Google expert Benjamin Mangold’s eBook is this month’s Independent publisher spotlight! Learning Google AdWords and Google Analytics written by Benjamin is considered the “go-to” book for those that are looking to get the most out of their digital marketing campaign efforts. Along with covering the fundamentals of Google AdWords and Google Analytics, Benjamin also explores more details for the experienced user including best practices, walk-throughs of account set up and other advanced configuration options.
1. Tell us about your background and how it led to the creation of your content.
I’ve been an active member, advocate, educator and campaign creator in the online marketing community in Australia and internationally for close to 10 years, starting in North America. I’ve been lucky, meeting world leading experts such as Avinash Kaushik, Jim Sterne and Justin Cutroni very early in my career.
My book ‘Learning Google AdWords and Google Analytics’ is a way for me to share what I’ve learned and what’s important to me. One of the most important things to me is teaching best practices for accuracy, consistency and measurable improvements in results.
There’s a global shortage of digital skills. I hope my book can help people with their courses, skills development and as a ‘go-to’ guide for people working on campaigns.
2. What were your motivations to pursue publishing?
Writing and publishing ‘Learning Google AdWords and Google Analytics’ basically allows me to capture and share everything I’ve learnt in the past 10 years. I’m also very motivated by the challenge of designing the book so it’s easy to keep up to date.
Sharing the latest on digital advertising and digital analytics is what I do. Whether it’s through campaign management, presenting training or speaking at conferences. Publishing a book in hard copies and electronic form is a whole other channel.
Having a book out there that people are buying and reading because it helps them with their courses, jobs and career development is very satisfying. It means I’m making a difference! It also helps me build my reputation and my company’s brand.
3. Have you published before?
While I’ve never published a book before my background in design has helped. I also have a great content team at my company, Loves Data. We’re posting blog posts, and publishing on social media and our website all the time. So we know how to create, design and format content. Publishing a book with more than 500 pages is a challenge of a different order!
4. When evaluating different resources or platforms to publish on, which criteria were most important to you?
Being new to book publishing but knowing how my target audience would be using my book made technical performance in terms of formatting, accessibility and reliability the most important criteria.
I’ve always followed the Google model of providing relevant, useful information in the shortest possible time. And this is what people are used to and expect. So a publishing platform with a clear focus on usability and the user experience was essential, especially for credibility with universities.
RedShelf are university specialists. From the first point of contact and beyond, RedShelf has been supportive. RedShelf is ahead of the eBook publishing curve with interactivity features and options for renting or buying books.
5. What helped you make a decision on a platform?
The nature of modern publishing and the content of my book made an e-version essential. At the same time the data was showing hard copies would be in demand. We’ve published the book on Amazon’s on-demand printed copies and Kindle platforms and iBooks as well as RedShelf.
My book is very practical; I worked hard to break it down into easily digestible sections with plenty of examples and links to extra resources. Having a publishing platform that made it relatively easy to upload without losing quite complex formatting was a very important consideration. This also makes it easier to keep it up to date.
6. What were some of the biggest challenges you faced when publishing your content?
The biggest challenge was downloading 10 years of knowledge and experience from my brain. Getting the topics in the right order so the content flows smoothly was another big challenge. Double-checking the accuracy of technical details, making sure all spelling was correct and consistent, and that all cross-references, footnotes and links were correct were other big challenges.
7. If applicable, how did RedShelf ease these challenges?
The appeal of RedShelf was firstly its relationship with universities in the US. The opportunity to have my book listed as a textbook for digital marketing courses is very exciting. Secondly, RedShelf's own plans and ambitions to push the boundaries of eBook distribution with subscriptions, updates and added features for lecturers and students was appealing.
I'm on the same page as RedShelf on accessibility, especially for university lecturers and students. They need the latest information and to be able to cross-reference and footnote information.
8. Has it been challenging in regards of promoting or marketing your book to the masses?
My company, Loves Data, is a digital advertising and analytics agency and industry-training provider. We have a design and content team that is publishing a wide variety of content constantly. So promoting my book is really an opportunity and test for us; it's a matter of practicing what we preach, and preaching what we practice!
9. What are some of the advantages of self-publishing?
The Internet has made it possible to self-publish and to make sales by connecting with target audiences in all sorts of ways through digital advertising and social media for example. The major investment and asset is the intellectual property, not inventory. Self-publishing allows me to achieve higher ROI and gives me the control I need to keep the book up-to-date.
Quality control, cost control and the ability to reach target audiences all over the world with customized online marketing campaigns are big advantages of self-publishing.
10. What are some of the advantages of self-publishing with RedShelf?
Digital publishing is still a young industry. Digital marketing is young, too and these industries are closely related and since they are digital they are constantly changing. The shortage of digital skills in high demand around the world has created a stampede amongst universities to fill the gap with digital marketing courses. RedShelf seems ideally positioned to take advantage of this huge opportunity by distributing books such as mine in innovative ways.
11. Do you have plans to publish another title in the future?
Yes I do! I have a team of experts with heads full of knowledge and experience which needs to be shared. I would also really welcome suggestions from RedShelf readers who are interested in Digital Marketing, Search Engine Optimization, Conversion Optimization, Google Tag Manager and Social Media.