Money. Hardly any word gets an author’s attention faster. And we understand. Money is good. Money is what we trade in exchange for all our stuff. And in this episode of Self Publishing Insiders the Draft2Digital team is telling you how you can make more money using D2D’s free tools—even if you aren’t an author! Time to get your side hustle on.
Join the Draft2Digital team to talk about some of the tools D2D has baked right in to help you make a little extra cash—even if you never publish a book! This will be a good one to tune into for all authors, bloggers, podcasters, and social media influencers, as we cover topics such as affiliate income, referral fees, and more.
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book, author, link, people, publish, affiliate link, affiliate, amazon, tool, digital, money, paying, create, ad, retailers, splitting, publisher, marketing, indie author, self publishing, side hustle
Mark Lefebvre, Kevin Tumlinson
Kevin Tumlinson 00:02
Well, hello everybody we are live, that’s our favorite way to be here at drafted digital, especially when we’re doing these live streams, it means that everything worked. And you are a part of history, that means you’re here at a great time as we are discussing something I think is going to be very interesting to authors, which is the idea of a side hustle, meaning a little bit of side income for authors, but also if you are not an author, a little bit of side income, even if you’re not publishing a book at all. So we’re gonna be looking at some of draft digital tools for doing that sort of thing. But first, let’s welcome my my good friend and co worker mark to digital. Mark Leslie Lafave. Thanks for hopping in, man. It was kind of last minute for you.
Mark Lefebvre 00:49
Oh, it’s pretty exciting. I wasn’t sure the content, but I’m really thrilled to get to talk about the different opportunities. Because again, we’ve got some really, really awesome tools that writers may not even know about, or like you said, book lovers in general might might be able to leverage.
Kevin Tumlinson 01:06
Exactly right. Yeah. Yeah, actually, I did a talk at a chamber of commerce, a while back before pre COVID, really, but about how to how to use drafted digital tools to add some extra income to your business, even if your business has nothing to do with books. Because we actually have some some pretty, some pretty cool ones. And actually, you’re perfect to help talk about this, because you’re kind of overseeing a lot of what we’re doing with the books to read platform, you want to talk a bit about what books to read is sort of evolving into,
Mark Lefebvre 01:41
yeah, sure. So books to read. For anyone that doesn’t know that’s the word books, the numeral two read.com. Set up initially, primarily as a platform for authors, no matter how your books are published, that you can actually have universal book links to all of the different retailers and library websites that are publicly accessible. And it’s geo targeted. So Kevin in the US is gonna if he clicks on a link for Kobo, for example, take them to the Kobo site, or Apple or Amazon nook, there is only a US site, so it’ll only take you to the US. But with Kobo, and with Apple and with Google and with Amazon, it will take me to the Canadian site. And it does that geo targeting. So if you’re sharing, for example, if you’re in the UK, you know, normally you’d have a link to the UK version of the sites, but you can basically share it and then somebody in the US will go to the proper American site. So universal book links. But what I love about it is because I have traditionally published books, and I publish with other small publishers and I my own self publish stuff, and I have titles that weren’t published through draft to digital initially, and I don’t want to lose my review. So they’re all still up there. Wherever they were, right, I can have a universal landing page that has all of my links all in one place, all geo targeted, customized to include all my own stuff. It’s kind of like having an author central page, but it’s universal for all all the retailers. I can have my my social media links, custom carousels really, really cool. But here’s where it comes in handy. And this is I think what you’re getting at is, I can put in my affiliate links for the site. So my affiliate code for Amazon, my affiliate code for Google, my affiliate code for Apple, my really complex and hard to get affiliate code through Cobos affiliate program, which is through Lake share, which is like, you’re after you smash your head on the desk a couple times, we finally figured out how to use it. But basically, and and, and because you can link to any book in the universe. Yeah, I don’t know how we’re not authors using this platform,
Kevin Tumlinson 03:35
in the same way. So because you can no, so first let’s let’s let’s loop back just a second, because every time I bring up affiliate links, somebody inevitably looks at me like I like I have two heads, like they don’t know what I’m talking about. So in case you don’t know, dear listener, and or viewer, an affiliate link is referencing the idea of an affiliate program mean, you are an affiliate with a retailer, you sign up for a special account in Amazon’s case, it is an Amazon Associates account. And because you are an affiliate, whenever someone uses your special link, a link that has your special bit of code and your affiliate code attached to it, you can get a little bit of revenue off of anything they buy. And Amazon in particular, is a pretty good one to have an affiliate account with because it’s not just books when people click a link that is associated with your affiliate ID, and they buy anything, they buy books or refrigerator, jewelry, whatever they buy, there’s a certain percentage that comes off of that and goes to you. So these are good things for you to to have access to the sort of thing. Now, I think I lost track of what you you had asked me you’d said as this is kind of what we’re talking about is in part, one of the things that I think is very important for the author, community. you’d ask me how entrepreneurs were using this. So you know, I always tell people, like I’ve had podcasts for years. And one of the things I always tried to do was, you know, I would interview a lot of authors, for example. So let’s just say that that’s all I did, let’s just say that I was not an author. But I did have this podcast or a blog, you can create these universal book links for the books that are written by your guests as an example. And so you have an entire list, we’ll just call it a reading list. And we’ll get to that in a second. But you can have an entire list of these books so that people can buy the book from your, from your guests, and then you get a little bit of a kickback off of it. So even though you were not the person who wrote that book, you don’t have to be an author to use books to read. That means that you can profit off of someone else’s work in a way, they don’t lose a dime, you get paid by the company, the the affiliate company, so you are both helping out the author, helping out the retailer and helping out yourself. That’s that rising tides thing that we like to talk about.
