How to Publish Your Own Book, Course, and Webinar on Amazon in 12 Weeks or Less
Welcome to this episode of The Determined Mom Show, and I have my good friend Scott Smith here with me, and today we’re gonna talk about how to publish your book course and webinar on Amazon in 12 weeks or less.
Hey Amanda, it’s so great to be here with you on your show, The Determined Mom Show. I am a subscriber and a fan, so I love listening to your episodes and it’s great. What an honor and a privilege to be here with you.
That’s awesome. I am very honored that you’re here. I’ve been following your work for several years now since we met at Clubhouse like. Reminded me earlier, and it’s just amazing the connections that I’ve made through knowing you and it’s just an honor to have you here.
First I wanna talk about you. I know you, your title officially is Motivational Listener, and so I might expound on that a bit. But then also tell us how you happened to Amazon publishing.
The title, Motivational Listener, there’s some brain science that goes behind this, but the bottom line is if you wanna say, what is the goal of being a motivational listener? It is that when we have a conversation, So Amanda, if you and I are speaking and I’m the motivational listener, my goal and outcome is that you leave that conversation feeling better.
Before we started talking and the term motivational listener, I stole from my wife. And because I’m a good husband, I will always give her credit because one day somebody asked her, I said, Christine, what do you do? And she thought about it and she said, I think very accurately I’m a motivational listener. I said, Christine, I love that and I will always give you credit, but I am stealing that. And that was back in 2016.
It’s a good interrupt pattern, right? We hear lots of motivational speakers, so motivational listeners are a good pattern. Interrupt. And again, the brain science that goes behind that. And that’ll be for a different show.
That’ll be the next episode. Awesome. So tell us about Amazon publishing and how, how did you get started in that.
It’s really interesting. So like many people, I wanted to write a book and actually, the first book that I wrote is titled Motivational Listener, Be Interesting by Being Interested, A Practical Guide to Being Successful In Business Networking Events.
That’s quite a title, but anyway. It all originated from a talk that I gave at the Social Media Summit in Dublin, Ireland back in 2016 when I first claimed the title of motivational listener, and I’m speaking of this social media event, and there is some deep knowledge there.
On Snapchat for business and Facebook ads and Google and all these different platforms and YouTube. My topic was a little bit broader. It was the psychology and physiology of relationships. And essentially what I did is I looked at the academic research that showed that the relationships that we create digitally can be just as strong as those that we create face to face.
Of course, for the last two and a half years we’ve had a global laboratory that has proven that to be true. Because you and I met, as you said, in the Clubhouse. Then we got together for some different events and the networking event that you have each week. And I’ve been able to attend that.
And also you’ve been a part of the virtual global tea break that we run each month as a co-host. And so we’ve proven that the relationships that we create online can be just as strong. I had this concept, I gave this talk and I turned it into an e-Course to teach people how to connect at business events. And I thought the same thing as you had a guest, Rachel Patterson recently, and she talked about her book.
It was a short, little 60-page book. And the reason she put it together is that they were having an event and they needed to have this book to give out.
I format, reformatted, and published it on Amazon. Self-published on Amazon. There was no guide. I, this is back in 2018 when it was released. I had to learn everything from scratch. There was no guide. It was painful, but I did it. And like Rachel’s book, I look back on it and I go, But as they say, if you are not embarrassed by your first release, you waited too long.
I love that. That’s so true. Anything that you do, Like even, I’m thinking back to my first podcast episode and I wish I could hide those. I was reading from my Google document and not sure what to say and so nervous that anyone would be hearing what I was gonna say and just all of those things. It’s the same thing, I’m sure with the book.
So then I, so I had the book and I. Another book after that and then, Cause now it’s easier. You get that first one done, then it becomes easier in May of 2021. I was accepted as an Amazon influencer. What that means is that I’m able to broadcast live to the audience on Amazon.
Of course, it’s the world’s largest book retailer. And I happen to know a lot of authors. So Amazon Live is for those people that are unfamiliar with it. You can go to amazon.com/live and watch broadcasts and it’s like the home shopping club and people are saying, Oh look, I got this mug and I got these clothes and I got these items.
It’s a way to, promote and it’s this life as they call ’em, shoppable videos very big in. But relatively new here in us. So I got accepted as an Amazon influencer and I thought I couldn’t, I can talk about products, but I know a lot of people who have written books, so I started doing author interviews.
