Interviews with John Kremer
In a recent teleseminar, I shared the following 10 things you can do in the next week to sell more books. Here is a short summary of what I covered:
1. 90% of marketing efforts are wasted. This is not a bad thing. Learn how to use this insight to set better priorities.
2. Book marketing is all about creating relationships. The only reason to hire a publicist is to hire them for their relationships. Ask, “Who do you know?” It’s all about creating friends.
3. You can’t do everything. Prioritize what you do best.
4. Packaging is important. As an author, this offends me, but the reality is that if a book isn’t packaged well, it won’t sell. An instant judgment on your book is based on the packaging. Packaging not only includes the cover, but also the title, the contents, and the interior design.
5. Build a brand with your books. For example, consider the Dummies brand or Chicken Soup of the Soul.
6. We are in the business of creating and selling rights. Licensing rights can make the difference between a profitable publishing operation and a losing operation.
7. Remember that small presses can create bestsellers. In fact, they’ve created more than 400 bestsellers in the past 20 years. See http://www.bookmarket.com/bests.htm.
8. New standards are here for submitting info to booksellers. You need ONIX compliant data. Get familiar with it. This information allows retailers to pull up information immediately about your book.
ONIX for Books is an XML format for storing and sharing bibliographic data pertaining to both traditional books and eBooks.
ONIX Users Directory: http://www.bisg.org/what-we-do-21-140-onix-users-directory.php
9. What was your strength can become your weakness. For example, New York publishers depend on chains and have almost lost touch with the independents.
10. Make no little plans, because they have no power to move the hearts of men and women. So many books are published that don’t come to their potential because the publisher didn’t have the confidence. Let your vision shine through. Don’t let the media sell you short.
Seth Godin always has interesting points to make. In his blog, he made the following point, one that I've been trying to get through to people for a very long time:
“The art of marketing is not finding more money to do more marketing. It's figuring out how to tell a story that spreads with the resources you've got.”
So many self-publishers and new authors want to throw money at marketing or hire someone else to do the marketing for them when they should be spending the time creating great stories. By great stories, I mean, marketing messages that move people, get people talking, get people telling others about your story, etc.
Before you do anything else to market your book, decide what your story is - what message will move people to act.
“Someone once asked me how much I made for my first Guerilla Marketing book. The answer I gave was $10 million. The book itself only paid me about $35,000 in royalties, but the speaking engagements, spinoff books, newsletters, columns, bootcamps, consulting, and wide open doors resulted in the remaining $9,965,000”
- Jay Conrad Levinson, author, Guerilla Marketing series
Book Marketing 105: Choosing a Book Distribution System - This vital mini-guide includes criteria for deciding how you will distribute your books. Also includes complete information on 30 distributors, 4 library distributors, 89 book publishers who also distribute for other publishers, 3 sales representatives to the chains, 27 bookstore wholesalers, 34 library wholesalers, and 23 Spanish-language wholesalers. Plus a sample book distribution contract. Ebook download, $30.00.
RadioPRGuy.com: http://www.radioprguy.com - When you decide that you're ready to start dealing with radio stations directly, get Alex Carroll's program. His top radio show database, tapes of dealing with producers, and examples of actual talk shows will help you to become a radio talk show star.
VideoTrafficGuys.com: http://www.videotrafficguys.com - A wonderful way to get top rankings in Google and other search engines as well as a lot more traffic. These guys make it easy to use video to drive traffic. Fantastic resource.