Mark Lefebvre 06:11
And I love, I love the idea of, you know, spreading out my income sources among as many places as possible. And you know, income income, affiliate income can start off as just pennies. But over time over volume, as things grow, that can actually become a relatively decent, you know, regular income stream that just kind of adds to an additional channel, like I’m all about publishing wide and having your books available everywhere. So you can make a little bit of money, and a lot of places, and affiliate revenue is just another another padding to that income, which I think is important. Can we talk about reading lists? Because let’s
Kevin Tumlinson 06:51
do because we’re at the end. And we’ve we talked about universal book links, which is where you’re associating that affiliate link idea, right. So Mark breakdown for us how reading lists work?
Mark Lefebvre 07:05
Yeah, so and this is a comment I saw from Craig, who said, he said, I made a reading list as well to share with readers with my affiliate because Craig’s obviously built in his affiliate link in there. So riffing off that, I’ll give you an example. I was recently on wanting to run a promotion. So I wanted to do a bookbub ad. And I wanted to do a bookbub ad to a series. And yes, Amazon has a series link page, which is easy to use. But that’s just Amazon and and I want to promote it in as many places as possible. So I went into reading lists. So reading lists, you get into the same dashboard, as an author that you get into create your universal book links or not as an author, you just log into books, read comm, you’ll see universal book links. And then you’ll see reading lists. So a reading list is kind of like you are a merchandiser, creating a landing page, customize the way you want, what I did is I took my Canadian verbal series, and I created the books to read reading list. And what I could do is there’s two types of features you could put you put a carousel, which has up to five, five books available that are on the first page, then you have to hit a little arrow to see if there’s more than five on the carousel like you can have 30 4050 for example, if you’re if you’re prolific, like Kevin, but then what I also did is I have a carousel with the books. But then I also do what I call them hero widgets, where if you just put a single book in a carousel, it creates a hero where you’ve got the larger cover, and you can put a significant amount of text that will appear on the right. So my landing page has the carousel of all the books in the series. And then it outlines what each book is about. And so now, I have a universal landing page for my series that is inclusive of all retailers. And I could use that landing page in a bookbub ad, I could use it in a Facebook ad, etc. And again, because they’re all based on my URLs that I’ve get affiliate, if anyone happens to buy, but then that way when I’m doing my promos, when I’m paying for those ads, I’m paying for those ads to a much broader audience than just a single, you know, very centric, US centric UK kind of thing on Amazon. So that’s one of the things I’ve used reading lists for
Kevin Tumlinson 09:17
Yeah, that and that is kind of that’s exactly the tool that I recommend to people whenever I’m telling even outsiders and outsiders. By that I mean, people who aren’t authors or authors yet will say they’re not authors yet. These are that is a great tool because you can brand it you can create your own banners and things to brand the look and feel of it. You can name it whatever you want. You can get semi custom URL because it’ll be books to read calm slash, RL slash, whatever word you come up with. So it’s got a somewhat unique URL. So they’re very handy and I you know, I was building some for Sort of the product record part of the product recommendation recommendation pages of my website and my podcasts and things like that. So, and we’re using those tools in house ourselves as part of our marketing author marketing promotions. So yeah, so let’s talk about that a little.
