As an Indie author, I’m constantly looking to find new ways to market my books. One thing that had bugged me for a long time is that we, Indies, are at a disadvantage when it comes to new releases. We do all we can to let our readers know that we wrote another book, which will be released soon, but we don’t have contact with all of our readers, right? In fact, Amazon is discouraging us to have ANY contact with our readers or else they would take down all reviews placed by people who “know” the author. I think that’s ridiculous, but who am I to judge?
The best way to alert readers about your upcoming release is to place it on pre-order—an option that’s not extended to Indies.
Well, that’s not true. I recently came across something that few Indie authors know—how to place your new book on pre-order months before the release.
Here is how:
- First, you need to know that AA program works well if you’ve NOT published your book yet through CreateSpace.
- Second, you must have your ISBN for your book. Now, here, I was a little confused because many people told me that I had to buy my own ISBN. Not true. CreateSpace (CS) provides a free ISBN. So first you go to your CS account and create your book. Conduct all the steps to approve your book. That’s where you stop because now you have your free ISBN. DO NOT approve your files.
- Once you have your ISBN, you have to set up an Amazon Advantage (AA) account. https://advantage.amazon.com This will qualify you as a vendor. Don’t worry, it’s not complicated; if I could do it, you can too. Just follow the simple steps that will guide you from A to Z. I used my name, email, and address in all required fields. When they ask you for your banking information, if you live outside the USA, simply mark the payments made to Don’t worry about the ridiculous $15 charge they mention because you’ll only use AA for marketing purposes before release.
- Now you have your account so go ahead and sign in.
- At the top of the page, click on the ‘Items’ tab and a pull-down-menu will appear.
- Click on ‘Add an Item’.
- You’ll be asked to enter your product (book, music-pop, music classical, DVD, VHS). Pick Book Option.
- Enter your ISBN, then continue with the steps as prompted.
- After you have completed all the steps, you’ll want to upload the image of your book. Note that your pre-order must be live on Amazon before you can add images to it. Go to “Items>Upload images” on the AA menu and upload your book’s cover. The image must meet stringent specifications, but most importantly, the file must be named accordingly (Main). Amazon will then verify your image and in 1–2 days, your pre-order page will be updated.
- 1-3 days before the release date you should approve your book (in your CS Control Panel after being satisfied with your proof copy) so that it gets published.
- This is the last in the series of steps. Request (through your Amazon Advantage Control Panel by opening a support ticket) that AA stops fulfilling your orders. Tell them that CreateSpace.
Good luck with your book and happy selling.
Check out my new book – Resilience – that is up for pre-order.