I really love Kindle, and I really think it's one of the best opportunities for small business people. People that want to work from home, people that want to do online stuff. It's a great way to start and I'll tell you why in this episode.
NOTE: Complete transcript available at the bottom of the page.
Screw The Commute Podcast Show Notes Episode 569
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See Tom's Stuff – https://linktr.ee/antionandassociates[00:23] Tom's introduction to Ask Tom A Kindle Question [05:13] The easiest way to format a book for Amazon Kindle [06:09] The “first page of Kindle” technique [10:01] Picking categories [11:43] Importing your Word document into Kindle Create software [16:18] Creating your ebook cover in Kindle software [19:06] Sponsor message
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Episode 569 – Ask Tom A Kindle Question
[00:00:09] Welcome to Screw the Commute. The entrepreneurial podcast dedicated to getting you out of the car and into the money, with your host, lifelong entrepreneur and multimillionaire, Tom Antion.
[00:00:24] Hey everybody, it's Tom here with episode 569 of Screw the Commute podcast today? We're going to talk about. Ask me a Kindle question. And before I do that, though, I want to give a shout out to an unsung hero. Named Roy Benavidez. Roy Benavidez. I just got done crying my way through a 1991 speech he did to the Million Dollar Roundtable. He was a a really a war hero and amazing boy. We had the whole country is made up of people like this guy. We have a lot less problems, I'll tell you that. So check him out. Roy. Ben Benitez. Anyway. I really love Kindle, and I really think it's one of the best opportunities for small business people. People that want to work from home, people that want to do online stuff. It's a great way to start. And I'll tell you why. First of all, I don't want you to waste time on Barnes Noble, Nook or iBooks or any other kind of digital product, rather other than a PDF file that you sell off your own website. The reason Kindle is so great is Amazon got this figured out and they have this program called CDP. Select CDP stands for Kindle Direct Publishing and the Select Program allows them to make a deal with you.
[00:01:54] Where they are willing to give your book away for five days out of every 90. As long as you don't sell it in an electronic format anywhere else. And you say, well, what good is that if they're giving my book away for free? Well, if you've been following me, you know that. Books are the biggest hassle, least profitable things you'll ever do. They're designed. Smart marketers feel that they're designed. To lead to bigger sales of affiliate sales and consulting and speaking engagements and other big ticket items. And just a quick story about my my book to teach you how to pick a shopping cart system. They gave away 2500 copies in five days. I mean, you know, I'm good, but I ain't that good. I can't give away 2500 copies. And in five days through normal means. Yeah, I could pay for ads and do it. Maybe, but I'd cost a fortune. They did it for free, and I make between 600 and $720 per person per year. If somebody does what I tell them in the book. So I don't want to pass that up to have a two sales a month from Barnes and Noble or iBooks or something, you know? So so it's really a great opportunity for you. All right. So we'll get into that in a minute. I hope you didn't miss Episode 568. That was me ragging a little bit on intuition and and gut instincts.
[00:03:29] You can't really run a business consistently without real numbers. I one of my students is all into intuition and so forth. And I'm teaching her about. Real numbers and her jaw is dropping because things that she thought were great as like keywords and so forth. Nobody was looking for him, so she'd be hearing crickets the rest of her career. So, yes, there's a room for intuition and gut instincts. Absolutely. But it's not the only thing to run a business consistently and to give you the best chance of success, you've got to have real numbers. So that's what that episode was about, episode 568. And of course, any time you want to hear back episode, you go to screw the Compucom and put the episode number in. That was 568. All right. We're still going strong with our program to help persons with disabilities. One guy, one of the blind people in it, has already broken out and made a partnership and has a gorgeous website and doing speak. So so it hasn't even got to force their way through the school yet. So I'm really proud of that kind of stuff. So anyway, check it out at IMTCVA.org/disabilities. We've got to go fund me campaign there. Anything you can see? Even the blind people are making videos. So any time you feel like, Oh, I can't do this.
[00:04:59] Take a look at their videos, they're better than mine. So anyway, anything you can contribute to the go fund me is appreciated. And hey, if you're really flush with cash, you could you could sponsor a person yourself. Wow, what a what a thing you could be proud of. So let's get into some of the questions about Kindle. Tom, what's the easiest way to format a book for Amazon Kindle? Well, in in the old days, you used to have to get into HTML and do a bunch of hoops, but Kindle said, oh, that's too much trouble for people. So they created Kindle Create Software. That's the actual name of it, Kindle Create, and it's a software that they have Mac and PC versions. You download that to your computer, there's a million tutorials or we'll show you how to do it. If you're in my program, how to use the software. And it makes it 1000 times easier to make a Kindle book. And the software is, of course, free, so it costs you nothing to create these Kindle books. You can even create all talk talk about covers in a minute. But but yeah, Kindle creates software is the answer to that question. All right, Tom, what is the first page of Kindle technique I hear you talking about? I heard you, but I need to explain better. All right. Well, sorry about not explaining it.
