Tag Archives: Publishing

An Empty Vender Yields No Cash!

New Photo w Logos

A few years ago, during a very bad snowstorm, I knew that I had to go out and do some work on my vending machines. I had started the business, Skootdad Vending and Refreshments, in the early part of 2008. My girlfriend had just passed away from Ovarian Cancer, and when I got back to my work office in Colorado after the funeral in New York I was told that I had to choose someone from my department to be let go. When I began my employment with the company in 2004, the department I inherited was rife with deadwood. There were people who did not really do a day’s work, there were people who had a problem with authority; there were people who thought they were the smartest people on the planet. Over time, I was able to craft and build a department from the ground up as the original people left the company. By 2008, I had built a department that was one of the best functioning and creative production/manufacturing teams in publishing. I have no qualms about saying this outright.

For more information, click here— > http://bit.ly/workwithDon   <— Click here

When you have spent four years building a department and making it a professional and well synchronized unit akin to a Swiss watch, it is very difficult when told to choose someone because they have to be kicked out. And this is a recurring problem with this particular company. There is no focus, there is no innovation, and the end result is that every few years people get cut out. Unfortunately, the people who make the decisions are never the ones to get cut out.

For more information, click here— > http://bit.ly/workwithDon   <— Click here

You understand what I’m telling you about where I was working? The company was not a long-term career investment. I decided that it was time to look elsewhere and start building something from the ground up. I would always say to people when they asked me about the late hours that I spent working on these vending machines: an empty vendor yields no cash! This is the perspective for any businessman:   cash-flow is king. If you do not have cash coming in, then you are not running your business correctly. I wanted to make sure that my customers were always able to make purchases from my machines. It all comes down to customer service in a one-on-one situation. I personally am not there, but my robot needs to work correctly to push the candy out to the waiting customer. If this part of the process does not work correctly, I have failed in my duty as the vending facilitator.

If you have empty cells without product for the augurs to push out, you are wasting valuable time because your business is based on choice. Once the choices become confined, the sales will begin to diminish. Could this be what your business looks like? Could this be a new revelation on how you should approach business and look at the transmission of goods to customers and clients? Everything comes down to maintaining that trust with the people who buy from your vending machine. I have to say one more time: an empty vendor yields no cash.

For more information, click here— > http://bit.ly/workwithDon   <— Click here

Here is my contact information:

Connect with me!

Twitter:  @thebookkahuna

Empower Network Blog:  http://thebookkahuna.net/

Blog: https://thebookkahuna.wordpress.com/

Website:  http://thebookkahuna.com/

YouTube Channel:  https://www.youtube.com/user/TheSkootdad

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

Advertisements

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Professional Services: What Are You Worth?

 

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

Having been in the publishing industry for many years I’ve often wondered how other professionals charge and feel about questions regarding their profession. With 30-years in the industry and an advanced degree, I feel that the information I offer should be worth something. It took me long enough to acquire all this information, it also took a large amount of money and effort to go through a Masters program in publishing. Why would people expect me to give them information for free?  I’m already giving free content through my bog posts and videos.

Hey Doc, I got this pain…

Some of the other professions that get asked for information are doctors and lawyers. Everyone always wants to go to a doctor and say: “Hey, I have this problem with my shoulder can you tell me what I should do about it?” But meanwhile the doctor has a practice that he needs to keep up and viable as a transmission point for ROI on his education and learning. By the same token lawyers are always asked for free legal advice. “Hey I had an accident on Colfax! What should I do and who should I contact? The accident might’ve been my fault.” Both professions get asked questions for free advice all the time, but is this appropriate? Are we actually paying respect to the fact that this person spent years in school and possibly years in practice to hone their profession to a high level of respectability?

Free is a Way to Build Relationships

I think free information is a great way to get your word out. I’ve been blogging for years. I’ve been doing videos for about a half-a-year now and I thoroughly enjoy giving information to help people in their chosen fields. Having spent so much time in managing departments, I have a wealth of knowledge about business, operations, communications, and a plethora of other areas of import that might help an aspiring professional in any arena of business. The question would be where do you draw the line and start asking for a fee for your information?

The Rules of Thumb…

I think there are a few different factors that go into this equation:

1. What is your relationship with the questioner? If this person is a dear friend that you’ve known for years, then I think the questions are valid and the free information transfer is required. If this person is an acquaintance than the nature of the relationship is different and needs to be evaluated.

2. The depth of the question or number of questions: if someone is asking you five different questions and you answer all five but then there is a follow-up with another seven questions, depending upon your relationship in number one above, this would be the mark of a business relationship. As such, an evaluation of the relationship is in order so that your professional standing is respected.

3. What is the level of need of the questioner? If the person asking the question has no reasonable way to pay you and this information might be tantamount to a parachute to help them in an economical way, then the passing of the information is a donation of goodwill to help your fellow-man. Always use your knowledge and experience for the good of others. If you know for a fact that the person asking the question has the ability to pay, then the nature of the relationship needs to be evaluated.

The transfer of free information from an expert in the field is a great way to build visibility and get your word out that you know exactly what you’re talking about. There is nothing wrong with asking for payment for your expertise. If you have information that people want and you have a background of success and excellence that can back-up your reputation as a professional then it is only fitting that you should be able to set the price for your knowledge and information transfers.

Never Devalue What You Know!