Mark Lefebvre 10:19
Yeah. And here’s the brilliant thing. So just a frustrating element that happens is drafted digital works really hard with authors to try and work with retailers like more specifically, with Apple a lot, sometimes with Kobo. And with overdrive, a lot of those tend to be the three we’re getting somewhere with biblio. They’re there, they’re connecting with us on those, we’re trying to get as many different promotion spots. But one of the challenges is, we may get authors submitting, let’s say 100 300 titles, we submit to the retailer, and then they come back, okay, we’ll take these 10 or 20. Right. So whether it’s very limited, and the curation is happening over there, yeah, here’s the beautiful thing about books to read, it doesn’t matter where it’s published doesn’t have to come through draft to digital, right? It’s universal, it’s very universal. And that doesn’t have to be self published, it can be traditionally published to so Kara, who is awesome working on promotions, with the different retailers has what she was getting frustrated, because she had these great titles submitted by authors on themes in it. Ah, but but but they’re not all getting used. So we created our own landing pages. And, and we’ve been paying for ads to push them out. So right now in April of 2021, as we talked about this, we have books to read calm slash RL slash pocket garden. And what it is, is it’s, you know, spring, happiness, feel good. Actually, the first carousel is is really cool book covers, they kind of remind us of gardens and spring. But that’s kind of like the criteria and she picked a bunch of different titles, feature them, and then had all these different themes. And it’s all feel good, feel good, you know, light romance, romantic comedy, you’ve got some nonfiction, you feel good happy books. And and and what I love about this is we’re featuring some of the D to D authors that we wanted to help spotlight. We’re also featuring other titles that are just good books in general. So what we’re doing is we’re pushing this to the audiences where there’s an active bookbub ad right now, going on from it was from the seventh of April to the 20th. And we’ve also purchase some ad space through some podcasts for readers, such as the best book ever podcast. And so there’s going to be there was an ad read in this last episode this week. And there’s for the next three weeks, there’s going to be an ad read, again, trying to drive readers to this page so that we can show readers really cool titles, and hopefully some of those titles that they pick up are your titles that you’ve published.
Kevin Tumlinson 12:50
Yep. not new. Kevin, specifically,
Kevin Tumlinson 12:52
know, hopefully me. Yeah. So you know, what’s great about that is that’s something we’re doing. But we’re using our tools to do that. And it’s something that could be replicated by anyone. It doesn’t have to be us that does this. We are actively out there. We’ve got more relationships with vendors than you have. But we’re also looking for opportunities to help promote our stable of authors, as well as authors we just love out in the traditional world. There’s no reason you couldn’t do the same. So we got some kind of our pop a couple of these up because one in particular is coming up. But this this one from the indie authors is my best day as an Amazon associate was when I shared an affiliate link to Karen and I think it’s Dion. I don’t know, I may be mispronouncing but her Marsh kings daughter, which was featured in a big bookbub email, and Karen shared my link with her followers, which I think is a great, that’s a great way if you’ve got an affiliate account, and you use the all these is several affiliate accounts, you’ve got amazon books, Barnes and Noble Smashwords. If you create a universal book link, and you are sharing that you should tag the author for that book and get them hopefully to retweet or repost that link and so they because they’re going to enjoy the fact that you’re promoting their work. So this is a sort of way you know, if you start doing this and you’re helping to promote other authors, they may help to promote you to and suddenly people are clicking through that link to get that author’s book the author makes money off of it and so do you. So a little I Love Little trickles of side income. That’s my favorite. So Craig Craig price Craig a price Jr. On Facebook says I do formatting for authors on the side. Another side hustle you could get involved in we’re not directly connected to that but lots of older people who don’t have websites or know how I begin Using books to read to give them an author page and link to their books. That is a very, that’s a very cool thing, Craig, thank you for promoting that. And it is exactly the sort of use that we were thinking, when we built books to read and the reading lists and the author pages and that sort of thing. So if you haven’t already, you really should go to books to read calm, and try out, just sign up. If you already have a drafted digital account, you already have a books to read account, so you can get in there and explore. There’s all kinds of cool tools. And we are building more, I promise you, and we’re finding what, what’s there. One of the things that we have an option we have, it’s not directly, something you can use to make it make extra money. But it could help you with refining things like your ads on Facebook, is the ability to add a facebook pixel. So if you don’t know what that is, you’re probably not using that sort of thing anyway. But it’s really easy to Google it, I’m not going to try to go into it. But it’s essentially it’s a pixel that loads when people get to a certain website, and Facebook can track that load of that pixel to sort of sort of help you measure the efficiency of your advertising. So good, good thing. So got more stuff popping up, we’ll get to some of these in a moment. Other ways, other tools that drive to digital as for the whole side hustle idea, include things like our, our refer a friend program, which is that is our version of an affiliate program, affiliate stuff was always kind of a challenge for us to offer. Because, first of all, we don’t, we don’t charge authors for anything. So if an author comes and signs up, even if you referred them the bus, we were able to give you for a long while there was a hearty Thank you, which will still give you but if you are interested in making a little extra scratch, the we have what we call D to D refer a friend. And what this is, is our referral tool. It’s located if you go to draft a digital.com, you go to your account, you go to my account, and then you scroll down and you’ll see refer a friend program. And in there, you would set up your URL. And you can kind of customize that same way you can the reading lists. But here’s where things get really fun. So once you start sharing that link, even if you’re not a D to D author, you start sharing your refer friend link. So you send that out into the universe. And what happens is when someone signs up using your link, when they click on your link, and they create an account, when they publish a book and make a sale, you start getting 10% of drafted Digital’s cut for that sale for two full years. So every time they make a sale, over the next two years on that book, on any books, any books that they have published, you get 10% of our cut. So nobody loses any money really drive you dig a little bit. But we were okay with that. And that’s a you rarely find a program like that goes to two full years, we when we first started, it was only a year. And we decided, you know what, this is doing pretty good. And it’s helping the authors. So we extended it. So you should definitely check that one out. That is a great way. What I love about that is is back to that rising tides thing, Mark, if if I refer you and you come on board, then I’m going to want to make more money. So I’m going to promote you more. So I’m going to take every book you publish, and I’m going to make a universal book link with my affiliate codes attached. And I’m going to broadcast that far and wide so that I can make as much extra money off of you as possible. And it never cost you a thing. That’s that’s the best way. Yeah, for things like that to work. So what are your thoughts on that? You you? Do you use that at all?
