Marketing

26 01, 2015

Tips for Successful Blogging

By |2018-03-29T11:09:22-07:00January 26, 2015|Marketing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on Tips for Successful Blogging

As the marketing specialist for Wheatmark, I have the privilege to work alongside many authors as they take their first steps into the unfamiliar world of blogging and social media. For those individuals with little to no experience in this area, this step toward marketing themselves can feel rather daunting and unattainable. This feeling, however, is not unordinary. Maintaining a blog and staying committed to promoting your brand takes a great deal of effort, but having a persistent attitude and an openness to learning will allow you to be more successful in the long run.

I recently stumbled across an article with a list of valuable tips to help you become a successful blogger. Out of the 19 tips provided, here are five that I believe are the most useful:

1. Make sure you have an About page that represents who you are and what you do.
Who you are is entirely unique, […]

5 01, 2015

New Year’s Resolutions…and a pretty neat trick

By |2018-03-29T11:09:22-07:00January 5, 2015|Authors Academy, Marketing, Publishing|Comments Off on New Year’s Resolutions…and a pretty neat trick

It’s that time of year again… time to resolve to finally get those things done that somehow, we’ve failed to achieve every year prior to date.

For some, it might be losing weight.

For others, it might be getting their books finished and ready for publication.

Still others might finally be ready to make some progress on their marketing.

The problem is: everyone knows that most resolutions are broken by February, if they even last that long.

How do you ensure that you follow through on your resolutions?

Today I’m going to share a neat trick that I learned from one of my mentors, marketing legend John Carlton.

John’s trick is simple, but profound: sit down and write a letter to yourself, but date it January 1, 2016.

That’s right: one year from now.

In the letter, write down all that you have accomplished this year—that is, in the year to come.

Of course, you’ll write it in the […]

3 01, 2015

5 Things Your Author Website Should Do

By |2018-03-29T11:09:22-07:00January 3, 2015|Authors Academy, Marketing, Social Media|Comments Off on 5 Things Your Author Website Should Do

I could have titled this article “Five Things Your Author Website Should Have” instead of “Five Things Your Author Website Should Do.”

And it would have been a very different article.

When we market our message or services, it is a very common error for us to think in terms of features instead of benefits. It does not matter how many bells and whistles your website has if they aren’t doing anything in terms of accomplishing your website’s goals.

Does your website have goals? A reason to exist? If you’re asking the question, What should my website do? you’ll be closer to thinking in terms of goals than if you’re asking, What should my website have?”

Only you can come up with a goal for your website, but I’m listing five below that you should consider.

1. Establish or solidify your credibility as an author or expert in your niche.

What would communicate this goal to […]

15 12, 2014

My Book Got Optioned. Here’s What Happened.

By |2018-03-29T11:09:23-07:00December 15, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing, Resources|Comments Off on My Book Got Optioned. Here’s What Happened.

I came across this article in The Chronicle of Higher Education and thought I’d forward it on to you.

As many of you know, I was a screen-writer in my former life, so I can really relate to this piece.

I was working in the indie world, and, since we’d arranged our own financing, my first professional writing gig was made into a finished film.

We sold it to a number of foreign TV markets, and landed several domestic DVD deals.

Yes, this was a “straight-to-video” project—domestically, at least.

But at least we got it made, and then got it out there.

To get a film or TV project made, you need to have three ingredients:

1. Material to develop
2. Access to distribution
3. Financing (money)

In my case, we had all three. But if you’ve written a book, you’ve got number one above covered, too.

That means all you need is numbers two and three, and you’re good […]

9 12, 2014

It ain’t over

By |2018-03-29T11:09:23-07:00December 9, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing|Comments Off on It ain’t over

2014 is coming to an end.

In fact, for some folks, the year is already over.

They figure: if it ain’t done by now, it ain’t gonna get done!

I don’t agree with that philosophy, though. Not at all.

You see, while many people essentially take six weeks off between Thanksgiving and New Years, successful people recognize that this period is ripe with opportunity.

Take the example of marketing your books.

Many authors are racing to implement some tactics quickly to “get the word out” about their books, thinking that this is their best chance to generate some meaningful sales.

It’s the holidays, after all… which means people are buying things, right?

But as Jim Best discussed with me on last month’s Authors Academy call, all the work he does to generate his impressive holiday sales comes BEFORE the holidays!

(Jim’s sold more than 70,000 copies of his books to date, so he knows what he’s talking about.)

One of […]

2 12, 2014

The A-Myth

By |2018-03-29T11:09:23-07:00December 2, 2014|Marketing, Publishing, Writing|Comments Off on The A-Myth

Wheatmark’s Sam Henrie wrote in a previous post about The E-Myth Revisited by Michael E. Gerber, one of the most important business books I’ve read, which helped me look at business in a completely different way.