As I continue to do this, I’m meeting more people who are saying, I would like to write a book too. I have broken the ice, so let me put together a program to help people. To be able to take the content that they’ve already written for the most part. So like yourself, you’re a podcaster.
You write newsletters, and you’ve already generated content. Let’s take that expertise and put it into the world’s largest reseller of books, Retailer of books. And it’s a perfect platform because, I’ll say back in the old days, blogs and then podcasts, which I’m a fan of. Both of those were great ways to showcase your expertise.
And then we were doing eBooks and downloadables on our websites, right? These are lead magnets that we can, we could share out. Then the explosion of short-form videos, especially TikTok. Instagram live videos or reels Facebook, YouTube, short videos. They become a way to communicate with people.
However, people go to TikTok and Instagram to be entertained. So we may find some customers there, some clients and people that we can help, but they’re there to be entertained. So it’s hope in a way. YouTube is great. People go to YouTube to find out how to do things, but generally, it’s a DIY place.
How do I format this? How do I do that, right? The only reason people are on Amazon is to buy something. And although Google is the world’s largest search engine and it owns YouTube, which is also the number two search engine. Amazon is the number one place people go to find things that they can buy to solve problems that they have.
That is so true. I love it. It is interesting to me that there are all of these different places that we can search for, but they’re very specific for very specific things. It’s really about the intent. You’re spot on. Like anything that you need to search, you go to Amazon for anything you need to buy.
You go to Amazon first. It’s so ingrained in our phones, I don’t know, is it in our phone or any, in our electronic devices. That it’s just a natural habit. And I love that you’re putting that together. Solving the problem, like whatever your specific area of expertise is, you’re solving that problem for the person that’s searching for it.
I think that’s a really important thing to point out. And you had mentioned earlier that coaches content creators of any kind that already have all that content out there. This is the perfect place for them.
Absolutely. So a great example is my wife. So she’s launched her business Aging Better Network, and she talks about the aspects of aging. She was also a caregiver and like many families, we have lost family members, lost loved ones, so she wrote a LinkedIn newsletter. Called and it was titled The Care Grievers Kit.
And so in this LinkedIn newsletter, she shares taking physical things that you can put together in a kit.
So when you have those waves of grief where you miss that person in your life, you can go to this kit and pull things out. There might be some. Items that help you remember a moment with them. Maybe they gave you a birthday card or for my mother.
We enjoyed watching the movie The Sting when I was young, and so recently I was missing being around my mother, so I turned on the movie, right? And it was very comforting. She brings the newsletter to me. I’m like, This is great. And if you just added a couple of things and we listed those out and she wrote those. And within two weeks, that newsletter was a book on.
That kind of content is so helpful because there isn’t, there’s stuff out there, but I think especially if you have a niche that’s very unusual or very specific, that is just, can be explosive as far as growth goes.
Absolutely. And one of the authors that I often point to is a lady named Barbara Carnes. So she, I’m in Oregon. She lives just over the border in Vancouver, Washington. And Barbara is a registered nurse, back in the eighties, seven, late seventies, and eighties, she was working at the end of life in hospice.
She discovered that a lot of the families that were going through this were going through the same series of problems and questions, so there was no information out there. So she wrote a book called, Gone From My Site, and we would call it a pamphlet.
It’s 15 pages and sells for like $7 and 99 cents on Amazon. So she published that in 1980. And it changed the hospice industry, and she’s written several books. Most of them are under 30 pages. She’s written some longer books as well. But this is what she started with, that 15-page book that she released in 1985 since then has sold over 35 million copies and it’s 15 pages, so it’s 80,000 copies a month. Books, booklets, whatever you wanna call them, are going out.
It solves one problem. It addresses it, it tells people what they need to know. And when people are going through an end-of-life, the situation with a family member, they don’t want a 200-page book not, it’ll have time, everything, and stories, right? It just, gives me what I need right now. And so she put that together and she did that. I encourage people. Don’t try to solve everything.
Don’t try to put all of your knowledge into that one book. Think of your book as a series of books. Later on, you can compile them into a longer book. If that’s gonna be helpful, then it may be. But the important thing is that you take your ideal audience, you. Take a common problem they have presented and offer a solution that way you can have an impact. Because think of all the business books.
