Best Self Publishing Courses: Which one is right for you?

What's the best self-publishing course on the market?

Over the past couple of years, I had many authors ask me this very question. At the time, my answer was, “I’ve never taken any, so I can’t honestly tell you.”

In truth, how can anyone recommend such an important part of a self-publisher's development if they haven’t taken one?

Well, that has now changed. After hearing this question too many times, I decided I would choose the most well-known courses in the industry and take them all so that I can finally answer that pressing question.

Yup, I actually put in 48+ hours of watching videos and doing the courses in hopes that I can give you first-hand recommendations.

How did I get through all those hours of video? A lot of this:

Dave Needs Caffeine in order to watching all of those self publishing course videos

However, writing this ended up being harder than I thought. It turns out there is no such thing as the perfect course…but there is such a thing as the right course for the right person.

So, before you spend money on a course based on a mention from an authority or a random email you found in your inbox, find out which course is the best for you and make the right investment for your goals as an author who wants to successfully self publish your books.

In this article, you will learn:

Now, I’ll tell you from the start that most of the links on this page are affiliate links.

P.S. Some of the courses below are only open for enrollment at certain times of the year. During set times, the creator launches his course, gets students, and then focuses on that class of students before the creator relaunches it again.

Why I Chose These Self Publishing Courses

Thanks to platforms like Thinkific and Teachable, which make it easy to create online courses, the internet is now brimming with trainings on how to make money with Kindle books. However, over the years, only a few have risen above the rest and really stand out to teach you how and where to market your books.

Therefore, in choosing which courses I would review, I used the following guidelines:

  1. They must have been created by someone who has devoted themselves and their business to eBook publishing.
  2. The course has to have a good standing with those who have taken it.
  3. The creator should still be active with the course and updating it so as to reflect new changes in the market.
  4. The tactics taught in the course should be morally sound, in line with Amazon’s rules, as well as Kindlepreneur's marketing morals.

Now, just because a course wasn’t selected for this article doesn’t necessarily mean that it was excluded because of the above guidelines. However, many didn’t make the cut because of it.

What's the best SelfPublishing Course on the Market?Click To Tweet

If you have a course you think I should check it out, then contact me about it here…not in the comments. And if you want to learn how to outline, write, and sell from your writing heroes, check out my review of MasterClass.

Best Self Publishing Courses Comparison Chart

Before we get into reviewing these courses, let’s go ahead and look at them side-by-side so as to compare some of their features:

Comparison of the Best Self Publishing Courses

Self Publishing 101Self-Publishing SchoolAuthority Pub AcademyYour First 10K Readers
Teacher(s)Mark DawsonChandler BoltSteve Scott
Barrie Davenport
Nick Stephenson
WebsiteHereHereHereHere
Price of Course$597$8,000$797$597
# Books by Creator20+

6

7512
# Hours of Course Video21+ Hours6.5 Course Hours +
Services (see below)
12 Hours10 Hours
Included Features- Detailed ScreenFlows
- Teach Library: 27 Tech-Related Videos
- Cheat Sheet and Transcripts
- Facebook Group - Effective Author Networking
- Writing Copy for Facebook Ads
- Facebook Live For Authors

- (4) 1-1 Coaching Calls
- 1 hour Clarity Call
- 1 Dedicated Launch Call
- Group Coaching Calls Every Day of the Week
- Done-For-You Cover Design, Keywords & Categories, Upload 3 book formats to Amazon (kindle, paperback, and hard copy)
- 1 Year Mastermind Community

- Facebook Group
- Expert Interviews
- Case Studies

Extra Courses:
- Evernote for Authors
- BookBub 101

- Tools of the Trade
- 6-Figure Swipe Files
- Facebook Group
- Q&A Sessions

Extra Courses:
- Facebook Ads
- Cold Email Strategy
- Networking Tactics
- Cover Designs

Check It OutCheck It Out!Check It Out!Check It Out

As you can see, all of these courses have their pros and cons. So, let’s find out more about them and see which one is right for you.


Self Publishing 101 Review

Mark Dawson is well-known for his Self Publishing Formula podcast and his Facebook Ads for Authors course. But some don’t know that he also has an in-depth course for authors that includes a whopping 22 hours of video to teach you the many stages of the self-publishing process. This is a course many Kindlepreneur readers brought to my attention, and I can see why!

