Tag: self-help book

Will your book become a bestseller? Does your book have what it takes? Or perhaps the question is “do you have what it takes?”

I’ve thought long and hard about what’s required to produce a sustained bestselling book and reap the rewards that go along with that status. You know… paid speaking gigs, a large engaged following, high-end clients, and making a global impact.

After years of analyzing the successes (and failures) of my mentors, private clients, and students I’ve distilled it down to three things.

I call it the Bestseller Framework and I explain it in this video.

Will your book become a bestseller?

After watching the video I invite you to take my “Bestseller Indicator Assessment”. Just answer a few multiple choice questions about your book (whether it’s published yet or not) to see what your potential is to become a #1 bestselling author. It’s fun and informative.

After you take the quiz, I’d love for you to post your scores in the comments below so I can give you my personal feedback.


After you’ve taken the quiz and have read the assessment based on your score then you’ll have a good indication of your chances for bestseller success. The maximum you can score is 90 points.

If your score is 15–29, sadly a bestseller is improbable. If you scored 30–44 then a short-term bestseller is possible with help. A short-term bestseller is likely if you score between 45 and 59. A #1 bestseller is highly likely if your results are in the 60–74 range. And if you scored 75–90 a #1 sustained bestseller is guaranteed along with exponential business growth.

For ideas on how you can increase your score (and become a bestseller with certainty) download my bestselling eBook 5 Things Every First-time Author Needs to Know or order it on Amazon.


Geoff Affleck

Geoff Affleck is a 5-time #1 bestselling author and creator and facilitator for the eBook Bestseller Bootcamp for aspiring self-help authors.

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Post a comment or question below. I'd love to hear our thoughts on this.

Selecting the best Amazon book categories is one of the most important and overlooked aspects of publishing and one of the easiest to do. Most self-published authors and professional publishers give little thought to the category placement. They often place a book in a category that either too broad or too competitive.

Why Amazon Book Categories are Important

Although most Amazon customers don’t browse for books by looking in the category listings (they use keyword searches), your category choices still matter. Why? Because Amazon’s algorithm gives priority to books that rank higher in categories. This means that if you can get your book to #1 in a category then Amazon will be more likely to place your title higher on the keyword search results and suggest it to more customers.

So getting a #1 ranking is not only important for your credibility as an author but is important for getting more exposure and sales for your book. This is why it’s so important to get right.

Which Amazon Book Categories are the Best?

The best Amazon book categories are the ones that have the fewest books (less competition for you) and its top-ranked books have low to moderate Amazon rankings. By low I mean an Amazon Bestsellers Rank (ABSR) of about 10,000 or worse (e.g. 10,000 – 3,000,000+). If the bestselling book in a category has an ABSR of 10,000 or better (i.e. 1 – 10,000) then it is obviously selling quite well and will be harder to beat.

5 Tips for Choosing the Right Categories

When choosing your Amazon book categories I offer these tips:

1. Go deep

Go deep. In non-fiction Amazon often has subcategories that are nested several levels deep like this one, Direct Marketing, which is four levels deep in the Kindle eBooks section:Amazon book categories

2. Choose less competitive categories

Chose a category where the #1 bestselling book has an ABSR that is the least competitive. For example, in Direct Marketing the #1 book at the time of writing this blog is “One Hour Content Plan”. It has an ABSR of #9,835. And while a ranking of #9,835 puts this book in the top 1% of all eBooks, it is only selling about 15 books per day. So if you can sell 16 books per day then you can rank at #1 in this category and claim #1 bestseller status!

3. Best fit vs. loose fit

Chose one category that is the best fit for your book based on its genre and title. Then choose a second category that is a looser fit for your book but is less competitive—one that you can more easily win the coveted #1 spot.

4. Don’t settle for only two categories.

Send an email to Amazon Author Central support and ask them to add you to additional categories. Copy and paste the exact category path that you want to be in into your email and you can be instantly placed in multiple categories.

5. Check and rotate

Check your categories monthly and change them if you see a more competitive category open up.

Choosing the best Amazon categories is easy and can help you become a #1 bestseller more easily and with no cost to you. It’s worth spending a hour or so doing your research so you can make the best choices.


Geoff Affleck

Geoff Affleck is a 5-time #1 bestselling author and creator and facilitator for the eBook Bestseller Bootcamp for first-time nonfiction authors.

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Post a comment or question below. I'd love to hear our thoughts on this.

Do I need permission to use quotes in my book? If you don’t have permission or are not using the quotation in a way that is considered “fair use” then you run the risk of being sued.

Students in my eBook Bestseller Bootcamp raise this question often so I thought I would do some research on the topic.

Unfortunately there is no cut and dry answer regarding how to legally use quotations in your book so every author needs to make a judgement call on whether to take the risk. Some of the factors to consider are;

1. Was the quote made before 1923?

If the quote was made before 1923 then it is probably in the public domain and is safe to use. However this does not apply to old advertising slogans which may be trademarked.

2. Are you quoting a fact?

Are you quoting a fact, a book title, a song title, or someone’s name you do not need permission. Such things cannot be protected by copyright. You also don’t need permission to include links in your eBook.

