Kindle User Experience Upgrades Empower Authors

It’s not a secret that digital technology and the internet are the bomb! Totally disruptive. Totally innovative. Totally liberating. Totally exciting… to some of us.

We, the unapologetic self-publishers of 2019, who want to tear down the barriers to success with getting our books published and in the hands of eager readers.

The User Experience Matters And Kindle Makes Good

 

Lots of people are afraid of technology because they find it cold, counterintuitive, and awkward to use. But technology is always improving, so shunning it does us no good. When we can find an instance of a place where the user experience of online design—an abstraction called UX by graphic designers—is logical, straightforward, and flows seamlessly in a clear progression, we should celebrate that to the max. Kindle Direct Publishing has drastically improved its UX.

Whatever you think about Amazon “taking over the world” and Jeff Bezos’ rapid climb to the top of the social hierarchy in the United States, I think you’d have to admit that he understood the possibility of online technology to make our lives simpler and flowing before we did. That’s why he is such a powerful influencer—and so wealthy.

Enter Kindle Direct Publishing

The admirably seamless user experience is nowhere more evident in the Amazon stratosphere than in its publishing arm, Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP). When all the other stores were poo pooing self-publishing, KDP started studying our writing and marketing habits and finding ways to serve us and invite us into partnership with them. It was an early opportunity missed by the arrogance of Barnes and Noble, which had the largest brick and mortar footprint across the nation. Now that everyone buys books online, B&N has been playing catch up. And as B&N catches up, KDP is forced to become even better so that we (self-publishers) remain loyal to it.

DIY authors are a hot commodity because we drive a lot of internet traffic to online stores.

Self-Publishing Resources Expand

In this “space race” of self-publishing, Amazon smartly bought a group of smaller companies and fit their offerings together to create a publishing jigsaw puzzle—the original print-on-demand paperback company, Book Source, was renamed CreateSpace. It remained as such until Fall 2018, when this system was retired and all the production files in it started to be rolled into Kindle Paperbacks—where royalty rates have increased to a desirable 60 percent of retail price!

Amazon/Kindle also bought Goodreads (a social platform where authors can interface with readers), Audible (an audio publishing company), and more. At each step self-publishers have been invited to participate and empowered to do it for little to no money upfront.

There were a few elements that had to be done exterior to the web-based platform until now, but as software designers cobbled those together, these features have been integrated into KDP. Now it is quite robust. One of my favorite words!

Learn more at our free webinar!
Learn More Social Buzz U is featuring Stephanie Gunning’s webinar  which will go in depth into the Kindle Direct Publishing changes and how you can take advantage of it. If you miss the live training and want access to it, consider joining Social Buzz Club and gain this training and hundreds more in our library of high content trainings to grow your business from top experts.

Writing and Design Come Together

A tipping point has been reached where the upgrades to the back office publishing experience have made it possible to write and design simultaneously, and with a push of a button have a respectable-looking book published in a manner of days.

The improvements benefit consumers too—because frankly, as convenient as portable reading devices like the Kindle are, the appearance of self-published ebooks was always pretty awful. it was hard to add more bells and whistles to a book design that had to be converted into a software that couldn’t accommodate them. Until. Recently. Now conversion of ebooks is better.

Progress leads to perfection, I suppose.

Advertising Tools Join In

With the upgrades to its systems, DIY publishers have access to advertising tools on Amazon. Beta testing is being done on features like the X-Ray, where clickable links add value.

The thing I like about KDP is that when the company wants us to adopt a new behavior they create an inducement to do so. And those inducements usually are tools that increase sales.

Savvy self-publishers need to know their own goals to discern which tools matter for them. Having tools available may empower some people more than others, depending on aptitudes for technology. But the good news is that help is definitely available, so authors can delegate the tasks that lie outside their own comfort zone to support personnel if they want to.