Mark Dawson started out as a traditionally published author and has ventured over to create an extremely successful self-publishing author business. He’s a USA Today bestseller and has published over 20 books, so he definitely knows what he is doing. In his Self Publishing 101 Course, he shares the methods virtually any author can use after you've written your book to build your author platform and earn money from your writing.

Self Publishing 101 is the perfect course for beginner and intermediate and even advanced authors who are trying to build a continuous stream of money from your books. Mark and his team, along with a few key guest experts, cover everything you need to know in order to have a successful book.

You get to look over their shoulder to see everything from how to create accounts, how to format your book, how to setup a landing page, and an email sequence that will put your email list and book sales on autopilot.

This course focuses on the basics of self publishing, with a major focus on building your email list and your author website – which are very powerful for those who are looking to build an author career out of this. It includes lots of examples for fiction authors, as Mark is a fiction author, but it all equally applies to nonfiction authors as well. It covers everything from “What is an email list and why do I need one?” to “How do I build an email list as a new author?”

Each module also includes a cheat sheet session notes with a To Do list and the video transcript to help ensure you implement each step you learn.

PROS TO SELF PUBLISHING 101

  • Includes the most video by far
  • Costs the least
  • See step-by-step how to use both paid and free tools to format your book (Vellum, Scrivener, Draft2Digital, and Reedsy)
  • Book launch guidelines for first 90 days and 365 days after you publish
  • Shows how to use tools to deliver lead magnets and create autoresponder sequences, keys for building your email list
  • Continuously updated with the most relevant information for students
  • A NEW extra mini-course on Facebook Live for Authors
  • A NEW deep dive into how to find the very best keywords and categories by yours truly 😉

CONS TO SELF PUBLISHING 101

  • Not for authors who want to learn how to publish a book as fast as possible
  • Ummm yeah, that's about it.

Who Is SELF PUBLISHING 101 For?

  • Do you have your first (or first few) books written and need help turning them into a long-term profitable business?
  • Do you wonder how to build an email list as an author?
  • Do you struggle with technology and how to make all the tech tools work together?
  • Do you want detailed help establishing your home base on the internet, including your author website?
  • Do you want the best bang for your buck by spending the least and getting the most hours of coursework?

Then THIS is the course for you.

Check Out Self Publishing 101 Here!

Self-Publishing School Review:

Next up is one of the most well-known courses that has actually produced some epic results from its students.

Chandler Bolt stormed into the self-publishing arena just a few years ago and quickly created one of the biggest names in the self-publishing industry. What’s even more impressive is that he dropped out of college, made over seven figures, and is only in his early 20s – all verified to be true.

But don’t let that young age dissuade you. You’ll be hard-pressed to find someone who took the course and didn't love it. But, just in case you don't, Chandler offers a full refund – so pretty much risk-free.

Self-Publishing-School

Chandler and his team have done an amazing job of creating a system that will get you to publish a book with his course / program Self-Publishing School. The reason I call it a program is because there is much more to it than a simple course (more on that later.) This is perfect for those out there who have a book inside of them but keep having life get in the way. Or those who aren’t sure about the process and need the guidance and the ‘push’ to get your book written and published.

Through the support systems, course videos, community, coaching, and fast-paced methods of writing and publishing, I truly believe that anyone who takes this course will publish a book with no problems and get a return on their investment.

In truth, the thing I dislike most about this course is probably what makes it a hit amongst its students. Instead of letting you get bogged down with details (which I am personally a fan of), he instead gives you enough and keeps pushing you to move forward.

Pros to Self-Publishing School

  • Excellent system for keeping pace and supporting its students
  • Excellent use of the Facebook platform to offer extra value through community
  • Regularly updates course content to stay current with self-publishing trends
  • Weekly workshops and daily group coaching calls
  • Has had some heavy hitters take the course and excel (both in Nonfiction and Fiction) such as Hayden Crabtree, Mike Acker, Scott Allan, R.E. Vance, and Lise Cartwright
  • The 1-on-1 coaching calls REALLY give you personal attention while on this project
  • A one-hour clarity call, which is probably more important than you think
  • To top it off: Done-for-You Cover Design and other DFY services!

