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2016 Smashwords Survey - How to sell more books

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Authors: Learn to reach more readers with your books. Mark Coker's fifth annual 2016 Smashwords Survey. Reveals quantifiable ebook sales data to help authors reach more readers. The 2016 survey answers such questions as: Do readers prefer longer or shorter ebooks?; Do ebooks that start out as preorders sell better?; How do I price box sets?; what are the sweet spots for ebook pricing?; Do series books sell better than standalone books?; which ebook genres are most popular?; do series with FREE series starters earn more money than other series; and much more. For historical context, check out the prior three years of Smashwords Surveys, all here at Slideshare.

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2016 Smashwords Survey - How to sell more books

  1. 1. SPECIAL SLIDESHARE EDITION Annual Smashwords Survey 2016 MONEY MONEY MONEY: Facts & Figures for Financial Payoff Las Vegas April 14, 2016 Mark Coker Founder, Smashwords Twitter: @markcoker
  2. 2. Welcome to the Fifth Annual Smashwords Survey 2016! An RT Booklovers Exclusive
  3. 3. Notes Regarding this Special Slideshare Edition For each of the last five years, I’ve revealed our annual Smashwords Survey at RT Booklovers. For this special SlideShare Edition, I’ve added supplemental text to capture additional context and analysis I shared in the original live presentation. If you find the findings useful, please share the presentation with your writer friends on Facebook and Twitter, or blog about it. Slideshare has a cool embed feature that allows you to place the presentation directly into your blog. I share this annual study to help ALL writers – even writers that don’t publish and distribute with Smashwords. Enjoy! ~ Mark Coker, April 17 2016
  4. 4. Notes Part II RT Booklovers is primary a conference for romance writers and readers. Romance also happens to be the best-selling genre in ebooks. I met one reader who reads over 300 books per year. Although you may find sections of this presentation romance- heavy, it’s because I presented this to an audience of romance authors, and because romance truly dominates ebook sales. Romance authors have been at the forefront of the indie ebook revolution. Writers in other genres have much to learn from the romance authors. They’ve been the first to pioneer and adopt best practices such as preorders and free series starters, and they’re probably the most professionally organized with organizations such as RWA and conferences such as RT Booklovers. There’s much opportunity to find great ideas and inspiration from these smart authors! I know I do.
  5. 5. Last year’s study has been viewed over 35,000 times • Access the prior study at Slideshare http://www.slideshare.net/Smashwords/2015- smashwords-survey-how-to-sell-more-ebooks
  6. 6. GOAL: Identify data-driven factors that can give indie authors an incremental advantage in the marketplace
  7. 7. In Search of Viral Catalysts
  8. 8. What’s a Viral Catalyst? • Viral catalysts drive word of mouth - anything that makes your book more accessible, discoverable, desirable and enjoyable to readers • Read the free Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success to learn how viral catalysts spur word-of-mouth
  9. 9. Topics we’ll explore • Where are writers excelling? • What’s happening with • Series • Preorders • Sweet spots for pricing: $2.99 and $3.99? • Does FREE still work? • Box sets • Do longer books sell better? • and more!
  10. 10. Data was aggregated from across the Smashwords Distribution Network March 2015 – February 2016 from these sales outlets:
  11. 11. ? ? ? We asked questions of the data We looked at 12 months of sales data (March 2015 – February 2016) for over 250,000 titles, aggregated across the Smashwords distribution network, representing over $20 million in actual global customer purchases at retail Some findings are useful, some not
  12. 12. The Smashwords Behind Smashwords (Where the data comes from)
  13. 13. 15 years ago I met Lesleyann (now my wife), a former reporter for Soap Opera Weekly magazine. We decided to write a novel together that explores the wild and wacky world of daytime television soap operas. It took us about three years to research, write and edit.
  14. 14. Here’s the finished book. We shopped it to literary agents and were lucky to get repped by one of the most respected NY literary agencies. They were awesome, and for two years they tried to sell it to major publishers.
  15. 15. 2004-2005: Publishers Said “No” For two years our agent got nothing but rejection. Though they did receive one piece of valuable feedback: Publishers were reluctant to acquire the book because previous novels targeting soap opera fans had sold poorly. Soap books weren’t a hot category.
