By Eric Johnson, Advanced Publishing LLC
As a publisher, of all the different hats you wear, which is the most important? Sometimes the answer is dictated by circumstances. Any given day may bring technical, logistical, personnel, or client-relation challenges that demand your attention. In these situations, the most important one is the Problem Solver hat. Regardless the size of your publishing operation, this hat—aka the Buck Stops Here hat—will always have your name on it. It reveals your ability to identify what needs immediate attention, prioritize actions to deal with problems, and handle multiple challenges simultaneously.
In our most recent post in this series, Develop Your Book Audience, we designed a guide to get you past the apprehension of “My audience is all over the place” to a place of audience understanding and subsequent development that will help you build meaningful author, title, series, character, and publisher brands. A refined audience will generate engagement and direct relationships with readers and influencers, helping you build a strong brand recognition and ongoing consumer relationships.
Written by: Kevin Watson, Press 53 Publisher
Social Media is crowded with users who all seem to be screaming for attention. Reading your own newsfeed is like reading the stock market ticker that scrolls across the bottom of your TV: you see a post, consider it for a moment, and then move to the next item. Paying $20 to promote a post will get your number of views up, but the results can be disappointing. Yet, Press 53 has found a way to use Facebook to build a community and, therefore, marketing team to help us sell more books.
By Jake Handy, @jakehandy
As the value of book discoverability metadata in the publishing industry becomes more known, it’s helpful to know exactly where authors and publishers are making the most mistakes. Thousands of new titles pass through Ingram’s metadata channels each and every day and each of these titles have dozens of metadata fields. It should be no question that the owners of all these titles should want to put out the very best metadata they can.
In our last post in this series, How to Build a Strong Book Marketing Foundation, we outlined a strategic approach to digital book marketing that begins with some core foundational elements – book metadata, author profiles, and publisher websites – to ensure you have all of the right groundwork in place for successful book marketing campaigns. Now you’re ready to start engaging with readers, building deeper relationships, and growing your online platform.
Tis' the season for giving!
With twinkling lights and snow covered streets, many are preparing for end-of-the-year festivities. Not only is this a time to prepare for future endeavors that lie before us in 2019, it is a season when people reach out to friends, family, and their community to give back.
by Dmitri Barvinok,
Front Edge Publishing
Publishers know eBook editions are a vital part of a book release. What you may not know is that the metadata for your eBook editions can open a doorway to valuable options on Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com and other retailers. That’s especially true if your book has multiple contributors.
By Taylor Hale, Customer Experience Manager
The pace of innovation these days is breathtaking. The lifespan of a company on the S&P 500 was about 60 years in 1960, now it’s just 12 years. The cost to launch a tech company in 2000 was $5,000,000, and now, thanks to cloud computing, it’s basically $0.(1)
By Victor R. Volkman
This month mark’s the one-year anniversary of the Lightning Source (LS) Book Long Term (BOLT) program - a tiered, continuous sales ladder that replaces the old notion of quantity discounts that are limited to only today’s order. Like a lot/some of you, I didn’t know what to expect or how to really take advantage of incrementally increasing discounts across the sales year. Luckily, I also began experimenting with a new marketing service through a popular online retailer at the same time I signed us up as a BOLT publisher.
By Pete McCarthy, Director of Digital Services
In a digitally-connected world, book marketers will benefit by having a nuanced understanding of the many ways book buyers discover, discuss, compare, purchase, and otherwise engage with books and authors--everything that leads to a consumer finding and buying your book and what you can do to reach and influence them at each stage.
In the first part to this series we discussed what goes on behind the scenes of search, social media, and retail algorithms. We then touched on marketing tactics you can use to most effectively reach your audience on those platforms and ensure your content is providing value.
Written by: Bailey Davis, Publisher Engagement Manager (@baileydavis26)
Not all publishers are the same, nor are the means for getting their books to market in the most efficient and cost effective ways. As with most businesses that require some type of order fulfillment, when it comes to getting your book products to market, you need to match with a distribution method that best fits your business model.
