Online Publishing Strategy
Here’s a scenario, you’ve built a consistent stream of passive income, you’re ready to add more streams. You’d first like to take a couple months off to simply relax and refocus, can you afford to do this?
While this may sound counterculture, the truth of the matter is you are no longer subject to the demands of a traditional employer. You’ve built your own path instead of helping some employer build theirs. You can work from anywhere, anytime you need to. Why? Because you’ve developed a profitable Online Publishing strategy!
What is Online Publishing?
In a nutshell it’s the publication of in-demand, quality, valuable material that other people pay you money to obtain. Commonly it’s in the form of ebooks (such as Kindle), paperback books, and audio books. Three sales streams for each publication – That’s great!
Every time you add another publication, it’s another stream feeding into your overall revenue. Like any river, the more flow you add, the bigger your river gets!
So here’s the difference…
- Most people work for an employer.
- They have set hours to report for work.
- They have set procedures to follow.
- They have limited time off.
- They are building the wealth of their employer.
- They have one primary stream of income.
- They often have limited opportunities.
Developing, and maintaining a consistent online publishing strategy, is arguably a simpler way to build your own business path, leading to improved financial freedom. I’ve even seen people engage online publishing while working their regular 9-5 type jobs!
What are the details, what are some of the specifics?
When I talk about online publishing, I’m talking about the big elephant that is… Amazon – Kindle books to be specific.
There are three streams to the strategy actually…
#1 Kindle books (Amazon KDP “Kindle Direct Publishing”)
#2 Paperback books (Createspace)
#3 Audiobooks (ACX)
Two key points here…
Millions of Kindle book readers are sold world wide, providing a great opportunity for writers.
Amazon maintains high trust, high website optimization, one click purchase, and includes marketing resources.
…hence Kindle as the initial platform.
A common (and easier flow) is to first publish for Kindle, then port to paperback, and then to audio. As I’ve mentioned, these are three streams for one publication.
Key strategy: Publish in more than one format. More formats enable you to reach more market streams.
One of the more common question I field, is “Roger, I’m not good at writing, what can I do?”
Well… Here’s one key… I always advise business owners to work on their business, to grow and nurture it. If you are working in your business (such as writing a Kindle book), less time is spent on growing the business.
Again, work on the business, not in it!
Solution: Use a ghostwriter to create your content.
Don’t misunderstand, of course writing the book yourself, is cost free, and requires your time and labour. From time to time, you may likely do so. For the most part however, it’s more business savvy to use the services of professional writers; so you can work on your business instead.
Key strategy: Publish your own books under your own name. Publish your ghostwritten books under pen names. When your business grows bigger, with a substantial revenue stream, competitors will work to track your activities, to better target their competitive actions. Pen names help your privacy initiatives.
What do I need to publish a book?
You’ll need the content, that either you or your ghost writer has written and a book cover. The important thing to keep in mind is to ensure that expenses are kept as low as reasonable. Keeping expenses low (on each publication) helps you because an unsuccessful book would incur a low loss. Similarly, everyone makes mistakes along the way – That’s a fact of business life. Low expenses result in reduced financial impact when mistakes happen.
Leverage online resources to help you get jobs done, for example:
Fiverr can be used to retain a graphics book cover designer.
Upwork or Elance can be searched to find a content writer.
Side note: Pixabay or Unsplash may yield good stock images.
Just keep in mind, using such services as the above ideas, means that it’s up to you to ensure that the process runs smoothly, and you have the right people in the right places, doing the write job.
Key strategy: Work with an established company that already has the writers, proofreaders, etc. Using such a strategy simplifies the excessive follow up, back-and-forth, etc. as you would only liaise with the manager, or your agent, and don’t have to manage all the team members (the company would instead take care of that). Doing so frees up a lot of time.
One benefit of this business model is the average time frame to realize any manner of revenue is around 30 days or so (which is really fast). Kindle publishing is a faster business model than many. Additionally any publication you add, is commonly available for purchase the next day, “live” anywhere from 24 – 48 hours after you’ve added it. Purchases are very simple for customers to complete.
A realistic timeline for a smaller publication, is about three weeks for the content to be written, possibly four days for the graphics cover to be designed, then a day for the book to be added to Amazon’s KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing). Many of us tend to write and publish the first book ourselves (which is a good idea, providing you hands-on experience).
Realistically, publishing a single book does not provide a large revenue stream. The goal is to publish several (over time) quality books.
Key strategy: As your revenue stream grows, reinvest some of that money back into your business. Have longer, better quality publications written for each of your chosen niche readers. Longer books that are better quality, help grow your revenue even more – It’s an ongoing cycle (and needs to be consistently nurtured).
A Word About Passive Revenue
In any business endeavour, passive does not mean set and forget.
“Passive” is never 100% assurance of revenue. It is important to follow up older publications and provide updates when needed, as well as create new material – regularly. Not following up on older publications risks losing some sales (decreasing sales) opportunities. Not creating new publications decreases your business growth.
Passive does not mean set and forget. Check on your publications at the very least each month. Then make fixes and adjustments if needed. Including tweaking your promotion and marketing.
Key strategy: Grow your distribution foundation. Kindle is a terrific launch point, to earn revenue for each book. Be sure to Increase your distribution. How? Create a paperback version of the book, and later an audio version.
Leverage Sales Funnels
Use Kindle books to funnel customers into your services and products. Use it to build an email list – Place your call to action inside the introduction of each book. Again, make sure to include a bonus for incentive (click a link to access them – That link goes to your URL) and ask people to subscribe to your mailing list, with their email address.
Any further advice?
Yes, again… Focus on operating your publishing business! Not getting stuck working in it.
One good strategy is to earn the most revenue with the least amount of books – If you focus on quality! This makes your publications and business long term and sustainable.
One worry I commonly field, asks if the market is saturated? – In my opinion… No, instead, it’s very competitive! A great game plan in this case, is to focus on the long term, with the right strategies (do not focus on the competitiveness). Again, think long term! Publish quality books, continue to market your publications. To reiterate: Focus on long term strategies.
When is the market saturated? When using a short term, quick profit driven model. Instead you need to grow long term for sustainability – Build a long term business and brand!
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For almost twenty years, my expertise in business management has helped businesses bring their goals to fruition. I provide practical, logistical services for your business website. The key strategies to help realize greater business freedom through smarter operations is paramount in today’s global marketplace.