Cons to Self-Publishing School

  • Brings up marketing methods but doesn’t go into detail on how to really rock those steps (although this course is about not letting you get bogged down in the weeds)
  • Videos comprise of HD web camera shots and minor on-screen walkthroughs
  • A bit pricey, but that higher investment compels you to commit to publishing; and it covers the coaching & services portions that other courses don’t have
  • Only 6.5 hours of video, but then again, it cuts the fluff and keeps pace (and it does have endless Youtube videos and podcast interviews to assist along the way)

Again this isn’t to say that the lack of details is a bad thing. Most people get bogged down with the details and therefore never pull the trigger and publish their book. I am totally a victim of this, but then again, I was a nuclear engineer so…I’m sort of detail-oriented by nature.

Who Is Self-Publishing School for?

  • Have you never published a book before and want to?
  • Do you need some motivation to publish your first book?
  • Do you need the knowledge of know how to effectively and efficiently write a book?
  • Do you need some of the book production services done for you?
  • Do you want a return on your investment ASAP?

Then THIS is the course for you.

Check Out Self Publishing School Here!

Authority Pub Academy Review

Authority-Pub-Academy

While Chandler’s course did a great job of pushing someone to publish a book, Steve and Barrie’s course does an excellent job of giving you more details, more information, more videos, and more training as a whole.

For their course, Authority Pub Academy, the focus is not only on getting you to publish a book but also on helping you to build a writer's platform and brand your author name – which I personally like. In truth, this is a strong strategy for the future.

A couple of years ago, there was a Kindle gold rush where people saw the easy money making potential of self-publishing and everyone, and their cousins jumped in. The amount of Kindle books on Amazon went from 500K in 2010 to 4 Million by 2015.

Because of the amount of competition, it’s becoming more important for authors to build off of their initial book success, and grow their author brand. It’s a strategy like that that has brought Steve Scott the level of success he enjoys today.

Steve-Scott-and-Authority-Pub-Academy

So, while the course gives you the basics of publishing your first book, it also takes the extra steps to show you exactly how you can build your author platform and create long-lasting success in self-publishing.

Pros to Authority Pub Academy

  • Solid amount of videos and information
  • Well-created videos and slides
  • Excellent information for building a platform
  • Made by two of the best in the industry
  • Love the case studies and examples
  • Extra mini-courses on important tactics: Evernote and BookBub

Cons to Authority Pub Academy

  • Newer course, so it still needs to smooth some things over
  • Fewer support mechanisms than some of the others
  • Not super fast paced

Who Is Authority Pub Academy for?

  • Have you never published a book before and want to?
  • Do you want to go the extra step and build an author platform?
  • Do you want to grow your Kindle business into something more than just one book?

Then THIS is the course for you.

Check Out Authority Pub Academy Here!

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Your First 10K Readers Review:

Your-First-10K-readers-Nick-Stephenson

Of these four courses, Your First 10K Readers was by far the most beneficial to me.  Not because the other courses are of poor quality, but because it was designed to teach ADVANCED marketing tactics, which is better suited for someone like me.

This course is NOT for beginners and was not designed to teach you how to publish your first book. Instead, it assumes you already have a book or books and want to create a strong platform on which to build your publishing empire.

Nick Stephenson's Results

Now normally, I don't trust pictures like the one below. However, after taking the course, and seeing some of the details he goes into in some pretty awesome ebook marketing tactics, I think it's safe to say that this is a good representation.

This course starts with a great look at the industry at a whole and brings everything full circle, as he goes into incredible tactics to immediately improve your pre-existing sales.  However, what makes this course epic is that he then goes into detail for each particular tactic like Facebook advertisement, automated selling systems, networking prowess, traffic generation methods, and more.

Of course, there are subjects like platform building and email list creation.  However, this course takes it a step further and shows you how to synchronize all your efforts so that they work together to truly grow your readership…to your first 10K readers…oh see what I did there?