There’s an online audience for every book. That’s a nice thought, right? If only connecting those booklovers with your content, the content they want and may not yet be aware of, was as simple as knowing they exist.
By Stephen Sparks, Little Infinite Editor
I ran through several drafts of an introduction this interview with Copper Canyon’s Joseph Bednarik, but finally came to the conclusion that the most effective way to present the forty-five year old nonprofit press was to provide a list of some of their authors. And so, before getting to Joseph’s answers below, consider that Copper Canyon, the best poetry publisher in the U.S. if not the world, has published the likes of Pablo Neruda, W.S. Merwin, Ocean Vuong, Adrienne Rich, C.D. Wright, Lucille Clifton, Octavio Paz, and hundreds more.
For most, City Lights is synonymous with the Beat Generation, a bookstore that became a gathering spot for poets who have since entered the pantheon of post-war American literature. But in the sixty-five years since its modest beginning, City Lights has embraced an eclectic aesthetic, publishing a wide range of works that do not fit easily into any simple categorization. Stephen Sparks, Little Infinite’s editor, emailed Elaine Katzenberger, publisher and executive director of City Lights publishing program, to find out what the press looks for in its famed poetry series.
Established in 1907, Fordham University Press (FUP) is the seventh-oldest university press in the country, as well as the nation’s oldest Catholic university press. Today, Fordham University Press publishes ninety books a year and continues to uphold its prestigious reputation. They are known for producing award-winning studies in the fields of anthropology, classics, communications, cultural studies, gender studies, history, literary studies, philosophy, political theory, race and ethnicity, religion, sociology, theology, and urban studies with a particular emphasis on creatively interdisciplinary work. Not only does FUP publish two books of poetry through the Poets Out Loud prize a year, but they also have a long history of publishing books focusing on the New York region.
Located in Melbourne and London, Scribe Publications is a multi-award-winning company that has operated as an independent trade-publishing house. They have provided narrative and literary nonfiction titles to readers around the country, including over 65 non-fiction and fiction titles annually in Australia, about 60 in the United Kingdom, and as of 2017, about 30 titles in the United States. Not only do they specialize in narrative and literary nonfiction titles, but they pride themselves on publishing the best local, international and translated fiction titles. For over 40 years, Scribe has been dedicated to providing readers with the best books.
Established in 2006, Oceanview Publishing was founded on the principles of excellence in independent publishing. They have provided mystery, thrillers, and suspense titles to readers around the country, which includes their best-selling title The Perfect Assassin by Ward Larsen. Known as one of the fastest growing independent publishers in the U.S., Oceanview Publishing’s titles have received many awards and nominations such as Independent Publishers Awards, Indie Excellence Awards, and ALA Book of the Year. These awards exemplify their dedication to works that create emotion, thrill, and chilling storylines.
Before the digital age, piracy was a concern, but not a prominent one. At the time, theft of digital content required a high level of technical skill and the risk of illegally acquiring content wasn’t worth the financial consequences. While stolen content has been a fear, it has garnered more attention through the digital age.
Do you have an inventory solution that allows you to respond to market developments and reversals while avoiding the expense of overstocking? Is your book reaching readers across the globe? If not, our Global Connect print on demand program might be the perfect solution for you.
For 40 years, Milkweed Editions has been devoted to identifying, nurturing, and publishing transformative literature. They currently print more than 350 titles, which include Braiding Sweetgrass and the all-time bestseller Montana, 1984. Not only do they invest time into the editorial process, but they strive to build an engaged community around literature.
It is that time of year again! We are preparing for the 2nd annual indie authors celebration, and you should be too. For the second year in a row, libraries across North America will be hosting local events in celebration of indie authors. Indie Author Day brings more visibility to the significant growth of the self-publishing industry, independent authors, and to libraries as hubs for community engagement. We are looking forward to libraries and authors connecting locally and globally.
