When Is the Right Time to Publish Wide?

Publishing wide, which involves distributing a book across multiple platforms rather than exclusivity with one, offers unparalleled access to a global audience, diversifying income streams and increasing visibility. 

For authors, the benefits of publishing wide extend beyond the mere proliferation of outlets; it's about embracing the full potential of the digital age to connect with readers wherever they are. 

From increased market presence to enhanced financial security, the advantages of this strategy are compelling. As we delve into the world of wide publishing, it becomes clear that this choice can significantly impact an author's career, offering a pathway to greater independence and success.

Key takeaways: 

  • Publishing wide allows authors to maximize their reach potential by diversifying their presence across major retailers, streaming services, libraries, and niche platforms.
  • Publishing wide empowers authors to significantly boost their royalties and exposure by accessing 40% of the market beyond Amazon.
  • Mastering the art of wide distribution transcends timing, demanding authors be skilled in promotions, brand development, community engagement, and understanding market analytics. 

Maximize Your Reach. Publishing Options

Publishing wide offers authors a strategic advantage by diversifying their presence across various platforms. This approach enhances visibility and maximizes revenue potential. 

By publishing widely, authors get the unique opportunity to connect with different reader segments across various mediums and markets.

Here’s a closer look at why including these channels in your publishing strategy is beneficial:

1. Big retailers

Think Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Apple Books. Being present on major retail platforms ensures maximum exposure.

These retailers dominate the ebook and print book markets, attracting millions of readers worldwide. A presence here guarantees access to a vast audience and the potential for significant sales volume.

If you are questioning Kobo and Google Play Books, know these platforms may have a smaller market share in some regions but offer strong international reach, particularly in Canada and Europe for Kobo and across multiple countries for Google Play. This global presence helps authors tap into international markets more effectively.

🔥 Choose to distribute your book across all retailers instead of limiting yourself to KDP Select to significantly broaden your reach. By making your work available on various platforms, you're not just expanding your potential audience; you're also diversifying your revenue streams beyond Amazon's confines. This approach helps you lessen your reliance on a single marketplace, offering a sturdier foundation for your author brand.

2. Subscription-based platforms

Platforms like Scribd provide readers with unlimited access for a monthly fee, expanding your book's reach among subscription enthusiasts.

These services compensate authors based on reads or book access duration, complementing traditional sales with a steady revenue stream.

3. Libraries

Inclusion in library catalogs exposes your book to a wider, diverse audience, including those who may not purchase books.

Digital lending through OverDrive and Hoopla introduces your book to thousands of libraries, generating income with each borrow.

4. Niche platforms

Platforms catering to specific genres can connect you with dedicated readers, enhancing engagement and loyalty.

Niche platforms like Dreame, a PublishDrive exclusive, often have engaged communities, leading to more interaction, reviews, and a stronger following.

🔥 Reach all of these stores and others through PublishDrive's reliable network of book partners.

Maximize Your Royalties. The Strategic Power of Publishing Wide

Publishing wide is a tactical approach that not only diversifies income streams but significantly amplifies an author's earning potential.

Insights from PublishDrive’s 2023 Book Sales Statistics highlight that 40% of the overall book sales originate from stores beyond Amazon. This figure underscores the vast opportunities authors miss by limiting their distribution to a single platform.

🔥 Watch this video & dive into the comprehensive report to gear up for 2024

Here’s a closer examination of the numerical advantages of publishing wide, as reflected in the broader success stories seen on platforms like PublishDrive:

1. Diversified income streams

By making titles available across multiple retailers, authors can tap into a 40% additional market share, substantially increasing their royalty income. This approach mitigates the risk of dependency on a singular revenue source, ensuring more stable financial outcomes.

2. Global reach = Global sales

With platforms like Kobo thriving in Canada and Google Play Books' widespread international availability, publishing wide opens doors to global markets. This expansion is not just about broadening readership but also about capturing sales in regions where certain platforms outperform Amazon.

3. Increased discoverability and sales potential

Each additional platform is a new avenue for discoverability. Different algorithms mean that a book might perform differently across platforms, potentially becoming a bestseller on one, even if it's not on another. This multi-platform presence increases the likelihood of capturing varied reader demographics and preferences, translating to higher sales volumes.

