Success Stories: Selling Books Online


Book Selling with Google Adwords . . .

My book, American Meth: A History of the Methamphetamine Epidemic in America, is selling an average of about five copies per day, with almost no marketing. The marketing I am doing, via the Internet is working great, and I thought I would share this with you, as it might help your readers.

I am using Google Adwords to direct traffic to my website. I set up a budget of $6 per day. It sounds cheap, but that turns into $180 per month. So I am off-setting that cost by hosting Google Adsense ads. The Adsense revenue is now averaging $8 per day.

The topic of my book is very current, so perhaps more web traffic comes and goes my way than for the ordinary. But I think that many of your readers would benefit from doing the Google thing with their sites. It’s all about effective marketing, the way I set it up was to try to make marketing free, and as of now it’s actually making a few bucks, which I will reinvest into other marketing endeavors. — Sterling Braswell. Web: http://www.americanmeth.com.


A Self-Publishing Success Story

After flying military transport planes around the world and getting his first taste of the Internet in 1996, Willie Crawford built his first website that same year. Following the guidance of some experts, he chose to focus on two niches: cooking (soul food recipes) and marketing (a lifelong interest).
His cooking website became an instant hit and allowed him to launch a self-published cookbook that still earns him a six-figure income every year. Combined with his marketing website that sells seminars, DVDs, software, ebooks, and private memberships, Willie has become a seven-figure online marketer working his way to eight figures.

As he described the beginning of his cookbook in an interview in Mind Gold News:

When I first built my soul food website, for example, I struggled with the question: “What do I offer these people?” They come to my website and they join a recipe exchange mailing list. So—what do you offer these people that are on a recipe exchange list? That's a tough question.

I had to look for some common demographic and there really wasn't one, except, then they began asking me if I had a cookbook. So, they told me what they wanted….

They join this recipe exchange list, where they mail in their recipes or mail in requests and my wife compiles this into an email that goes out now twice a day. And we have an ad at the top and the bottom; that's where we make our money.

It drives traffic back to my site and it also drives cookbook sales. But, what happens is, the people read the recipes and some of them are so terrific that they associate that good feeling of getting good recipes to me. I never even imply that these are recipes from my cookbook, but they just associate great recipes.

For the complete Mind Gold News interview with Willie Crawford go to: http://www.mindgold.com.


Giving Books Away — One Half at a Time

Canadian author Ernie Zelinsky self-published three books, including The Joy of Not Working, The Lazy Person's Guide to Success, and The Joy of Thinking Big. After selling thousands of copies, he sold the rights to Ten Speed Press. The Joy of Not Working has sold 175,000 copies, been published in 16 languages, and made over $500,000 in pretax income.

Ernie now works two to four hours a day. He doesn't like to work at all in any month that doesn't have an “r” in it. Due to his success, he is giving away half of his latest book How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free as an e-book (only the top half). Here's why he is doing it:

“This promotion is a variation of a creative approach I used with my first book over 15 years ago. I actually cut the book in half and sent out either the top or bottom half to corporations with a letter saying that if they wanted to read the whole book, they had to buy a minimum of 10 copies. This resulted in about an extra $15,000 in revenues.”

The e-book version of Ernie's How to Retire Happy, Wild, and Free is available as a free download on the Wall Street Executive Library Website at http://www.executivelibrary.com.


“Just wanted you to know that one of the many reasons that I have sold thousands of books, and will continue to do so is because of power-packed info that you send out to authors. This e-mail alone has given me at least four new ideas to get my books into even more hands.” — Kevin Wayne Johnson, Writing for the Lord Ministries.


Website Leads Expert to Oprah and More

“My advice has appeared in major publications, including O, The Oprah Magazine, Fitness, Real Simple, Good Housekeeping, and others. Every writer found me via my web site. It's important for writers to be able to find you based on your topic, not by your name. I talk to so many people who have this confused. Search engines like Google love fresh content, and have special robots they send to sites that change often. Mine does, and I usually show up on the first two pages. It's also important to include the word ‘expert’ on your pages because that's exactly what the media is looking for.

“One of my best decisions was to take classes in FrontPage and create my own website. I don't have to beg a webmaster to do anything for me and can change my site any time I want.”

— Peggy Duncan, Personal Productivity Expert, Author, Conquer Email Overload with Better Habits, Etiquette, and Outlook Tips and Tricks. Web: http://www.PeggyDuncan.com.


Judy Cullins's Online Success

Judy Cullins, author of the ebook, Drastically Increase Your Web Traffic and Sales (http://www.bookcoaching.com) and editor of The Book Coach Says ezine. During her web campaign during the past year, she accomplished...

  • Raised internet book sales from $75 to $3000 (8 months). Over $4000 in 2004 thus far.
  • Increased book and internet coaching clients from 7 to 17 in two months.
  • Increased search engine placement to #1, 2, and 3 in Google, Yahoo and 35 others.
  • Increased ezine subscribers 15-25 a day (total 3500+).
  • Listed on 3140 Web sites with a hyperlink back to her web site where she sells her services and books.

Copyright © 2010 by online marketing expert John Kremer
Email: JohnKremer@bookmarket.com

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