Follow by Email

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

10 Ways To Sell Books Despite Technological Challenges




Can a book sell a lot of copies when it doesn’t exist in print?  Can a book sell a ton of copies without retailing in a physical bookstore?  Can a book be a best-seller without having a publisher?  Can a book that got negative reviews or lacked sales become a movie?

The answer to each of these questions, in 2018, is YES. Welcome to a new era in book publishing.

So how does one promote in this environment, where there are new ways to sell books, promote them, and market an author’s brand?

With all of this change in the media, retail and publishing industries, how does today’s author plot a course for success?  

Technology continually turns things upside down, to the point that books can be written with the help of a computer – as well as promoted, marketed, and sold.  Soon, maybe robots will create and sell books on their own.

Regardless of all the changes and challenges associated with selling and promoting a book today, let’s focus on the 10 foundational basics that you’ll need to rely on in order to get your book noticed.

1.      Execute a timely, comprehensive, smart book publicity campaign.  Where needed or affordable, enlist the help of a seasoned pro.

2.      Cover the basics – have distribution to bookstores, libraries, and major retail chains.

3.      Make your book available in as many formats as possible – print, e-book, audiobook.

4.      Execute a grass roots campaign – start by directly reaching out locally to stores for signings, libraries for appearances, and organizations or schools for bulk buys.

5.      Have multiple books, products or services to sell so that your efforts to promote or sell one thing can help you sell plenty of things.  For instance, you can promote book X to a radio show or service Y to a TV show or speak at a convention about book Z. People will then check out your website or track down all of your books, products, and services as a result of exposure to your message about one of your offerings.

6.      Give your book to loud-mouths – whether online or in-person.  Find people with big followings and good networks.  They can spread the word about your book.

7.      Think BIG – what stunt or big play can you make that would instantly put you on the map?  Is there an issue in the news that you can insert yourself into?  Is there a big-name celebrity who can endorse your book?  Is there a huge group that will agree to buy large numbers of copies?

8.      Can you speak with confidence and conviction – but act out of a sense of urgency and desperation (without people seeing you as desperate)?  In other words, act like this is the moment you live or die; that you have to see action taken that yields significant results. If you want something, you need to go after it and seize it.  Take it!

9.      Help yourself by helping others. Not only is it a moral quality to have - it can be a strategic advantage.  Help a charity or non-profit, even donating books or sharing proceeds, provided the group can somehow help you get the word out about your book.

10.  Offer your book as a prize or reward.  For instance, give it to a school doing a fundraiser.  Or offer it to parents of kids who come home with an A+ report card.  Or give it to salespeople at companies when they reach a certain sales goals.  Or reward every high school graduate at a school with a copy of your book.  It will make the news and the recipients will talk about it to others.

No matter how books are created, printed, sold or promoted, you can find a way to generate attention and increase sales.  Instead of complaining how the media is shrinking or bookstores are closing, go out there and use your modern-day megaphone to champion you book.

DON”T MISS THESE!!!

How to fix a broken book marketing campaign



Should all authors invest in book marketing or book publicity?



Yes, this is how you get your book reviewed



What is the payoff  for authors to getting a million clicks?



Do you think like a book marketer?



How should authors sell themselves?



The keys to great book marketing



How Authors Can Capture The Media’s Attention



Big Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts



Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released




Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Interview with author Lauren Marino




What Would Dolly Do?
How To Be A Diamond in a Rhinestone World

A Unique Look At Dolly Parton


1.      What really inspired you to write your book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and conveying it into a book? I was inspired to write the book after a rough patch in my own life. I was a fan of hers growing up and then, as an adult, a series of coincidences put her in the forefront of my mind and I had to heed the call. I started to study her and the more I learned about her the more I realized what an incredible person she was. Through all of the books and articles I read, and the songs I listened to and the performances and interviews I watched there were certain themes and an unrelenting positivity that made me want to dig further. She became my role model. In the book I write:

"She gave me hope and reminded me what I was made of at a time when I needed it most through both her song and her example. None of us get out of this life unscathed. We only get one time around, so we need to make the most of it. There's no better example on how to do this than Ms. Dolly Parton. As a result, I find it helpful when faced with a dilemma to ask the question, 'What Would Dolly Do?' and it makes me stand a little taller.'"

I guess you could say I wrote the book for myself and realized that a lot of other people could learn from her too –without having to do all of the research and interpretation that I did.

