Chris A. Baird | April 9, 2021
Top Self Publishing Myths

You might be hearing a lot of things about self-publishing from a lot of authors out there. But I tell you, not all of it is true. Let me share with you the top self-publishing myths that you might have or might not have heard of.

Today's article has three points and you're going to want to stick around for the third point. It explores the biggest myth that is costing you and causing you to lose when it comes to self-publishing.

The topic we're exploring in today's article is top self-publishing myths. We're going to go through a number of the big ones. I think you're going to find something quite helpful, something in there for everybody.

Maybe you're an author or getting started in self-publishing and you hear from a lot of different other authors and self-publishers all of the things you need to do. They'll go through a list of "you need to do this, you need to do that".

There's only one big problem. Some of the items that show up on the list that these people are giving you are complete myths. That means if you do those things you will see no impact on your sales or worse yet you may start losing sales.

As a result of the time, you could have spent doing things that are proven and tested to easily get your book self-published and selling. But instead, you opted for simply not going that route. Just trying to wing it yourself. So this is where we're going to explore in today's article.

Check out my absolutely free and updated Self-Publishing Checklist. That will make sure that you're not skipping any of the steps necessary to get your books self-published and selling. So check it out now.

From my own story, when I first got started, I started putting my book together just like everybody else. You first write the book and then we start the process, we're going to need to format it and do a lot of other things. But I realized, it needs to be perfect.

So I went through like 50 rounds of editing, making sure I didn't miss anything. Because after all, it's the most important thing to make sure there's not a single grammatical error in your entire book. Isn't that worth it?

Maybe you should go a hundred times. Then it'll sell so much better if it's perfect and it will only take you a couple of years to get the book on the market. After all, a lower-quality book isn't going to sell if there are some errors in there.

We don't want to put it out onto the market until we're sure there are no errors. Well, that was a little bit of a myth now, wasn't it? The interesting thing was when I got it onto the market, I didn't particularly see any change in sales.

The sales were sort of what they were, they were not particularly great. They were okay but I wasn't making a lot of money off of my very first books. And what happened was I then heard about a strategy of what if you only have so much time to write books yourself?

What if you hire other people to write books? I don't put my name on them. Just choosing pen names to test it out and experiment. So I started choosing shorter books in popular markets.

Targeting specific keywords because now we're talking about self-publishing itself as a game. The idea of how can I put books on the market that meet a particular need? In specific niches that I know are popular.

Here was the big secret that I discovered, these lower quality books now were still quality enough. They weren't getting one-star reviews but a little bit lower on the quality scale. Putting these books onto the market, I discovered they were written by ghostwriters and they were edited a couple of times.

You go through it and make sure there are no grammatical mistakes. Use automated things like Grammarly and Copy Pro and several other programs. I was using Pro Writing Aid at the time, that was the one I was using.

I just sort of go through them and see them and correct big mistakes. I put them onto the market and what did I discover with these shorter 3000-word books? The answer was they were outperforming my highly edited books where I spent hundreds of dollars paying editors to edit and make sure everything was perfect.

But how can it be? I'm getting outperformed by ghostwritten books. Now it's by English speakers, they're quality and I tried some lower quality ones. I just gave up, I didn't even publish them but by English speakers who know about the topics, they're writing on and putting those onto the market and then seeing what happens.

My Books Were Outperformed

They were outperforming my books and that made no sense to me that is unless I was buying into a myth which in fact I was. And the huge myth is that well-edited books will not outperform lower-quality books that are in a good market. So that's the myth.

Actually, the myth would be well-edited books will outperform lower-quality books. That is a complete myth. So it is true that if your book is full of grammatical errors, people are going to give you one-star or two-star reviews for that and it will affect your sales.

But assuming we're removing just basic grammatical errors. We're not talking about huge formatting on the book, then all of these efforts will become a myth. You do not need to have a book that has been edited 50 times to see sales on the book.

You just need to make sure it's in a popular market, you have a great cover on that book, and the titles and keywords are matching what people are searching for. There's a current, flow of people who are looking for particular books on a topic. We're putting those books into that market and focusing to make sure they're optimized for that market.

Then the connection occurs between the reader and the book itself. Then they are satisfied, they are giving positive reviews and we're seeing a lot more sales than spending an infinite time editing our books. It was all about the market.

Editing matters only to a certain degree but it is by far not as important as marketing. Making sure that there is a market, a market of hungry readers who want to read our book. This is something you need to keep in mind.

So top self-publishing myths? Number one, spamming Facebook groups filled with other authors with your book will trigger sales. That is a complete myth if you take your book and send the link, your Amazon link to all these groups.

You will annoy people with that spam. Usually, I see these authors trying to sell other authors where they'll be like "Look I also wrote a book you should buy it and read it". But why would other authors? They're not your target audience.

