Copyright © 2016 by Tyra Buburuz
Published by Upper Room Productions Inc.
No part of this book may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, without the express written permission of the publisher.
All rights reserved.
Chapter 1 – The Three Principals to Success
Chapter 2 – A Good Book Cover
Chapter 3 – A Good Summary
Chapter 4 – Proofreading, Editing and Formatting
Chapter 5 – Reaching Your Audience—Categories and Keywords
Chapter 6 – The Common Mistake You Don’t Want To Make
Chapter 7 – Promotion Inside Your Book
Chapter 8 – Ask For Reviews
Chapter 9 – The Quick Reference Sheet
Chapter 10 – Advance Promotion
Chapter 11 – Promotion While Your Book is Free or Discounted
Chapter 12 – Personal Social Networks
Chapter 13 – Where to Sell Your Book Online
Chapter 14 – Free vs. Discounted
Chapter 15 – Final Thoughts
About the Author
Letter to the Reader
This book has been written primarily for authors who:
– are new to self–publishing
– have a marketing budget of zero dollars
– have their works distributed in digital format by a major online distributor
If this is you and you’re trying to increase your market share in the digital book world while growing your readership, or if you are a person considering delving into the above, then this guide may be for you. Even authors who have been around for a while may still benefit from some of the information in this book.
From the core principals of what makes a book successful, to what will have readers coming back for more, this book covers zero cost book promotion ideas for today’s online marketplace.
This book also contains over 50 top free promotional website URLs that offer free book promotion, many of which may be right for you.
I hope you enjoy it!
No matter what genre you write in, or how many followers you have on your social networks, you can enjoy success in digital book publishing if you can achieve three basic things:
p. – promotion
p. – selection
You can have the best promotion, and the widest selection of books, but if they’re poorly written, and don’t strike a note with an audience, chances are any downloads or sales you receive will be short lived. Quality writing is key.
So you’ve got a great book. Good for you! The next step is promotion. There are many paid services to promote your book but this can be costly. So if you’re a new author, and you want to test the waters, the best way to go is free.
Once people begin to discover your awesome new book, they’ll want more. So give them what they want. If you can, write your books in series. If readers like one book, chances are they will buy other books in that series. If what you write doesn’t work for a series, try writing books in the same genre. If readers enjoy your writing style and ideas, hopefully they will keep coming back for more.
A good book cover will draw the interest of more readers than a poorly designed one will, and a professional looking cover will go a long way in attracting new readers.
If you use Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing to upload your book, you will notice a free built in option for creating your book’s cover called, “Cover Creator”. In that you will find a wide array of high quality images you can use for your cover, with a wide variety of font and layout options.
If you can’t find an image you like in their free catalog, you can upload your own and use their text editor to add your title and other information. They also offer free solid backgrounds and texture designs if you don’t want to use an image or photograph on your book’s cover.
There are many people who design beautiful book covers online, but this can come at a high cost. If you’re new to self–publishing, and you don’t have a budget for cover designs, I highly recommend the Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing free Cover Creator option.
After the book title and cover, the next item a potential reader will look at is your book’s summary.
A good summary can go a long way in convincing readers to take the next step in downloading and/or purchasing your book. You don’t want this to be too long, remember it’s a summary and not the book itself. Aim to give a good description of your book, while trying to peak a potential reader’s interest.
This doesn’t have to be perfect the first time around. You can write, re–write, and edit this as you go if you find what you have does not resonate with readers.
Like most writing, this takes practice. You will improve as you go along.
Part of writing a great book is having your proofreading, editing and formatting in order.
Proofreading and editing are often thought of as the same thing, but in reality they are different processes.
Proofreading is something you do to find spelling and grammatical errors, and make the necessary corrections, whereas editing is the process of preparing your written material for presentation by revision or adaptation.
You can never do too much proofreading, especially when it involves your own work. If possible, have another person read your work over for grammatical and spelling errors. Another person who is unfamiliar with the material may catch errors you might have missed.
You also have to be careful when writing with an auto–correct program. Often times it will auto–correct a word, thereby replacing it with another word that makes no sense whatsoever in your sentence.