Mark Lefebvre 19:09
Not enough. And I saw Craig left a comment that he’s referred all kinds of people and keeps forgetting. Because I mean, I’m constantly referring because I say hey, you can come to draft to digital and you can get you can get a an ePub and mobi file converted completely for free, you don’t even need to use draft to digital to publish. And so I spend a lot of people who are frustrated and struggling, go just create a free draft digital account and use this free tool. And then if you want to use them for distribution, it’s there. You decide how to do it. And I keep forgetting to say Oh, and here’s my affiliate link. So I think I’ve done it like 1% of the time. But that being said, again, it’s like that. refer a friend program. It’s like this affiliate income that I don’t even think about and it’s like, oh cool. I’ve made some money off of some people and that means they’ve been successful. Yeah. So I keep forgetting to use that myself I need to kind of embed all my D to D links to my own little comm slash Mark Leslie or something like something easy like that. I think
Kevin Tumlinson 20:11
it was drafted digital comm slash word slinger. Yeah, which I yeah. Yeah. I By the way, there is a post I wrote on our blog here, I’ll pop that up. If you go to Bitly bit.li, slash DDD, dash side dash hustle, that will take you to a blog post we, we published fairly recently, which outlines some of what we’re talking about here, and will allow you to actually have links to other blog posts and things so you can kind of follow along, reference that stuff, so that you can, you know, learn a little bit more about how it works, including how universal book links work, reading lists, all this stuff. So there’s, there’s a bunch of links there for you to follow. So check that out. And for those of you in the who attended live here, let’s just post that there for you to clickety click on that should be popping up in your in the comments any second now. So there goes. So that is and be sure share that stuff. By the way with other authors. Don’t be greedy, get out there and help others make money. So, um, you know, the whole idea of a side hustle is, in terms of being an author is that we want to we you hear this a lot, this is advice you hear a lot, you should diversify your income streams. Now, I recognize that everything we’re telling you right now is still tied to draft a digital. But there are a lot of ways for you to start making little extra income on the side as an author, that and affiliates is one of those. Some of the things we talked about are things I actually recommend for authors in general. But if you have a blog, for example, or you microblog, that’s a term that’s, I think, should do for a comeback on platforms like Twitter, etc, or Instagram, Pinterest anywhere, you really should be using all the affiliate links you can get, get yourself into, to, to post the stuff. In terms of the universal book links, one of the things I would do is, every time you post anything that’s related to a book, I would have a universal book link for that. You can do the same thing with on sites like Amazon and other and elsewhere, you can actually get affiliate links through them for certain, like films and products and things like that. One of things you have to be careful for is making sure that I think there are some restrictions on where those links can appear. I think that there are rules against using affiliate links in emails, I believe, universal book links, we’ve found, this I think still holds true. Because they are essentially embedded on a site that your visitors go to first, if you can claim some ownership for I think that they are within the terms of service for sites like Amazon, they I don’t think we’re breaking I don’t we have not been found to be breaking any rules on that. It seems some things pop up about that in like authors groups or whatever. But so far as we can tell, and we have a pretty strong relationship with Amazon. That hasn’t been the case. So I wouldn’t I would be, you know, careful about using the Amazon links directly in emails and that sort of thing. But so far, I use the universal book links in all my emails. I haven’t seen any problems come from that yet.
Mark Lefebvre 23:53
Yeah, I haven’t seen that either. And I think it’s because we’re taking people to a landing page that is not a direct link to anywhere. And people decide where they go from there. I think that that kind of prevents the whenever I don’t know why. But it hasn’t seemed to have been an issue, at least in my own experience and the way I use it.
