Tag Archives: Amazon

The Apple Surprise!

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http://www.digitalbookworld.com/2014/apples-big-move/

I just read the article on the dbw website by Jeremy Greenfield, Apple’s Big Move,  that talked about how the new operating system that’s being released by Apple is including iBooks and roughly 34 books for free. I took a look on my iPhone and iPad, because I had already downloaded the new operating system for both of them. Unfortunately I couldn’t really see a difference, and I’m not exactly sure how the apps are set up. I could not tell if there was anything different on either one of my devices.

What I do see in this turn of events is the possibility of Apple becoming a larger player in the e-book competition with Amazon. The devices are where the line is drawn. Every time Apple releases a new product in the realm of the iPhone six or the new generation of iPads, they immediately sell millions in a few weeks time. This ability to crush it with sales can have crossover effect once people realize that they can also use the iBooks app to quickly and efficiently purchase books and e-books. The ability to gain market share through hardware sales is one that Amazon has actually perfected.

Whereas Apple is selling a high-level technology device that everyone wants with an added bonus (iBooks), Amazon is selling a device that is not technically superior to the one that Apple produces, but the delivery of content through the KDP model is the preeminent sales structure within the competitive marketplace. This could actually turn into the heavyweight battle that was foreseen years ago between these two corporate giants. Overall I see this is a good thing.

Competition is something that keeps all corporations on their toes. If there is no competition than individual corporate structures are less likely to be on the cutting edge of innovation. Competition keeps people guessing. Competition makes research and development a needed function. Looking through the corporate history of the United States you can never have the Ying without the Yang. For Henry Ford there was Chrysler who was building cars at the same time. For Coke there was Pepsi. For Westinghouse there was GE. The best minds need to be pitted against each other to keep new products and new process innovations updating the given markets.

It will be interesting to see if this additional exposure through iBooks has an impact on e-book sales through Apple. The possibility exists that the iPhone 6 and iPad are too technologically advanced to steer large quantities of dollars in the e-book direction. There are so many different apps and things to do on these devices that reading may be something that is relegated very far down the list of functions for customers to use.

Whether Apple becomes the player that grabs more market share from Amazon has yet to be seen, but having the app and some free books could be a step in the right direction for customers yearning for another sales portal worthy of a challenge to Amazon.

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Forbes Article: Indie Authors and Amazon

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

There are so many different varied places to find great information on publishing that sometimes there is a bit of information overload. This occurs frequently when looking for ways to get from manuscript to e-book or bound book as quickly and efficiently as possible. I do many blog posts that are culled from information from the dbw website, Entrepreneur Magazine website, Publishers Weekly website and other information conduits when I find pertinent information that would help. Today I found a great article on the Forbes website that detailed specifically how authors can get an e-book project posted to and through Amazon for Kindle download.

http://www.forbes.com/sites/deborahljacobs/2014/04/25/how-to-self-publish-your-book-through-amazon/

This article kicked off with a nice intro by Deborah L. Jacobs, who then handed off to successful independent publisher Paul Jarvis. The article gave some interesting background on Mr. Jarvis as he told us about his previous excursions into self-publishing in the recent past.

“I started out in the first camp two years ago when I used Gumroad to self-publish the ebook, Eat Awesome…   Gumroad allows you to sell a variety of digital products from your own web site, including ebooks, music and software. Setup takes less than five minutes. They take a very small percentage (5% + 25 cents) of each sale. I sold 5,410 copies of the book I published with them, netting about $12,033 (after they took their fees)…  My second book, Be Awesome at Online Business, I sold exactly same way.”1

Mr. Jarvis then goes through a listing of the most important functions that any self-publishing author would find useful and helpful when dealing with Amazon to publish their titles. He mentions the KDP which stands for Kindle Direct Publishing. KDP is an integral part of the e-book functions for loading, marketing and selling your e-book on Amazon. He also thought talked about the print arm of Amazon which is CreateSpace. Now CreateSpace is a print-on-demand portal that will allow you to get print books out to your audience that may not necessarily want to buy an e-book. They will print your title as a one-off so you don’t end up with a garage full of printed books. Mr. Jarvis gave some information on Amazon Author Central, which is the pivot point for all of your personal author information. And finally Mr. Jarvis gave information on Amazon Associates. In the Associates program you can link your book with other products on the Amazon website which can increase profit margin when there is a purchase of your particular title.

