Book Writing, Self Publishing, and Marketing Coach

Are your eBook Sales Low - 11 Writing & Marketing Mistakes

As an author, you want to put out the best product you can. Often, writing and pre-marketing mistakes cost you sales.

Writing Mistakes to Avoid

(know that all writing should market you)

1. You do NOT provide enough consistent structure in each chapter.

Your audience wants an easy read, so your formatting and organization must guide your reader to your gems. Remember, your chapters brand you and each one should support your book’s thesis and title.

“Judy, It’s great to meet you. This is a fantastic post. Your site has valuable info on it. Thank you for sharing. :)
Debbra Sweet

2. Your book title lacks specifics in terms of audience and particular information just for them.

It isn’t searchable.

From one ½ hour session with my recent Dentist client to “Create a Book Title that Sells” she put prevention in her book title. Mistake - prevention doesn’t. Her adult audience with toothaches wouldn’t search for ‘tooth health” or prevention. They would search for “Toothache Solutions.” So, together we brainstormed to make a best book title - one that her audience will search for.

3. You write on and on without giving your reader a break or a reason to read on.

Both emerging and professional authors make this mistake.

This “telling” is not so much fun for the reader. They want to know you care about them. Make it easy for them to keep reading. Count your words in a sentence. Aim for a 15-17 average length for easy reading. Change long unwieldy sentences into 2 more dramatic ones. Use fragments for emphasis. Make sure each paragraph is short - 2-5 sentences.

When I look at a whole page with no paragraphs, I get turned off and don’t read it. I want simple and easy to understand copy and so do you and your audience.

Hook your readers to turn pages and keep turning to finish each chapter. Ask a question or two to engage and include segments about where they are now with this particular challenge.

Why? So they will gladly recommend your book to many others.

Here’s 24/7 sales team just for you!

Pre-Marketing Mistakes to Avoid

Building your Author’s platform begins before you write a word - this is, if you want your ebook to succeed financially. I call these strategies “The 9 Essential Hot Selling Points” that are in CH2 of “Write your eBook or Other Short Book Fast.”

Emerging authors make many of these mistakes…

1. You don’t know your book’s purpose.

Answer the question – “why are you writing it?”

  • For fame and fortune?
  • To answer a challenge?
  • To brand your business and make money?
  • To entertain?
  • To tell an inspirational story?
  • To make a difference in your audience’s lives?

Make sure to include benefits to you too.

Most of us write the book we needed to read.

2. You don’t know what your primary or preferred audience wants.

You have an idea and start writing in a kind of automatic voice. I remember one early book of mine, “Passion at Any Age.” It took me years to find my voice and I lost interest because the book was just too long - 160 pages. That’s when I turned to eBook writing - taking so much less time and energy, that I could write 5 shorter books, each with an angle that would sell better than one “all encompassing book. “

Your audiences may want one or two topics, but not all 20 or 30.

Don’t forget to ask yourself, what benefits will your reader get after they read your book?

Book coach’s tip - It’s always best to write the book your audience wants rather than write a book and hope people will buy.

3. You write self-help or informational books, but where is your target audience so you can promote to them?

Realize they aren’t in bookstores; they are online.

4. You think you need to write a print book of 200 plus pages and you need an agent and a publisher.

Today, we and our audiences don’t choose to read many long books. We’d rather have our specific questions answered.

Many people want their answers to be accessible and they need them now! You can self publish your book and offer it to Amazon and many other online retailers without an agent or publisher.

You can self publish an ebook, offer it on the Kindle, the Nook, and even sell if directly in PDF format and earn all the profits. Benefit to your audience? Instant download, instant access, and in a format of their choosing.

5. You don’t realize you need to write the easiest chapter first, not necessarily in order from 1-8.

If you pick a difficult chapter to write first, you can get stuck fast, and either give up or go on to more research. When you use your book coach’s “Fast- Forward-Chapter-Writing Blueprint” you will write natural copy in conversational style.

6. You think you need to do a lot of research.

Really, if your book is your business, what you know is already in you about one particular topic.

My 10 years of giving “write your book” seminars was my research for my book, “Write your eBook or Other Short Book - Fast!”

Make a short list of questions your audience wants answered for each chapter of your book. Ask them directly in Facebook, Twitter or LinkedIn what concerns they want answers for. Email your mailing list, ask in a survey, or ask for help in LinkedIn from your contacts. Then, answer them.

Now you have part of the middle of your chapters.

7. You forget to use a hook at the beginning, in the middle in your headings, and at the end of each chapter.

You launch on telling your reader all kinds of info you think is important rather than listen to what your readers want.

Readers want to be engaged, not told. They love to discover, but not be taught.

You, the author, must motivate your reader to keep reading to finish each chapter. Then, the whole book. Now, you have your strong 24/7 sales team to give good “word-of-mouth.” Watch those sales increase!

8. If you’re a non-fiction author, you forget to put a finish on the end of the chapter.

Maybe you list action steps, but you don’t include a final chapter paragraph that gives the reader a reason to turn to the next chapter. Remember, benefits sell.

Go ahead; Make my day and put a smile on my face. Leave a comment or question below!

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About me - My life’s mission and passion is to help unknown authors create the income they deserve, build their confidence, writing skills, and marketing tactics to get their unique, useful story out to their audience who wants an outstanding life and work.

  • STEPcoach BobCollins

    Based on reading this and other eBook articles of yours, I'm going to take a drastic leap and re-title a guidebook I wrote in 1999, but which has seen only mediocre sales. The original, and current title is "12 Steps to Improving your Stepfamily's Communications." I wrote it way back when to generate income while starting a non-profit ministry for blending families. Today the ministry is doing very well, but my income is still very low. Based on your suggestions, I will start today rebranding the ebook as "A Happy Stepfamily in 12 Simple Steps." … still too long? I hope not. I'll add the subtitle "previously known as "12 Steps to Improving your Stepfamily's Communications." just to avoid any confusion by previous buyers. I may, come to think of it, add some new content (I've learned a bit in 12 years!). If I do that, can I call it "The New, Updated 12 Steps …"?

  • Judy Cullins

    Bob, Instead of new subtitle, update your book a little. I update my 14 books every 2 years. I like this tittle as is. What is a problem your audience will Google to find info in this book. Include that in title.You need to make it searchale too. Key words a must in new title,.

  • Alberto Garza

    I'd like to write a couple of books and I am gathering info like the tips you kindly share in your website.

    Thanks and hope to hear from you soon.

  • Judy Cullins

    Hi Alberto, Glad my tips have value. when you get serious contact me about coaching and how it can speed up your process! You should first read my $15.95 book at

  • Trish Jenkins

    Great summary, Judy!

  • Deborah H. Bateman

    Judy, I love reading your tips. You make it sound doable. I really appreciate your insight into writing and marketing books. Thanks

  • Judy Cullins

    Deborah, you are so welcome! Doable yes-in only 15 hours a week or less. Is that good for you?
    You can also half your time investment using a coach!

  • Judy Cullins

    Thanks Trish, I'm glad this had value for you! keep reading and apply these-taking action. Action works so well.

  • Toni R.

    Judy, thanks for the great info on your site. I'm researching e-book publishing, and your articles are very helpful.

  • Patsy Rae Dawson

    Hi Judy, I’ve followed you for years and love your newsletters. I learn not only from what you say, but also the way you do things. I like your permission to share your article if the bio is included. I understand about writing being copyrighted even without a notice, but most people don’t. I didn’t see a copyright notice on this article. How are you taking care of that? Thanks in advance for your reply.

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