Kevin Tumlinson 24:13
Yeah, apparently I posted the wrong I posted a YouTube link. It didn’t copy the bitly link Sorry about that, guys. But Alyssa, of course is watching and has corrected the record and fixed everything. So yeah, I don’t know how we do anything when we don’t have Alyssa on our side. So never make her angry. Okay, so let’s see. I got we’ve had a couple of comments. Craig is posting a lot of questions and comments. I want to make sure everyone has a fair shake at getting things answered.
Mark Lefebvre 24:46
But many of them I see Alyssa has already routed them, they’ll probably come back to me so I can build them into tickets to things we need to improve an update on bookstore.
Kevin Tumlinson 24:54
Some of that has come your way. Yeah. Let’s see. This one. Okay, so we we actually do have pay hip support, I believe and the universal book links, isn’t that correct?
Mark Lefebvre 25:07
Yeah, except right now pay hip is only for ebooks, we don’t have a way to split it out for audio because we can’t have audio. So if you’re selling direct audio, or print, which is coming, it’s kind of like in the top level of the queues of things that need to get added to book Street. Once we get through our prints, all of the work we’re doing to make print so much better. Yeah, I mean, news Come on that coming soon. Not to that.
Kevin Tumlinson 25:29
Very exciting. But yeah,
Mark Lefebvre 25:31
but that’ll be there. And then with that, Craig, I do know, we have it in the queue to figure out how do we differentiate pay hip audio pay hip ebook, and then obviously, if you have direct sales, pay hip, etc.
Kevin Tumlinson 25:44
Now, we add some audio book support to the universal but yeah,
Mark Lefebvre 25:48
it’s manuals. So it’s not automatic. Like with ebooks, you press a refresh button. And we send some crawlers out when we go get the links for you. With audio, it’s manual support. So you can you have to go in and add your audio links. But but that’s how we’re going to, that’s how we’re going to have print is like, because and here’s the challenge with print, you go to a place like Amazon, and you get all kinds of used books listed. And then you get even on one of my latest books, I was looking at it on the UK site, and I was like, Oh my God, why is this book $69 $19? What’s going on? It’s because because of the way a lot of affiliate programs and anyone can kind of sell anything there, they can buy it from the same source and then up charge it. So what you want in control of is I know I want the link, that’s the actual real link, which is, you know, my book, or the publishers book or whatever, not some used bookstore or some scammer gave me an Amazon. So so it will be manual, but at least it puts the control in your hands as an author, which I left.
Kevin Tumlinson 26:47
Yeah. So Tammy asks, would love to see in addition to books to read WooCommerce support or a blank link spot? These are things that we are trying to figure out internally. It always seems like it’s the easiest thing, you know, just add support. And in some cases it is but in certain cases, there are some, like legal challenges, other challenges that we have to overcome before we can just add that we want to prevent people from using the service for scamming others. For example, serious purposes. Yeah. So we have to figure out ways to, you know, to make sure yeah,
Mark Lefebvre 27:27
like we don’t know, because it’s automated, we don’t know that Tammy is pure of heart and her links are beautiful links that are going to send, but we know their person might have a link to some, you know, some weird virus that you’re gonna download in your computer, right? So we don’t know that. So that’s what we have to check.
Kevin Tumlinson 27:46
Yeah. Yeah. With the storefronts, it’s it’s easy. We know. Because we have relationships with these stores for one thing that when, when we’re scanning that we can find that it is a book, it is for sale. It’s not just someone posing as a book and scamming people out there money, etc. But let’s see. This is a question about print, which we may we can kind of answer as I publish my print books via Ingram. Will it help for me to publish print via D to D? Do you distributed channels other than ID? And Grimm? I’m
Mark Lefebvre 28:20
guessing that I’m guessing Ingram is this, it’s pretty much going to be the same, right? You’re gonna get the same distribution you would get if you’re publishing through Ingram, so you would just be duplicating your efforts just to let you know.