Some people find they catch more errors by reading their work out loud, while others find greater success by reading a printout of their work as opposed to reading it onscreen. I’ve also heard of people using hard to read fonts to help slow their reading down to catch even more errors. Try a couple options and find what works best for you.
Editing is also a very important part of writing a great book. Your job as an editor should be to look at the book as a whole. Does it flow well? Is every piece valid, or do some parts interrupt the flow or confuse the reader? Should there be more to it?
Overall, editing is about refining the manuscript to give your readers the best reading experience and the greatest enjoyment.
No matter where you publish your book, good formatting is key. Most every website you choose to upload your book to will have detailed instructions on formatting. Follow those instructions closely to ensure your book looks great and is fully functional on any reading device or platform.
Chances are, even if you’ve written the greatest book ever, not everyone will be interested in reading it. Therefore you need to know who your audience is, and then promote directly to them.
This may sound difficult at first, but it really isn’t. The simplest step to gaining market share with your respective audience is to place your book in the correct category. Try to be as niche as possible. This will drive downloads and sales, and keep your book charting long after it’s initial release and promotion.
Remember to be as specific as you can with your category selections. Most online distributors will allow you to pick two to three categories. Don’t select anything out of your writing scope hoping to land readers that wouldn’t normally be interested in your writing—this is deceptive and misleading, and will only serve in turning people away from and not to your writing.
For example, don’t place your historical romance novel in a contemporary thriller & suspense category.
Keywords are also very important in helping readers find your book. Most online distributors will allow you to submit seven or so keywords and phrases. Choose these wisely ensuring they are relevant to your book. Also, try to select words and phrases that are not already in your book’s title, summary, or description as these are, for the most part, already included in the site’s search engine process.
Here is a common error I have seen. Hopefully you haven’t done this, but if you have now is a good time to fix it!
Forward vs. Foreword – Forward is a direction you move in; foreword is an introductory note.
If you decide to place an introductory note in your book, you will want to title it “Foreword” not “Forward”.
Inside your book is prime advertising space, so use it wisely.
Placing a link back to your website, author page(s), social media account(s), and even links to other titles you have available is a great way to encourage interaction between you and your readership. This also helps increase sales, as well as “likes” and “follows” on your social media pages.
This is also a great opportunity for you to follow back and learn about your audience. Learning about your readership can also help you improve your writing by addressing topics your audience shows interest in.
A good place to place this additional information is at the end of your book.
In your book you can include a section such as, “Letter to the Reader”. In this letter you basically thank the person for reading your book, and then ask them to leave a review.
It doesn’t have to be long, only sincere. Reviews help people in their decisions on whether or not to download and/or purchase books—especially in instances where they are unfamiliar with the author. Getting reviews can be a difficult task, but asking for reviews is a good way to get the ball rolling.
And while some authors opt to purchase reviews, I do not recommend it. Posting false reviews is illegal, and really isn’t a good practice for any person or business. It is better to have little or no reviews, than to have ones that are fake, false or purchased. Eventually you will be found out.
Keep your reputation in check and be patient. A good book will eventually garner good reviews if you keep up your promotional efforts.
Before you begin your book promotion, you will need what some refer to as a quick reference sheet. A well written quick reference sheet will save you loads of time and energy because you will only have to compile and type the information once, as opposed to 20 times or more.
Create it once, and then cut and paste as necessary.
Your quick reference sheet is basically an interview you give yourself as an author based on the book you’re promoting.
This may seem a little overwhelming at first, but much of this information may be reused and recycled for multiple book promotions, with small to medium changes, depending on how much time you want to invest.