You’re probably like me, I have a shelf full of business books that I haven’t read or haven’t read completely. And the other thing is I haven’t implemented anything out of most of those books, but give people one problem. So Your expertise in the Google business profile, formerly Google My Business, Google Places that there, you can put together a 300-page book on how to manage this, but maybe it’s just a 20-page book that tells people how to claim theirs.
Just to get started, right? Then the next one is how to do posts, how to do, how to respond. Then another book about how to manage, how get, and manage your reviews. Now, later on, you can compile them all, but each one of those steps along the way gives them a specific item that they can implement right away, and that’s what’s important. That’s how you change lives.
I love the idea of you not only putting out this consumable content that answers questions but also using that to attract people to what you do. If you’re a coach, you’re using it to get clients. If you’re an agency like us, we would be using that same book to get clients as well. So tell us a little bit about that aspect of it and how it works.
Absolutely. So one of the benefits. Of course, we’re self-publishing, so you have control. In the old days, if you were going to use traditional publishing, you would have to find an agent, because publishers only speak to agents. They don’t speak to the authors. It’ll take you about a year to find an agent. That agent will probably take a year to find a publisher who is interested in your book.
Then you’re looking at a two-year process too. So four years from the time that you go, I have an idea that will help people till the time that it gets in their hands. So you can get your ideas to market quickly. And I’ll give an example later about how I’m doing this currently with a joint book.
But the problem with selling books on Amazon is that they don’t tell you who bought your book or she. That person’s email with you. So you’ve got the book there getting helped. So the key in the self-published book especially is putting hyperlinks into the book that go directly to gated content. So content that is specific to your book, but requires them to share their email.
So what I recommend is, as you go. Here are these concepts. We’ve got this problem. Here’s the solution, but let’s help you apply this directly in your life or to your business, whatever type of coach you are. I have exclusive free content for the people who buy this book. Click on the link, take some to your website, capture their email, and then take them through.
My recommendation is to do three videos. We want to connect your face and your voice with the solution to their problem. And again, there’s brain science that goes behind this, right? So we want them to see your face, hear your voice, get, and connect that up with the solution to the problem.
So in the first video, you tell them what it is they’re gonna do and why they want to do this. In the second one, you give them the layout. What it is they need to do. So it might be taking an inventory or filling a worksheet out or some other item that they need to do. And the third one, you provide an interpretation of that, and here’s what you do.
Now, of course, this is solving one problem and it’s providing one solution, and coaches and consultants have many more items that they can solve than they can. In the videos, you’re always reminding them, Now I’m just solving this one problem for you. There are many more things. There are a lot of things that combine into this, and if you’re interested in learning more, here’s how you can do business with me.
And so you can enroll them into different email sequences. Courses, whether they’re free, mid-value, high-value, or whatever it is you have to offer. But now you’ve captured their email and so you’re using Amazon as part of your lead magnet, the top part of your funnel.
That’s awesome. And it’s ingenious. Like I love the idea of. I never really feel connected with an author unless I’m also listening to the audiobook. If I’ve purchased the book, I read it and then I listen to the audiobook. That’s the only way that I feel connected to them. But I love the idea of doing the audio end video because that is gonna really like, just bring it full circle.
That’s amazing. And you recommend 20 to 40 pages? Nothing. The huge pull of existing content. I will say, Scott and I had our recall a couple of weeks ago and he inspired me during that call. He’s Look, you have all this content lying around. You have all these episodes already recorded.
You have everything that you probably need to write a book, so just go look and see what you have. And I ended up pulling, I think probably 30. Either piece of webinar or podcast episodes or some sort of audio content that I already have. I rip the transcripts using the descript. They’re already written, pop them in Google Drive in documents, and I have at least 10 books already.
That took me probably maybe four hours. I’m thinking of just going through the same grade. And I’m like, Oh my God, I have all this content. And I didn’t even think about it. And I just, I obviously wanna say thank you for bringing that ease into my mind because I didn’t even think it would be that easy.
Not only that but just giving us this method that you’ve created to make it easy, step by step. I’m also following along with your 12-week email series, and that is helping me to stay focused every week, every Friday now, because I signed up on the day that we had our pre-call. Every Friday I get the email and I just follow along and I think it’s amazing.
