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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Review: $5 Book Promotion by Amy Harrop and Deborah Drum


$5 Book Promotion is a new, multimedia course aimed at self-publishing authors who need help with formatting and (especially) promoting their books or e-books.

The authors, Amy Harrop and Deborah Drum, are Kindle publishing specialists. I've mentioned some of their other excellent products such as Publisher's Review Accelerator and Book Trailer Treasure Map on this blog before. I also recommended their report on "underground" promotional methods, which you can still pick up via this blog post for free if you haven't already.

Amy and Debbie were kind enough to allow me reviewer access to $5 Book Promotion, so here's what I found...

First off, this is a web-cased course, hosted on a WordPress site. This is an increasingly common approach, and has the advantage that course material can be continuously updated and expanded. As I've said before about such courses, just be careful to make a note of your log-in details!

$5 Book Promotion is arranged in five main "workshops" (plus a short introductory module). The workshops are as follows:

1. Publishing Essentials
2. Author Platform
3. Communities and Social Media
4. Specialiized Promotions
5. Repurposing Content

Each workshop has one or (usually) two videos of 15 to 20 minutes in length. These are screen-capture based and voiced by Amy or Debbie.

I was pleased to see that the videos are accompanied by transcriptions, though the authors strongly recommend that you watch the videos through at least once or you won't see the examples they are referring to.

At the end of each workshop is a set of checklists for each topic covered (Module 1 covers seven different topics, for example, including book cover, book description, formatting your book, and so on). The checklists are provided in Word format, contained within a Zip wrapper. They set out concisely the key points you need to consider for the topic in question.

In addition, an outsourcer spreadsheet is provided for each workshop. This is where the reason for the name $5 Book Promotion becomes apparent. Amy and Debbie suggest that you don't try to handle every aspect of your book promotion yourself, but rather stick to what you enjoy and are best at. For each topic, therefore, they recommend a range of potential outsourcers on the popular Fiverr website.

As you probably know, Fiverr lists people who are willing to take on specific tasks for just five dollars. The spreadsheets include links to the Fiverr members in question and their job (or gig) titles. To give you an idea, I've copied part of the spreadsheet for Workshop 1, covering book cover design, below.

As always, you can see a larger version by clicking on the image.

Using low-cost outsourcers for some tasks can greatly boost your productivity and ensure you focus your time and energy on the tasks you are best at. Although many people are understandably wary of spending money hiring other freelances, in practice - as Amy and Debbie show - investing just a small amount in outsourcers can pay huge dividends in terms of raising your book's profile (and sales).

In addition to the course itself you also get various bonuses, including access to a live question-and-answer session with the authors. This is all explained on the $5 Book Promotion sales page.

Overall, $5 Book Promotion lives up to the high standards set by Debbie and Amy's previous products. It's not for complete beginners, but if you have self-published titles that aren't getting the sales you hoped for, it could be just the resource you need to build your royalties at an ever-growing rate.

If you have any comments or questions about $5 Book Promotion, as ever, please feel free to post them below.

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