Kevin Tumlinson 28:32
Yeah. Yeah. So yeah. Okay, so we’ve had Alyssa helped us out and answered the blank link, with a very appropriate statement. I think the blank link input is ripe for abuse. And Tammy, I think now agrees. Yes. So DDD, having your back is, has been a common theme lately, by the way. So and we’ve we took a little bit of abuse over something recently, which we won’t go into. But, you know, I’m glad I was very heartened to see that people get it, people get that the rules that we have aren’t arbitrary rules, we do things because the retailers have their rules which we are sworn to uphold, basically. So there it it. I know it’s sometimes it just seems like things just happen because they happen. But I promise you, what we do here is we look for every opportunity to protect the authors make sure the officers are getting everything they’re supposed to get get paid on time aren’t being ripped off in some way. So you know, we’re no rule is arbitrary. So, so I, when it comes to that, so, we’ve covered pretty much everything I think, that DVD author offers so far. But one of the things that I did want to talk about and it’s it is sort of related and I actually have a word in which this particular service slash tool could be used, even if you aren’t a publisher, and that is our data, the payment splitting, which is a fairly new service that we started offering, and what and it’s kind of it’s sort of piggybacking off of the technology we created to create DVD shared universes, which had sort of a limited, you couldn’t just sign up for a DVD shared universe. This was the program that we created as a replacement for the Kindle Amazon’s Kindle worlds, were an intellectual property holder, kid allow, like ag riddle, for example, had his whole Atlantis was it his Atlantis gene universe opened up so that other writers could write within that universe and share revenue with the IP holder with ag riddle. So we had a program very similar to that. And it’s sort of manual, all manual, not not the, you know, it’s not set up for people to just sign up and do. But because of that, and because of other things that we’ve talked about, and offered and promised over the years, we were always inundated with people asking for ways to easily share revenue, because some of the some of the ways in which that is being done by other companies will just say are not great. And then they’re not very easy to use. For one thing, not trying to be disparaging here, I’m just saying this is the feedback we got people were not happy with the methods by which they were being empowered to share revenue with other authors for things like co authoring a book box sets, you know, anthologies and things like that. So we created DDD, payment splitting. And what what it does is allow two or more creators, there’s an organizer, the person who organizes the split, and then there are the contributors. So you can have multiple contributors on a project, and everybody can get a certain percentage of each sale. After all the other, you know, the royalties, all the other stuff comes out of it. That’s the royalties, but the art cut, that’s where thing. So this has been well received, people are very excited about this, I was very excited about this. And you can actually assign the various percentages. So it’s not like everybody has to take the same percentage. So if the organizer, for example, puts together a box set, and they’ve taken on all the expense of cover, design, editing, layout, you know, advertising, all that stuff came out of their pocket, you could have the organizer receive a larger percentage of the cut than the other participating authors. Everybody gets to agree on their percentage, no one can change percentages unless both parties agree. So it’s a very safe, easy way to do this. But one of the things that I think makes it very powerful, is we take care of all the taxes. And by that, I don’t mean we’re paying your taxes. But I do mean that we we you go through the same tax interview as you as our authors go through when they set up their accounts, it’s required. And so taxes are handled for you in terms of what you you know, reporting to your your government, in that government agency, the amount that you would, the amount based on what you got, I’m think I’m butchering this entire thing. But basically, let’s just put it this way, we made taxes a little easier for you. You don’t as a as the contributor, you don’t have to figure out who gets what, when it comes to taxes. In terms of like the forms that they get, or any of that stuff, all that gets taken care of. That was probably the stickiest part of figuring this out. But where I think this comes into our discussion today is you don’t have to be an author on a project to receive income on that project. So let’s say that you were a cover designer, you could offer to design a box set cover for free in exchange for a certain percentage of the sales of the book indefinitely. Or you could do layout, maybe you are going maybe you volunteer to handle the marketing everyone in the box that chips in for the the actual cost of advertising, but you take care and manage all the ads and make sure you know you’re doing the hard work behind the scenes of making sure that those ads are effective testing and all that and in lieu of some sort of salary are upfront charge. You agree to take a percentage of the book so that is a that is another side hustle kind of tool, a creative way to use The DVD payment splitting. So I kind of went a long way on that, and didn’t let you contribute at all. Go ahead and say what you’re like, no, what
Mark Lefebvre 35:08
I wanted to add to that is, as a Canadian, and draft Digital’s in the US, every time if I were to get paid from draft to digital, and then have to figure out, okay, all the 16 people that I’m collaborating with, everyone gets their percentage cut, then I got to translate it into all the different currencies, whether it’s back to American to Canadian to pounds to Australian dollars, whatever, I’m going to lose money every time I exchange back and forth, so I lose money on that I lose a lot of labor. And it takes care of paying everyone directly, I get my money directly, everyone gets their tax forms, tax forms, very important for your local government, that you actually have a tax form and deeded, he will send that for your American sales. That’s really, really beneficial. So that’s a huge, huge benefit. And one of the things I love is with printing, and and ebook is you can differentiate those sales. So here’s one of the frustrations that I know happens is like, Yay, I got 18 cents from Amazon, Mexico, I know, I have to divide that 18 ways. And so the costs for me to do the math, figure out the 18 ways, right? I mean, it’s gonna cost me more to figure out getting the money back and forth. Whereas I know that I have, I think six or seven projects that are collaborative projects through draft to digital, and one of the benefits is okay, so you know, if I made 18 cents off of Amazon, Mexico, and then I made actual real money off the USA, UK site, and all the other places like Kobo and Canada and other places like that, that all of those things add up. And I don’t need to do all that work repeatedly. Because the payments do come in, you know, in multiple stages. They’re not all at the same time, as Apple has their own fiscal calendar that doesn’t sync up with anything in this universe, but it’s its own little thing. And so all of these weird payments coming in, the authors get the money immediately. So if I’m in a lot of cases, I’m the publisher, but in a lot of those cases, the author gets the money directly. I don’t even have to worry about it. I mean, right now, one of my frustrations is I have you know, hardcover through Ingram. So I gotta wait till Ingram pays me and sends me the cheque or whatever deposits the money. And then I have to figure out how to translate the money to another currency to get it to the author. Well, that there’s that time delay. Yeah. Where I’m, you know, I’m sitting on the money that really should be that author’s money. So, I mean, it solves so many collaborative problems in the industry, I don’t think, Oh, I think people recognize just just how beneficial a program like that can be.