  16. 16. My Epiphany • Publishers unable to take a risk on every author • They can’t say YES to every writer • Publishers judge books based on perceived commercial merit • Publishers guess what readers want to buy • Dirty secret: They throw spaghetti against the wall • Considering that most books flop, publishers can really only guess at what readers want to read
  17. 17. I evaluated our options 1. The rational option  Admit we weren’t good enough and give up 1. The irrational option  Believe in ourselves Keep in mind our rejection came about 10 years ago, during the dark ages of publishing when nearly 100% of sales were print books, and publishers controlled the printing press and the all- important access to retail stores. At the time, if a publisher said no to writer, it essentially sealed the fate of the writer. You were a “failed writer.”
  18. 18. I wondered… Wouldn’t it be COOL if there was a publisher that could say YES to every author? This way, readers could decide which books were worth reading. MY CRAZY IDEA: What if there was a technical solution to this problem? Maybe digital books held the key? What if I could develop a free ebook publishing platform that would enable any writer, anywhere in the world, to enjoy the freedom to self- publish an ebook at no cost???
  19. 19. My solution: Smashwords Launched in 2008 • FREE eBook Publishing Platform  Free ebook publishing  Free best practices knowledge - to help writers publish like professionals  Distribution to major ebook retailers and libraries
  20. 20. Smashwords Distribution Network Upload once, reach multiple outlets * Limited distribution to AMAZON, see http://smashwords.com/distribution for instructions
  21. 21. How Smashwords Works 1. UPLOAD • Upload a Microsoft Word file, formatted to our Smashwords Style Guide • Ready for immediate sale online 1. DISTRIBUTE • Distribution to major retailers 1. GET PAID • Author receives 85% of net, which equals 60% list at major retailers and up to 80% list at the Smashwords Store
  22. 22. Ebooks published at Smashwords
  23. 23. LET’S GET STARTED
  24. 24. Numbers are Dangerous
  25. 25. The hazards and opportunities of data driven decision making • Averages are only averages • Big variances in a sample can skew data • Median = midpoint of numbers in a range when arranged from highest to lowest. Often represents a more “typical” outcome. • Your book is unique. • Data cannot fully explain the multivariate factors that drive readers to purchase one book over another • We try to identify opportunities for incremental advantage
  26. 26. The Power Curve
  27. 27. Navigating Data-speak (the dangers of “average”) Higher rank  Sales rank  Lower rank LowerDollarsalesHigher
  28. 28. The Power Curve – Sales at Each Sales Rank Best practices yield incremental advantage in sales rank, exponential advantage in sales For every well-implemented best practice, you’ll gain an incremental advantage that moves your sales rank to the left. With each incremental move to the left, you receive an exponential increase in sales due to she shape of curve.
  29. 29. The Long Tail of Authordom Here’s the power curve for the top 500 highest earning Smashwords authors. Author #500 looks like they’re doing poorly, but they’re actually doing quite well. The even bigger sellers on the left create the shape of the curve. However, if you’re the #10,000 best-selling author at Smashwords, you’re doing poorly. The tail is long. Always make decisions that move you to the left.