2. What is it about and whom do you believe is your targeted reader?  Dolly Parton has long been a feminist icon for many, although she would never refer to herself in those terms. She has been one of the most consistently creative and successful fixtures in the public consciousness over more than five decades. She grew up in a two room cabin in the Appalachian Mountains, one of twelve children and she watched her parents work their fingers to the bone. She became an international superstar, a successful businessperson and philanthropist, the epitome of the American Dream. Her unrelenting positivity and belief in everyone’s ability to overcome adversity through grit, faith, a strong work ethic and a big heart lifted her out of her circumstances and she lifted everyone else around her too. I wanted to know how she did it, what motivates her and how she keeps on doing it, at 72 years old. The book is biography, life lessons, and a guide to helping you embrace your own inner Dolly with some beauty tips, recipes, creative and spiritual advice thrown in.
Obviously it is for Dolly fans –who span generations and demographics --but I think it goes well beyond that –to me, she is a strong female role model that we can all learn from, at any stage of life.

3. What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts for readers who finish your book? What should remain with them long after putting it down? One of the great things about Dolly, in addition to her humor, sass, and incredible talent and drive, is her heart. She was bullied growing up and almost dropped out of school because of it. Her father never learned to read or write and she watched him suffer because of that. She was a dreamer, a bit of an outsider. And she took all of the things that were supposed to work against her and made them work for her. And then she gave it all back, not just through her songs, her movies, her joyful and upbeat presence but by becoming one of the world’s biggest literacy advocates with the Imagination Library and as a big believer and supporter of education. She is a huge reader and says that through reading you can self educate and its true. She is also accepting of all people. She chooses love over hate and that is something we definitely need more of in the world.

4. What advice or words of wisdom do you have for fellow writers? That’s a tough one! Keep your head in the clouds but your nose to the grindstone. Figure out your process –which usually means sitting down every day for a few hours and not getting discouraged. Some days you will produce a lot and be in a state of flow and other days nothing good is going to come out. Plan down time with yourself to read other books and to experience life and keep notes. Realize that if you want to make money from your writing you’re going to have to hustle and go out there and sell it. As they say in the music biz, you have to work the record. In the book biz you have to go out there and work the book.

5. What trends in the book world do you see and where do you think the book publishing industry is heading? The industry has changed so dramatically since I started in it in the 90s and it has become so much tougher. On the one hand publishers are under pressure to grow revenue and are anxious to acquire a lot of new projects. The competition is fierce and MBAs and business people –as opposed to creative people –are running the companies. This makes sense on the one hand but it puts a lot on the author to build their own platform and market themselves. And it makes it much tougher to “make” a book or have a surprise success. The conversation changing books –by political figures, thought leaders and groundbreaking experts and those with a huge platform are mainstream publishers’ focus. And self publishing or hybrid or indie publishers will be for everyone else. But there always seems to be this sense that the book industry is on the brink of doom and I just don’t think that’s the case. The media likes to cover it that way but I think it will continue to succeed. Different platforms and business models will evolve to accommodate the huge number of people self publishing or who want to be published but can’t find a literary agent or mainstream/big five publisher. There are opportunities there for those who can think outside of the box.

6. What great challenges did you have in writing your book?  Writing is a solitary endeavor and there are moments of self-doubt, even after the book has been edited and accepted by the publisher. There is always that insecurity that what you have to say isn’t important or won’t be appreciated by people. In those moments I would re-read Dolly’s stories of overcoming adversity or words of wisdom, like “let your determination be stronger than your fear” and it made me stand a little taller.

7. If people can only buy one book this month, why should it be yours? This book is meant to inspire people through the example of Dolly Parton’s life and if you are having a rough time –and eventually we all do –reading this book will give you some perspective, some hope, some laughter and motivate you to make the most of yourself.

8. What lessons can we learn from Dolly Patton’s life?  Don’t be afraid to dream big and then do the planning and hard work to make your dreams happen. Be professional. Find specific time to be creative and to have a spiritual life. Have good people in your life, be loving, make sure you find joy in the simple pleasures, work hard at being happy and take care of your own and give back to others. And always have a good sense of humor!

9. Did people mistakenly see Dolly in a certain way merely because she has a huge chest? Yes, and the Nashville establishment at the time, made up of men, underestimated her because of her appearance and she used that to her advantage because she is whip smart and a shrewd businesswoman. She was frustrated early in her career to have that be the focus rather than her incredible talent as a singer and songwriter but she eventually decided to make it part of the act, saying, “I’m a good sport. I know some of the best Dolly Parton jokes. I made them up myself.”

10. What advice do you have for young women looking to live an empowered career and balanced life? Be intensely focused on your professional endeavors and put in the work but use your time wisely. Be organized and work smart, work for result. And make sure you give yourself down time and enjoy the small –and big –pleasures in life. Have perspective. As Dolly says, “Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life.”