Stay In the Know

Where taking a good close look at KDP’s dashboard every month or two can be beneficial to those who recognize the space is constantly evolving, the best publishing practice is to be mindful of your books and not neglect them. Try thinking of online publishing as a video game. The more you know about the possibilities the more likely you are to be a winner.

Stay in touch with your books. Modify your description, pricing, and keywords periodically. And try out new tools to suss them out. It all exists because someone like you wanted it.

Come play with the rest of the kids in this DIY playground.

 

VISIBILTY: The Key to Attracting New Clients and Changing More Lives

If you are looking at your bank account or your thinning client list, and wondering where it all went, it’s because you don’t have enough visibility.

If people don’t know about you, they can’t become your raving fans and enthusiastic ever-buying clients.

The Field of Dreams ‘build-it-and-they-will-come” ethos is the curse of the entrepreneur. Much as we love what we have created and what we offer, people must discover us in order to have a thriving business and continuing revenue. And that takes going where they are, not waiting for them to come to us.

Today, the fastest and most effective way to create the massive visibility that drives a heart-based transformational business is through speaking, radio shows/podcasts and virtual summits.

If you offer people processes, steps, products or resources that improve their personal and/or professional enrichment, then you need to be in these places where people can connect with you and your message.

Finding them and getting booked are among the things that leaders often dislike, resist or don’t find the time for. But once you develop some simple steps and get into the swing of being your own best advocate, you’ll enjoy a steady stream of appearances that will invite you back time after time!

Here are some suggestions to get you started:

Speaking Engagements

The first step is this process is to actually commit time to locating opportunities and pitching the bookers. Block at least three hours each week in your calendar just for this purpose. If you can’t do the time, you can’t earn the dime!

Identify at least three different topics on which you can speak. They could be derivations of the same one for different audiences or three entirely different subjects that all lead to what you are marketing. This gives bookers flexibility and you more chances to get a “yes.”

If you are concerned about your presentation skills, you have three paths…start testing your primary signature talk locally on small audiences, working to perfect it. Join a local Toastmasters chapter where you can safely learn and grow into a speaker within a welcoming community, or lastly get connected with one of the brilliant speaker trainings around. You can find a great list at on the Speakertunity resources page. This may be a little more costly, but it’s the quickest path to proficiency

Create a stellar Speaker One-Sheet. This document features your profile, photo, testimonials and brief descriptions of your presentations, packaged in an attractive manner. When you include it in an email to a speaker booker, it gives them a capsule summary of why you would be great for his/her audience

Now you want to get out in the world. Some obvious—but often overlooked—ways to find engagements are to ask your friends and your clients if they belong to or know of organizations that might like to have you present. Explore local chambers of commerce, women’s groups, service organizations, Unity or Centers for Spiritual Living, networking groups. Most of these are easy to find on Google by typing the organization + your city.

If you wish to be doing conferences, check around in your industry, or once again, Google! Lastly, there is a website called Events in America you can explore for aligned events.

You can also create your own events, pair up with other leaders in your field to host joint events, or, lastly, negotiate with people you know who are already hosting their own events. Sometimes, you may be able to get free stage time, sometimes you may need to pay for it, you may also split your revenue with the organizer and lastly, you might propose a stage swap—where each of you speaks on each other’s stage.

Radio Shows and Podcasts

Today, there is a vast array of audio possibilities. With the advent of internet radio and more recently, the explosion of podcasts, there’s almost an infinite number. And the latter two options bring highly targeted audiences interested in the hosts’ subject matter so you can zero in with impact, where with most broadcast, you may not know on whom your message will land.

So first, you will want to put together a great 1 to 1.5 page pitch letter, which makes you sound irresistible! You’ll want to tell the host or producer exactly how you will impact the audience—what solution you bring: how it will help them change, heal or move forward in life more successfully.

