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Aiming at Amazon: The NEW Business of Self Publishing, or How to Publish Your Books with Print on Demand and Online Book Marketing on Amazon.com Paperback – January 1, 2007
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No, this is not one of those books that will teach you how to become an instant Amazon Bestseller. What Shepard suggests is much more ingenious. While becoming an instant bestseller may appear glamorous, the effect of this marketing trick lasts little compared to a real bestseller with good steady sales over a long period of time. Furthermore, the author's innovative technique includes ignoring--yes, totally disregarding--bookstores. With this plan, your aim will be selling your book via Amazon only. While this method may appear a little extreme, there's a beautiful simplicity to it.
Shepard demystifies distributors and wholesalers and offers you a practical, step-by-step plan on how to become your own small press, print your book, and sell it to the public via Amazon. He explains why it's important to stay away from subsidy companies that use print on demand, and he takes you right to the POD printer itself--Lightning Source--saving you an infinite amount of money in the process.
Some of the topics discussed include: choosing POD for printing your books, researching the market, designing and layout, cover design, setting up accounts with Lightning Source and Amazon, Amazon marketing tactics, and getting reviews, among others. In sum, everything you need to know to become your own press and start selling your book online.
Whether you live in the US or in another part of the world, this is an important book to read if you plan on self publishing a non-fiction book, as Shepard also offers valuable information for those living abroad. Written in Shepard's friendly style, Aiming at Amazon is a must read for anybody who is considering self publishing without too much hassle or expenses.
The instant book is an example of what a print on demand (POD) book looks like since it was written, produced and sold using the very techniques described in it. It's not like the reader of the book is reading about theory - he is holding an example of what he is reading about.
The book is divided into four parts:
1. Publishing for Profit
2. Building Your Book
3. Meeting the Market
4. Finessing the Future
I cannot say I had a favorite part. I liked them all equally because I am not well-versed on the publishing industry. Therefore, I learned a great deal about putting together a book not intended to be sold in digital format. I also learned that it is not all that hard to put together a great self published book and have it be successful. The author seems to want to publish his works in order to profit primarily from them. I think that is great, but I highly recommend anyone who wants to publish their works to boost their consulting or coaching practice get a copy of this book and study it.Read more ›
I am leaving in my original comments (see below) because I do still feel the same about Search Inside and the cover, but now that I've had a chance to apply some of Aaron Shepard's other suggestions, I would rate the book higher.
His suggestion on using TitleZ for long-term analysis is very useful. Also, I was also able to come up with additional suggestions to give Amazon for BISAC codes by using the website he referenced. Additionally, I have now done So You'd Like to guides and Listmania lists and they do attract a surprising number of viewers, as he notes. I am working on adding search suggestions, so I don't know the impact of that recommendation yet, but it looks promising.
It should be noted that Aaron comments that it takes about a year for your book to reach its full potential on Amazon...so I guess I'll have to wait until then to give all his suggestions a shot. But, if I were rating the book for the first time today, I would give it 5 stars.
Original comments (***)
I bought this book hoping it would show me how to gain greater exposure for my book on Amazon. I'm a first-time author; I'm not a celebrity; and I didn't go the traditional publishing route. So finding a way to reach the people who might benefit from my book despite these obstacles is key.
So I was surprised that some of the advice in the book, like skip Search Inside because the Search Inside logo degrades the thumbnail cover images, didn't make sense to me. For one thing, I've seen books with Search Inside and the cover images look fine.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Don't waste your money. Outdating, totally ridiculous in terms of information that is useful and ULTRA-boring.Published 6 months ago by Breezy
There's some good info in this and other books by the author. However, I'd love to see more user-friendly formatting and more attractive covers.Published 9 months ago by Voice dude
This book will guide you to self-publishing earnings. It's easy to read and got me started on the right track.Published 9 months ago by happy camper
This is the first book I've read on self-publishing and I have read about 10 more. That was about 6 months ago and I jest finished writing my first children's book. Read morePublished 16 months ago by Sharon M.
Aaron Shepard knows his stuff when it comes to self-publishing and selling on Amazon. Much of the information in this book is relevant and can easily be applied to today's... Read morePublished on June 22, 2014 by Doug Erlandson
Even though its a few years old now, it is still fairly up-to-date.
It made publishing so much easier. Thank you.
I bought this 6 months ago and, due to changes at Lightening Source, the information in the book is well out of date. Even the author on his site admits this. (His site is [...]). Read morePublished on April 27, 2014 by Tony Smyth