Thank you, and I’m, I am grateful that you’re taking that knowledge that’s been inside your head or stuck on podcasts. You’re extracting that out of your brain and sharing that with the world because they need this information. They need what Amanda Tento has to offer, and people learn in different ways, so providing it to them in a different way is the right thing to do.
I know I have some friends that like don’t listen to podcasts at all, so they would benefit from some of the content on the podcast, but they’re just not podcast people. I feel like shifting this into a different medium is gonna be helpful as well.
The course that you’re going through is a free course that I offer on the website, and I call it the pip method. Publish, Instruct, and Promote. And so it’s taking that information, you have published it, Instruct, that’s creating that exclusive course where you capture their email and then promote and do that as a webinar.
Of course, my recommendation is to go live on Amazon with me. So I have a paid mastermind, and so people who go through that with me, we do a webinar on Amazon, which is permanently housed on the Amazon servers. So you can always point to people, Oh, you can go learn more about what I have to offer and give them that link.
Again, it’s a shoppable video. Now, shoppable video means. As they’re watching the video, your book is in the carousel. It’s right below that video to buy the book. All they have to do is click on it, it opens a new tab, and then they can hit add the cart. And this is opposed to using a nonshoppable video.
Let’s say you put that same content out on YouTube, you say go watch my video. They watch it and then they go, now go to the show notes and scroll down and find the link and click that and then go to this other platform where you can access the book, but you can direct people directly to there.
So when I do these Amazon live videos, not only is it live to the audience on Amazon and permanently available, you can always point people. I provide a full MP4 copy of that interview, of that webinar so that the author can then post the full thing, they can edit it up, put it on their book page, their author page, their website, social media, anything that they wanna do to promote it. So it’s really fun and I love doing this.
And it’s very evergreen. Once you have written your book, once you have started that promotion, once you’ve done your webinar with Scott, then you know you have all of this stuff already done and said, and all you have to do is just refer people. I love that.
I think making things as simple as possible for us as business owners and a lot of our listeners are moms, so combining all of the stuff we have going on, makes it so much easier. So I love it.
How can people get into your paid mastermind? How can they sign up for the 12-week email series course?
The best thing to do is to go to my website, d Scott smith.com and there you can sign up for the free course. and also you can request access to the paid Mastermind course. Of course, I recommend that people start with the free course and get started and see if it’s really interesting to them. I’m a huge fan of masterminds. I am a part of a paid mastermind for over three and a half years now. Iron sharpens.
I always tell people, Look, I pay for this Mastermind and I could lease a very nice car for what I pay for that. But masterminds are hugely important. If you want to be successful in your business, don’t do it alone. Get into a Mastermind. Have people hold you accountable.
And in one of the episodes I have on my podcast, which is Publish your book, we talk about goals. Dr. Gal Matthews from d the Dominican University outta California gives five steps that you need to do to be successful and have goals is the first one. The second one is to write down your goals.
The third is to develop a plan to meet your goals. Fourth is to tell somebody about your goals. It helps you formulate it when you have to communicate it. But the fifth is to have someone hold you accountable, and that’s what happens in a mastermind.
I am a huge fan of masterminds as well, and I had ambitions, and someday I may still run a mastermind.
I have run them before, but I haven’t done it. Or so but I love them and I love participating as well. So I think that this is an invaluable resource for you. If you are out there, you’re listening and you’re ready to either write your book or maybe you’ve even already written the book. I’m sure there is a lot of content in that mastermind that can help to move that book along a little bit further.
I wanna throw one more reason out there for writing your book. And it’s about adding to your body of work, to your legacy. And, I think back to my parents, grandparents, great grandparents, if they had written books, I would treasure those. And I know you have a growing family. Congratulations. I just think, imagine when you publish your book that your children are gonna go, Oh, this is mom’s book and someday this is great Grandma Amanda’s book, right? So create that legacy today.
Take that information that you have and publish it. It’s your point of view. It’s the synthesis of what you have pulled together, you’ve created. It is different from anything else in the universe. Nobody else does what Amanda does. So when you publish it, you capture it and you add to your body at work, you add to your legacy.
I love that. But if that doesn’t reason enough for anybody that’s listening to write your book, then I don’t know what is. Thank you so much for being here. We truly appreciate you. We appreciate your expertise and I hope that anyone listening is gonna be signing up for your email course because you have to. I’ve already done it so I can tell you that it’s really good.