To find these opportunities:

  • Discover broadcast opportunities by searching online for radio stations and local shows in your market. But if the website doesn’t give you names of producers (which are often different that then host in the broadcast world), then pick up the phone and call the station.
  • For internet, you can search by subject matter or go to selected radio networks. Some networks focus on a specific genre, such as health or business, but others have different “channels” where you can find shows covering your topic area.
  • With podcasts, the easiest to access are iTunes and iHeartRadio, where you can track down the show in your genre by subject matter. From there you can often find a link to the host’s website where you can either secure an email or submit via online form. You may also see podcasts your colleagues are appearing on when the promotional posts show up in your email box or on social media. Follow up with those.

Virtual Summits

Virtual summits are one of the most successful ways to build your opt-in list, get new clients, drive people into a specific program and develop joint venture partnerships. These events, of course, encompass both telesummits on the phone and video summits presented online. They are usually produced by a host who assembles a group of experts on a related subject matter so enticing that people will immediately submit their name and email to gain access to the interviews. Every guest presenter involved co-promotes to his or her list and social media.

To get on the “summit circuit,” you need to find aligned summit hosts for whom your topic resonates; you will often need a great free online lead-generation offer; you must be willing to co-promote.

These are not easy to locate BEFORE they are booked solid with guest presenters, but watch for the ones that show up in your email box, as many of these hosts do one or more events each year. This will give you a head start on reaching out for the next one. Also put the word out to your friends and colleagues you are looking to get on summits. They may get invited and connect you with the host as well.

The Easy Way To Find Your Booking Opportunities

But what if I tell you there is an easy way to find ALL OF THESE. It’s called SpeakerTunity™.

SpeakerTunity™ provides three individual subscription services that monthly deliver to your desk direct contacts so you can book yourself for speaking engagements, radio shows and podcasts, and lastly, virtual summits across North America. It’s simple, easy, time-saving and inexpensive.

Want to try it without obligation? Just go to  SpeakerTunity.com/Free-Trials *
and you can enroll for one month free in any or all—SpeakerTunity™ Speaker Leads, SpeakerTunity Radio™ and SpeakerTunity Summits™.

(And if you would like further guidance on writing the critical materials that will get you booked, take a look at Get Booked Training)

 

*This is a referrer link. Social Buzz Club receives commission for your purchase or subscription.

Reasons To Be Interviewed on the Radio

dachingerIn my experience it is great to be on radio.

I am known on both sides of the microphone. I host a high-end, award-winning, syndicated radio show and am also interviewed as a guest sometimes several times each week, as a Success or Media Expert.

Radio Host and Guest

I started out only as a radio host and now, years later, my broadcast program is syndicated on sixty six stations. I really enjoy interviewing people and I have spoken with many authors on my show, which means I’ve spent a tremendous amount of time reading each interview guest’s book before featuring them on Dare to Dream Radio.

Author

I have written multiple books and I’m interviewed flushing out questions which include very important points so you can promote everything you do and be the best at stimulating book sales and being interviewed.

Being an author myself who’s been both interviewed, and interviews other authors, I am keenly aware of how they present themselves and the impact their interview skills make.

Books and Radio Opening Career Doors

I wrote my first book and started being invited onto programs as a guest expert. I wrote a second book, both international bestsellers, and more stations, magazine and broadcast hosts wanted to interview me. I initially began the interview merely for book promotion, however a lovely surprise occurred, and I don’t know how to emphasize this enough – that it’s changed my life in the best possible ways. I didn’t have any foreshadowing that writing books and opening the door to appearing on media would ultimately charge my career path and truly opened doors for me to speak on stages and teach classes globally and become known in this niche media field.

Although I am still writing books, years after my books were released I am still called to Teleseminars; to be interviewed; to appear on radio shows; and I love when I share the information and my messages that started in my books on a big platform and to audiences worldwide.

Want to learn about How to Use Radio Interviews to Build Your Business?
Join Debbi for a free live webinar on April 28! “Mastering Radio Interviews for a Radical Platform & Profitable Business”

Register here!

Media Opportunities Abound for You, Too!