Having actually published an e-book on Amazon myself (The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing) I find it exhilarating that this mode of content transmission is readily accessible. I recommend you read this article by Paul Jarvis, the time investment is well worth it.

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E-book:  The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing

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Amazon E-book Sales

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahunahttp://www.forbes.com/sites/greatspeculations/2014/04/02/estimating-kindle-e-book-sales-for-amazon/

I finally got around to reading an article that I’ve been meaning to read for the past couple of weeks. It was an article in Forbes that did the unthinkable: it actually did an educated “guesstomation” on how many e-books Amazon has been selling over the course of the past few years. We all know that Amazon holds this information very close to the vest as a trade secret. The breakdown of how Forbes figured out these calculations was very telling and actually had a very scientific approach to deliver the deducted answer.

Forbes began this article by figuring out how many Kindles and Kindle offshoots have been sold by Amazon since the initial introduction in 2007.

“Amazon launched its Kindle e-reader in late 2007. Assuming a 3-year replacement cycle, we conclude that there may be approximately 30 million Kindle e-readers currently in use.” 1

Once the total number of kindles in use has been arrived at, the average of five e-book purchases and downloads per year was introduced as part of the equation. Now people have 30 million active kindles each with an average download of five per year at an expense rate of $4-$10 per download, you came up with a formula that looks something like this:

30,000,000*5*7 dollars =1,050,000,000*.30= $315,000,000

You might be asking yourself where the 30% came from. That would be the percentage that Amazon gets from every sale as a handling a distribution fee. If you read the article which I have accessed and embedded for this blog post, you will find that the estimated amount Forbes came up with was somewhere between $260 million and $530 million annually since 2007. Since Amazon is a multibillion dollar company, this amount seems paltry but will continue to grow with time. Again, you have to factor in the equation that Amazon is not really using its publishing arm to drive revenue. Amazon is using its publishing arm which is inclusive of selling kindles and selling e-books to drive customer base to other products on the Amazon website.

It’s always been known that Amazon would take a loss just to ensure a larger segment of market-share. It is nice to know that the largest e-book player is making significant sales which are transferring hundreds of millions of dollars into their corporate earnings. It’s always great when you can use deductive reasoning to pull away the drapes to reveal the underlying information range.

Information from the Forbes article was supplied by the Trefis Team.

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The Book Kahuna Interview on CNTV!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Did you ever want to use your talents for something greater?

Did you ever think: What if I could start a business that would help people to create their dream books without getting fleeced?

Having worked in the publishing industry for the past 30 years and gone from assistant to manager and beyond, is it possible I might have something to offer young people in the publishing industry?

I am convinced that I have something to offer. I am convinced that there is a market for what I’m doing and that people are looking for voices to come out of the din and give them directions on the paths they are choosing.

I know there a lot of naysayers out there who look at what I’m doing as something frivolous, insignificant and lacking in any real ability for successful conclusion. To them I say, “Stand back and watch this take off!”

Anyone who wants to review my academic and work histories can do so by accessing my LinkedIn profile.

www.linkedin.com/in/donaldschmidt/

I currently have a Go-Fund-Me  campaign where you can contribute and actually receive products that I have put together. The one product is my lecture at the Denver Publishing Institute that was turned into a self-narrated video with the corresponding PowerPoint presentation, the other is the e-book that I wrote for my Master’s thesis with an added chapter on “How to load your e-book for an Amazon Kindle download”.

http://www.gofundme.com/5qk2mo

I hope you will take the time to review the attached video and see exactly what I am building and why I am building it. There have been people throughout history who have been laughed at and ridiculed (Edison, The Wright Brothers, Marconi) while building something integral and special to their particular niche in the corporate world. I know that I am on the right path because of the social media interactions and views that I am generating with my blog-posts, tweets and videos. Come along for the ride and see where this journey takes us!  If you sign up for my email list you will receive the DPI lecture as my gift to you.