[00:06:22] Good the first time. So any kind of Kindle reader, so you can have the Kindle Fire, you know, actual hardware or you can have the Kindle reader for your cell phones or for your laptops or tablets. Has a function where you can click a button when you're reading a book and go to the beginning. I think that's what the buttons call go to beginning. Well, guess who gets to set where the beginning of the book is or the first page, even though it's not necessarily the actual first page. It's called the first page or the beginning of the book. You get to set that when you put your Kindle book up there. So one of the techniques is you always want to give a freebie in the book where they have to come back to your website to opt in so you get that person in your database. Even though I love Kindle. Amazon gets the customer. I don't get the customer's name. I don't get a chance to follow up with them. So any time you do one of these, you want to put what's called a bounce back to your website where they get some kind of freebie. It could be the audio of the book or could be another checklist or another free e-book or whatever you want, as long as it makes sense to them and gets them back there. And you put that near the top of the book.
[00:07:50] There's several really cool reasons to do this. So right now we're talking about the the first page technique. Any time the person that's reading your book hits go to the beginning, you have chosen or you should have chosen that page with the freebie as the beginning of your book. That way it keeps hitting them in the face that they can get a freebie. Let's say they didn't want to go right off the bat to your website. So they read the book and they say, Wow, this is really great stuff. And then they remember or they they they hit go to the beginning. Maybe they want to reread something and they land on the freebie page again of your book and then they can click over to your website, opt in and get their freebie. So that's the one thing. The second reason that you want to have a good freebie at the top of the book is because. They're on the first page. Technically not the first page, but the first page is the beginning of the book is because there's a look in function. If you go to Amazon and pull up a book at the top of the book, there's a little button that says Look in so they can click the book. And I think the average is about they show you maybe 10% of the book, but they're going to see then your freebie.
[00:09:14] So even if they don't buy the book, which, you know, I want them to buy the book, but I'd much rather have them in my database to hear all the other stuff that I have out through the year so that are usually much bigger money so they can use the look in function, see part of the book and see your freebie without even buying the book. So that's why the first page putting a freebie on the first page or at the beginning of the book is so critical to your overall success because they can see it over and over again when they hit the button to go to the beginning. And if they don't buy the book and they happen to use the look in function to check your book out, they can still get the freebie and get in your database. So that's the first page Kindle technique. All right, Tom, how do you pick categories? Well. First of all, you know, it's kind of a balancing act here. You want to pick a category. That, of course, makes sense for your book in case people were searching by category. But the other side of that coin is if it's a really popular category, you could get buried really deep in the results and they don't see your book. So you want to balance the category that makes sense for your book but doesn't have as much competition.
[00:10:38] It gives you a better chance of selling your book. So that's basically how I pick categories and you get three to start in. The next question I got here is Tom. I heard you can get extra categories to be listed in. Yes, you can. That's really cool. And we go into depth in that in my Kindle Master class of the actual instructions on how to do it. But basically you call them up and say, I'd like to have seven additional categories and they say, OC, what do you want? Give them to you? I don't know why this exists or who figured it out, but I think it still exists. I haven't done it for a little while, but yeah, you can call them up and get seven extra categories, which gives you more exposure. Now that doesn't mean you should put your book in some obscure thing that doesn't apply to your book because they won't accept it. But it's very easy. You can either email them or call them and get in seven additional categories for a total of ten categories. So that just gives more exposure. All right, let's see. Tom, should I import my entire word? Document into the Kindle? Create software. Well, yes, you should if you want to shoot yourself in the head of frustration. Okay. So, actually, no, you shouldn't. You can get away with it if you have zero graphics in your book.
[00:12:12] But that doesn't make for a very interesting or high quality book now, does it? So when you decide that you're going to take your book and it's all done and you want to take it into the Kindle, create software. Here's the method I use. You can use other methods, I guess, but so I go to each graphic or picture and I put. Like five Xs where the picture is. And I put the parentheses like what the name of the picture was that goes in that part of the document. And I go to the next picture, put five X's and the name of that picture, the actual name of the file. The file name, basically. And I go throughout the document to each place where the picture was and put the five X's in the name of the picture, the title of the file. And then I take all those pictures out of the document. First of all, always make a keep a copy of finished copy and then save the Kindle version, save as and change the name of it. So you have the original. And then so in the Kindle version, I've taken out all these graphics and I put in these five X's and the name where that goes. So I'm only taking text into the Kindle software. Also, the cover is if you have the book cover as the first page of your, let's say a PDF file or something, you don't put that in either.