In 2015, Nielsen ratings wrote: “Of the 243 million Americans (aged 12 or older) using radio each week, 66.6 million of them are Millennials. This far outpaces the size of the weekly Generation X and Boomer radio audiences, with 57.9 million weekly listeners each. The younger generation also listens to a lot! Millennials spend more than 11 hours a week with radio, and nearly three quarters (73%) of their listening occurs while outside the home and close to making purchasing decisions.”

This, too, is available for you. It depends on how far you want to take it and how much you are willing to put into it. When people put some attention and energy on media, that’s all it takes to get it started and begin opening doors. The exposure and the breakthrough of what’s possible is why we are having this conversation about the next level which is media and, specifically, radio. Being a quite comfortable radio host does not equal a quite comfortable radio interview featured guest. It is a whole new set of skills to switch to the other side of the microphone and be the one being interviewed.

When you’re ready to be coached and interviewed on radio or take a book you’ve written to bestseller status it is time to up your game through a guaranteed best-selling book launch.

How To Profit Through Speaking

tonyahofmannI run into people all the time who have the same questions:

  • Can I really be a speaker?
  • How do I perfect my presentation skills?
  • Can I really make money as a speaker?

So, here are the answers for so many of you: YES!!!

The Bottom Quarter of Your Audience

Anyone … I mean ANYONE, can be a speaker. If you really have a desire to help people and to change their lives, businesses, families, health or whatever, then you can be a speaker. Get over that you want to be like Tony Robbins or Oprah Winfrey and just be yourself. In all scenarios when you speak, there will be about 25% of the people who automatically don’t understand you, don’t get you, and just don’t like you. STOP focusing on that bottom percentage because in reality … YOU don’t like them either!

The Cream of the Crop Audience Portion

This was so hard for me to get over because I was so focused on getting everyone to like me that I completely missed the point: the top 25% of the people LOVE you! They love everything you say; they “get” you; they adore you … focus on them!

 

The Gold is in the Middle!

Now, what most people do is they ignore the left over … the 50% who haven’t decided or need more information or time to decide which camp they want to jump into. So, bring those people into your data base, social media and keep the conversation going until they decide to opt-out and go away or buy from you. By the way, never look at who opts-out! Focus on the positive and the amazing people who are your community and want to be a part of your community.

Connection Over Perfection

Please stop trying to perfect your presentation skills and, rather, just get really good at connecting with the audience. If you have a perfect presentation and get a standing ovation, then you messed up! Yep, If I get an audience who jumps on their feet, I know I didn’t connect with them enough. I want them, rather, in their thoughts, filling out forms and I want them running over to me to create momentum in their lives. Not to buy a book because they think I’m “awesome” but because they know I can help them make a huge impact in their business and help them go out and change lots of lives. So, stop perfecting and just start changing lives with your words. Get used to tweaking and improving but never, ever, to perfecting.

Speaking to Sell

To make money as a speaker these days is different than it was ten years ago. Now, speaking is just part of your marketing for your business. There is some philanthropic speaking where you just give back but, for the most part, you are looking at driving those in the audience to something they can buy into. In reality, there is no way in thirty to sixty minutes on stage you can change those people’s lives forever. They MUST go further with you which means your sales offer. So, yes, six and seven figures a year is not only reasonable but a must to really make an impact and change lots of people’s lives with your message.

10 Personal Branding Tips For Making A Big Change

Gail's bestselling book - "30 Days to Social Media Success"

Gail’s bestselling book – “30 Days to Social Media Success”

We’ve all laughed about how someone’s driver’s license, passport photo or employee ID snapshot doesn’t look at all like that person, or whose business card photo is at least twenty years younger than they are!

It’s funny because the picture is out of sync with the reality. But having your brand match your business is no laughing matter.

What happens when you go from being an established, well-known professional in one field to creating a new company in a very different type of business?  How do you take the best of one world and carry over those benefits to a new identity? And how do you get people who know you in one role to see and trust your proficiency when you decide to change what you do?  Continue reading