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No one said anything worth having is easy, and I am prepared to fight for every scrap that comes my way along this challenging test. I will succeed and prosper in the end!

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Amazon and Publishers: Numerology Roulette!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffbercovici/2014/02/10/amazon-vs-book-publishers-by-the-numbers/

Whenever there is a new way to do things, people and companies in the status quo begin to get upset. This is not a new development and has been going on since the covered wagon manufacturers were confronted with Henry Ford’s new transportation vehicle. I’m sure there was a spate of gnashing teeth and hand wringing as the model A’s and model T’s came off the production line. The buggy whip manufacturers were probably not very happy as well. Such is corporate life when a new model rolls around and upsets the status quo. Amazon is the new Ford Motor Company.

Amazon Corporate Model

I recently read the article in Forbes magazine by Jeff Bercovici:  Amazon Versus Book Publishers By the Numbers, and was struck by the lack of historical perspective that people have towards this love/hate relationship. To fundamentally understand the relationship between publishers and Amazon you must first realize that Amazon is not trying to be a book publisher or distributor based on the normal models. Amazon is building a business whereby books are almost a marketing device to grab customer share for purchases of everything else that Amazon sells on their website. Keeping this in mind is a difficult part of the overall Amazon/Publisher picture. There was a time a few years ago when Amazon was actually contemplating giving Kindles away to ensure market capture even though they would suffer a loss on their ROI. Any company that will give away a new electronic reading device to ensure consumer capture does not really consider themselves a book-selling company.

Some of the comments that were under this article on the Forbes website were instrumental in giving a bird’s eye-view of how the public views this spat. Most people believe that publishing companies have been in control of the situation in dealing with authors for far too long. Now with the dual realities of distribution points like Amazon being able to call the shots, and also being pushed to provide more and more bestsellers while competing with a vibrant and upstart self-publishing/independent publishing author base, the publishers are back on their heels. This may be the change in the publishing atmosphere that is necessary to even the playing field to a more author-friendly environment.

Click— http://tinyurl.com/lama53t– Click

The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

The Numbers

Some of the numbers from the article were very surprising to me and here are a few examples:

$5.25 billion: Amazon’s current annual revenue from book sales, according to one of Packer’s sources. That means books account for 7% of the company’s $75 billion in total yearly revenue.

19.5%: The proportion of all books sold in the U.S. that are Kindle titles. E-books now make up around 30% of all book sales, and Amazon has a 65% share within that category, with Apple AAPL -1.11% and Barnes & Noble NE -0.38% accounting for most of the balance.*

14: The number of workers Amazon employs for every $10 million in revenue it generates. For brick-and-mortar retailers, the average is 47 employees per $10 million of revenue.

1 million: The total number of copies — print, e-book and audio — sold by author Helen Bryan, whose two historical novels, “War Brides” and “The Sisterhood,” were put out by Amazon Publishing. Amazon announced this morning that Bryan is its second author, following Oliver Pötzsch, to reach the million-copy mark.

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Some may find these numbers droll and uninteresting, but I think they tell the story of a complete change in the publishing/bookselling mindset. Amazon will not be going away anytime soon, and with any uncomfortable situation the basis for the irritation will become the norm as time moves on. This is all new and could easily be instrumental in changing the publishing landscape over the next 5 to 10 years.

And in the Future?

Whether Amazon being a major player in the book distribution model will adversely impact the publishing community, as a whole, remains to be seen. Rather than lament the fact that Amazon is in the race, publishers should be looking for new and innovative ways to sell and market their products.  Only through continued innovations and new processes can the publishing community survive and thrive in the era of Amazon.

CLICK HERE ——->     http://www.empowernetwork.com/almostasecret?id=The-Book-Kahuna     <—- CLICK HERE!

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You Have to Get This Ebook From Amazon!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

Click— http://tinyurl.com/lama53t– Click

The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing:  History, Industry Perspective (Print and E-book) and “How To” Publish Your E-book for Amazon Kindle

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“How To” Publish Your E-book For Amazon Kindle

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

I’ve heard that this is a really hot topic out there in publishing land, and I thought I might take a crack at putting some information on the table that may be helpful to anyone.  This question is one that is resonating throughout publishing and I can give you the answer in a very short succinct set of words:  Epub Files.