  30. 30. Let’s dig in to the survey
  31. 31. About the Smashwords Catalog (source of these survey results)
  32. 32. Smashwords authors and publishers come 175+ countries
  33. 33. Fiction Dominates Top Fiction Categories 1. Romance 2. Erotica 3. Young adult or teen 4. Fantasy 5. Mystery & detective 6. Gay & lesbian fiction 7. Science fiction 8. Thriller & suspense 9. Historical 10.Literary 11.Adventure 12.African American fiction 13.Womens fiction 14.Christian fiction 15.Children’s books 16.Anthologies
  34. 34. Smashwords Catalog is Fiction- Heavy • 89.5% of sales are fiction • Romance (incl YA romance) is ~50% of sales (45% excluding) • Erotica is 10% of sales • Non-fiction 11% of sales
  35. 35. Top Non-Fiction Categories 1. Biography 2. Health, wellbeing, & medicine 3. Self-improvement 4. Business & Economics 5. Religion and Spirituality 6. Relationships and Family 7. Sports & outdoor recreation 8. Education and Study Guides   9. New Age 10. History 11. Travel 12. Home and Garden 13. Sex and Relationships 14.Cooking, food, wine 15.Computers and Internet 16.Psychology  
  36. 36. How different categories perform
  37. 37. Categories of Top 200 Bestsellers, ranked by category share (YA Romance in YA)
  38. 38. Categories of Top 200 Bestsellers, ranked by category share (YA Romance in Romance)
  39. 39. Romance #1 at Smashwords retailers
  40. 40. Romance Dominates across Smashwords network • Romance titles account for • 9 of top 10 bestsellers • 78% of top 50 bestsellers • 75% of top 100 (vs 87% 2015, 70% 2014) • Why Romance Dominates • Romance authors most professional, sophisticated, experimental and organized • Amazing relationships with amazing readers At various points in the presentation, you’ll see me reference prior years. Check out the prior years’ surveys at Slideshare to do your own historical comparisons. It’s fun to see what changes and what doesn’t over time.
  41. 41. Relative average earnings per title by category
  42. 42. Let’s look at the top romance categories
  43. 43. Top Selling Romance Categories Based on Smashwords sales analysis of 30,000+ titles 1. Contemporary 2. Paranormal 3. YA Romance 4. Erotic 5. New Adult 6. Suspense 7. Historical 8. Adult 9. Fantasy 10.Sci-fi 11. Regency 12. Western 13. General 14. Action adventure 15. Time travel 16. Christian 17. African American 18. Short stories 19. Gothic 20. Clean & wholesome
  44. 44. In the next slide, I looked at every sale of a romance title to see how the different subcategories performed relative to one another. Just because one category is larger than another doesn’t mean that’s where you should be writing. Write what you love, whether it’s Romance, sci-fi, fantasy, mystery, horror or any of the myriad non- fiction categories. There are a lot of readers even in the smaller categories. There’s a lot of opportunity to become the big fish in the smaller ponds!
  45. 45. Mega view: All Romance Categories, Ranked Performance by Category
  46. 46. NEW: How do different romance categories compare to one another • In the two slides that follow, I took a completely different look at romance subcategories • Analyzed 32,900 romance titles priced $.99 and up • Aggregated sales per subcategory, then computed average and median sales per title per subcategory • Averaged the average and median yields to create aggregated benchmark, then compared each subcategory’s average and median yield to the appropriate aggregated benchmark • From here, calculated the percentage +/- divergence for each category • The “average” chart hints at where the biggest hits are found • The “median” chart hints at where books typically outpeform other subcategories. I think it might identify some under- served categories!
  47. 47. Average Relative Performance, yield per title per category
  48. 48. Median Relative Performance, yield per title per category In Romance, this might suggest sci-fi/fantasy/erotic and adult subcategories are underserved?
  49. 49. Social Media Impact on Sales?
  50. 50. One of the opportunities of our Survey is to try to identify the successful habits of the bestselling authors. Is there a correlation between an author’s social media presence and their sales? The next chart shows some insight. As in our past surveys, it appears better-selling authors are more likely to have a social media presence.
