So your book isn’t a stand-alone item. It is, in fact, a part of your business plan. It’s a marketing tool and a highly effective one at that.
But we know this already; don’t we?
Then why do the majority of business owners who’ve gone to the trouble of authoring a book fail to link it to their marketing strategy and then measure its performance?
In my experience, it’s the same fears that to date may have stopped you from authoring your book. It’s the unknown. It’s this big time-consuming unknown field. Thinking of tackling a project like writing and publishing your book can be understandably daunting and it can lead to the procrastination our brains often do as a result.
Many aspiring authors drive all their energy into creating the book, but then don’t have a plan in place for how to use it once it’s done. The promotion of it becomes secondary.
The message I really want to get across is if you really want to own your intellectual space, use the process of creating your book as an opportunity to improve and validate your offering, gain more speaking gigs, attract a certain type of client, launch a product or service, grow your business…you just need to be deliberate about how you use your book as a marketing tool.
Your book is an asset which supports these objectives. We therefore need to keep these four ‘pillars’ in mind, before, during and after putting pen to paper:
* Your book marketing and the quality of the book’s content are of equal importance
There’s only so much your book can do in and of itself to completely catapult your career, brand and revenue all in one go, once it’s written and published.
People tend to view book writing and book marketing as two separate components. While they are two different activities, they work hand in hand.
If your book’s rubbish, the best marketing campaign in the world won’t help you because your reputation will be damaged. If your book’s the most amazing, valuable read of someone’s life, a flatlining promotional campaign will keep it unheard of by the majority of your target audience; unappreciated and unactioned.
Accept there are areas in book production and book marketing that are not your unique ability and give yourself permission to outsource them. Aiming for perfection inevitably sets you up to fail so definitely don’t do that, but aim for an exceptional standard and invest in order to achieve it. When you get strategic, you’ll see the commercial returns [link to Our Authors page].
* Taking the long view pays
Sometimes people ask what it takes to become a bestseller. The thing about bestseller listings is they can be bought. On Amazon, you can become a bestseller for all of half an hour or so, by tagging your book in less popular categories, arranging for a load of them to be bought on the day it comes out and lining up reviews for publishing day (there’s a bit more to it but you get the gist).
Achieving bestseller status in that way may not do much for you, other than allowing you to put ‘bestselling author’ on your bios, rather than simply ‘author’. This is good if status and prestige are important to your target audience, but you run the risk of appearing all style over substance. Status and prestige also come with longevity and ongoing success, which is far harder for a prospect to question, or for a competitor to overtake. You’re therefore better off focussing on how you can reward your readers for picking up your book in the first place, making the read so valuable they talk about it, share it and most importantly, action it.
* Book marketing works best with a plan
As with any result, if it’s important and you expect to see it, clarity and commitment are needed. That is, you need to have a clear strategy, clear timescales, clear processes in place to support these commitments, and clear criteria by which to measure your results.
* One size doesn’t fit all
Every author’s unique and so is their business, and as a result, so is their book. There isn’t a credible one-size-fits-all book marketing solution. There are, however, tried-and-tested marketing methodologies, not to mention content by other published authors on what worked for them and what didn’t. My book [affiliate link] shortlists 80 of those.
That doesn’t mean that these are the only 80 that matter – there are endless approaches to book marketing. That elusive silver bullet is the one(s) that suits you, your audience and your book together. The way to figure out what that is by writing and marketing for your audience, and with your end results in mind.
The question to ask therefore isn’t, “How do I write a best-seller?” but rather:
“How can I author and promote a book that serves me as a strategic business development asset?”
Notice I say ‘author’ and not ‘write’? A ‘strategic business asset’ rather than a ‘best-seller’…
I can only make a certain number of these available each month and there are only a few left so book yours in now – make it happen!
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