Book Reviews in Publisher’s Weekly

Contrary to popular belief, it IS possible to get your independently published book reviewed (for free) by Publisher’s Weekly, as demonstrated by just this small sampling of Outskirts Press titles (click on each cover to jump over to the PW review):

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Since Publisher’s Weekly is an industry news periodical, timeliness is of utmost importance, so the more recently your book was published, the more likely your chances are for a review.  Check out the submission guidelines on their site for more information.

Introducing the Free Book Marketing Bookshelf for Outskirts Press Authors

In yesterday’s posting, I displayed the results of a survey we conducted on a cross-section of our published authors asking what single thing they valued most about publishing with Outskirts Press. The first and second most popular answers gave way to our new brand message and the further emphasis of our fantastic publishing experts.

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For the third answer, “Book marketing advice/support to help you sell more copies” I mentioned the introduction of our exclusive Book Launch Kit, which for new authors who began publishing on August 1, 2016 or later, is mailed to every One-Click, Ultimate, and Full-Color author upon publication.

The items within the Book Launch Kit are:

  • The 7 Tactics of Successfully Published Authors
  • The Book Marketing RoadMap
  • An Official Certificate of Publication
  • The 28 Day Book Launch Calendar
  • The Book Marketing Bookshelf

Providing lots of marketing support and advice after publication has always been one of the major differentiating factors between Outskirts Press and many other publishers. Every author already receives The Marketing COACH, which provides creative online assistance, coaching, and help via email for years after publication.  Every author already received the 7 Tactics of Successfully Published Authors.

And as of yesterday, every author now also received the Book Marketing Bookshelf, a growing resource library of articles, e-books, whitepapers, resources, and guides that offers free marketing advice, promotional suggestions, and strategic steps to help our authors sell more books.

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Published Outskirts Press authors signed-in to their Publishing Center  Dashboard need only look for this graphic and click it to open the free marketing resource library, which is currently stocked with the following helpful information:

  • Top National Contests & Awards
  • 10 Local Ways to Use Your Free Author’s Copies
  • Top 15 Steps for Marketing Your Book
  • 10 Best Practices for Your Responsive Author Webpage
  • 77 Book Marketing & Promotional Resources

More marketing information will be added to the library regularly.

The Internet has demonstrated that anyone can throw-up (pun intended) any ol’ book onto the “cloud” as a poorly conceived, designed, and edited e-book.  But that’s not doing readers, or the self-publishing industry as a whole, any favors.  Few and far between are the #1-rated publishing companies that are truly committed to helping authors publish high-quality, professional, award-winning books and then giving them this level of marketing support after publication.

In fact there’s only one.

 

 

 

Self Publishing Simplified Infographic

One of the goals of the new & improved Outskirts Press is providing our published authors with even more marketing support after their books are published.  We’ve always been very good at that (as evidenced by hundreds of testimonials to that affect here), but it’s going to get even better for our authors this year and next when the Book Marketing RoadMap and Book Marketing Bookshelf become available for all our published authors who started publishing August 1st or afterwards. More details about those exciting (and free) new marketing offerings will be forthcoming soon.

But, in the meantime, as we were consolidating the marketing support materials we have for our authors, I came across this oldie-but-a-goodie, an infographic from a number of years ago that is just as valid today as it was then:

Say Good-Bye to Self-Publishing Simplified

… and say HELLO to Publish Your Passion.

We unveiled the new Outskirts Press this Monday with a new website for new clients and new book publishing packages for everyone.

That means a new publishing guide, which covers all the new publishing services we offer as of August 1, 2016. It’s called Publish Your Passion, and it is available from our new website here.

A new publishing guide means we must say good-bye to the old publishing guide, Self-Publishing Simplified, which was 108 pages of detailed information. As I mentioned in a recent post, Outskirts Press spent a lot of time over the past ten years educating authors on what self-publishing was, and how it worked.  Our publishing guide was 108 pages for that very reason.

Now that most writers are familiar with what self-publishing is and how it works, publishing guides can be shorter.  Thank goodness! Asking anyone to read a 108-page publishing guide was asking a lot!

Our new publishing guide, Publish Your Passion, is much shorter (over half as long), and in full-color.  It covers all our hardcopy publishing packages, from our One-Click suites, to our a la carte black & white packages, to our full-color package. We titled it Publish Your Passion because we understand the passion and emotion that comes from writing a book and then entrusting the right company to publish it.   Many of us at Outskirts Press are writers ourselves, including yours truly, and we are equally passionate about helping you publish the book of your dreams.

Speaking of full-color, we actually used to have two different publishing guides: Self-Publishing Simplified, which was not only our comprehensive publishing guide but also served as an example of our black & white printing; and Adventures in Publishing, which was a fully-illustrated guide for our full-color package that also served as an example of our children’s books (and was in fully-rhyming verse).

I’m going to miss that one a lot.  It was … cute.  And it holds a special place in my heart because I wrote it and worked closely with one of our amazing artists on all the original full color illustrators (thanks to my talented artistic collaborator, Victor!).  Anyone who has written and published a children’s book with full-color illustrations knows what I’m talking about.