  51. 51. Bestselling Authors More Likely to Have Social Media Presence
  52. 52. There’s been a lot of buzz about box sets. Box sets were big in 2014, but there’s been a little less activity with them over the last 12 months. I remain a big fan of box sets. As you’ll learn in the slides that follow, there are different types of box sets. To earn sales, do a single-author box set. To grow your readership, do a multi-author box set priced at FREE or $.99. To learn more about box sets, check out my how- to post at: http://blog.smashwords.com/2014/08/how-to-do- box-sets-at-smashwords-for.html
  53. 53. Box sets
  54. 54. Fun Facts: Box Sets  NEW: In June, 2015, Smashwords introduced a new metadata option to allow authors to tag their books as box sets.  Over 3,000 box sets at Smashwords  Primary reasons authors do box sets:  Single author value bundles  Multi-author promotions  Fund raising for charity  #1 bestselling boxset at Smashwords is  The ‘Burg Series by Kristen Ashley  Priced at $17.95 and sports 1.2 million words
  55. 55. Fun Facts II: Box Sets  Among top 50 highest earning box sets:  88% (44) are single author box sets, 12% multi-author  Average price is $7.09  Average word count is 328,000  Among top 50 box sets with most unit sales:  78% (39) are single author, 22% multi-author  Average price is $3.75  Average word count is 259,000  Only 4 of top 100 bestselling titles were box sets (2 single-author by Kristen Ashley and R.L. Mathewson, two charity; ¾ romance)
  56. 56. The next set of box set slides indicate that even though box sets generally underperform other titles, box set participation appears to be one of the successful habits of bestselling authors. Better-selling authors are much more likely to be doing single-author box sets and participating in multi-author box sets. In the next three slides, I look at the top 100 bestselling authors (arranged in sales rank bands of 10), the top 1,000 and the top 10,000. Remember, the #10,000 author is not doing well. When looking for best practices, what the worst- sellers are or aren’t doing is often as informative as what the bestsellers are doing.
  57. 57. Bestsellers more likely to participate in box sets
  58. 58. Box set participation among top 1,000 bestselling SW authors
  59. 59. Box set participation among top 10,000 bestsellers
  60. 60. Pricing
  61. 61. “Where should I price my book” is one of the most common questions authors ask. It’s an important question. Every time you sell a book, you earn a reader and you earn royalty. While money is great, I’d argue earning that reader is even more critical to your long term success. With smart pricing strategy, you can maximize both readership and earnings. The slides that follow are interesting on a number of levels. For example, note that the patterns have not changed radically over the years we’ve been tracking this. $2.99- $3.99 appear to be the sweet for most indie authors where you can maximize both downloads (readership) and dollars. But note that many authors are finding success at higher price points.
  62. 62. Q: What price moves the most units? A: FREE!
  63. 63. DOWNLOAD DATA FROM SMASHWORDS SALES AT iBooks
  64. 64. FREE • FREE draws readership • 41X more downloads on average compared to priced titles (last 12 months) • Was also 41X last year (interesting!), and 39X in 2014, but 100+ in years past • Powerful platform builder • Powerful sales catalyst for series or deep backlists
  65. 65. NOTE: The charts that follow aggregate both fiction and non- fiction sales. With about 90% of Smashwords sales dominated by fiction, these charts are most representative of fiction behavior. However, at the higher price points you’ll gain hints to how non-fiction performs at higher prices. In prior surveys we found higher price points help NF authors earn more unit sales in addition to higher earnings. See our 2014 and 2015 Surveys at http://www.slideshare.net/smashwords/presentations NF authors are usually best served at $7.99+, whereas fiction authors are generally best served at $2.99 to $5.99 Also remember this data is based on averages. Your book is unique and may not conform to averages. This is why price experimentation is so important.
  66. 66. Most common price points, excluding box sets
  67. 67. Which Price Points Get the Most Downloads
  68. 68. (2015) Which Price Points Get the Most Downloads Note how 2016 pricing data is not radically different from 2015
  69. 69. Which Price Yields the Most Earnings? The bump at $9.99+ is mostly due to non-fiction which more typically occupies higher price points (and sells better at higher prices)
  70. 70. Box set Pricing
  71. 71. Now that we support enhanced metadata for box sets, for the first time ever we’re able to look at how box sets perform at different prices. Some surprises here! Note how box set behavior is radically different to single- copy ebooks.
  72. 72. Most common pricing for box sets
  73. 73. Box sets: Which Price Points Get the Most Downloads
  74. 74. Box sets: Which Price Points Yield the Most Earnings
  75. 75. Relation between pricing and average word counts
  76. 76. Box sets: Word counts for each price band (fiction+nf)
  77. 77. Average word counts per price band, excluding box sets (fic + nf)
  78. 78. Average Word Count for Books in Each Price Band
  79. 79. Does Length Still Matter?