Lauren Marino is the former founding editor and editorial director of Gotham Books, where she published multiple bestsellers and award-winning books. She is the author of Jackie and Cassini and has collaborated with celebrities, doctors, psychologists, entrepreneurs and other experts on their books. She lives in New York City. For more info, please see: Instagram: _what_would_dolly_do_

DON”T MISS THESE!!!
How to fix a broken book marketing campaign

Should all authors invest in book marketing or book publicity?

Yes, this is how you get your book reviewed

What is the payoff  for authors to getting a million clicks?

Do you think like a book marketer?

How should authors sell themselves?

The keys to great book marketing

How Authors Can Capture The Media’s Attention

Big Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts

Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released

Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”






12 Things Authors Must Do To Promote A Book Successfully



Authors who look to conduct a successful book publicity campaign, need to do a lot of things correctly.  Here are 12 steps they must take to even have a chance at raising their brand, increasing book sales, and effectively spreading a positive message:

1. Make a plan for PR, at least six months before the book is scheduled to be published.  To go without a plan is a blueprint for abject failure.

2. Get a good website up -- one with functionality and clean design – at least five months prior to pub date.  Your site is your calling card and the best way to showcase who you are, what your book is about, and how to get in touch with you.

3. Establish your social media accounts today if you haven’t already done so.  Determine which ones you want to be on -- Facebook, You Tube, Pinterest, Twitter, Linked In, Instagram?  Determine a schedule for posting content and for finding new connections and followers.  You have to devote some time to this on a daily basis, if you are sincerely committing to it.

4. Determine – now – if you are a blogger, a podcaster, a videocaster – or none of the above.  If you want to produce content and share it regularly, figure out which site and medium serves you best.  Then stick to it.

5. Figure out if you will hire a professional marketer or publicist to supplement or replace what you should be doing.  Even when you have a publisher that helps you, and even when you take a hands-on approach to this stuff, you can always benefit from the experience, advice, knowledge, and connection of a good professional book publicist or marketer.

6. Develop great press kit materials – multiple press releases, a strong bio, a q and a or list of suggested interview questions, 5-7 book excerpts, relevant facts and stats, byline article ideas, background materials, good video or relevant images, testimonials, and a jpeg of the book’s cover.

7. Get some media coaching.  You don’t want to sound stupid or expose yourself unnecessarily to criticism.  You want someone to function and sharpen your way of presenting a coherent message to the media.

8. Develop your unique selling proposition and elevator speech.  Say what you are about succinctly.  Can you tell people in 20 seconds what your book’s about and identify why you are uniquely qualified to write it?

9. Collaborate with other authors – share information, trade resources, advise each other and lend emotional support to one another.

10. Follow the news cycle and see how you can inject yourself into the conversation.  You can monitor the media by setting up Google Alerts or key phrases and topics that tie into your messages.

11. Identify your book buyer.  Build a profile of this person.  Who would exactly be interested in what you have to say?  Find out where such people gather or get their information from.  Contact media that they consume.

12. Keep an optimistic attitude, an opportunistic mindset, and a confident approach in dealing with the media about your book.  Speak with conviction, smile and stay passionate.

DON”T MISS THESE!!!
How to fix a broken book marketing campaign

Should all authors invest in book marketing or book publicity?

Yes, this is how you get your book reviewed

What is the payoff  for authors to getting a million clicks?

Do you think like a book marketer?

How should authors sell themselves?

The keys to great book marketing

How Authors Can Capture The Media’s Attention

Big Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts

Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released


Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”

Monday, April 23, 2018

Authors Must Embrace An Expanding Media Landscape...

... , Even As Its Influence Shrinks

The news media’s growing in size and yet shrinking in its influence.  Allow me to explain why this is so – and how it impacts coverage of your book.

First off, let me just say that I believe the best way to market or promote a book is to secure media exposure.  You don’t necessarily ignore all other avenues, from speaking and direct sales to advertising and affiliate marketing, but you do need to make media exposure a priority and a central part of your plan.

Second, let’s define what the news media is.  It is traditional media, such as newspapers, newswires, magazines, television, radio, and newsletters.  It’s also digital media – web sites, dot.com side of traditional media, online book reviewers, bloggers, and podcasters.  Author generated blog posts, videos, or podcasts – and Tweets, Facebook posts, and sharing on Instagram or Pinterest -- fall under social media.

So the news media has grown, mainly online, with the number of outlets available to promote or market a book.  Traditional media is shrinking in its influence simply because it’s diluted by the billions of sites one can be visiting.  Sure, The New York Times is very important, but not like what it used to be.  It may even have more readers of its content than ever between print and online – but it no longer dictates the news the way it and just a handful of media outlets used to.  Stories can break anytime, anywhere – and be shared by anyone, anytime, anywhere.