Working on the business is quite different than working in the business. Just because you love cooking and everybody says you should open a restaurant doesn’t mean it’s a good idea. Being a great chef at your own restaurant might still mean doing a terrible job running the business and hating it. Michael E. Gerber talks about how business owners ought to view themselves not as technicians (chefs, dance instructors, editors, widget makers) but as marketers and savvy businesspeople. He exhorts entrepreneurs to become experts at making the business of their trade work better instead of getting caught in the daily whirlwind of working in the business. The e-myth is simply the […]

21 11, 2014

Did you hear what I heard?

By |2016-07-18T14:37:15-07:00November 21, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing|Comments Off on Did you hear what I heard?

I’m going to go out on a limb and say that Wednesday’s Authors Academy call was one of our best ever!

Jim Best totally blew me away with his insight and his experience marketing his books.

Jim’s sold 70,000 copies to date… so he knows of what he speaks.

His closing thought was that first and foremost, your book has to be good.

Otherwise, you can’t get the power of word-of-mouth marketing working for you.

Jim’s books happen to be great—and they make great gifts!

You can check out his entire catalog here.

I recommend starting with The Shopkeeper—it’s lots of fun.

Meanwhile, you can definitely file the interview under “can’t-miss.”

But only Authors Academy members have access to the recording of this call to review on-demand.

If you’re not a member, give yourself a much-deserved early holiday gift by clicking here.

If you’re at all serious about selling copies of your book, you’d be just plain nuts to […]

14 11, 2014

How to Sell 1,000 Books during the Holiday Season

By |2018-03-29T11:09:23-07:00November 14, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing|Comments Off on How to Sell 1,000 Books during the Holiday Season

How would you like to sell 1,000 copies of your book during the upcoming holiday season?

I know I would!

Next week in the Authors Academy I’ll be interviewing James D. Best, author of the Steve Dancy series of westerns including his latest, Jenny’s Revenge, scheduled for release in February.

Jim’s sold more than 70,000 copies of his books to date, which includes a few one-off titles in addition to his extremely popular westerns.

Jim published the first Steve Dancy tale, The Shopkeeper, back in 2007.

He was a complete unknown at the time, having published only one book previously. The Shopkeeper was his first work of fiction.

His book sold reasonably well at launch, but his initial sales tapered off after a bit—he’d reached the end of his existing platform.

Most authors give up at that point, figuring they’ve sold as many as they’re going to.

Not Jim. He went to work, and by the following Christmas, […]

12 11, 2014

It’s the end of the bookselling world as we know it

By |2018-03-29T11:09:23-07:00November 12, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing|Comments Off on It’s the end of the bookselling world as we know it

… and I feel fine!

This article (sent to me by client and friend Byron Thompson) predicts the demise of publishers at the hands of retailers like Amazon and Apple.

Meanwhile, this article predicts the decline of—you guessed it—retailers like Amazon and Apple, at least when it comes to selling books and other media like music.

These types of articles sometimes make us wring our hands and fret: what, oh what, are we to do?

How will we ever survive without NY publishers… or even worse, without retailers like the mighty Amazon and the amazing Apple?

I think there’s nothing to worry about, and let me tell you a story that illustrates my thinking why:

Back when I was in middle school, I loved reading Michael Crichton sci-fi thrillers like Congo, The Andromeda Strain, and Sphere.

This was around the time when the first Jurassic Park movie came out.

One time, I remember being so wrapped […]

10 11, 2014

What has Tom Hanks got that you don’t?

By |2016-07-18T14:52:01-07:00November 10, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing, Publishing, Social Media|Comments Off on What has Tom Hanks got that you don’t?

I came across this article this weekend.

It’s about how Tom Hanks got his first piece of short fiction published… in The New Yorker.

Now, in case you aren’t already aware of this, getting a short story published in The New Yorker is pretty much the ultimate accomplishment for a writer.

Many authors submit stories for months, or years, or even decades… and never get their work published.

But not Tom Hanks. Did I mention that this was his first published short story?

What exactly has Tom Hanks got that you don’t?

“Duh, Grael,” you’re probably saying to yourself. “He’s Tom Hanks!”

My point exactly.

Tom Hanks is a famous actor, so he’s able to get his fiction published by The New Yorker his first time out.

What this phenomenon refers to is the idea of “platform,” which Tom Hanks most certainly has.

The New Yorker knows that publishing Tom Hanks’ fiction will help sell magazines.

They know people will […]