The items you will want to detail on your quick reference sheet are:
Your promotional dates: (these are the dates you will be giving your book away for free, or at a discounted price…more about this can found in Chapter 14 – Free vs. Discounted)
The title of your awesome book: (longer descriptive titles seem to garner better results in search engines, but keep in mind it’s a title and not a summary)
Your book’s ISBN (if available) and ASIN numbers: (every book you distribute through Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing will automatically have an Amazon Standard Identification Number (ASIN) assigned to it by Amazon free of charge; an International Standard Book Number (ISBN) is not required to sell your book on Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing nor is it required for promotional activities)
Where to find your book: (the URL where your book may be downloaded and/or purchased)
A short summary of your book: (some websites will require a short summary of your book’s content)
A long description of your book: (some websites will require a lengthy description of your book’s content)
An author biography: (this can be filled with interesting things about you—if you don’t have a lot to say about your writing, talk about your family, your pets, your favorite books, what moves you to write, and so on…)
Your book’s genre(s): (the category or categories your book fits into)
Your book’s keywords: (words readers may search for if they wanted to find a book like yours)
Your email address: (site owners will ask for this in order to contact you in regard to your submission)
Your social media and website URLs: (your twitter, facebook, and personal web page URLs—some websites will ask for these)
A promotional tweet for your book: (many sites offer a free tweet for authors; writing one of these in advance will save you time, and you’ll probably write a better tweet in advance as opposed to composing something on the spot; and don’t forget to test out your tweet on your own twitter account to ensure the text fits prior to giving it to a third party to post)
A promotional ad for your book: (many sites offer free classified ads for your book; with a classified ad, you can get a little more elaborate with your writing as opposed to composing a tweet—but both can be highly effective if they’re well written)
A form letter: (a short and friendly email asking site owners if they would like to include your book promotion on their website; many sites offer free book promotion, but instead of taking submissions via an online form, they ask that authors email them with their information—using a form letter will make this quick and easy for you)
A high quality image of your book’s cover: (you’ll want to have a large .jpeg file of your book’s cover image in a place where you can easily access it on your computer as many sites will ask you to upload this when you provide them with your book information; anything around 500 × 795 pixels is acceptable)
Okay, now that you have your quick reference sheet ready to go (see: Chapter 9 – The Quick Reference Sheet), you will need a list of places to use this information. Depending on what genre you write in, many of the websites listed below may be willing to consider promoting your book for free.
You will want to start notifying these sites about 10 days in advance prior to your free giveaway or discounted book promotion to ensure a better chance of placement on their sites.
At time of publication, all of the following websites offer at least one free option for authors who want to list their book promotions, however most offer paid adverting as well so make sure you look for the free option prior to submitting any forms. You don’t want to waste anyone’s time, including your own.
Also, make sure you read each website’s guidelines and requirements prior to submitting your book. What may be suitable for one site, may not be suitable for another. Some have genre restrictions, while others may require your book to have a certain number of reviews prior to promoting it on their site.
Advance Promotion URLs:
Armadilloebooks.com – http://www.armadilloebooks.com/submit-free-ebooks/
Awesomegang.com – http://awesomegang.com/submit-your-book/
Bookangel.co.uk – http://bookangel.co.uk/submit-your-book/
Bookdealhunter.com – http://bookdealhunter.com/submit-free-book/
Bookpinning.com – http://bookpinning.com/?sws=home/submit-book
Christiankindlenews.com – http://christiankindlenews.com/submit-free-christian-ebook-deal/
Contentmo.com – http://contentmo.com/submit-your-free-ebook-promo/
Discountbookman.com – http://discountbookman.com/book-promotion/
eBookdealofday.com – http://ebookdealofday.com/free-book-feature/
eBookstamp.com – http://www.ebookstamp.com/free-ebook-promotion/
eReaderiq.com – http://www.ereaderiq.com/authors/submit/
eReaderparadise.com – http://ereaderparadise.com/submit-ebook/
eReaderutopia.com – http://ereaderutopia.com/author/books
Faithfulreads.com – http://www.faithfulreads.com/p/authors.html
