As an author, publisher, or book marketer you are always looking for ways to sell more books. Could one get strategic advice on how to sell more books by reading a book geared towards professional salespeople who normally battle in the corporate arena? Certainly.
In skimming Target Opportunity Selling: Top Sales Performers Reveal What Really Works by Nicholas AC Read (McGraw-Hill Education), I came across chapter four, which focuses on convincing a potential customer through a 9-step process called “PRECISION.”
Though this work is really geared to help salespeople sell products and services to the corporate C-suite, I distilled his points to be relevant for selling books.
Step 1: Problems
Ask questions about what problems/needs someone has. If you wrote a book related to weight control, you want your potential customer to acknowledge he or she is overweight, has failed to lose weight, and wants to reduce his size.
Step 2: Risks
Next, define the risks that the customer has made to resolve his weight problem or that he may need to make.
Step 3: Effect
Start to identify how you have a solution to his problem that is risk-free.
Step 4: Consequences
Make sure the customer fully understands the consequences of doing nothing or keeping the status quo.
Step 5: Impact Points
Show how one problem leads to others. Sure, being overweight by itself has a disadvantage, but then explain how it impacts your appearance, your relationships, your health, and your abilities.
Step 6: Scope
Convey the scope of the solution they’ll need to attack the problem.
Step 7: Ideas
Ask questions and learn of their ideas and priorities so you can be aware of how to give them a hard sell.
Step 8: Options
Identify what their other options could be, gradually dismissing them or showing their weak points.
Step 9: Needs
Show how your solution is exactly what they need.
By having an engaging conversation with a potential customer you can position your book as the solution to their troubles and do it in a way that sounds factual and logical. In the end, they customer will convince himself of needing your book simply because you got him to discuss the key points that makes him aware he has a need and you have the answer.
Book Excerpt: Uh-Oh, Robert Fulghum
“Questions, actually, that I keep on the front burner of my mental stove. Such as:
How shall I achieve a living balance between the mundane and the holy?
Between humor and grief?
Between what is and what might be?
Between self-concern and concern for the common good?
“Between the worst that I often am and the best I might become?”
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Here is my 2014 Book Marketing & Publicity Toolkit: Based on 20+ years in publishing --
Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Media Connect, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at email@example.com. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2013
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