Book publicity has simply gotten harder.  You must cast a wide net and hope for a tiny percentage of those you contact to give coverage to you and your book.  Then you need to keep the momentum up by sharing your earned media via social media or paid media.  It’s a never-ending cycle, a process that requires intelligence, patience, persistence, luck, connections, and savvy.

The other factor in getting news media coverage is your competition for it has grown greatly.  A million new books are released each year.  Plus movies, plays, songs, sporting events, tech products, professional services, politicians, and a zillion other local, national, and international experts, organizations and opportunists are soliciting the media for attention.

So what’s an author to do?

You need to put blinders on and crowd out the obstacles, challenges, and competitors.  Believe in your book message, and self -- but don’t rest on your laurels – go out there and fight for what’s yours.  Act with confidence and vision.  Communicate sincerely, optimistically and with conviction.

The media, no matter its format, size or location still has certain needs and standards that only an authoritative author can fulfill.  Get out there and convince them you deserve coverage and that your book warrants ink, screen time, or air time.  You are as unique as anyone – and your book deserves to stand out from the crowd.  It’s your job to not only write a book, but to promote and sell it.

Do you really believe your book is special?  Go out there and persuade the media, ever-expanding but diluting simultaneously, that you deserve a piece of the pie!

DON”T MISS THESE!!!
Speak with conviction if you want media coverage for your book

Yes, this is how you get your book reviewed

What is your lifetime book publicity campaign strategy?

What is the payoff for authors to getting a million clicks?

How should authors sell themselves?

Do you think like a book marketer?

The keys to great book marketing

How Authors Can Capture The Media’s Attention

Big Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts

Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released


Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Are Books Better Than Life -- Or Do They Make Life Better?




I’ve always been told that one can be optimistic or pessimistic.  But sometimes you can be both or at least what I call a realist with optimism.  You can be hopeful, dream big, and choose to see the good in life and others BUT you must also acknowledge certain realities:

·         We all die.

·         Most of life is filled with taxes, chores, obligations, errands.
·         The odds usually are not in your favor – not at the casino, nor the lottery, nor the big things in life.
·         We live too often in fear, anger and loneliness – and not more in happiness, laughter, and love.
·         Life just doesn’t seem fair or make sense all of the time.

The pessimist assumes the worst – and often finds it.  The optimist blacks out the negatives and pursues the positives, often falling short but feeling better about things than others.  So where does the reality of it really fall into place?

We each operate under our own standards – of what we value, like, and find worth pursuing.  At some point we reflect back and wonder why we didn’t get all that we wanted, why others disappointed us, and why life’s cruelties crept into our world.  Even those who are considered successful by one measure, may fall short by others.  Sometimes it seems the trick to living life is to do so with no expectations, minimal obligations, and to demand little of others.

But we want more from life than to just get by, to merely avoid pain or avoid a problem.  We want to experience joy, perhaps travel, accumulate things, have new experiences, and to expose ourselves to amazing ideas.

Perhaps this is where books come in.  They can self-medicate us.

Writing books is an unbridled pleasure and the act of creating one is addictive and contagious.  As writers, we give a gift to others while we get to experience pure ecstasy.

Reading books is also a wonderful pleasure.  We can experience life safely and get exposed to the harsh realities of life without paying a price, taking a risk, or experiencing pain.  We can also see worlds of possibility, ones that don’t yet exist but in the imagination of other writers. We can live in their world without losing the one we really live in.

Can books, collectively or even singularly, help us understand the true meaning of life?  Can any book provide the wisdom, information and theories that we need in order to straddle a life that’s worth living?

Books allow us a convenient escape but can they lead us to take action and build a real world out of the imagined one? Let’s dream together – and wake up together.

“The difference between the right word and the almost right word is the difference between lightning and a lightning bug.”
--Mark Twain

“I don’t think writers are comfortable in each other’s presence.  We can talk, of course, for five minutes or so, but I don’t think we want to socialize.”
--Joseph Heller

“The good writing of any age has always been the product of someone’s neurosis.”
--William Styron

“This is what I find most encouraging about the writing trades:  They allow lunatics to seem saner than some.”

--Kurt Vonnegut

DON”T MISS THESE!!!

How to fix a broken book marketing campaign



Should all authors invest in book marketing or book publicity?



Yes, this is how you get your book reviewed



What is the payoff  for authors to getting a million clicks?



Do you think like a book marketer?



How should authors sell themselves?



The keys to great book marketing



How Authors Can Capture The Media’s Attention



Big Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts



Enjoy New 2018 Author Book Marketing & PR Toolkit -- 7th annual edition just released



Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at brianfeinblum@gmail.com. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2018. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.”