Never devalue your experience and knowledge by giving everything away for free.  Set a limit, and set a price standard.  The free-market will judge whether you are worth your asking fee or not.

Twitter:  @thebookkahuna

Blog: https://thebookkahuna.wordpress.com/

Website:  http://thebookkahuna.com/

E-mail List:  http://tiny.cc/bookkahuna1

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

Empower Network Blog:  http://thebookkahuna.net/

The Book Kahuna

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

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.

Twitter:  @thebookkahuna

Blog:  thebookkahuna.wordpress.com

Website:  thebookkahuna.com

E-mail List:  http://tiny.cc/bookkahuna1

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

Empower Network Blog:  http://thebookkahuna.net/

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

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.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

The Golden Nugget of Opportunity: Publishing Layoffs!

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

http://www.digitalbookworld.com/2014/rich-pickings-for-the-small-and-beautiful/

I read with profound interest the article on the DBW website by Tom Chalmers:  Rich Pickings for the Small and Beautiful and wanted to use this blog post to convey some of my thoughts on his article.

Mr. Chalmers has given us a snippet glimpse into his point of view with initial comments about his Communist- leaning father’s mindset. I think it is an admirable quality to feel empathy for those who are displaced by corporate upheavals. The immediate impact of the layoff or job loss is disastrous and financially catastrophic as well as emotionally and physically draining. Having been through this series of events four times in my career I can speak from a point of experience on this issue:  the latest event coming in February 2013.  Eventually I will have to thank ABC-CLIO for taking the direction they decided to take!

Not being a free market thinker, Mr. Chalmers has missed the point that a layoff or job loss can also be the staging platform for a complete transformation and career reinvention. If you continually go from day-to-day with the mindset that you owe something to a corporate structure, then that corporate structure will always have you at a disadvantage in any rational thought process about finances and career goals. Being able to process and use your own intelligence and academic credentials is something that is challenging and rewarding to the person who steps out and plays the role of maverick. The people who do not “color within the lines” are usually the ones who innovate and expand the knowledge base of the field in which they are associated. Steve Jobs is a perfect example of someone who did not play by the rule-set of the corporate and business structure model that was in place at the time. Thomas Edison did not play by the rules of his time. And even in the arena of politics, although now we think of him as a great statesman, Winston Churchill was a reviled maverick for most of his political career. It is lucky for us, that the most important five years of his political career took place during World War II.

The book publishing industry right now is going through a convulsive period. I have been lucky enough to be in this industry for the past 30 years, and also advanced my skills by getting an MS Degree in Publishing Science. I did not go back to school because I wanted to continue to be laid off and work for other corporate entities that might lay me off again. I went back to school because I am a maverick in this industry and I want to see other people succeed and breakout of the mold that the publishing industry has created. You do not have to sit and work for a company and get laid off every three or five years to be successful in this industry. The way to get ahead is to continually advance your skills, move up the ladder within corporate enterprises and then strike out on your own to create a business model that is new and innovative. Also if you can brand yourself with a catchy moniker, that doesn’t hurt either.

To summarize the article:  I think Mr. Chalmers has every good intention in feeling sympathy for the people who are laid off or displaced by corporate contractions, but I think that he has a mindset that does not look beyond the workstation cubicle to envision displaced workers striking out and forming business entities that will make them successful in the market without being part of a traditional corporate publishing structure.

Follow me on Twitter:        @thebookkahuna

Subscribe to my YouTube Channel:    http://www.youtube.com/user/TheSkootdad

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

What’s Important?

Don and Derek

The Book Kahuna and his Corgi, Derek!

The Book Kahuna

I was recently involved in a business conversation that was put on video when one of the participants started to ask me about my “Naked Blogging” Campaign. She wanted to know how deep into my own psyche I was going to delve to come up with pertinent topics to pass to my audience.

I thought about this question introspectively. I wondered what I could tell my readers that would make them understand who I am, why I work in publishing, and why I so desperately want to give back to the people within this industry and the authors who want to write for this industry.

At this point I am 52 years old.  I’ve been married once before and now I am not. I had a long-term relationship with a woman who passed away from Ovarian Cancer. I had another long-term relationship end recently after we had been engaged for four years. I’m reaching the point in my life where some of the goals that I wanted for myself are slipping away, and that’s okay.

Growing up I knew that I had a great father. I had an equally great mother, but knowing what kind of man my father was made me realize that I could also be a great father if given the chance. I didn’t marry until I was 35 years old, and that marriage ended in divorce four years later. We had been talking about children and I was fully prepared to be a father. I was ready to love someone so much that I would give part of myself to them to make another human being. I would sacrifice everything in my life to make sure that child grew up to be a wonderful part of the American dream. Even after my marriage ended I still had hopes of finding someone who might love me and want to be a parent with me within a loving family environment. I’m not the easiest guy to get along with, but I do have some qualities that are wonderful for parenting skills.

I realize now that my calling may not be to be a parent, but to be a mentor of sage advice to those who want to know about the publishing industry. My parenting skills can be utilized as teaching skills and refocused to aid those who need a hand up to live a happy productive life. It’s not life changing or life-threatening to write a book or to work in the publishing industry, but to be a help and possibly put someone on the right track for success is as admirable a goal as any for an individual.

My figurative “children” are those people I can reach and help along the way.

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Pub Talk! The High-Heeled Ninja: Leslie Lane Peabody!

The Book Kahuna

Because Publishing Discussions Need to Take Place!

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized