SCBWI

Society of
Children's Book Writers
and Illustrators

Part Two: Breaking Barriers, Barnes&Noble, and Amazon with Jaimie Engle, award-winning author and Indy Publisher

The A-Z of Publishing in a Digital World Series

Breaking Barriers: Barnes & Noble, and Amazon with Jaimie Engle. A zoom two-part presentation webinar. September 28, 2019. RM Rivera took the notes.

Jaimie Engle is a regular conference speaker, writing instructor, and classroom guest across the state of Florida. She is a PAL member, an independent publisher, an award-winning author, and a self-proclaimed “marketing guru.” After the first event, Jaimie sold five of her books to a traditional publisher. Read more about Jaimie by clicking here www.the WRITEengle.com and follow Jaimie on Twitter @theWriteengle

How an Indy Publisher can partner with B&N and Amazon

Do research, make a marketing plan, and be creative.  Creating a plan will help self-published authors and indy publishers organize and visualize their short and long term goals. This plan can be submitted to potential partners, such as B&N and Amazon.

What Does a Marketing Plan Include: The pitch: Why does an author want to partner with them, and what can they and their books bring to the table? Include the following:

  • The author’s bio, books, website, and other social platforms.

  • Awards, nominations, and accolades.

  • Online book sales.

  • Partnerships, events, and media releases.

  • Charitable events.

  • Bookstores and venues that sell the author’s books.

  • Promoting

  • Awards and accolades.

Rejection: B&N turned down Jaimie’s market proposal. Although Jaimie sells 1,000 books at a book signing and school events in a year, it didn’t create enough traffic to their online stores. Jaimie had only thirty-eight online sales. Even Amazon will not count publishers buying their books from them as a sale. According to Forbes, “There are somewhere between 600,000 and 1,000,000 books published every year in the US alone, depending on which stats you believe. Many of those—perhaps as many as half or even more—are self-published. On average, they sell less than 250 copies each.”

Turning a Negative into a Positive: Jaimie suggested turn a rejection into an opportunity than turn it again into a better opportunity. Partner with a local charity and make an event. She created experiences so the public will come to them. Jaimie built up her media presence by having those who hosted her events link them to her media platforms. Creating those links shows potential partners, such as B&N, that authors/publishers are serious about their business and their books. Jaimie created fifty new links that boosted her book sales. Jaimie created a “paper trail” and resubmitted a new marketing

plan/proposal again to B&N. They said, “Yes.”

Keywords: Choosing keywords and categories can help sell books. Use the Google search engine as a tool can work in an author’s favor. Always use the word “author” and “book” to associate who you are, for example, type in J.K. Rowling, author, and “books” in Google search. Google will then give a list of links to J.K. Rowling, the author of Harry Potter books, etc. Picking the keywords can help bring the right traffic to your website.