3. Is it “fair use”?

If you use someone’s copyrighted material in such a way that it might not be considered fair use, then you should ask for explicit permission. Even though in the video above I said that you should credit the source, please note that doing this does not remove the obligation to seek permission. It is expected that you always credit your source regardless of fair use; otherwise, you are plagiarizing.

The four factors judges consider to determine fair use are:

  • the purpose and character of your use
  • the nature of the copyrighted work
  • the amount and substantiality of the portion taken, and
  • the effect of the use upon the potential market.

For more detailed articles on these four factors see these sites:

What Is Fair Use?

Measuring Fair Use: The Four Factors

The bottom line is that it is impossible to determine if the way you are using a quotation is fair use or not. Not only does it depend on the four factors above, it also depends on the Judge’s bias, and on how aggressive the copyright holder is.

Doing this research as made me think twice about using quotations in my books. In future I will use pre-1923 quotes and ask myself, “is this quotation absolutely necessary?” If it isn’t then I won’t use it.


Geoff Affleck

Geoff Affleck is a 5-time #1 bestselling author and creator and facilitator for the eBook Bestseller Bootcamp for aspiring self-help authors.

Read more posts

 

Post a comment or question below. I'd love to hear our thoughts on this.

How do you format a book for Kindle? Amazon Kindle Direct Publishing is the most popular way to publish eBooks. It is relatively simple to take your manuscript and publish it with KDP. The easiest way is to write your book using good old Microsoft Word. Even though I’m a Mac Pages fan, I don’t recommend writing a book in it because Amazon can’t convert it to an eBook format.

Using Microsoft Word Styles to Format a Book for Kindle

Before you start typing your eBook you should set up your Word document using Microsoft Word styles. Styles are simply pre-formatted settings for your chapter titles, sub-headings, second level sub headings, bullet lists, numbered lists and quotes. Using styles helps you easily format your book for Kindle.

For example, your chapter titles you’ll use “Heading 1”. Your sub-titles are “Heading 2”, etc. Heading 1 might be a 20pt font while heading 3 is 16pt and your main paragraph font is 12pt. It doesn’t matter which font style you choose because KDP will convert it to a standard style. And besides, when people read their eBooks they can often decide on their own preferred font styles and sizes.

Formatting Tips for Kindle eBooks

  1. Don’t use your spacebar to add extra spaces or indents
  2. Set your paragraph text style to add a 12pt space after each paragraph rather than hitting the “Enter” key twice at the end of each paragraph
  3. Use numbered lists rather than typing numbers
  4. Use styles for your headings rather than manually bolding text or increasing the font size
  5. Insert hard page breaks after each chapter (but remember that you can’t control the way your eBook looks on an eReader so don’t bother trying to end your chapter at the end of a page.
  6. Don’t use page numbers for an eBook!
  7. Don’t use Headers or Footers for an eBook
  8. Do use Word to create your Table of Contents (page numbers are unnecessary)
  9. Do include links in your eBook to your opt-in page, website, or other resources

Other Supported eBook Formats for Amazon

Amazon does support other formats besides word including HTML, MOBI, EPUB, RTF, TXT and PDF. RTF and TXT files are fine if you don’t have any images. PDF has limitations too.

Here are some recources you will find helpful:

Amazon Supported eBook Formats

Amazon Formatting Guide


Geoff Affleck

Geoff Affleck is a 5-time #1 bestselling author and creator and facilitator for the eBook Bestseller Bootcamp for aspiring self-help authors.

Read more posts

 

Post a comment or question below. I'd love to hear our thoughts on this.

How do you find a good editor for your book? Judy from Australia wrote “the trickiest thing I found about writing and book self-publishing in the non-fiction genre is editing and finding an editor.”  Thank’s Judy. I’ll give you a few tips in the video.

The best ways I know to find a good copy editor—one who is professional, fast, proficient, affordable, and most of all, doesn’t lose your authentic voice are these:

  1. Look in the acknowledgements section of books that you really like in your genre for the name of the editor. Then contact them.
  2. Ask for referrals from other authors who LOVED their editor.
  3. Ask me for a referral. I’ll be happy to refer you an amazing editor who meets all the criteria above.

One thing I didn’t talk about in the video is using gig sites like fiverr.com to find a good editor. While editing gigs are a-plenty on these sites, finding a good one is a crap shoot. If your budget doesn’t allow you to hire a recommended professional editor then this may be a good option. Here are some tips for hiring gig editors:

  • Find one whose first language is your language
  • Look for one with lots of 5-star ratings and read the comments
  • Try them out with a short sample such as your introduction or first chapter to assess the quality of editing and turnaround time
  • Do this with two or three editors and compare results

If you have no budget for editing then ask a friend to help you (again, quality may suffer) or see if you can trade services with a professional editor.


Geoff Affleck

Geoff Affleck is a 5-time #1 bestselling author and creator and facilitator for the eBook Bestseller Bootcamp for aspiring self-help authors.

Read more posts

 

Post a comment or question below. I'd love to hear our thoughts on this.