Are you looking to self-publish your work? If so, it’s crucial to learn the ins and outs of some of the most common self-publishing mistakes. In learning of these mistakes, you can set yourself up for the most success possible.
What are the most common self-publishing mistakes, you ask? To help, we’re shining a light on the eight most common mistakes that authors make when self-publishing their work. From your blog layout and editing to market research and timelines, we’re covering it all.
Before you publish your work, you’ll want to avoid these mistakes at all costs. It’s time to learn from those who have self-published their works before you!
Of course, it’s always tempting to edit your own work.
While this is a cost-effective means of editing, it’s also setting yourself up for disaster. Not only will a professional editor spot typos and grammatical errors, but they’ll also highlight structural sentences that need improvement. If you’re looking to make money with self-publishing, you need to be serious about hiring an editor. At a minimum, use a tool like the Hemingway Editor for an automated way of checking your work.
Without proper editing, your work is very likely to have some standout mistakes. From the perspective of your readers, this makes your work more difficult to enjoy and take seriously.
2. Insufficient Market Research
In order to maximize the success of your works, you’re going to want to conduct proper market research.
This market research will tell you what readers are interested in right now. It’s also going to help to provide clarity in terms of the length, format, and general structure that readers currently most desire.
Remember, your goal is to create material that your readers are actively interested in. In order to know what the public wants, it’s imperative to spend the time necessary and conduct this research.
3. A Lack of Timelines
In the self-publishing world, you’re essentially only working for one person. For better or worse, this one person just so happens to be yourself.
While there are benefits to creating all of your own rules, this can also be a dangerous game. This is especially the case when it comes to establishing a strict timeline for your works.
When using a professional publisher, that individual will set concrete timelines that you must adhere to. When you’re working for yourself, this simply isn’t the case. With this, it’s only natural for your level of motivation to decrease.
To counteract this, be sure to set strict timelines for yourself. You can also share these timelines with other people to increase your accountability.
4. Incorrect Formatting
Every type of work will require a different sort of formatting.
For example, the formating for regular blog posts could be entirely different than the formatting for a standard novel. If you’re new to publishing, understanding the right formatting won’t always come naturally.
In most cases, the correct formatting will be entirely dependent on the forum in which you’re publishing. For example, one blog may require writers to submit their work in a Microsoft Word document while others require an Adobe PDF file. To ensure that you’re adhering to the right formatting, be sure to conduct the right research and ask questions.
5. A Poorly-Timed Release Date
What’s the best time to release your work?
When it comes to self-publishing, there are good times and there are bad times to release work. Of course, this timeline will also depend on the subject matter of your work. This is where conducting market research comes into play yet again.
Do yourself a favor and dig online for more information. Your goal is to find a relevant time to release your work. This is a time in which your audience will naturally feel more inclined to read works on your subject.
While the average person reads 12 books a year, it’s more important to figure out what time of year people read the most. With this, you may want to release your work during a time that people are more likely to spend their time reading. This is why many authors choose to release their work in the summer when people typically have more time to relax.
6. A Lack of Notable Reviews
At the end of the day, reviews are an incredibly important part of any kind of brand-building.
Just as 90% of consumers will read reviews before visiting a business, so too will your readers. This is why having notable reviews on your work has become a key to success.
Unfortunately, those that self-publish are far less likely to have a variety of reviews. This is as compared to work that has been professionally published and often uses notable people to create an interest in your work.
Even in the event that you’re self-publishing, do your best to get as many people to read and review your work as possible. Once you have these reviews, ensure that you’re advertising them both physically on your work and on other platforms such as social media.
7. Asking for Minimal Feedback
When you choose to self-publish, you’re minimizing the feedback that you’ll receive on your work.
Of course, receiving harsh feedback can be challenging for some. But, it’s also the best way to ensure that what you’re putting out there is your best work possible. When it comes to writing, your reputation is everything.
With this, it’s crucial to ask for as much feedback as possible. Try to get as many people in your network to review your work as possible. From here, don’t be shy in asking for their honest feedback and suggestions. After all, this is the only way to better yourself as a writer.
8. Incorrect Pricing
Sure, you might be a professional writer. But, this doesn’t mean that you know the best strategy for pricing your works.
With this, self-publishing authors will often undervalue their work and price their work far too low. On the other hand, if you price your work too high, fewer people are likely to purchase it.
To help arrive at a fair pricing strategy, be sure to research what other works under the same subject are selling for. And evaluate how well those books are selling at various price points. With this, your best bet is to match this price or come slightly above or below it.
Common Self-Publishing Mistakes to Avoid
To self-publish or to seek professional help? That is the question!
The truth is, self-publishing your work can lead you to success. It’s also a great way to save money and adhere to your own rules. But, in doing so, it’s imperative to ensure that you’re avoiding all the most common self-publishing mistakes.
In understanding these mistakes in advance, you can take extra caution when moving forward with your works. With this, you’re all the more likely to maximize your chances of success!
Are you looking for more guidance on self-publishing? If so, be sure to check out our 30 Days To #SelfPub e-course!