[00:13:46] You take that out. You can take the table of contents out, too. So here's how it works. So once you suck in the text into the Kindle, create software. It looks at your headings and subheadings and generates kind of a table of contents for you. That's clickable. Now you can edit it if they made a mistake or something, but it just makes it very easy. Then. I go through the document where the five X's are, I think you can search for them. That's why I do it in mostly in these documents because you don't have five X's anywhere. You just search for five X's and it goes right there. And then then through the Kindle create software, I insert each photo one at a time or graphic. That way you can position it properly if you just suck it in all at once. Yes, the photos will show up, but the thing will look crazy, I'm telling you. And you can't really manipulate and move stuff around if you do it that way. So you separate the photos out. Import the text. Edit the table of contents and then put the photos back in one at a time. Now, you don't have to worry about page numbers changing. You do, or after you put the photo in, you erase the five X's you can edit in in the Kindle, create software the text a little bit too.
[00:15:19] So you take out the five X's, you take out the parentheses in the file name and you insert the photo and you can move it around and make it bigger, smaller, whatever you want. Using the Kindle, create software. Then when the book finally ends up as a Kindle, it's going to look right on all the different Kindle readers and so forth, which by the way, you can do previews also in the Kindle, create software of what it's going to look on a cell phone and a tablet and a laptop and all that stuff. So. So that's a really great. And then you're also going to put the book cover in separately, not even in the Kindle, create software. This is the cover goes in when you upload the files to the Kindle creates software has created for you. When you upload them into Amazon, you put the book cover in separately. So that's the story there. And which brings up can I create my e-book cover in Kindle Software? Well. You can Kindle has an e-book cover creator for you. However, we don't really use it. My main suggestion, besides having somebody else do it for you is Canva. Canva has hundreds of book covers that you can simply I mean, even the free version has tons of them. I have the paid version, but I lost track at about 300 different book covers for all different, you know, different styles.
[00:17:00] And all you have to do is make minor adjustments and change the text and put your name as the author. And there you go. You have a gorgeous design book cover for free, and then you save it. And then as a jpeg usually, and then you insert it into Amazon for that book. Now, here's one tip on the cover. Never, ever. If you can possibly do it, make a white background for your cover. If you have to have a white background, I want you to put a black border or a colored border or something around the edge, and here's why. If you just make it a white cover background of your cover. It's going to fade into the background of the Web page at Amazon and look really, really crappy. So I want you to go ahead and pull up a bunch of Kindle books and see the ones that made this mistake. And you'll say, Oh, my goodness, that looks like heck, and so don't do that. If you do have a white background, I had to do it on my Wake Him Up book, which was, you know, the cover was created years and years and years before Kindle was ever around. And so I had to put a black border around it so that it would stand out as a book cover rather than just a bunch of text and pictures flopped on the web page.
[00:18:25] So. So, yes, you can do it in Kindle, but don't say there's much you can do. A much better job of your cover outside and canvas. The one that I use. All right, let's see. Oh, well, I think I answered this one. Or I do. I put my Kindle book cover into Kindle Create software. I said, no, the book cover is going to be inserted once you upload all the texts and graphics files for the main book up to Amazon, then there's going to be a separate place for you to insert the cover when you're uploading it into CDP Kindle Direct Publishing at Amazon. And by the way, my Kindle Masterclass is like three and one half hours. That gives you every single detail. It's inexpensively priced and it'll save you enormous trouble getting this done. And a lot of you out there listening have books already and it's just such a nightmare to get it ready for Kindle. And then some of you want to go to Fiver. Well, yeah. Yeah. Fiver will slop it together for you, but really I'm not sure I'd want to for five bucks depend on those people to make the do all these things I'm telling you. Plus a bunch more that you need to know about Kindle. So check out the Kindle master class at screwthecommute.com/kindlemasterclass. Notice how creative I am with my page names.
[00:19:55] Amazing. Anyway screwthecommute.com/kindlemasterclass. Okay. So, yeah, Kindle is really powerful. There's hundreds of millions of customers a day coming to Amazon and and hey, even if you want your Kindle book to be top of the heap. I'm not. That's not what this episode is about. But Kindle and Amazon sponsored ads are some of the best bargains on Earth. You could be right up there with major, massive authors and have your book right up there when the when people hit the page as a sponsored ad. So. But a lot of people. Sponsored ads. Yeah. Sometimes people like look at them askance but if they're really interested in the topic. They kind of ignore the fact that it's sponsored and they look at the product and they'll look at your description, which you need to have a good description for Kindle just like any other book. And, and gives you a chance for Penney's to get a book sale, which, again, like I said, should, if you've created your book smartly, will lead to much bigger sales of other stuff. Also, again, I want to remind you to check out Roy Ben Benitez, very inspiring story. He passed away in 1998. But what he did just just amazing. All right. So that's my story. I'm sticking to it. We'll catch you on the next episode. See you later.