  80. 80. In prior Surveys, we found strong evidence that readers prefer longer books. Longer books are much more likely to be among our top sellers. Possibly this is because if readers find an author or story they love, more words equals more hours of reading pleasure. As you look at these charts, especially the top 1,000 and 10,000, visually superimpose in your imagination the Power Curve. The titles on the left sell exponentially more than on the right. The titles on the left are much more likely to have higher word counts. This means, for example, if you have a great novel that’s 100,000 words, you probably should not break it into two 50,000-word books, or four 25,000-word novellas. You might disadvantage the book. One of our bestsellers, Kristen Ashley, often writes up to 200,000 words per book.
  81. 81. Average and median word counts of top 100 bestsellers
  82. 82. Average and median word counts for top 1,000 bestsellers
  83. 83. Average and median wordcounts for top 10,000 bestsellers
  84. 84. Word Count for Top 10,000 (2015 Survey for comparison)
  85. 85. Q: What’s the average word count for the top 70 bestselling Smashwords romance books?
  86. 86. 2016 Survey A: 122,037 words = average word count of top 70 Smashwords romance for 2016 Smashwords Survey Excluding box sets, the top 70 non-boxset bestsellers average: 98,680 words
  87. 87. 2015 Survey A: 94,150 words = average word count of top 70 Smashwords romance for
  88. 88. 2014 Survey A: 96,197 words = average word count of top 70 Smashwords romance for
  89. 89. 2012 Survey A: 112,195 words = average word count of top 60 Smashwords romance
  90. 90. Preorders
  91. 91. Smashwords Launched Preorder Distribution July 2013  Preorder distribution to iBooks, Barnes & Noble and Kobo  We promised a sales advantage. Did we deliver?
  92. 92. Fun Facts: Preorders 2016  Only 13.5% of books published during the survey period were born as preorders. (9.8% in prior survey) BIG implications here. Preorders remain the most underutilized best practice.  7 of top 10 bestsellers born as preorders (5 of 7 preorders were romance)  On average, preorder books earned authors 6.7X what non-preorder books earned (median earnings for preorder was 2.8X non preorder books (3.5X last survey)  Of top 200 bestsellers, 55% (110) were born as preorders (2015: 67%)  Of top 200 preorders, 78% supplied by romance authors (vs.82% 2015)
  93. 93. Preorder usage of top 100 bestsellers
  94. 94. Preorder usage of top 1,000 bestsellers
  95. 95. Preorder usage of top 10,000 bestsellers Bottom line: Books born as preorder sell better. Release your next book as a preorder, otherwise you’re leaving $$$ on the table
  96. 96. Series!!!
  97. 97. Smashwords Series Manager Tool Gives New Insight about Series Performance  Launched September, 2013  Enhanced discovery at retailers gives Smashwords authors advantage  15,000+ series at Smashwords  We track series performance!
  98. 98. Fun Facts: Series 2016  Of top 10 bestselling series:  7 are romance  4 are YA (of which three are romance)  6 series did not have a new release during the survey!  Of Top 100 bestselling series:  Average 6.49 titles per series (median is 5)  Added just under one new title to the series on average (.8 releases)  62 series had new releases, 38 did not  Average word count for all books within top 100 bestselling series: 95,057
  99. 99. Power Curve of the top 100 bestselling series
  100. 100. Average price points within top 200 bestselling series
  101. 101. Most common series starter price points, top 200 series
  102. 102. Q: Do series writers get more action?
  103. 103. Series writing by top 100 bestselling authors
  104. 104. Bestselling authors more likely to write series
  105. 105. Is there a connection between author earnings and the # of series published?
  106. 106. Most top 100 bestsellers are series books
  107. 107. Most top 1,000 bestsellers are series books
  108. 108. Among top 10,000 bestsellers, the series advantage is clear
  109. 109. Q: Do series with FREE series starters earn more sales?
  110. 110. Free vs. Non-free series starters • We looked at two categories of bestselling series: • The 100 highest-earning series that have free series starters • The 100 highest-earning series that have non-free series starters • Next, we totaled up the sales of each group and calculated the average earnings per title, and the median earnings per title. • We first did this in last year’s 2015 Survey
  111. 111. (2015 SW Survey)FREE Series Starters Lead to 66% Boost in Series Sales
  112. 112. FREE Series Starters Boost Series (2016 Survey)
  113. 113. Free series starters among the top 100 bestselling series
  114. 114. Free series starters among top 1,000 bestselling series
  115. 115. Free series starter usage among 10,000 bestselling series
  116. 116. Q: Do series books earn more than standalone books?
