The other day I helped market my wife's nutrition practice for the first time. It was 15 years in the making.
She's had a decent nutrition practice going for a while, but she has not marketed herself much beyond creating a basic website and mailing her cards to a handful of area doctors, seeking their referrals. I told her marketing, to be effective, has to be executed consistently, intelligently, and creatively.
I came up with a marketing plan for her, identifying who her target clients are, how to find them, and what to say to them. The first step? She was to put together a mailing list of her past patients. She had no such list but after organizing her files we uncovered 1500 to 2000 names to be entered into a MailChimp list. Nothing beats going back to prior customers and asking them to return or provide referrals.
Next, we expanded her list of doctors, therapists, and counselors who can refer her patients. We put together a sizeable list and pumped out a mailing of letters and business cards to them. Any one of these medical professionals could feed her a patient – or many patients.
Marketing is a simple game. Come up with a plan, craft a message, take action and get it out there. Of course, deliver a great service. Repeat and rinse.
Yes, it's that simple, but mistakes get made: laziness or complacency interferes with progress, and sometimes we just slow down or have an unlucky streak. Marketers must persevere and keep going no matter how many no’s or lack of responses they receive. It is a numbers game: the more contacts you make to more people, the more sales you will earn.
Of course, it’s not just about outreach and following up. You must have a good book, product, or service and offer it at a fair price. Make sure it's readily available. You must be able to deliver your offer in a relevant, inviting, and practical way.
Marking your book is not so different from marketing one’s nutritional services. In both cases, you fill a void or desire. Books do something for or to a reader. Make them realize that as you describe your offering. You could be a jewel to them, providing important advice, useful information, wonderful entertainment, or inspirational wisdom. Highlight the benefits of your offering to as many qualified people as possible.
Step one? Get started, now. Identify a list of people to contact. Crafter a snappy message. Reach out and follow up. Try again, with them, or a different list. Change the message or offering as needed. Seek out feedback and understand why people say yes or no.
You can do this. You have to. Start now.
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org. He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2020. 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.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo.