Chris A. Baird | July 12, 2022
Success Stories: The Power of Self-Publishing

Are you demotivated to continue with the self-publishing process? Here, let me tell you one of those success stories: the power of self-publishing today.

Making Fewer Sales

Jim told me that there was no way anyone would pay more for his books if he were to raise the price. I told him he was dead wrong. You're going to want to stick around to find out exactly why. Because we are going to discuss success stories: the power of self-publishing.

The thing was that Jim from North Carolina has been writing over the years a series of survival books. Putting them out on Amazon within the non-fiction side of things. It's an exciting thing that he enjoys in his personal life.

He'd been putting books out onto the market. But the problem was he wanted to sell more of his books. So, he was trying to figure out exactly what he needed to do.

He wasn't seeing the sales increase. I mean sometimes, as he was putting new books on the market, he would see the sales go up a bit. But then they would just flatline and he wasn't seeing another way of doing it without writing a lot more books onto the market.

The thing was within his niche, he could see that other people were making quite a bit more money. They are making a lot more sales on their books than his. He was trying to figure out exactly why they were making more money than he was making on his books.

He was trying to figure out what exactly he would need to do. Because the problem was that he was starting to lose his motivation to keep writing. He started to doubt the issue or maybe the market was too small or people just didn't like his survival books.

Maybe that was the reason why he wasn't selling any additional copies. So, he was trying to figure out what he could do to increase it. The first thing he did was he tried adjusting the cover.

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Because he had heard and I've mentioned before that the cover is the second most important thing when it comes to your book. Your title and subtitle are even more important but your cover is number two. So, he thought maybe he could adjust the covers.

But he was still getting about one to two sales a day on his main book. Then the second thing he tried to do was change the descriptions. Trying to mix it around and change the paragraphs up.

I also definitely recommend fixing your descriptions if possible. So that was the second thing. But the problem was he was still selling only about one to two sales a day. And based on that, he had to figure out a solution.

So, he was reading through one of my blogs that he got to. He had Googled his way forward somehow and managed to find one of my blogs. He was reading through it and he decided he was getting tired of this. 

He wanted to see if there was another way to go about doing this. So, he decided to book a free Discovery Session with me. Where we could sit down and go through his exact issue. 

Looking exactly at his specific case, pulling in the knowledge from hundreds of other obsessions. Where we go through the same sorts of issues and challenges. See if we can find what we can fix to increase sales of his book.

Setting The Price Right

So, the first thing I noticed was that his book prices were way too low. Specifically, in his paperback prices, he was making about $1 to $2 a sale. So of course, this was a terrible thing.

I wasn't telling him that what you're going to want to do is make sure you're making at least $5 off of each sale of your paperback book. That's our starting price even though he reacted to me. Jim was like “This can't be the case because nobody's going to pay that much money for a book, right?”

He assumed that if he's not selling thousands of copies and such, then that tells them that nobody's interested in paying money anymore. So, if you raise the price, his sales should go down. What happened was he started testing this out.

So, we set his price up, he's making $5 a sale. Then we follow strategy number two with these which is every time you make six sales in 30 days, you raise the price by $1. If we go 30 days without making any sales at all, we go back to the base price and start over again.

So, we continue this particular flow. What happens then is you're going to earn at least that $5 on a sale for your paperback books and your hardbacks assuming they're not bundles. If they're bundles, then that changes the rules a bit.

Because then, you have the base price and then we get an additional $1 profit for each bundle. That tells you the price of the bundle that helps motivate people to purchase those bundles.

But assuming just basic single copies and his Kindle book which he had thought he could sell for like maybe half the price of his paperback at $5.99. I told him no, that it needs to be at $2.99.

Check out this related article: How To Find Success In Self Publishing  

Because we're using the Kindle book to drive the traffic with the ads. To get them to buy the paperback book. Which is going to be high priced or the market's going to tell us.

From my personal experience, I had just actually looked at my own. One of my top-selling books and the price has been raised on it 28 times. So, each copy that sells, it's 28 plus the 5 so that takes you to a 32 profit on each sale.

I was completely blown away by the fact that this strategy which I was introduced to years ago and have tested out and figured out exactly how to work it to get that maximum out of the Amazon algorithm that they're using and found this one is by far more effective than anything.

So, I gave that suggestion. He just thought there's no way this is going to work. But he said, “Okay fine, I'm willing to give it a try.” He thanked me for the discovery session.

Also, if you wish to have a discovery session, go ahead and check that out. And book a free discovery session at a time that works for you. So, ultimately, he was wondering a little bit about this whole pricing thing.

Whether people would be willing to pay a higher price. Because for him, he thought pricing is only about telling people how much money something was worth. And that's the reason they'll choose the price to decide what they're going to buy or not. 

Making A Lot Of Paperback Sales

In reality, pricing is about quality. It tells people the quality of the book and it sometimes impacts the experience of the book. If I give it to you completely for free, you're going to be less likely to read a book than if you have to pay a hundred dollars for that book.

It's just one of those rules that work for the psychological aspect. It is that when people are coming into it, they will look at it, right? The price itself only serves like fifth to seventh place in terms of when a person is evaluating whether or not they want to do something.

People do it all the time when it comes to pricing. So, he agreed to do it, and he increased his price. What happened was he saw absolutely no changes in his survival books.

They said the sales were still the same except for one difference: he was making a lot more money on these paperback sales. He also noticed by decreasing the price of Kindle books, he was increasing the sales of those specific books.

So, the total amount of money coming in was drastically going up. He was starting to notice a huge shift. Over several weeks, he continued to increase the prices because remember, he was getting one to two sales a day.

Every three to five days, he would have hit the sixth sale which would bump the price another dollar. He kept doing this for several weeks as the price continued to go higher and higher. So, success stories: the power of self-publishing.

After a few more weeks, it finally stabilized where suddenly it wasn't hitting the sixth. It was getting close to it but it wasn't quite hitting the sixth. He was now making five times the amount of royalties that he had made in the beginning.

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It was an absolute complete success. He was a success story. Jim was doing an amazing job and the funny part of it was that he wasn't having to do anything.

He just changed the price; the product is identical. Your market gets to decide and that was when Jim realized the key here. He misunderstood what pricing is really about.

At the core level, the pricing communicates the quality of what you're selling. It tells the market that this book is quality. If you want, you're going to have to pay a little bit more money.

As a result, the market itself buys a lot of copies and the price goes up. They quit buying copies and bring it back down to the base price. But never under $5 in royalties.

But the thing is that your market itself tells you exactly what the value of something is if you're listening. The thing is that a lot of people experience aspects of success and aspects of failure.

But we need to make adjustments to what they're doing. If you have experienced success with your books, I'd like to know about it. So go ahead and tell me about it. 

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