7 November, 2014

Is the book dead?

By |2023-06-09T11:16:22-07:00November 7, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing, News|Comments Off on Is the book dead?

My friend and client at Wheatmark Frank Babb recently sent me the link to this thought-provoking essay in The Economist.

As the article notes, people have been predicting the death of the book—and even the death of reading itself—for more than a decade.

I’m not so sure about that, but one thing is certain: there are more books being published now than ever before!

According to Bowker, around 8,100 ISBNs were issued in 1960… compared to around 1.4 million in 2013!

That’s a lot of books—and that doesn’t even include all the self-published books that the author didn’t get an ISBN for.

Suffice it to say that the competition for readers is fiercer than ever!

That’s why it’s so important to invest in training programs like the Authors Academy and attend live, in-person events whenever you can.

Knowledge (and it’s application) is your greatest asset as an author.

I’ll be presenting on Choosing a Publishing Service […]

12 October, 2014

A social media site that costs nine thousand dollars to join?

By |2023-06-09T11:16:58-07:00October 12, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing, Social Media|Comments Off on A social media site that costs nine thousand dollars to join?

A social media site for the 1%? No, this isn’t a joke. It’s real!

You can check out the article about it here.

I didn’t link to this article just to shock you, or to piss you off.

(Though if you’re signing up for the site as others are reading this, I tip my hat to you, Richie Rich!)

I linked to this article to remind you of the incredible power of targeted marketing.

This is marketing that is targeted at a particular audience—not just “everybody.”

“My book is for everybody,” authors say to me.

No, it’s not.

Every book has an ideal target audience, an “avatar reader.”

This is the kind of person who would buy your book based on the title alone.

For example: The Rich Person’s Guide to Social Media—How to Keep the 99% from Cluttering Up Your Online Feeds

Or: The Thrifty Buyer’s Guide to Coupon Clipping—Save an Average of $20 Every Time You Visit the […]

25 September, 2014

Can a book change your life for the worse?

By |2023-06-09T11:17:13-07:00September 25, 2014|Marketing, Publishing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on Can a book change your life for the worse?

Last week we discussed life-changing books.

For most people, that means “life-changing for the better.”

But is it possible for a book to change your life for the worse?

This article from the Sunday Book Review in The New York Times considers the question.

For my part, I love the idea that a book can be a bad influence—just like it can be a good influence.

I also happen to believe that it’s true!

But that’s not what this article got me thinking about, which is the subject of influence itself.

Books are perhaps the most influential media out there.

They can convince people to dress up like characters on Halloween (and on other days, too.)

They can convince people to make major lifestyle changes, like changing their diets or beginning an exercise program.

They can convince people to drop everything and go on a spiritual quest.

They can even start wars.

There’s just one problem: most of the time, you […]

16 September, 2014

“Never have so many said so little to so few”

By |2023-06-09T11:17:31-07:00September 16, 2014|Authors Academy, Marketing|Comments Off on “Never have so many said so little to so few”

A lot of people would have you believe that blogging is passé, or even dead. They think if you’re not on the “bleeding edge” of technology, you’re wasting your time.

“Never have so many said so little to so few,” they say. And they have a point: many, many people’s blogs are read by their family and close friends only.

Is blogging dead? No, but writing a boring blog is!

You may have noticed that we’ve been playing with a new format here at Wheatmark for the last couple of days.

That’s because I just attended a GKIC Fast Implementation Bootcamp in Tempe last week.

Dave Dee, one of my mentors, taught a course on email marketing that was just incredible… but when I got home and reviewed my notes, I realized I’d already learned these exact same techniques… four years ago!

I just hadn’t bothered to implement what I’d learned.

The moral of the story? You’ve […]

12 August, 2014

Don’t Sweat Those One-Star Reviews

By |2023-06-09T11:17:54-07:00August 12, 2014|Marketing, Resources|Comments Off on Don’t Sweat Those One-Star Reviews

I read Light in August by William Faulkner when I was in high school and remember not being able to put it down. It was unlike anything I had read before. The story was so dark. All of the characters led such bleak alienated lives in the unforgiving society of the rural deep South in the 1930s. Faulkner opened a window for me onto a place, time, and people that I was unfamiliar with, and I couldn’t look away. The disorganized narrative style was also new and interesting to me—like some new kind of atonal music.

