Monday, April 11, 2011

What Amazon Can Do For YOU

Last week at the Whidbey Island Writer's Conference, Amazon representative Jon Fine spoke to us about what Amazon is doing now, can do for authors (self pubed and traditionally pubed), and things to look for in the future.

I was surprised to learn how many opportunities Amazon provides for self publishing and Indie publishing. For the self publishers, there are programs such as Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace. There are also more traditional Indie style publishing with Amazon Encore and The Domino Project (powered by Amazon). I had no idea Amazon did all this. I thought it was Buy, Sell, end of story. Boy was I wrong.

Here's the part that I thought was very helpful to authors (and another thing I had no idea about): your Author Page. We've all seen those Author Pages right? Where all the author's books are conveniently displayed? Well, that's not all the Author Page can do (keep this in mind when you are pubed--traditionally or self). On your Author Page, you can upload your books and book covers, announce tours and appearances, display your blog, display video, display a photo, and put up your Twitter feed (brand new). When you are pubed, be sure to communicate with your publisher if they will be doing this or if you should. A lot of people use Amazon now to get info about books and authors, and Amazon is a great place to display it all.
One last tidbit. You know the Search Inside feature on some (unfortunately not all) books? I use it all the time to decide which book I want to read next and it helps me whittle down my stack of TBRs. But it also helps convince me to read a book (importance of a great first few pages). Again, talk to your publisher about this feature. Why is it so important? Jon explained. When Search Inside is available, the entire contents of your book is made accessible by search engines (even though the reader will not be able to see all of it). If you have a mention of something in your book that isn't in the title or synopsis, and someone Googles for it, they will see that your book has it. Voila. Another book sale.
So, don't underestimate Amazon anymore. They are so much more than a convenient bookseller. They are a terrific example of how one company is changing with the changing tides.

10 comments:

Barbara Kloss said...

Great info! Thanks for sharing. I haven't extensively researched self-publishing yet, so this answers some questions I have floating around in my head somewhere.

Heather said...

This is pretty amazing. I had no idea Amazon did so much for authors. I'm bookmarking this for later use! Thank you.

AderuMoro said...

Thank you for this! Sounds like it'll be really helpful when it comes to self-promoting.

Scott Clark said...

Wow, this sounds really cool. Thanks for sharing the info. I look forward to using it in the near future.

Melanie said...

Amazing! I had no idea. This is great information to know! Thanks. :-)

Kristin Lynn Thetford said...

Brilliant post! Thanks for the information! :)

Andrew Leon said...

I have to agree that Amazon is great for this stuff. The best part is that it can be completely free. Not just the Kindle stuff but CreateSpace, too. It's really great!
Now, if I could just figure out how to make my Author page look like something worth looking at. :P

Michael Offutt said...

Amazon is reshaping the world of publishing.

Rebecca Ryals Russell said...

Thanks for the info. I had recently discovered and filled out the Author Page, but the Look Inside info was useful.

Aisyah Putri Setiawan said...


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