Production Functions

Anyone who wants to write the Great American Novel, or a Cookbook, or a How To book has a set of functions that need to be adhered to make sure the quality of the project is at a high level when it gets out into the marketplace.  Whether you are a self-publisher, a medium-sized reference publisher, or a McGraw-Hill or Random House, the finalization of the manuscript process begins with the manuscript review.  Now, the manuscript review is a checklist for anyone in the production field to make sure that all of the elements (frontmatter, text, backmatter, figures, graphs, tables, and halftones) are finalized with the manuscript.  If you are self-publishing, the resolution for the images should be at least 266 dpi, (dots per inch).  This higher resolution will not matter as much for the e-book, but if you ever decide to print your book either on a web or through a print-on-demand vendor such as Lightning Source, you’ll want the images in the final files to be crisp and accurate in the reproduction process.  Right now, we are dealing with a 1/c black title and not even thinking about a 4/color project.

The Master List

  1.  Copyediting:  No matter how good you can write, there are standards and those standards are contained in The Chicago Manual of Style, 16th Edition.  Find a good copyeditor to go through your manuscript and give it a once over while maintaining the integrity of your written “Voice.”  Find a copyeditor that you like and ask them to get into the weeds with you to make your tome a well written, grammatically correct vision of information.  The copyeditor on a project can make or break your sales by giving you a project that will pass the scrutiny of all readers.
  2. Design/Composition/Layout:  For years publishers used designers who worked in Mac platform design software like Quark.  In the age of Epub files, Quark is convertible, but not in a very effective manner when compared to InDesign.  Epub files are Adobe based, and since Adobe always builds suites of tools that complement each other, composition should be done in InDesign.  This will make the final conversion a much simpler matter than anything converting from Quark files.  You could be using an HTML based layout program like 3B2, which will let you easily convert to XML based on your D-T-D (Document-Type-Definition), but supplying e-books to Amazon as an Epub file is the way to ensure it gets loaded and out for sales with an immediacy that will capture revenue streams quickly.  Other file formats such as Word.doc will work as well if you run them through an HTML filter process before you submit them to Amazon.
  3. Author Review/Proofreading:  No matter what format is the final, the manuscript must be proofread, and the author must review it.  Who would know the final product better than the person who wrote the title?  The proofread should be a word-for-word and not a line-scan.  Companies do not realize how much damage is done to a reputation when the consuming public finds typos in a project they just paid good money for.
  4. Indexing:   In the world of reference publishers, this is a key feature.  A bad index can turn an award winner into an albatross if the index is not as comprehensive as it should be.  The index should have all of the most important main entries in the book, and sometimes one or two sub-entries will help to create a strong index as well.  This step is supremely important if you are planning on publishing through dual format avenues:  POD and through Amazon KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing).  This step is not necessary if you are only doing an e-book since the content of an e-book is fully searchable on a Kindle.

For anyone looking to publish for Kindle downloads, the next step would be to set up an account on KDP.  Once you have this account set up, you con upload the e-book content and the cover art to Amazon through this account.  After you upload the files you will need to complete the metadata information to finalize this upload process.  Finalizing the metadata will be instrumental in generating a preview of your title on the Amazon Sales Portal website for your title to sell.  After the upload and finalization of the metadata, there may be a lag time of roughly 48 hours until your title is available for purchase and download.

For more information please refer to the Amazon site directly:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/seller-account/mm-summary-page.html?topic=200260520

CLICK HERE!!!—->The Electronic/Digital Revolution in Book Publishing<—-CLICK HERE!!!

It’s Alive!

Once you have gone through these steps and done all the final checks, you can have Epub files loaded to Amazon, who will do any conversion necessary on the files for you before they are uploaded for sale.  This is a very rudimentary set of points, but whether you are publishing an e-book or a print book, this same set of steps needs to be adhered to ensure your product is at the highest quality possible, on the schedule that you want, and on the budget that you want to pay.   These are Dr. Frankenstein’s notes that will be the basis for your creation… Build on them.

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