You need to be thinking, this is something I've talked to my students recently about. You do need to be asking yourself who is your target audience? Who are you writing to? What readers are you writing to?

You can go into their groups where those people interact and over some time build relationships. Then mention and post your books. But do not go into infinite Facebook groups and just pound away posting links to your book.

This results in no sales, you will not see any sales coming through for your books. If you play this game huge myth, it's a huge waste of time. I would recommend staying away from that one.

Check out this related article: Do You Want To Sell More Books?

Number two or the second myth is that the quality of your book is the most important thing in getting sales. This one is almost painful. How often I hear people thinking this particular thought.

They're thinking that if they can just write a high-quality book and edit it enough times and make it perfect, that is the most important thing for sales. In reality, there are two big issues, one is there needs to be a hungry market that wants to buy what you're writing on.

The market needs to not be oversaturated with other books that are already meeting that need. Number two, we just need to optimize the book, the title, the keywords the cover, the description, and the look through the chapters.

When they open the book up and see the chapter titles, there are also all of them selling your book. We want to optimize all of those things and this is a huge myth. The idea that the quality of the book itself somehow plays a role here.

It does not, I can tell you I've read many five-star books that people are very excited about that. They are of lower quality, it needs to be a certain level and it needs to deliver at least what it's claiming because otherwise then, it's just a scam.

But we're not talking about that, we're talking about books that deliver the value that they're promising. However, the quality of the book is not as important as the job you spend marketing the book. That is going to save you a lot of time to keep that in mind.

Which means you need to be putting more books onto the market. That's the key issue with this one. Putting more books onto the market, as opposed to spending infinite time polishing and republishing one given book. Keep writing books, keep self-publishing and increase the quality with each book.

Demotivating Myth

Optimize the book, put it on the market, see what your reviews are, and then fix those issues. To make sure that your readers are happy with the books that you're putting out there. Now number three and our secret answer of the day and I even threw in a bonus for you SPME's out there who I know are wondering, is there a bonus this time?

The answer is "Yes" there is. So the secret is you will hit it big with your very first book. After all, this is a myth as we talked about, "I'm such a great writer that who isn't going to want to read my book?". The question I always ask my Coaching students is, do you already have a platform?

Do you have thousands of people already reading your material? They're like, "Well, not really, I don't have that". The other question they ask is that maybe you've already written books? So we can see the sales of your existing books.

We know that you've already got an author's platform, there's a lot of people who don't have that either. Well, what about your email list? Maybe you've got an awful thousand emails on your email list of readers who are excited and want to buy your new book.

Is that what you have? No, I don't have that. What do you have? I have an amazing high-quality book I've edited and polished many many times that I'm going to eventually release on the market. We're going to make a killing with this book.

The answer is that doesn't happen, that is like winning the lottery here. The people who are making a hundred thousand dollars or more on Amazon have between I think it was like 40 books on the market.

So a lot of books, unless we're saying all these authors were just terrible. They didn't know how to write the book the first time. But the reality is, you may feel that your first book is going to be amazing in quality.

It's lower in quality than you would imagine, it's not as high as you might imagine. And number two of the top self-publishing myths, wait till you put it on the market. This myth here will seriously demotivate you.

You put it on the market and you discover people are not buying your book. Why aren't they buying your book? Well, you simply don't have an audience yet.

Check out this related article: Should You Quit At Self-Publishing?

Your book may be wonderful that's the thing that's so painful for people that a high-quality book is going to make sales. That is a huge myth you need to avoid this one. And now our bonus myth for today that is the path is effortless.

No, it is not! As you start to write, you may find it easy but we're going to need to get resistance. We're going to need to keep on pushing. If you listen to me long enough, you're going to catch this issue.

It's all about your daily habits. Are you not putting writing for your book every single day? if you're not, you're going to lose here. You're never going to get your book out, you're never going to self-publish.

We're simply not going to learn the skills that are necessary because some days, I wake up and I'm motivated. And some days, I wake up and don't want to help people with self-publishing. I do not want to self-publish new books.

This is just how it is, we have to press through that resistance, and by pressing through, we can reach a point where we're succeeding. Success comes after we press through that resistance. If you want to succeed, you're going to need a press.

So the idea that it is effortless, that is going to cost you in the beginning. It may be effortless but eventually, you're going to hit that wall. And you're just going to need to press through it.

Hopefully, that was a little helpful to you. So, why don't you help me now because I want to hear what myth have you run across in self-publishing? Have you run across the top self-publishing myths that I have mentioned?

I'm sure you've heard something that I haven't mentioned here. I want to hear about it below in the comments so just go ahead and put that in there. Check out my other articles and videos for more answers to your self-publishing questions.

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