Are you capitalizing on your Amazon Author Page to make the money you deserve from your book?
Few things demonstrate your expertise on a subject like a book does. That’s why so many coaches, speakers, marketers and others choose to publish books in their niche.
A book gives you:
- Instant credibility—after all, you know enough to fill a book!
- An unforgettable business card—take a few with you to your next live event.
- Opportunities to reach a new market—many people will find you first through your book, not your blog.
- Speaking opportunities—event planners frequently seek out authors to speak at conferences and other gatherings.
- Bigger paychecks—all that credibility means you can—and should—be charging more.
But your book isn’t the only tool in your author arsenal. If you publish on Amazon, whether as a Kindle author, Create Space author, or with a traditional publishing house, you are entitled to an “Author Page.”
If you have not already started your Amazon Central Author Page, please go there now first and start it. Then proceed with the tips below to make it the best it can be.
Check out our tutorial for setting up your account:
Just like the about page on your website, this is where Amazon browsers go when they want to know more about you. Say for example they’re browsing for information about business branding, and they find your new book. If you’re an unknown to them, it’s hard to know if you have the information they’re looking for. That’s where your author page comes in.
By clicking through to your page, new visitors can learn about:
- Your experience and expertise
- Other books you’ve written
- Your blog and the topics you cover there
- Upcoming events
They can even ask you a question or two. What better way to decide if that book is worth the investment in time and money than to get to know the author better?
But many authors simply don’t take the time to make the most out of their author page, and they’re missing out—not only on an opportunity to make a great impression, but on the chance to earn more money as well.
Step 1: Rock Your Author Photo
Not only will people judge your book by its cover, but they’ll also judge you—or at least your credibility—by your author photo. For this reason, it’s important that you take the time to upload professional quality photos to your author page.
Depending on your book’s subject, you may want to play with the location and background for your photos. Tying the theme of your photos to the subject of your book can have a positive impact on your credibility. For example:
- The author of a book about podcasting might choose to be photographed in the studio.
- A writer who publishes diet and fitness books might choose the gym or the kitchen as a backdrop.
- A business coach who writes about earning more money may choose a high-end resort or other “rich” looking location.
You might also decide to keep it simple, and post images of you in your office. This can work well, especially if you want to be known not for your niche, but for being a writer. Just be careful to clear any clutter and remove distractions from your walls and shelves before snapping the photos.
Step 2: Craft a Compelling Biography
When someone visits your Amazon author page, it’s because they want to know more about you. Your biography is where you get to shine, so give it all you’ve got and don’t be shy!
A great author bio adds to the “know, like, and trust” factor that’s so important in today’s marketing. (And make no mistake, you are marketing. You can either choose to do it well or choose to do it poorly, but it’s still marketing.)
Above all else, put your best effort into your bio. Treat it as you would your book and have it professionally edited and proofread. The last thing you want is for an errant typo or grammar error to make you look bad on the one page that strives to declare you as an author.
Step 3: Make Use of Your Events Tab
Hosting a book signing? Blabbing with your friends? Appearing on a telesummit?
The Events section of your author page is the perfect place to keep readers up to date with all your upcoming appearances, both online and off. No event is too large or too small for a mention, but do be sure to keep your events calendar up to date. The last thing you want is for a new fan to see only that your last published event was several months—or even years—ago.
Step 4: Video Sells
If your Facebook feed is any indication, video is huge. And Amazon lets you ride the video marketing wave by uploading your own short (under 10 minutes) video to your author page.
They recommend sharing “interviews, book signing videos, and other videos with readers” but emphasize that they should focus on “specific features of your books or your experience as an author.”
In other words, no cat videos or Chewbacca-mask laugh fests, regardless of how funny they might be.
Here’s the best place to begin: with a book trailer.
Regardless of the type of video you’re using, be sure to keep Amazon’s video guidelines in mind before you upload:
Step 5: Invite visitors back to your house
Your Amazon Author Page is great for that initial introduction, but if you want your visitors to become life-long fans, you’ll want to invite them to visit your other online properties as well.
Amazon makes it easy for you to share what’s happening on your blog and social media by allowing you to link directly to both your blog’s RSS feed as well as your Twitter timeline.
Your blog feed offers a preview of your latest posts (no images, unfortunately) in a scrolling section just below your book covers. Visitors will see the blog title, plus the first 200 characters or so of the article, so it’s just enough to pique their interest. If they want to know more, Amazon includes a “read more” link that takes them right to your site.
This is a fabulous opportunity for you to get in front of your ideal reader and to entice him or her to join your community.
Step 6: Start a Conversation
One extremely powerful and often overlooked area of your author page is the “Customer Discussion” section. Very much like a private forum just for your fans and visitors, this section allows you to have conversations with your visitors.
You don’t have to wait for them to start the conversation, though. Feel free to post a series of questions about your subject matter to help get things rolling.
Step 7: Spread the Word
New visitors coming from Amazon are only one audience for your author page. There are plenty of others as well, if only they knew where to find you! That’s why it’s important for you to claim your Amazon Author Page URL and to start sharing it around the web.
The first step is to claim your URL. Most authors choose their name, but if you have a common name and it’s already taken, you may need to get creative. You might consider being Jane-Smith-Life-Coach or Coach-Sara-Jones for example. Just be careful when branding yourself in this way. If there’s any possibility you’ll one day give up life coaching in favor of personal training, you may want to choose something a little less specific.
Whether you’re writing self-help books, romance novels, or business development advice, it pays to take advantage of all the tools at your disposal, and that includes making good use of your Amazon Author Page.
With millions of visitors every single month, Amazon gives authors an exciting opportunity to be seen by a new—and very large—audience. Even more than simply being seen, though, if you take the time to write a great bio, keep your events calendar updated, and stay in touch with your fans, you’ll no doubt find yourself making more sales as well.
And as an author, isn’t that what it’s all about