Articles tagged "the modern parent’s guide to kids and video games"

Writer’s Bloc: An Inside Guide to the Publishing Business

Writer’s Bloc: An Inside Guide to the Publishing Business

Welcome to the wild world of self-publishing – one of the most exciting and rewarding journeys you’ll ever undertake. But make no mistake: It can often be a long, difficult and bumpy road as well. Navigating the publishing industry’s ups and downs has always been a rollercoaster ride. But in an era of breakneck change, as the realms of digital, print and on-demand publishing increasingly collide in strange and unexpected (not to mention smartphone-, tablet PC- and app-friendly) forms, consider. Nowadays, it’s more akin to taking a regular spin on Space Mountain. Daily. And after having chugged a Big Gulp and binged on theme park hot dogs to boot.

That said, I’d like to personally welcome you to the party: Just by taking the time to visit this blog and learn more about the day-to-day realities of working as a published author, you’ve already justified your presence on the VIP guest list. As the creator of nearly a dozen books on business and technology, including the bestselling The Modern Parent’s Guide high-tech parenting series and The Business Expert’s Guidebook (which explains how to use everyday apps, gadgets and online services to start and successfully run any small business), trust me when I say that the festivities are just getting started. Ask anyone who’s been published, and they’ll let you in on a closely-guarded industry secret: Coming up with the idea for your next life-changing masterwork, and even writing the book, is merely the beginning.

How Free Books Build Your Brand as an Author and Authority

Scott Steinberg wants to help parents navigate the weird world of gaming and technology as they raise their kids. He wants to help them so bad, that he’s literally giving this advice away for free. If they want it for free, that is.

In an interview with Portfolio, Steinberg describes how his new book, The Modern Parent’s Guide to Kids and Video Games will not only be released in different formats, but at vastly different prices as well (ranging from $17.99 to zilch.) On his website, he offers a paperback version of the book (available through Lulu), and a digital version, available free for the Sony reader.

But how effective a business model is offering both a version that costs money and one that is absolutely free? Is that even a business model?

As Steinberg explained, “Free giveaways facilitate brand-building, cement subject matter expertise, and foster huge publicity wins. These opportunities not only allow you to do something positive that benefits readers, they can also potentially lead to new relationships, fruitful speaking engagements and heightened goodwill.”

By offering a free version, Steinberg sees the tradeoff between profit and publicity as being completely equal. It doesn’t mean completely giving up on the idea of turning a profit on your self-published book, but by giving digital copies (or excerpts) away, an author can help promote their name and foster goodwill (resulting in even greater exposure and sales).

In the traditional publishing model, authors have to promote their books. But in self-publishing, we’re finding more and more that authors are using their books to promote themselves — especially when it comes to how-to guides or areas of specialized knowledge. For Steinberg, who is established in the field of advising parents about technology, his book aims to help build his flourishing brand.

Sometimes, the best way to establish that you’re a qualified source of information, is to literally have written the book on it. If you’re pursuing a career in consultancy, self-help, or expert analysis, self-publishing is a great way to build your brand and establish you as a bona fide source of knowledge.

Put succinctly by Steinberg, “Many authors consider books the best form of business card available.”

For additional reading on the topic, check out our blog post Make More Off Your eBook by Selling it for Free.

Thoughts? What examples do you know of authors selling their eBooks for free? Did it incentivize you to download the book?