Scribd for Indies to Sell Ebooks?

Scribd social publishing siteFrom their website;

Scribd is the world’s largest social reading and publishing company. We’ve made it easy to share and discover entertaining, informative and original written content across the web and mobile devices. Our vision is to liberate the written word, to connect people with the information and ideas that matter most to them.

Scribd is not, in my experience, a great place for Indie authors who want to sell ebooks. Why? Because most readers there are looking for freebies.

It is, however, a great place to get lots of reads if you have a free book, or if you want to let readers enjoy the first 25 to 50% of your book for free. Then at the end there can be links for where to buy the rest, like at Amazon.

This idea doesn’t always occur to some Indies, that Scribd can be a powerful marketing tool. But it really can provided you have a book listed there for free. For example, I uploaded a very short bedtime story called Shep Dreams of Home to Scribd, and it has received hundreds of views since. I’m also uploading another freebie, this one a short story of 8,500 words, Extreme Skiing and Psychedelic Mushrooms: The Art Of Chasing Fear. Hopefully these freebies will get read hundreds to thousands of times and lead readers to my other books. Anything is possible here, so it’s worth a shot.

A few tips on using Scribd effectively for this:

-Notice there is no separate cover image to upload for your document. Visit the site’s most recent non-fiction page to see what I mean. Whatever is on the first page of the document will appear to book browsers so if you have a cover image, it alone should be presented as large as possible on the first page of your document.

-If the free book is just part of a longer piece, have an explanatory note at the end that lets the reader know this concludes the free section of this book.

-Have links to your websites and/or retailer links, like Amazon, where the rest of the book can be purchased.

-For authors with multiple books, include a list and brief description of other titles.

-Include something that allows people to contact you, like a link to your blog or website. Including your email at the end of the book is fine, in my opinion.

If you succeed with getting lots of readers because your book is listed there for free, maybe people will like it and maybe they’ll buy it or another book of yours. Might as well give it a shot.

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4 Responses to “Scribd for Indies to Sell Ebooks?”

  1. taureanw Says:

    Interesting I will have to check out the site

  2. Sarah,The Webbiegrrl Says:

    Great suggestions here, Jason! I know about Scribd and yes, mostly regard it as a place where readers go for freebies (which is fine) but it never occurred to me–just as you said–to exploit that presence of people looking for freebies! Given I run a Freebie Friday on my blog featuring authors who’re offering a title for free for a day to increase exposure and readership, this is fairly ironic, don’t you think? ^_^

    Would you mind if I included this “tip” in my Tuesday Tips this coming week (Jul 5)?


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