  117. 117. A: Yes. Series books sell better.
  118. 118. Series books sell significantly more than standalone
  119. 119. Summary of Key Takeaways • Romance writers and readers dominate • Climb the power curve by implementing no-brainer best practices • Series books sell better • Longer books generally sell better • Preorders remain huge untapped opportunity for most authors • $2.99 and $3.99 remain sweet spots for most indie romance authors, but some authors finding success when they migrate higher • FREE remains powerful catalyst for readership-building • Box sets generally not big moneymakers, but they have ancillary strategic benefits
  120. 120. Remember • Data-driven publishing decisions are irrelevant without a great book • Numbers provide hints at opportunities to engage with more readers • Dangerous to make decisions on a single metric alone • Your book is immortal • Experiment and iterate until you get viral catalysts just right. Then iterate some more. • Read the Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success for other viral catalysts
  121. 121. Appendix: Free resources about ebook publishing in the slides that follow …
  122. 122. Learn to Publish Like a Pro with These FREE Best Practice Guides • Secrets to Ebook Publishing Success (best practices of successful authors) • Smashwords Book Marketing Guide (how to market any book at no cost) • Smashwords Style Guide (how to format and publish an ebook)
  123. 123. Don’t Keep Knowledge a Secret! For the last eight years I’ve shared the best practices knowledge that helps writers publish with greater pride, professionalism and success. I learn from our authors – I learn from you – and I share it for everyone’s benefit. The secrets I teach are universal. The knowledge – like Smashwords - is free and available to everyone. One need not publish with Smashwords to benefit from this information. I share this information because I believe a rising tide lifts all boats. I want to help writers everywhere achieve their dreams because dreams are important, and books are important! Please share these resources with your friends. As you peruse my free resources, please do your fellow writers a favor and share what you learn. Blog it, Facebook it, Tweet it and share hyperlinks to it across social media.
  124. 124. How to Publish Ebooks • In 2005, I presented a four-module ebook publishing course at the Pacific Northwest Writers Conference. • View all the slides at http://bitly.com/howtopublishebooks or http://blog.smashwords.com/2015/06/how-to-reach-more-readers-with- ebook.html • Modules include: 1. Introduction to Ebook Publishing. 2. Ebook Publishing Best Practices. 3. Ebook Preorder Strategies. 4. iBooks Merchandising Secrets.
  125. 125. Summary of Smashwords Tools • Smashwords offers free tools to help you publish with pride, professionalism and success!  Single upload – reach many retailers and libraries  Manage your book across multiple retailers from your Smashwords Dashboard  Advanced tools  Preorders, including assetless (metadata-only)!  Centralized metadata management  Smashwords Coupon Manager for custom promotions  Daily sales reporting
  126. 126. Are you a Smashwords author or publisher yet? Over 115,000 indie authors and small independent presses use Smashwords to publish and distribute ebooks! If you found the Survey useful, we’d love to welcome you to Smashwords. By partnering with Smashwords for distribution, you are directly supporting our ability to continue bringing you such great educational resources including this annual Smashwords Survey. To join Smashwords, click to www.smashwords.com and click JOIN. For more information, visit https://www.smashwords.com/about/how _to_publish_on_smashwords
  127. 127. Checklist for Publishing and Distributing with Smashwords 1. Sign up for a free account at www.smashwords.com The confirmation email will walk you through the next steps 2. Prepare your manuscript and cover image. The Smashwords Style Guide will teach you how to professionally format your book - http://www.smashwords.com/books/view/52 3. If you want to hire a low-cost expert to format your book or design your cover, check out Mark’s List at http://smashwords.com/list 4. Upload your manuscript and cover to Smashwords for distribution to major retailers. 5. Bonus points: Read the Smashwords FAQ to learn how to get the most out of the Smashwords platform - https://www.smashwords.com/about/supportfaq
