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3 Reasons You Probably Didn't Make Any Money When You Published Your Non-Fiction Ebook


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There's nothing more energizing than waking up to an e-mail box full "Notification of Payment Received" messages. That's the happy subject line you see whenever you get an order through PayPal. And oh what a vision of beauty it is.

Unfortunately there aren't a lot of ebook authors who see this popular tagline on a regular basis. The more I talk to budding ebook authors, the more I realize that failure to sell is the norm rather than the exception.

Here are 3 distinct reasons why your ebook might not have made it past the starting line.

  1. Right Topic, Wrong Focus.
    The act of choosing a topic is an underrated act amongst ebook authors. Extremely underrated. Most authors choose topics based on random niches. For example, lots of people buy digital cameras. So logic would dictate that an ebook showing how to take great pictures with a digital camera would do well. Yet even with a high existing demand for digital cameras, that's not necessarily true. Demand for digital cameras does not equal demand for photography ebooks. Especially if you're creating the ebook for the average consumer - John and Jane Q. Public. However if you're writing ebooks that show professional photographers how to create stellar results with their $6K digital camera. . . you might have a better demand. Or if you can give wanna-be wedding photographers the insider secrets for making $100K a year, you've upped your chances at success. It's not enough to show readers how to tackle a task. You have to write ebooks that tackle a specific hurt.
  2. Your Sales Copy Wasn't Sales Worthy.
    You can sit down and crank out the world's greatest ebook for your designated audience. But heed my words. . . if your sales copy is crappy, you might as well take that electronic volume, throw it in a bonfire and roast marshmallows. At least you'll get a sugar rush! I think the problem is that most authors excitedly go through the ebook writing process. And when it's time to write the sales copy, they've lost a lot of steam. So they whip up something that resembles sales copy. But upon closer examination, it only turns out to be words on a page. Sales copy sells. Words on a page don't. I'm a firm believer that writing sales copy is part art and part salesmanship. If you want to learn how to play the guitar, (another type of art), you take guitar lessons. And if you want to write great sales copy, you study copywriting.
  3. You Underestimated the Marketing Demands.
    In a single week a Hollywood actor may appear on several different radio and television talk shows. From sun up to sun down. . . every channel you turn to seems to have that same smiling face. You know why they're chatting away. And if you don't, I'll tell you why. They're starring in a movie, and they're building fanfare for it. So if famous Hollywood actors and actresses do it (with existing name recognition) that's a major signal for the rest of us to follow the marketing bandwagon. Over a decade ago, I discovered a technique from book marketing guru John Kremer, that when implemented almost always increases sales. You simply commit to doing 5 marketing tasks a day. No less. If you're consistently doing 5 marketing tasks a day, you're building momentum. You're using the law of averages in your favor. And the more visible you are to your audience, the more likely they are to see your marketing message and respond with credit card in tow.

Remember, you don't have to cut your losses in this game. In most cases you simply have to be perceptive enough to choose your projects wisely and don't be afraid to promote like a professional.

Alexis Dawes is the author of “Desperate Buyers Only, " where she provides insider knowledge on creating and marketing ebooks. If you'd like to learn how to turn as few as 10-pages of content into a full-time income (based solely on personal experience) visit her website at ( )


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