In today’s society, consumers crave instant gratification. The tech industry has changed our perception on the distribution of services and products, and the internet has made these resources easily accessible. We have become accustomed to a type of lifestyle that allows us to fulfill our needs almost immediately. With technology becoming more advanced, it is vital to your sales and customer satisfaction to quickly fill readers’ orders before they find another source.
BenBella Books, a publishing boutique, has provided readers with captivating titles
Even if you have no idea what I’m talking about, those two words probably create an expectation, excitement, or interest. That’s the power of pre-selling your next book. Pre-selling can boost your sales, develop your audience, and increase the chance of reviews and buzz.
Did you know that Labor Day is only 9 weekends away? Time for a summer vacation is quickly ending! Having trouble deciding between a trip to Italy or France? Maybe a quick visit to Colorado is more realistic?
For 67 years, Indiana University Press has provided titles that have left lasting impressions. Introducing books like Metamorphoses and Crow Killer to our reading list, they pride themselves on being a leading academic publisher specializing in scholarly and trade titles. Join us in celebrating the impact that these titles have in the academic community.
In a “mobile-first” world, people have access to content all the time. According to a recent survey by the Pew Research Center, 73% of Americans read a book within the last year, and 28% of the books were eBooks. Readers have realized the benefits offered by a digital book format resulting in a shift in e-reader adoption.
The New Press has worked to broaden the audience for books on important social issues for 25 years, bringing titles like The New Jim Crow and this season’s Becoming Ms. Burton: From Prison to Recovery to Leading the Fight for Incarcerated Women to the forefront. Join us in celebrating fearless books for perilous times.
by IngramSpark Staff
In the past decade alone, opportunities to self-publish a book have become vast and plentiful. We’ve been incredibly blessed to play a role in the continued growth of the self-publishing industry, are happy to see it thriving, and are making efforts to continually push it forward every day. And while it’s wonderful to get props for our efforts, what drives us is helping people across the globe share their stories, dreams, and passions.
A prima ballerina assoluta. A franchise football star. A humming bird. While each of these are worthy of “oohs and aahs” in their own ways, they all share a similar characteristic. Agility. The ability to respond to changes in their environments with speed and precision. Come a bit closer and we’ll let you in on a secret.
By Philip Wallace, Marketing Systems & Content Analyst
When we change our calendars from one year to another, there is a familiar ritual of undertaking self-improvement. I certainly don’t want to knock that idea, as I am a firm believer in aspiring to better myself in all the facets of life. Yet, I tend to find a particular sort of affirmation in hearing from voices who don’t necessarily have it all together and don’t mind letting their eccentricities shine a bit.
With digital you get more. But more of what? That’s the question, and the answer is up to you. All too often, going digital can mean more of what you don’t need. More data that you don’t know what to do with. More expense. More assets, formats and channels to manage. More reliance on Amazon. More hassle and more headache.
Christian Content Manager Melissa and Lead Content Manager Gail are excited about the upcoming holiday season, and of course, the gifts that come in the form of books. Need a little inspiration for gifts this holiday season? Check out Mary Engelbreit’s A Night of Great Joy, a book for children ages 3-8 about the Christmas story with illustrations of kids from all over the world as they put on a Christmas pageant.
By Philip Wallace, Marketing Systems & Content Analyst
A couple of recent events prompted me to revisit my favorite book, John Berendt’s Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil: A Savannah Story. First, a sad development, celebrated Savannah drag performer Lady Chablis passed away at the age of 59. Chablis figured prominently in Berendt’s 1994 nonfiction bestseller and went on to play herself in Clint Eastwood’s 1997 film adaptation. Secondly, a much more upbeat trigger, a colleague at work was preparing to visit Savannah for the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance trade show and wanted my advice on what to explore if she happened to have some free time.