  128. 128. Have you heard about assetless (metadata-only) preorders? • For two years running now, the Smashwords Survey conclusively proved that books born as preorders sell better. • Smashwords is a leader in ebook preorders. We’ll get your preorder listed at iBooks, Barnes & Noble and Kobo • With assetless preorders, you can get your listing established up to 12 months before you release your book. • Advance listings enable: • More effective advance marketing • Higher first-day sales rank at iBooks and Kobo • Learn more at www.smashwords.com/preorder
  129. 129. Smashwords YouTube Tutorials • View nearly 10 hours of Smashwords video workshops at http://youtube.com/user/Smashwords • Smashwords video series: • #1: Introduction to ebook publishing - https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=khM4czIJUVM • #2: Ebook publishing best practices: https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=Jnd7jYcjqm8 • #3: 2013 Smashwords Survey: https://www.youtube.com/watch? v=2rrl4NExo3Y • #4: 10 Trends Driving the Future of Authorship: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NbT7r-DUa6M • #5: How to reach readers at iBooks, the #2 global ebook seller: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xKwwcL_FS_c • #6: How to add navigation to Smashwords ebooks: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gpB9hmlgeU4 • Check back for new videos in the future!
  130. 130. What does it mean to be an “indie author”? • Indie means self-published • You are your own publisher • Indie authorship is a worldwide cultural movement • In April, 2014, I published the Indie Author Manifesto at http://blog.smashwords.com/2014/04/indie-author- manifesto.html in which I described the ethos behind the indie author movement. • The manifesto explores the mindset, attitudes and aspirations of indie authors • The manifesto is not “Anti-publisher” • Instead, it provides a roadmap by which indie authors and publishers can work toward mutually aligned interests • Infographic on next slide…
  131. 131. The Indie Author Manifesto • Read the story behind the manifesto (and download a high-res poster) at http://blog.smashwords.com/2014/04/indie-author- manifesto.html or Google “indie author manifesto”
  132. 132. 10 Reasons Indie Ebook Authors will Capture 50% of the Ebook Market by 2020 • In March 2014, I predicted indie ebook authors would capture 50% of the US ebook market by 2020 • Is my forecast too conservative? Maybe. • Read the post at http://blog.smashwords.com/2014/03/sizing-self-publishing- market-10.html or Google “ebook market by 2020” • Includes a downloadable spreadsheet so you can create and publish your own forecast
  133. 133. View other Smashwords Presentations on Slideshare • View more Smashwords presentations on Slideshare at http://slideshare.net/presentations/smashwords • Here are some notable presentations • How to Publish Ebooks (a collection a four-module training course mentioned on prior slide): http://blog.smashwords.com/2015/07/how-to-publish-ebooks-ebook- publishing.html • Ebook Publishing in the Classroom (Includes a primer of ebook self-publishing and also best practices): http://www.slideshare.net/Smashwords/ebook-publishing-in-the- classroom • How public libraries can launch community publishing initiatives: http://www.slideshare.net/Smashwords/how-libraries-can-launch-community- publishing-initiatives-with-selfpublished-ebooks-33409020 • 2014 Smashwords Survey - http://www.slideshare.net/Smashwords/2014-smashwords- survey-how-to-sell-more-ebooks? • 2013 Smashwords Survey - http://www.slideshare.net/Smashwords/new-smashwords- survey-helps-authors-sell-more-ebooks • 2012 Smashwords Survey - http://www.slideshare.net/Smashwords/how-data-driven- decisionhow-datadriven-decisions-might-help-authors-reach-more-readers
  134. 134. Connect with Mark Coker Twitter: @markcoker Blog: blog.smashwords.com (subscribe via email and never miss another post) LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/markcoker Facebook: facebook.com/markcoker Web: www.smashwords.com HuffPost: huffingtonpost.com/mark-coker
  135. 135. Thanks for your time! Connect with Mark Coker: Twitter: @markcoker Facebook: facebook.com/markcoker Web: www.smashwords.com Blog: blog.smashwords.com (subscribe via email) HuffPost: huffingtonpost.com/mark-coker

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