The BIG Book Writing Myth
There are times when things happen and I want to let people know straight away that more can be done or that things can be done in a different way.
That was the case when…
I got a call just now and I thought I’d share it because I think there are many people in business who are in the same ‘boat’ as this caller!
“Yes, I’ve written a book before, it was sort of part of my degree, but it’s not really academic, more of a workbook. It sort of goes with the program I offer. I’ve never gotten much from it, you know, I didn’t market it well. I don’t know much about marketing, really,” is what he said.
Let’s untangle that, there are several different things he is actually talking about.
Firstly, having written a book ‘before’, he means, he wrote it in a way most people do, by simply starting to write. People have an idea about a subject they feel strong about or they have had an experience, mostly something negative, and they overcame it despite the odds.
Those types of books need a deep dive into who will be reading it, and where you will find those readers to let them know about that book, well before the first word is written.
We do judge a book by it’s cover!
The first thing seen is always the book title.It is important then, to make it clear in the book title who the book has been written for and who will most benefit from reading it. That needs to be prominent on the cover of the book.
For example: ‘77 Gardening Tips for Fruit & Vegetable Gardeners’ is clearly written for people who like growing fruit and vegetables. You are unlikely to find much or anything, for that matter, about growing flowers, in that book.
While a title like: ‘The New Version of You’, is anyone’s guess?! It may be written for ‘anyone’ who wants a new version of themselves, but who exactly would describe themselves and their situation, as needing a new version of themselves?
The way to write a book that will attract the type of reader it is intended for, requires planning before writing.
I start every new client of my Write & Publish a Marketing Optimized Book in 6-Weeks or less, with planning in detail the book topic and who will be reading it and why.
When you start with such detailed planning, the book title emerges almost by itself.
The next thing this caller, this afternoon, had missed, was to have a clear outcome in mind for his book.
He ‘sort of’ wanted his book to be ‘professional’ and to him that means ‘almost, but not quite, academic’, but he also wanted it to be a workbook to be used alongside one of his programs.
That’s dangerous because it lacks a clear business outcome. If the book is to be ‘professional’ that is meaningless, unless you aim for professionals to contact and work with you as the result of reading the book.
Or if the book is written for academics who want to read a white-paper style academic publication, you do not need to write the book as a general published book, but want to publish it in the academic circles directly, perhaps on the University circuit, if it is for that type of reader.
A clear outcome in mind, meaning, what the book is going to do for you or your business, the type of marketing required, can already be determined.
Sometimes it looks like people think there is one and the same type of marketing for every type of book. People look at the book merely as a ‘commodity’ to market, not at what a book can do for the author.
But even trying to ‘simply’ make book sales, is not simple! Your book still needs to have been written for a specific reader.
Getting clarity on the outcome the author wants to achieve with their book needs to happen before the writing starts. Clarity on the outcome determines what the chapters in the book are about and it determines what goes into the book and what not.
For example, if the book is to take the reader to buy an online program, it needs to be planned how many steps that will take. And how many steps it will take, depends on WHO the reader will be.
You might put one and the same link after each chapter in the book, that takes the reader to a free PDF or Video as the next step. Whatever the urgency around the book topic is, it may then require to further ‘nurture’ the reader, with more information about the PDF or Video, they got, before the reader is ready to contact you.
But there are also topics where the reader may come to you, the author, directly from the book because the topic is so urgent for the reader to want to solve.
The gardening book mentioned earlier, for example, might take the reader directly to a paid online ‘how to’ event. No long nurture path.
I hope that explains that there is not one type of marketing for every book!
And that is exactly the reason why I created my 6-Week Write & Publish a Marketing Optimized Book. The right type of marketing for your book is best established before you start writing.
And that takes me to the third point, entangled in this caller’s question on the phone today.
Many people in business say they do not really know marketing. Some may have studied some part of marketing before they started their business, but often what they’ve studied does not go deep and wide enough to see the full picture of what marketing needs to be applied in their business or, in this case, for their book
While I’ve described above different ways of marketing within the book, or marketing types to send the reader somewhere, let’s take a look at what it takes to market the book itself, once it’s finished and published.
And by the way, this is also part of my Write & Publish a Marketing Optimized Book in 6-Weeks or less!
Here are 3 Ways to market a marketing optimized book, once it’s finished and published:
1. Set up a series of promotion steps to announce the publishing of the book. That might look like this –
Set up a live online event
Send out emails announcing the date and invite your list to the event, where you give away several additional bits of information, in direct connection to the topic of your book. This might be infographics, videos, interview opportunities, invitations to be on your podcast etc
Post the event in social media, invite people directly, via FB or LinkedIn
With each announcement, offer something of interest to the reader, that will make them book the event or already pre-buy your book.
2. Search for events, interviews, podcasts, lives in groups etc that are aligned with the topic of your book and where most likely the right readership is present. Ask to be invited, and for such occasions, my clients have already created the exact right Bio, PR and One Sheet material, to be accepted as speaker, or to be interviewed.
We do that spread over the 6-Week Program, and I offer all the templates and examples needed, to create the exact right one for you.
This is a powerful way to spread knowledge about you and your book and can go viral really fast.
3. Look at what topic is a ‘hot’ topic in the media at the time of publishing. Work out how you can attach your topic to this highly publicised news and start connecting with and contacting journalists and media outlets. To do this successfully, you will need a Press Release Style Sheet, which my clients learn about and set up, during the 6-Week Program.
Here is an example: Coronavirus has been in the news since early 2020 and by Dec, is still reported on daily.
Someone took that opportunity and wrote and published a book about ‘Coronaspeak’.
It is a collection of words and phrases that people created during the pandemic so far. The writer uses humour to bring the, sometimes double meanings, of words, to the reader.
The Author contacted news and media and and was able to become known and sell his books to a huge audience.
(Apologies, I can’t for the live of me find the authors’s name and book details right now! It was on Australian Breakfast News a couple of weeks ago, if you know who I’m referring to, here, please comment!) LOL
Those, above mentioned three ways of promoting the book, are best applied in the right circumstance and it is advised to plan for which exactly is to be used.
The way the book is promoted needs to fit into how the book, once in the reader’s hands, leads the reader to the next step.
Simply reading the book and then doing nothing, does not make it a valuable book for you!
Look forward to chatting over Messenger if you’re interested in help. And if not, I hope this post served you anyway
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