Kevin Tumlinson 37:39
Yeah, and you can get really creative with it. I shared a link in the comments. That is interesting uses for DDD, payment splitting, I don’t have that one programmed into the little on screen thing. So if you’re watching this after the fact just go to go to draft to digital comm slash blog and just search for interesting uses for DVD payments blooding that will find that post for you. And I did outline some of what we talked about here it is pretty cool stuff. So I got a couple of comments here, I definitely want us to address so let’s see, there’s one another one from Craig says, I’ve been thinking about creating a small, this is another way you can side hustles some cash, even if you’re not the one publishing your books. But I’ve been thinking about creating a small publisher to help people publish their books for a while now planning on trying this. So using the payment splitting books to read author pages, books are the universal book links. Using all these little tools we discussed here, you could totally build a virtual publishing house, very young
Mark Lefebvre 38:47
agents who’ve done this, where where the agent says, I know, this is a great book, I can’t sell it to New York, but I know it can be good. And the agent wants to make their 15%. So the agent invests in publishing the book, yep, keeps 15% for themselves, the rest goes to the author. And then that way, the agent and the author are making good money, and then potentially getting the track record sales that the agent can go, Hey, look at how many of this we sold. Do you want to buy the print rights? Yeah, if you want to buy the foreign language, right? literary agents could really leverage this tool, because I know agents are sitting on 1000s of
Kevin Tumlinson 39:19
books, so many, you know, can sell
Mark Lefebvre 39:21
but they can’t because they can only sell 10 of them. Yeah, right. And there’s only what five publishers in the world now as opposed to the 1000s that used to exist.
Kevin Tumlinson 39:29
And I know that there’s a sort of taboo on self publishing when your goal is to get into the traditional publishing world. But you I could see agents using this as a way to test them test the markets and show publishers that this this author is some you know, someone that could invest in so
Mark Lefebvre 39:49
Oh, can I add to that? Yeah, they could also if an agent really, really really wants to hang on to North American rights because they really want to convince Penguin Random House to buy it in Canada in the US and They can use DDT, and only publish it everywhere. But Canada in the US, they haven’t, you know, ruin that market for themselves show that it’s selling really, really well and then sell those rights because again, exactly more tools we have as you’ve got different currencies you can play with and control. And you can control the territory as you publish to.
Kevin Tumlinson 40:18
Yeah, that’s a very good point. Tammy, coming in on Facebook says, Can you develop contributor a get X percent of royalty until X total? No, not yet. But I think this is something that would be very useful. So we can pass this along to our, to our team. This the and we’ve talked about Wait, you know, this is definitely not the end, that we didn’t just develop this. And that’s where it is. And that’s where it’s gonna stay. We’re already we’ve been looking at ways that we can improve royalty splitting over time. So yeah, you can look for some of these things. In the future,
Mark Lefebvre 40:59
I would recommend if you have a request like that, please email support at draft to digital comm because it’s only by knowing that there’s a number of authors that want to use it that we can prioritize that. On the flip side, Tammy is the Okay, so as a publisher, I’ve paid upfront, like the advance on the book, I don’t want to start paying the authors until I get my events back. Therefore, after X amount is earned, then they start getting the royalty that’s the potential other thing I know that’s in the queue of enhancements to add.
Kevin Tumlinson 41:29
Yeah, Tammy, I’m sorry, Lynn, was kind enough to post the link to the blog post that I shared in the, in the
Mark Lefebvre 41:39
collaborative anthologies. She’s a brilliant editor, and has done some really amazing anthologies using using collaborative tools. Like,
Kevin Tumlinson 41:48
I think we’re only scratching the surface of ways you can use that payment splitting tool to really create some side revenue. There’s, and of course, you know, you can publish your own work this way as well, if you’re collaborating with others, you know, there’s nothing limiting you at all. So don’t don’t think this is only for people organizing these things is for you and your writing partner. We’ve seen people share revenue with their cover designers share revenue with illustrators, for example. So if you have a book that has illustrations, so the two of you can split royalties, their early readers
Mark Lefebvre 42:26
that they really, really, really value highly.