Out of curiosity I went to Goodreads to see what current readers thought of the book. I was surprised to find 662 one-star reviews, with 7% of readers giving the book one or two stars. This for a book that is always included in any list of the best novels of the […]

25 July, 2014

6 simple steps for authors to find Twitter followers

By |2023-06-09T11:18:29-07:00July 25, 2014|Marketing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on 6 simple steps for authors to find Twitter followers

One of the easiest ways for you to build your digital author platform is with Twitter. Using simple search techniques you can find people who are actively engaged in your niche. Since they are already using Twitter, once you make a connection, you can be assured that some of them will help you spread your reach even further across the Internet.

As you set out to establish your online identity as an author or future author, it’s important to start building your Twitter followers as soon as possible. Maybe all you have come up with is the title for a book. As long as you have a basic idea of your niche, you can start making important connections on Twitter.

To get started, here are six ways to add followers:

1. Start by simply letting Twitter search your email address book and show you people on Twitter you already know. You may have […]

30 June, 2014

It’s time to sell your book!

By |2023-06-09T11:18:55-07:00June 30, 2014|Marketing, Resources|Comments Off on It’s time to sell your book!

Once a book is published, the first time author may think the job is done. Unfortunately, there is still a lot more to do!

It’s time to switch from your author hat to your marketing one!

You may have heard that the best time to begin marketing your book is day one. Building a following does take time. But it doesn’t mean that it is too late to start marketing at any point in the publishing process. In fact, you can market a book that is years old and still find success if you apply yourself with enthusiasm and hard work.

This article is about creating the right mindset for selling your book. If you love meeting people, talking to crowds and have no problem with meeting strangers, you may think that selling your book will be easier than someone who would rather stay in the background. Surprisingly, though, with all the many […]

17 June, 2014

An Amazing Resource: FriendsPlus.Me

By |2023-06-09T11:19:14-07:00June 17, 2014|Marketing, Resources|Comments Off on An Amazing Resource: FriendsPlus.Me

Recently, we’ve been emphasizing Google+ and its versatility. Here’s another reason to start using Google+ immediately.

FriendsPlus.Me allows you to post an update or picture on Google+ and automatically have that post appear on your other social media accounts. Go to and connect your Google+ account. Then, choose which social media sites—Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or Tumblr—you’d like to repost to. You can also select whether you’d like your Google+ posts to be immediately reposted on other sites or schedule a specific date and time. You could even pick a time of day when there will be more traffic on a social media site and increase your engagement with followers. Posting a picture? No problem. FriendsPlus.Me will include the picture at an optimal size when it gets reposted on Facebook or Twitter.

The main goal in using FriendsPlus.Me is to start interacting regularly on Google+, instead of spending all of your […]

16 June, 2014

How to create a strong social media profile as an author

By |2023-06-09T11:19:22-07:00June 16, 2014|Marketing, Resources, Social Media|Comments Off on How to create a strong social media profile as an author

Part of a successful digital author platform is a consistent brand image and active participation in several relevant social media networks such as Facebook or Goodreads.

Your personal brand should be consistent across every platform. This means you use the same name, colors, images, and biography for each account. For example, you don’t want to use your name on Facebook and the title of your book as your Instagram account.

If you plan to write more than one book, it is especially a good idea to go with your personal brand and get your name out there instead of just your book’s title. This personal brand will carry you through different book titles, speaking engagements, book tours, and other projects that will happen during your entire writing career.

For your author website, choose a domain name that has your name in it., and not one that is your book title. Then make sure […]

30 May, 2014

Want 15% of $26,000,000?

By |2023-06-09T11:20:20-07:00May 30, 2014|Marketing, Resources|Comments Off on Want 15% of $26,000,000?

We’ve all received advance-fee fraud emails claiming that if we just allow the deposed King of Tannu Tuva to deposit $26,000,000 into one of our bank accounts temporarily, we’ll be able to keep 15%. At some later point we’ll be asked to lend $5,000 (the advance fee) very temporarily to allow the transaction to go forward. Ever wonder why the fraudsters don’t make these emails more believable? Why they claim to be from Nigeria when most people (correctly or incorrectly) believe that Nigeria’s the source of most scam emails? Why they don’t tell less farcical stories about why they need our help? Why they offer such absurdly large amounts of money for otherwise readily available, inexpensive banking services?

Because they only want to get responses from the very gullible. They want the somewhat gullible to weed themselves out, so the scammers don’t have to waste months in email and phone conversations […]


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