Questions & John's Answers:
Selling Rights, Etc.

The following are a few of the questions John Kremer has answered during the past four years of writing the free Book Marketing Tip of the Week ezine. Below are a few answers having to do with selling your company or selling rights.


Question: Selling Your Company

What basic and most important advice do you have for someone about selling their publishing company? Good idea or no? Couldn't the buyer just start another one?

John's Answer: If you're not active in marketing your books anymore, you should either sell the company to someone who will be active or you should dissolve the company. If you still love your books and want to continue to market them, then don't sell. Keep marketing.

Sell a company of you have a list of active titles. If you have one or two active titles, then sell the titles, not the company. No one will want the company, but there will be some publishers who would probably love buying and republishing the titles.

If you don't have an active company, no one will be interested in buying it.
They will simply publish similar books under their own company name to reach the same market. Your company will have no value to them.


Question: Foreign Book Distributors

“I am representing a new publishing company here in the U. S., whose first book has just been released. I would like to know what product you have that would help us identify suitable foreign distributors for our first and subsequent titles. Any help you can offer would be gratefully appreciated.” — Robert Rabbin, marketing consultant

John's Answer

Well, gosh, I have just the thing for that. You would want my Foreign Book Distribution report which features 300+ distributors, wholesalers, and sales reps worldwide. Cost: $30.00.

Foreign Book Distributors, Wholesalers, & Sales Reps — This report features more than 345 companies that provide foreign distribution or sales representation. This report also includes a sample foreign distribution contract. $30.00.

For foreign rights sales, see my list of Literary, Foreign, and Sub Rights Agents: 1300 agents, 300 foreign. Cost: $30.00.

Literary, Subsidiary, & Foreign Rights Agents — This Word report includes more than 1,375 literary agents, including 375 agents that sell foreign rights and another 50 or so that handle subsidiary rights sales. This report also includes a sample foreign rights contract. $30.00.


Question: Merchandising Product Rights

“I self-published a book one year ago with Xlibris. Sales are pretty good, but I am now in the process of writing an awesome book proposal and plan to send it to several major traditional publishing houses. I am working on a promotional plan and have a lot of ideas for licensing products that can easily be designed from the book. I have over 10 product ideas.

“My question is this: Writers don't have money. Do I hire a marketing consultant to help me with these products? Or does the publishing house pay for it? Do I have to patent the product or does the publishing house do it? This is where I am confused. Publishing houses are the ones with the money, not the writer, so how does the licensing product line work?”

John's Answer

You do not need to hire a marketing consultant unless you want help selling your product ideas to various companies. Generally speaking, publishers do not patent product ideas taken from books. That is something you should do when you are ready to license the product rights. The same is true for any trademarks. Again, you don't need to do that until you are ready to license rights.

Do not allow the publisher to trademark or patent your ideas. Indeed, if you have great product ideas, you should reserve merchandising or licensing rights when you negotiate the contract with the publisher. The same is true if you have a great series title, such as Chicken Soup for the Soul or the Dummies brand. Be sure the contract you sign with a publisher clearly states that you own the trademark to the series title. To help you with that, you should get a good literary agent and/or intellectual property rights attorney. These merchandising rights could easily be worth more to you than the book itself — but the book will probably be the first thing to help establish the value of those rights.

For a list of intellectual property rights attorneys, see http://www.bookmarket.com/attorneys.htm.

For a list of literary agents that might be able to help you, I sell such a list for only $30.00.

Literary, Subsidiary, & Foreign Rights Agents — This Word report includes more than 1,375 literary agents, including 375 agents that sell foreign rights and another 50 or so that handle subsidiary rights sales. This report also includes a sample foreign rights contract. $30.00.


Copyright © 2010 by bestseller marketing expert John Kremer
Email: JohnKremer@bookmarket.com

Open Horizons, P O Box 2887, Taos NM 87571