Kevin Tumlinson 42:28
Yes. So that’s an interesting idea, you could offer like a little contest, you know, it says, The first you know, I don’t know, I don’t know what the terms of that might be maybe the first 10 people to show me one of my books on your bookshelf, I will include in the profits of this next book, you know, you get 1%, or something. So yeah, you can get really creative with this. There’s, there’s no end to the ways that you could use that some people ask, I want to address this before it’s too late. But people ask about splitting royalties with like charities and things like that, we don’t have a tool to do it directly yet. So you couldn’t say I want X percent to go to, you know, the Leukemia leukemia society or something along those lines, you couldn’t do that just yet. However, if you can convince whoever it is you want to split with to sign up and get a drafted digital account, there’s no charge or anything. They can go and do their own tax interview and set everything up, set up their bank accounts and everything, and then you can split with them. And then they would handle all the all the tax related stuff on their side that you know, the nonprofit stuff on their side once they got those payments, but it can be done. It’s not it’s not a clean way. It’s a clunky kind of way. But there are people who are already doing it so workable, right? It’s just
Mark Lefebvre 43:53
work. You can use the system the way it was designed, and and put the power back in your own hands.
Kevin Tumlinson 43:58
Yeah. Uh, okay. So we are we’re about one minute from wrapping up. There’s a there’s several questions here. I don’t I don’t want to I don’t know necessarily want to leave anything on the table. But some of these are. We’re never gonna be the answer in this amount of time I’m here. Here’s a question. Does PDF print book to E pub for E book retain footnotes and formatting and photos? So I’m the I’m reading that as they have a PDF version of the book they’re uploading converting to E pub. And they want to have it return retains that stuff and I don’t think we can you in print, you can upload a PDF and it would certainly keep all of your footnotes and everything we don’t believe I don’t believe we convert PDF to ebook. No, we don’t i don’t think so. Um, but if you uploaded the word document with footnotes and stuff, I think that we can handle that. So
Mark Lefebvre 44:58
preserve those kinds of footnotes in The editor embeds it as HTML links. And I’ve done it a couple times. It’s Yes, it’s it’s tricky. It’s not easy. So you have to really do your formatting consistently properly, you can’t do two different ways of footnotes, they have to be consistent. Right endnotes, for example, otherwise, just it’s really a horrible experience,
Kevin Tumlinson 45:18
you might want to reach out when you’re uploading something that contains footnotes and photos and that sort of thing. Just reach out to our support team support at draft a digital comm to say, Hey, I just uploaded a book, and it contains these things. Do Is there anything special I need to do and what what they’ll do is if there’s a they’ll review it, if there’s a problem, they can help you fix it. So that’s that’s not a bad idea. Okay, so I think we’re out of time. So everybody who asked questions, I apologize that we couldn’t get to everything. So you know, stick around, I’m sure people in we’ll be in the comments answering some questions as we can. But that’s going to wrap us up for for this go around. And I think this went very well, Mark, I appreciate you jumping in. I know it was kind of last minute. But I had a good time. And I think we covered some great ground here.
Mark Lefebvre 46:13
Some good questions from from folks. And thank you guys so much. Any questions you do have Don’t forget email support at drafted Digital’s really, really smart people we work with are going to answer your questions.
Kevin Tumlinson 46:24
That’s right. So that said, make sure you subscribe to us on YouTube and on Facebook. If you go to youtube.com slash draft digital, and Facebook comm slash slash draft to digital he said you can follow and like and subscribe, hit little bells, do all the things. Make sure you are bookmarking, DDD, live calm, because that’s where we do a countdown for every live episode that we do. We try to do at least one a month and we typically will do more than that. So that’s where you can find out what’s coming up and get links to it on both YouTube and Facebook. And make sure you are tuning in. Especially bookmark this URL because there’s something magical that will happen eventually I promise you at self publishing insiders comm that’s where that’s going to be the virtual home of the podcast self publishing insiders. So make sure you’re checking that out as well, wherever find podcasts are sold, go and tune in to the self publishing insiders with drafted digital that is rebroadcast of this live stream and you get some great interviews we did over the summer. We interviewed a an influencer in this industry every single day for about three months. So there’s a lot of wisdom there. So go check that out. But that’s gonna do it. Mark. Thank you again for joining me, everyone else. Thank you for tuning in. And we’ll see you all next time. Take care