By: Emily Waltenbaugh, Public Information Officer, Nashville Public Library & Ryan Darrow, Special Collections Librarian, Nashville Public Library
The Special Collections division at Nashville Public Library (NPL) tells the story of Nashville. The mission of NPL Special Collections is to explore Nashville’s past, inspire conversation, and anticipate stories to come. A large part of that mission is the collection and preservation of oral histories, as with NPL’s Veterans History Project (VHP). NPL hired an author to transcribe and compile many of these histories collected from World War II veterans in 2003, to put them into context and to provide perspective. NPL Special Collections wanted a bound version of this inspiring collection, and IngramSpark provided the ideal platform. NPL Special Collections librarian Ryan Darrow discussed the experience with Ingram and the various ways NPL supports its writing community.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Ingram Wire. Pat and Gail discuss books on current events they’ve enjoyed and are looking forward to: The New Confessions of an Economic Hitman by John Perkins, Unbroken Brain by Maia Szalavitz, The Games: A Global History of the Olympics by David Goldblatt, and The Fire This Time by Jesmyn Ward.
The demand for enhanced, interactive digital learning materials from the realm of higher education—students, teachers, and admins—is gaining more momentum every day. In our most recent #Built4UP (formerly #BuildUP) Twitter chat, Andy Cagle and Paget Hetherington from VitalSource discussed how their wide range of services can help university presses capitalize on the transition to digital course materials to achieve greater levels of success and sustainability.
By Philip Wallace, Marketing Systems & Content Analyst
Trivial Pursuit first came on the scene during my 1980s teen existence, and I became obsessed with that board game over the next few years. It didn’t hurt that my little rural community shut down completely when it snowed, so that became a fun indoor leisure activity for my family to supplement Rook, Monopoly, and Scrabble. Yes, I know that qualifies me as the relic of a bygone era.
In a recent post, we talked about the benefits of book data and how it can help your bookstore increase sales, help new customers find you and allow you to communicate more effectively.
CoreSource has now grown the number of available distribution channels past the 400 mark, and while the vast majority of our file and metadata distributions are to print and digital retailers, CoreSource has – somewhat quietly we’ll admit – been expanding its distributions to other business partners as well.
For the first time ever, libraries across North America will be hosting local events in celebration of indie authors! We’re thrilled to be a part of this event as it brings more visibility to the significant growth of the self-publishing industry, independent authors, and to libraries as hubs for community engagement. We hope you’ll participate is this unique opportunity for libraries and authors to connect locally and globally!
By Philip Wallace, Marketing Systems & Content Analyst
Over the years, Chuck Klosterman has made a name for himself as a cultural critic in a wide range of journalistic venues ranging from the music magazine Spin to The New York Times. in his latest book, But What If We’re Wrong, Klosterman tackles both the minute and major details of life where facts and conventional wisdom are more open to debate than we previously thought.
Knowing how to build ironclad relationships with your customers, while communicating value can make all the difference for university presses striving to demonstrate profitability. In last month’s #BuildUP Twitter Chat, Ingram and Consortium Books academic marketing ace, Heather C. Hart, answered questions and offered up some advice on connecting with those hard-to-reach customers, so you can maximize your sales opportunities.
We attend conferences for many reasons and recommend you do the same. Conferences are all about being part of the conversation and that means participating by speaking but also by listening to those in attendance. There’s always something to be gained by attending a conference you’re interested in and which promises to help sharpen your craft.
By Robin Cutler, Director of IngramSpark
There are hundreds of self-publishing platforms out there, each with their own array of features designed to help authors. The self-publishing world can seem complicated, even to seasoned authors with experience in publishing. Here's how to publish like a pro with IngramSpark.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Ingram Wire: Biographies. Readers Gail and Mason discuss five books on a variety of fascinating people: The Statesman and the Storyteller by Mark Zwonitzer, Most Blessed of the Patriarchs by Annette Gordon-Reed and Peter S. Onuf, Is that Kafka? by Reiner Stach, Leonard: My Fifty-Year Friendship with a Remarkable Man by William Shatner, with David Fisher, and Blood Brothers: The Fatal Friendship Between Muhammad Ali and Malcolm X by Randy Roberts.
