Q: What would you tell other authors about how to be a successful bookseller?
A: Through an online opt-in email blast strategy, I brought my book to the #1 spot in Wedding Showers, on Amazon.com. And that, I must say, was a fundamental factor that afforded my book an essential credibility boost. Indeed I was elated to add the bestseller distinction to my name—and I was thrilled to sell a few hundred books in one day! However I soon realized that bestseller day was exactly that—a launch—a jumping off point. Now, how to effectively leverage my new Bestseller Status to it’s utmost advantage? How to use this distinction to catapult from selling a few hundred books on Amazon to becoming a true, six figure-income author? Back to the drawing board.
I embarked on a journey to learn as much as I could about selling through non-traditional methods that had little to do with bookstore sales. I learned that corporations are often interested in using books as premium incentives to give to their customers or simply as gifts to their employees. I got 1-800-flowers to give me a coupon code via a full page add in the back of the book. I contacted several corporations and currently have interest from major players such as David’s Bridal, JC Penney, and Bed Bath & Beyond.
By this time, I was getting more and more interested in (cough) (obsessed with) book marketing, so I decided to take a leap of faith, and signed up to attend a publicity event in New York City. However, at this event, I met producers from over 100 national TV and radio shows, and over fifty book marketing agents, distributors and publishers. Here’s what I learned at the conference:
The biggest hurtle is not writing a book—it’s what you do after the book that is what is the most significant.
Q: So, what are some other ways can an author’s use their books to create income?
A: Here are just a few things that an author can do to leverage authorship and create great wealth:
- You can use your book as a networking tool (a book is more powerful than any business card you could create).
- You can sell your book to organizations and corporations in bulk.
- You can use a book to brand your business. It will help you acquire customers, and create hi-favorability among them. You are now perceived as an expert.
- It will make you a darling of the media. Whenever there is a high profile story going on, you can pitch yourself and you can provide your expertise.
- You can publish a newsletter and turn your computer into an ATM machine! You can send out one email, and if you have something of value to offer them, you can instantly generate thousands of dollars in sales. You will become a trusted guest, not an unwanted pest! An e-zine and a book can do that and you can build a list of trusted followers that love you.
- You can become a speaker! There are countless organizations who are looking for speakers everyday. You can speak at seminars, workshops, on cruise ships, conventions, churches, universities, etc. Having a book gives you expert status. Speaker fees range from free, to the average of $2-5,000/speech, and the higher paid speakers make upwards of $50-100,000 for a keynote speech. (Of course you need to understand that you really want to have a desire to give and to teach and not just sell.)
- You can use your book to develop a product line. (For example, Robert Kiyosaki wrote the book Rich Dad Poor Dad to sell his game, Cash Flow. He made about $40,000 on the book in the first year, but over 1 million dollars selling the game which retails at $195. He also sells coaching programs and a mentoring program.)
- You can write articles and create lots of traffic to your site. As you are positioning yourself as an expert, you can submit articles to countless places on the web and gain a buzz about your biz.
As an author, you are now in the business of marketing. However, you have to have a clear vision and a strong desire to genuinely help people. For example, my vision is to create more harmony among mothers and daughters-in-law world-wide, as well as inspire others to follow their dreams through writing and self-publishing a book.