example, if your eBook is selling for $7.95 and wholesale discount is 50%, net world be $3.98, and the author would get $3.68. Of course, you could set your discount at a much lower rate wholesale discount if you wish to achieve a higher profit (example: at 30% discount, you would receive $5.14).

Kindle
You can get as high as a 70% royalty rate from Kindle, minus “delivery” costs. Deliver costs are relative to your file size. On Amazon.com, the delivery cost is $0.15/mb. So, if your eBook that is selling for $7.95 is 5mb in size, your royalty would be: $7.95 X 0.70 = $5.57 – (5 X $0.15) = $4.82.

NOTE: to qualify for a 70% royalty your Kindle retail price must be between $2.99 and $9.99. If it is higher or lower, you are restricted to 35%. That means that you will actually make MORE money selling your Kindle at $9.99 than you would if you were selling it at $18.99, and you would probably sell a load more Kindle versions of your book if you price it as low as is reasonable.  For example, I make only about $5.00 per print copy of my book that sells at $24.95, but I make almost $7.00 on my Kindle sales that are priced $9.99.

ALSO: The 70% royalty is NOT valid in all countries. If you select 70% and your Kindle sells to someone who does not live in one of the participating countries, you will receive 35% for those sales. It IS valid in countries such as US, UK, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, Belgium, Switzerland, and many others. The 70% royalty is NOT valid (as of this writing) for sales made to residents of  the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Australia, New Zealand and many other countries. See Kindle Direct for the latest listing of sales territories that qualify for the 70% royalty.

Please note, these prices and calculations are correct as of this writing, and may have changed since that time.

The key idea with eBooks is to get your book OUT in as many formats, and in as many distribution channels you can. Make sure that links to where people can purchase these products is very visible and easy to find on your website.

I hope this short introduction has given you a bit more information about the practical why, where and how of eBooks. There’s a LOT more to talk about, especially how to make the most of your eBook format and how to market it. But, we’ll save that for another day.

I would very much welcome to hear about your own experiences, so pleae LEAVE A COMMENT BELOW or drop me a line at http://spiritauthors.com/contact to let me know what you have learned in your own eBook adventures.

And do subscribe to the Spirit Authors blog for more info and insight into the world of writing, publishing and book promotions.


Lynn Serafinn, MAED, CPCC is a certified, award-winning coach and teacher, marketer, social media expert, radio host, speaker and bestselling author. Her eclectic approach to marketing incorporates her vast professional experience in the music industry and the educational sector along with more than two decades of study and practice of the spirituality of India. In her work as a promotional manager she has produced a long list of bestselling mind-body-spirit authors. She is also the creator of Spirit Authors, which offers training, coaching, business-building and inspiration for mind-body-spirit authors, whether established or aspiring. Passionate about re-establishing our connection with the Earth, she supports the work of the Transition Town network in her hometown of Bedford, England.

Lynn’s Books:

International #1 Bestseller in Business Ethics, Marketing and Communication (Dec 2011)

Spirituality Bestseller (2009):

The Garden of the Soul: lessons from four flowers that unearth the Self (2009)

To contact Lynn for coaching, campaign management or media appearances, please fill in the form at http://spiritauthors.com/contact.

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