Is one the loneliest number or the perfect amount? When it comes to printing books one-at-a-time, independent publishers are not alone in seeing the benefits. Print on Demand is helping independent and traditional publishers alike.
Another University Press Twitter chat, another excellent learning experience for everyone involved. In case you were unable to attend this latest online discussion, or you’re simply looking for a quick recap of what was covered, we’ve provided a full transcript of the Q&A with our local metadata pro, Margaret Harrison.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Spring Arbor Wire. Watch as Melissa and Gail discuss books that will inspire and comfort women readers: Beauty Begins: Making Peace with Your Reflection by Chris Shook and Megan Shook-Alpha, The Mother Letters: Sharing with Laughter, Joy, Struggles and Hope by Amber C. Haines and Seth Haines,
Distinctly You by Cheryl Martin, You Are Beautiful in His Sight: Scripture Journal for Women.
Editing may come naturally to some writers, but to others it may seem like a daunting process. Either way, it's an absolutely necessary step to publishing a book. Even if you pay to have your book professionally edited, you should still give it a rough edit, yourself, before sending it off. Here's how to self-edit your book and publish like a pro.
By Shannan Starnes Rosa, MSLS, Collection Development Librarian for Adult Materials
An initial print run is the number of copies a publisher produces for a title’s first release. In the traditional publishing model, the publisher takes several months to prepare a book for sale in advance of its release date. Part of the planning process includes making a decision about the number of copies to ask a printing company to produce, and this number is a reflection of the number of copies the publisher forecasts will sell.
Learning how to publish your own book is a valuable skill for anyone who writes, whether professionally or as a hobby. Self-publishing doesn't just get your book onto physical and virtual shelves; it teaches you how to manage a business. As you travel down the road of self-publishing, you'll likely pick up these business skills along the way.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Ingram Wire: Fiction. Readers Gail and Stephanie discuss four titles for fiction lovers: We Love You, Charlie Freeman by Kaitlyn Greenidge, The Nest by Cynthia D. Sweeney, Versions of Us by Laura Barnett, Imagine Me Gone by Adam Haslett
Publishers have long relied on a supply chain that is two steps removed from their ‘real’ customers (readers), and they are increasingly at the mercy of large retailers who command high discounts, favorable returns policies, etc. While the independent bookseller market has shown resilience in recent years, the marketplace for books is a competitive and often polarized space that is increasingly challenged with issues around discovery, visibility, and monopoly.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Ingram Wire: Political Books. Politics is in the air so readers Gail and Stephanie discuss four timely must-have titles: Bernie by Ted Rall, President Squid by Aaron Reynolds, Quotations by Chairman Trump edited by Carol Pogash, and This Little President by Joan Holub.
Technology is here to stay, and most people in the publishing industry are thrilled about it. Analytics and other technologies have made book distribution, along with publishing and marketing, easier than ever. What's more, authors and booksellers can now reach consumers all over the world. Even the cost of publishing a book has drastically improved with the advent of e-books.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Spring Arbor Wire. Melissa and Gail discuss reflective titles for this spring: Contemplative Prayer by Thomas Merton, An Insider's Guide to Praying for the World by Brian C. Stiller, Praying in Color by Sybil Macbeth, and War Room Bible Study by Alex Kendrick and Stephen Kendrick.
By Phil Ollila, Chief Content Officer
What are effective ebook pricing strategies in today’s book business? Based on trends we observe at Ingram Content Group from both publishers and readers, we think about three general segments for ebooks: entertainment value, education value and marketing value.
