APE: How To Publish a Book by Guy Kawasaki & Shawn Welsh

Building Your Social Media Profile

  • Your profile on social media sites is your first impression so don’t get too cute. Use your name as it appears on the cover of your book. Your profile picture should be of your face smiling in a way that also uses your eyes. You don’t need to be a professional photographer to look good if you put in just a little effort and use a decent camera. Any other pictures at the top of your page should relate to your passion. Guy includes a cheat sheet for Google+ pictures and links for other sites. Your bio should be simple and straightforward. This is not the place to get cute or funny. You also need to provide an email address so people can reach you.

Sharing on Social Media

  • This is where sharing your competence. Information, insights, and assistance can add value to the lives of others. You can also be a curator, which means that you find good articles and point people to them. Curation is valuable because there is an abundance of good stories but many people don’t have the time to find them. Guy does this at Alltop.Com. Guy repeats his tweets four times a day, which is why I never miss his work. This isn’t allowed on Facebook or Google+. Think of your favorite news channel running a story more than once.

How to Comment and Respond on Social Media

  • Commenting helps build your brand by interacting with influencers. Quality comments will bring attention you wouldn’t get otherwise. They should add value to the post, be helpful, stay on topic, and above all show some class. You should also respond to comments people put on your site in a clear, concise, and complete way. Stay positive, limit arguments, and don’t be afraid to block jerks. This chapter also includes some tools that can make your work more efficient. (Doug: Be careful about taking political positions. I often see educators post what looks like political talking points. This looks like they are trying to tell students what to think rather than helping them learn how to think.)

How to Pitch Bloggers and Reviewers

  • Guy provides many sites that allow you to tap blogs that review books. He then suggests you use your network to find people you know who know reviewers and attend events to expand your network. Your activity on social networks will help here. Try to find people who cover your niche and personalize all contacts. Keep contacts short (five sentences or less), and send emails so they show up first thing in the morning. There is a nice tutorial on how to write a press release here along with a list of traditional PR contacts. The big trick is to get other people talking about how cool your book is. This PR as opposed to advertising where you tell people how good you are.


  • In the final chapter, Guy tells you the specific steps that he and Shawn used to make APE. This includes hardware and software choices, and who they hired to help. At the end they offer encouragement to go APE: Author a great book, Publish it quickly, and Entrepreneur your way to success. Self-publishing isn’t easy, but it’s fun and sometimes even lucrative. Plus, your book could change the world. If you are inspired by this book, your efforts are sure to multiple theirs. Good luck and thanks to Guy and Shawn.
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