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Nate highlights the huge problem with this advice. To say that it can be implemented with minimal development expense ignores the bigger issue. The real expense to the publishers would be in encouraging customers to go to a lot of work (signing up for a direct purchase account, providing their private send-to Kindle email and then telling Amazon it's okay to accept emails from the publisher) only to have the service likely be discontinued due to lack of interest OR if it is somehow miraculously a success, have Amazon shut it down for them. The publisher will lose a lot reader good will, and burn exactly the kind of motivated readers it should be taking very good care off. This is exactly the problem with DRM, where badly executed schemes keep punishing the customers most interested in working directly with publishers. On top of that, there will be plenty of other customers what will be annoyed the minute they find out they have to do three very intrusive steps (give up a credit card number, provide a private email, give blanket permission to have emails sent to their Kindle). Many sales will simply not be made as customers realize what's involved. And don't count on them to then go to Amazon buy your book. They might go there and buy something else or simply give up on your entire library because it seems like a hassle. Overall, publishers would be better served by focusing on creating the best content they can, content people really want, and worrying less on how to battle Amazon. Make your stuff available everywhere and let the customers figure it out what devices they want to read it on and how. Direct sales are probably a waste of time and energy, but if someone wants to experiment along those lines it would be better for them to simply allow customers to download ebooks (in PDF, epub and mobi) and then provide simple instructions on how to side load into the Kindle (which can be done with the send to Kindle app by the customer themselves) and any other device. As for providing samples and advance reads, that is best done by old fashioned email and downloads on the publishers site. No reason to put Amazon in the middle of it. Email lists are already proven to work well to sell books. A publishers site should have free samples anyway. On top of that, when someone wants to buy your book, you should really think twice before trying to push them into a direct sale rather than a one click from an Amazon or iBooks link. You've got a very good chance of getting them to change their mind.
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Feb 7, 2016