Do you have a written manuscript sitting in a desk drawer, waiting to be published? How do you know if it's time? It's not uncommon for a manuscript to go unpublished because the writer doesn't know the process, lacks the funds to traditionally publish a book, or has no idea what self-publishing entails. Additionally, some writers may feel like their book just isn't "ready." If you've been mulling over whether or not to publish your book, here are a few ways to prepare.
During our most recent Twitter Chat, Trent Harmon, Lead Buyer at Ingram Content Group, was kind enough to grace us with his presence as our special guest. While John Hussey and I did our best to stump him with our toughest Wholesale questions, it was a pleasure to see a number of University Presses join in on the conversation and worthy of a big cheer. (Thank you Kentucky, California, and Fordham!)
By Ann Lehue, Manager, Collection Development Programs, MSIS
Ingram’s Collection Development librarians meet with publishers on a regular basis and frequently discuss what’s new and what’s changing in the publishing world. Everything—from the usual waxing and waning of genres, to experiments with formats, to a surge in the awareness of social issues, to the way social media impacts who gets published—factors into this season’s crop of new books.
So, first things first—what are some common misconceptions about James Brown that really need to be cleared up?
He was much more than “The Godfather of Soul.” He was a son of the south. Very sensitive guy. Very misunderstood. A living symbol of what’s wrong and right about American history.
Small and large businesses are harnessing the power of analytics systems to track inventory, monitor sales, and identify their target audiences. These platforms are tremendously useful for increasing sales and efficiency, and retailers aren't the only ones who benefit.
Introducing a new Twitter hour just for you, University Presses! #BuildUP is our first-ever Twitter chat that will connect University Presses with publishing experts and thought leaders from Ingram. Starting April 1 at 10:30-11:30 CST, you can catch us every first Friday of the month with a new topic.
So you have an amazing idea for a story you just can't stop thinking about. Sounds like it's time you put that on paper and share it with others! But writing a book is so hard, you say. Of course it can seem that way; your mind is full of characters, plots, and dramatic twists and turns. But if you can't find a way to organize those thoughts and get them out into one cohesive story, the idea of writing a book can seem daunting. Fear not. Here are five easy steps to help organize your thoughts so you can finally write that bestseller you've been dreaming up.
Have you ever wished you had the time and tools to organize your house in a clutter-free, design-conscious, Pinterest-worthy way? From storage solutions and cleaning tips to secret space-saving methods and expert strategies, The Complete Book of Home Organization is packed with the tips and shortcuts you need to effectively organize your home.
So, you’ve finished your manuscript and you’re ready to publish. That’s great! You are probably eager to get it into the hands of readers but may be confused about how to make that happen. Editing, designing, printing, and marketing your manuscript can be overwhelming, but you do not need to navigate this time-consuming, multi-faceted process on your own.
Before the digital age, authors only had a few options to choose from to get manuscripts published. Traditionally, an author would have to invest with a publishing company and vanity press. This could cost thousands of dollars. Thanks to advances in publishing technology, authors can now DIY. Self-publishing is a great way to save money, get your book out there, and start making sales fast. However, there are a few things you need to know before you dive in.
This month’s video is brought you by the Spring Arbor Wire: Bibles and Devotionals Edition. Melissa and Gail discuss upcoming Christian titles that examine the book of Psalms and helpful ways to use your bible and devotionals to start your day. Watch as they review The Songs of Jesus by Timothy Keller and Kathy Keller, ESV Journaling Bible from Crossway Good News Books, Jesus Calling Morning and Evening by Sarah Young, and the KJVER Sword Study Bible from Witaker House.
This month’s video is brought to you by the Ingram Wire: Romance Edition. Romance novel readers Gail and Stephanie discuss their four must-read romance novels: Dukes Prefer Blondes by Loretta Chase, The Total Package by Stephanie Evanovich, The Song of Hartgrove Hall by Natasha Solomons, and The Friends We Keep by Susan Mallery