Nick-Stephensons-First-10K-readers


Pros to Your First 10K Readers

  • Best course on Advanced marketing tactics
  • In-depth looks into individual and useful tactics – don't gloss over
  • Great for fiction authors because it's one of the only ones made by a fiction author
  • Marketing strategies are excellent for Non-fiction authors as well

Cons to Your First 10K Readers

  • NOT for beginners
  • Must be willing and ready to increase your marketing efforts – not for the faint of heart

Who Is Your First 10K Readers for?

  • Have you published a couple of books but didn't make as much as you wanted?
  • Are you ready to roll up your sleeves and take your ebook marketing to the next level?
  • Are you  a fiction or non-fiction writer who needs the most advanced tactics to grow?

Then THIS is the course for you.

Check Out Your First 10K Readers Here!

Final Evaluation

In truth, all four courses are excellent and definitely deliver on their promises. However, I strongly believe that each course is better for a specific type of person.

I believe Self Publishing 101 is perfect if you want to focus on the detailed steps of what to do after you've written a book or two, including how to build an email list and establish your home base on the internet. If you want to learn from successful fiction authors or if you like to watch videos that show step-by-step details of all the critical steps, like how to upload books, format books, start a website, and use tools and services that will help grow your email list to sell more books, then you will love this course.

I believe Self-Publishing School is best for those who need help writing their first book and want a taste of some of the extra marketing methods out there. I also believe this course is best if you need the accountability and support system to help guide you along each step of the way. Basically, this is for those at the very beginning of writing a book.

I believe that Authority Pub Academy is perfect for those who want to build an author platform and keep the momentum going as they create multiple books. While giving you the basic information on how to publish a book, it goes a step further and dives into strategies and more complex parts of the business. This is the best course for those who want to learn from successful nonfiction authors and want to know what to consider before, during, and after writing your book to grow your platform.

And finally, I strongly believe that Your First 10K Readers is best for those who are advanced but want to step up their game to the next level.  Truly meant for the advanced, this course will teach you all of the individual amazing tactics and how to bind them all together in order to have a perfectly in sync publishing campaign.

If you need any more guidance on this, be sure to hit me up on my contact page or just reply to any of my emails.

Dave Needs Wine after writing about what is the best self publishing course on the market

And now that this epic post is complete, I think I'll treat myself to a little “author” treat:

Cheers,

Dave-Signature


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113 thoughts on “Best Self Publishing Courses: Which one is right for you?

Comments
  1. Maryse Laflamme

    Sooo, I’m confused. Kindlepreneur is an e-book marketing course promoting other e-book marketing courses?? I just did this search “difference between kindlepreneur and first 10,000 readers” and what came up was this article, which only confused me further, ha ha.

    1. Dave Chesson

      No, Kindlepreneur is not an ebook marketing course. Kindlepreneur is a free online website. I do not have any paid courses. I have a free course on Amazon Ads at AMSCourse.com. But no course on self publishing. Maybe you have me confused with someone else?

  2. Julie Abels

    I’d love to see some mention about which is best for fiction vs non-fiction. I know There is a lot of overlap but it feels like Dawson is mostly focused on fiction authors. Is that true?

  3. Will Morris

    WARNING about Self Publishing School purchase at your own risk. I requested to cancel within 7 days of signing up their 30 day money back guarantee didn ‘t happen. Then demanded to cancel after I was contacted by another student saying my personal phone number was used to contact him. Didn ‘t happen and little to no support. Now 3 months later I ‘m being treated as I ‘m a bad person and have been charged a total of $3,600. Oh and I can ‘t even get into the program because they updated and the login is different.

  4. Nicole Hawkins

    Thanks, that helps. Just came out of seminar for Self Publishing.

  5. Brooks Agnew

    Okay, Here is the thing. Self-published authors have only one challenge, once the POD company has all your files. Who the hell bought your book? Amazon sure won’t tell you. The POD printer won’t tell you. There is no tracking pixel to find out. So, how do I do it? I’ll tell you for free. Record your book, chapter by chapter. Save it somewhere that people can download it. Then, put a special email address inside the book cover where readers can write you to get the audio version for free. Boom. You have their email address and name, and now you can tell them when your next book comes out. About 5% of readers will request the audio version. Believe me, It is better than nothing,which is exactly what you get by paying someone for their secrets. Oh, and you can sell the audiobook for 100% profit. Now, go and do.

Comments are closed.

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