Freebies4mom.com – http://freebies4mom.com/share-free-ebooks-with-freebies-4-mom/
Freebookdude.com – http://www.freebookdude.com/2014/03/list-your-free-amazon-kindle-books.html
Freeebooksforme.com – http://freeebooksforme.com/authors-page/
Freebooksifter.tumblr.com – http://freebooksifter.tumblr.com/submit
Freebooks.com – http://www.freebooks.com/submit/ Freeebooksme.com- http://Freeebooksme.com/kindle-free-days-e-book-submission
Freebooksy.com – http://Freebooksy.com/editorial-submissions?utm_campaign=editorial-submissions&utm_source=Bargain+Booksy&utm_medium=referral
Frugal-freebies.com – http://www.Frugal-freebies.com/p/submit-freebie.html
Goodebooks.net – http://www.Goodebooks.net/authfree.html
Goodreads.com – http://www.Goodreads.com/topic/show/1153826-authors-advertise-your-ebooks-that-are-2-99-or-less-here
Hunt4freebies.com – http://Hunt4freebies.com/submit-freebie
Igniteyourbook.com – http://Igniteyourbook.com/free-ebook-submission/
Iloveebooks.com – http://www.Iloveebooks.com/for-authors.html
Indiebookoftheday.com – http://Indiebookoftheday.com/authors/free-on-kindle-listing/
Indiesunlimited.com – http://www.Indiesunlimited.com/category/indies-unlimited/thrifty-thursday/
Itswritenow.com – http://Itswritenow.com/submit-your-book/
Inspiredreads.com – http://www.Inspiredreads.com/contact/
Jungledealsandsteals.com – http://Jungledealsandsteals.com/submit-your-kindle-freebie/
Kindlebookpromos.luckycinda.com – http://Kindlebookpromos.luckycinda.com/?page_id=283
Kindlemojo.com – http://www.Kindlemojo.com/forum/t.php?forumID=11
Lovelybookpromotions.com – http://Lovelybookpromotions.com/?page_id=124
Mybookplace.net [++]- http://mybookplace.net/submit-your-book/
Pistic Books on Twitter – https://twitter.com/pisticbooks (direct message on twitter)
Pistic Books on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/pisticbooks (contact through facebook)
Thedailybookworm.com – http://Thedailybookworm.com/submit-free-books2/
Thevirtualbookcase.wordpress.com – http://Thevirtualbookcase.wordpress.com/how-to-submit-to-the-virtual-bookshelf/
Yourdailyebooks.com – http://www.Yourdailyebooks.com/sample-page/
Zourla.com [++]- http://Zourla.com/get_pixels.php
The following are a handful of websites that may be willing to promote your book for free, but you cannot post to these websites until your book is actually free or discounted. This means that you must wait until the day your book becomes free or discounted before posting to these websites and/or forums.
Like the advance promotion websites, all of the following websites offer at least one free option for authors who want to list their book promotions. Please note that many also offer paid adverting as well, so be sure to look for the free option prior to submitting any forms.
And always make sure you read each website’s guidelines and requirements prior to submitting your book. What may be suitable for one site, may not be suitable for another. Some have genre restrictions, while others may require your book to have a certain number of reviews prior to promoting it on their site.
Promotion While Your Book is Free or Discounted URLs:
Addictedtoebooks.com – http://addictedtoebooks.com/content/todays-free-kindle-books
Addicted-to-eBook Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/pages/Addicted-to-eBookscom/277297772316389
Amazon.com Author’s Forum – http://www.amazon.com/forum/meet%20our%20authors/
Askdavid.com – http://askdavid.com/free-ebook-promotion
Authorexpo.com – http://www.authorexpo.com/tweet-request/
Biblioconnection.com – http://www.biblioconnection.com/Classifieds.aspx
Crossreads.com – http://crossreads.com/community/forumdisplay.php?10-FREE-Books
eReadergirl.com – http://ereadergirl.com/submit-your-ebook/
eReaderlove.com – http://ereaderlove.com/contact/
Everywritersresource.com – http://www.everywritersresource.com/freeclassifiedsforwriters/post-your-book-promos
Kornerkonnection.com – http://Kornerkonnection.com
Worldliterarycafe.com – http://www.Worldliterarycafe.com/forum/171
Your social networks, friends, and family members are also good targets when promoting your book. The more downloads you get, the higher placement your book will receive in listings.
This is especially good when you are offering a free download of your book. People enjoy getting things for free, and you may even get some good feedback from the people in your social networks.
Posting to your twitter and facebook accounts are good places to start—if you have those. Personal emails are okay, but an informative posting on your twitter or facebook account can easily reach more people, and those are far less invasive than a personal email to a friend or family member asking them to download your book.
And don’t worry if you don’t have thousands of “followers” or “likes” on your social media pages. A small amount of genuine “followers” and “likes” are far better than thousands of fabricated “followers” and fictitious “likes”.
And while there is something to be said for appearances, fake “followers” don’t buy books. Only real people do that.