So, in other words, Self-Publishing Simplified and Adventures in Publishing are being terminated this week, and once they’re gone, they’re gone forever. I’ve already removed them from the Kindle and Nook.  As I write this, Amazon has 5 copies of Self-Publishing Simplified in stock and 4 copies of Adventures in Publishing.  I don’t want to suggest they might be collector’s items someday, but… you never know. Haha.  So don’t buy them expecting up-to-date publishing guide information — they’re out of date, and that’s why they are being cancelled.

Our new publishing guide, Publish Your Passion, isn’t a collector’s item (at least, not yet), but it is a comprehensive guide to help you choose the proper publishing package for your book at Outskirts Press.  And in the near future, it will also be available on Amazon and Barnes & Noble, serving as an example of our high-quality full-color book printing.

 

 

 

 

Social Media Branding

All this week I’m discussing the New & Improved Outskirts Press, which began on August 1 with the unveiling of our new RWD website for new authors (see below), new packages for everyone, and new inclusions with all new services (like more free galley revision rounds, more free image insertions, Publishing Tip Sheets, the Book Marketing RoadMap, and a responsive Author Webpage for every new author).

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I’ll discuss all the new packages and new inclusions, beginning with the One-Click for Non-Fiction Suite tomorrow, but in the meantime, this new branding effort extends past our own website at OutskirtsPress.com and incorporates all our social media channels and platforms, all of which are available @outskirtspress on their respective sites, with the exception of the Outskirts Press blog, which is at http://blog.outskirtspress.com.  And, the exception of Google+, which for some reason insists on making their naming convention different from everyone else by adding a + sign.

branding

In case the message isn’t clear, we passionately believe your book matters, and we’ll make it your way at Outskirts Press.

We still have Pinterest and Instagram to go. But as they say… Rome wasn’t built in a day.  Stay tuned!

 

What’s new at the New Outskirts Press?

Today, August 1st marks an exciting new chapter for Outskirts Press, with the launch of our new RWD website. Over the past year I have been blogging periodically about our transition to Responsive Web Design, which, according to Wikipedia, is  “an approach to web design aimed at crafting sites to provide an optimal viewing and interaction experience—easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling—across a wide range of devices (from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones).”

say-hello-RWD

But, more important than a cosmetic change are all the new enhancements and improvements that have been made to our client services and publishing services, as well.  Gone are the “old” publishing packages known as the Pearl, Diamond, Ruby, Sapphire, and Emerald.   Now we have all-new packages with all-new names — names that more clearly communicate their hierarchy to one another: Ultimate, Basic, Economy, and Full-Color. Over the coming days I will be discussing these new custom, a la carte publishing packages in more detail.

Our One-Click Publishing Suites remain largely unchanged, with one notable exception — the introduction of the One-Click Publishing for Non-Fiction Suite, which is  (as its name implies) the perfect bundle of professional services for all non-fiction books.

In recognition of this exciting new One-Click package, Outskirts Press is offering an introductory price savings of $500 for this first week of August only. The details for all our monthly promotional features can be found on the rotating image header on the front page of our site (which is also a new feature in itself).

When you’ve been in the self-publishing business as long as we have, a lot of things change — including website conventions (hence the RWD site) and client needs. When I founded Outskirts Press in 2002, one of our primary jobs was explaining what we did. Back then, the notion that we could take anyone’s manuscript and publish it and get it up onto Amazon seemed like magic to a lot of people.  So our “old” website and marketing out-reach did a lot of explaining of that concept.

Nowadays, nearly everyone is aware of their opportunities to self-publish a book.  They no longer need us to explain what self-publishing is, but rather, they need us to demonstrate why self-publishing with Outskirts Press is a better value for them than self-publishing elsewhere. Fortunately, this is a relatively easy thing to demonstrate in many ways, not the least of which is simply showing potential clients our hundreds and hundreds of testimonials.

In any event, this change to our basic approach affects not only the overall design of the new website, but the publishing services we now provide to our clients, as well.

In our 14 years of experience, we have learned first-hand that informed authors lead to successful books.  So our new publishing packages all include Book Publishing Tip Sheets, which are a collection of various articles, lists, and whitepapers filled with best practices about everything from better book titles to taking the perfect author photograph.

When Outskirts Press makes publishing a book so easy, it becomes easy for authors to forget an equally-important part of the self-publishing journey: book marketing.  Our famous and exclusive Marketing COACH is in the process of being improved as we speak (improving 2+ years of information is a daunting task).  And to complement the COACH emails, our new publishing packages all include The Book Marketing RoadMap, an informative series of articles and whitepapers focused on providing complimentary marketing advice to our valued clients after their book has been published.

This blog posting of what’s new is already becoming longer than I planned (because so much is new), so let me just quickly rattle off some additional new features:

  • additional proofing rounds
  • additional image insertions
  • new cover themes (plus new covers designed specifically for children’s books)
  • new author webpages with social media integration

The list of what’s new and improved goes on and on. So, what’s new at the New Outskirts Press?  A whole lot, as it turns out, and I’ll get into the details of all these new improvements in the coming days and weeks.