4. Flexibility and adaptability

The publishing landscape is ever-evolving, with reader preferences and market trends constantly shifting. A wide publishing strategy equips authors with the agility to navigate these changes effectively, optimizing distribution channels to align with current market demands.

5. Risk mitigation

Exclusive agreements can sometimes feel like putting all eggs in one basket. By going wide, authors reduce the risk associated with platform-specific changes, such as algorithm updates or policy shifts, that could negatively impact visibility and sales.

6. Control over distribution

Publishing wide means retaining control over where and how a book is sold, allowing authors to experiment with different pricing, formats, and promotional strategies across platforms to maximize their book's potential.

Publishing wide is not merely a distribution strategy but a crucial component of a successful publishing plan. Tap into the additional 40% of the market, expand globally, and enjoy the perks of a diversified income.

It's Not about When to Publish Wide…

Expanding distribution widely across multiple platforms is a strategic decision that should be made when authors are prepared to handle the complexities of promoting, branding, and engaging with a diverse readership.

This readiness often follows a period of growth on a primary platform, where authors have established a reader base and received feedback.

Depending on individual goals and resources, authors may choose to go wide right after launching their first book or after building momentum on a single platform.

It's about how to publish wide

Publishing wide means distributing on multiple platforms, but this may seem like a hassle if you go individually on each one.

However, wide and international distribution can come easily with the right platform. 

You can use an aggregator for distributing books across a wide array of platforms, from major retailers to libraries and subscription services, without the hassle of individually managing each outlet. 

PublishDrive is a subscription-based aggregator model, that puts authors firmly in control of their expenses while ensuring they retain 100% of their royalties. 

By consolidating the publishing process into a user-friendly dashboard, PublishDrive not only facilitates a smoother publication journey but also significantly broadens authors' potential audience by increasing discoverability. 

Working with an aggregator and publishing wide is the beginning of your marketing strategy because you also ensure your presence in various places to cater to different audience preferences.

To strengthen your presence on the market and increase your book's discoverability, here's what else you need to know:

1. Promotions

Mastering promotions is crucial for authors considering a wide distribution strategy.

This involves creating targeted advertising campaigns that resonate across different platforms, understanding each platform's unique discoverability features, and leveraging these for maximum visibility.

Authors should be adept at running effective ad campaigns, utilizing email marketing, engaging audiences through social media, and exploring cross-promotion opportunities with other authors.

2. Author brand

Developing a strong author brand is essential for standing out in a crowded market.

This means ensuring consistency in messaging, visual identity (including book covers and author website), and the overall impression readers get across all points of contact. A compelling author brand helps build loyalty and recognition, making it easier for readers to identify and seek out an author's work, regardless of the platform.

3. Community engagement

Fostering a community around your books can significantly boost visibility and reader loyalty.

Engaging directly with readers through newsletters, reader groups, and live events can help authors build a dedicated fan base willing to support and promote their work.

Community engagement also provides valuable feedback that can inform future projects and promotional strategies.

4. Social media presence

Maintaining an active social media presence helps authors connect with readers, promote new releases, and share insights into their writing process.

Each social media platform has its own culture and best practices, and authors should tailor their content to fit these nuances.

Effective use of social media involves not only promoting books but also contributing valuable content that establishes the author as a thought leader and influencer in their genre.

5. Analytics and market trends

Understanding analytics and market trends is vital for authors to adapt their strategies according to what works best.

This includes analyzing sales data, tracking the performance of promotional campaigns, and staying informed about trends in the publishing industry.

Knowledge of these areas allows authors to make data-driven decisions about where to focus their efforts and how to position their books for success across different markets.

6. Collaborations and networking

Collaborations and networking with other authors, industry professionals, and influencers can open new avenues for promotion and distribution. Guest posts, co-authored projects, and participation in anthologies are just a few ways authors can expand their reach and introduce their work to new audiences.

The Strategic How of Going Wide

Seizing the moment to go wide hinges on readiness rather than timing, a readiness defined by mastery over self-publishing intricacies such as promotions, author branding, and engaging with a community.

It's about understanding when your foundation is robust enough to support expansion and your strategies are poised for broader horizons.

When you feel your groundwork in promotions, branding, and community engagement has set the stage for growth, that's your cue.

Ready to broaden your reach and maximize your book's potential? Partner with PublishDrive and navigate the journey to going wide with confidence and strategic insight.