I like the idea of having my books available through as many online distributors as possible, but this can be a hassle when trying to update book covers, book content, or even taking certain titles off certain websites in order to enjoy some of the features offered on Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing KDP Select as this requires exclusivity (see: Chapter 14 – Free vs. Discounted).
Be selective, and always read the fine print. If you have the time and don’t mind putting in the effort, you can increase your readership slowly but surely by spreading your work around.
Now although estimates vary, the following rundown is an average snapshot of the information you will find on the top eBook distributors and their market share in the US at time of publication:
– Amazon 70%
p. – Nook, iBooks, Kobo, and Google Play sharing 28% – Independent retailers rounding out the other 2%
Now you may think by those numbers that anything outside of Amazon isn’t worth your time or effort, but with the US eBook industry currently valued at over $700 million, even a small percentage of that is equal to a lot of money.
So if you want to try different distributors outside of, or in addition to, Amazon, just don’t enroll the books you want to test in other markets into Amazon’s KDP Select as digital books distributed on Amazon outside of KDP Select can be placed on other digital selling platforms.
And as always read the fine print with any distributor prior to uploading your book to their platform to make sure it’s a deal you can live with, and to ensure that you’re not breaking any part of their distribution agreement.
Another way to test markets is to write more books and upload them to various distributors. You never know where people will discover your work.
When promoting a book, especially if it’s a new book, or if you are a new author without a lot of followers, a free book giveaway can go a long way as far as future sales of your book and in the growing of your readership.
If you are a member of Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing KDP Select, your book is made available for free to Kindle Unlimited members as long as your book is enrolled in KDP select.
Another benefit of having your book enrolled in KDP Select is that you can offer either free downloads of your book (up to 5 days of free downloads for every 90–day enrollment period) or you can run a Kindle Countdown Deal where the price of your book is discounted for a certain period of time (the regular price, alongside the time sensitive promotional price, can be seen on the book’s detail page which also features a countdown clock showing the time remaining on the promotional price).
I have experienced greater levels of success using the free download option as opposed to countdown deals, but there are many factors which can contribute to the success or failure of either. Try one or both and see for yourself which works best for you. But remember, you can only choose one or the other for each 90–day enrollment period.
Also be aware that in order for your book to be eligible for Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing KDP Select it must not be available on any other platform in digital format for the 90–day enrollment period. If you have a print version of your book you are free to make it available anywhere you like, but the digital version must be exclusive to Amazon for the 90–day enrollment period.
To be eligible for KDP Select you must also have the exclusive rights for the main content of your book meaning that the content of your book is not in the public domain, and that no one other than yourself has the right to publish your book.
Promoting your book may seem overwhelming at first but if you take the time and put in the effort, eventually you will achieve some level of success.
I have focused this guide primarily on the Amazon digital distribution platform: Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing, but the principals in this book should benefit you regardless of which you distributor(s) you select.
As always, continual development and promotion of your work is key. By doing so you should get better at what you’re doing, and hopefully build a following. Patience is also very important as most “overnight” success stories were, in reality, years in the making.
I wish you all the best!
Tyra Buburuz is the President & CEO of Upper Room Productions Inc. and works to produce Bible based media products to encourage spiritual growth such as DVDs, books and online media.
You can connect with Tyra online at:
Connect with Upper Room Productions Inc. online at:
I hope you have found the information in this book useful.
If you have, I ask that you please leave a review of this book so that other people may be helped by your evaluation.
And don’t forget to check out my author website at http://www.amazon.com/author/tyrabuburuz
for more books!
Thank you for reading!
For additional products visit us online at:
This book has been written primarily for authors who: - are new to self-publishing - have a marketing budget of zero dollars - have their works distributed in digital format by a major online distributor If this is you and you're trying to increase your market share in the digital book world while growing your readership, or if you are a person considering delving into the above, then this guide may be for you. Even authors who have been around for a while may still benefit from some of the information in this book. From the core principals of what makes a book successful, to what will have readers coming back for more, this book covers zero cost book promotion ideas for today's online marketplace. This book also contains over 50 top free promotional website URLs that offer free book promotion, many of which may be right for you. I hope you enjoy it!