Saturday, May 7, 2022

Can Authors Get What They Want?



Do you think that the people you solicit, as an author, want to say no or yes?

Authors, if you are to even have a chance at mild success, will need to ask many, many people  questions in which they need a certain number of yes responses.

People that you ask for hep may genuinely want to help others, but things block them:

* They misunderstand what is demanded of them.
* They think it takes too much time or money to help you.
* They don’t feel inspired to go out of their way.
* They don’t believe they will be repaid in kind.
* They are in a bad mood or tired when you ask them.

You just need to be persistent, reach far and wide, remain optimistic, and show resilience in the face of no.

My mantra: No is a delayed yes.

In time, some of those whom deny or ignore your request for help, will come around. Ask again. Ask differently. Give a different ask.

Here are the popular questions most authors will ask, repeatedly:

* To literary agents: Will you represent my book to publishers?
* To book publishers: Will you publish my book?
* To bookstore owners: Will your store carry my book?
* To consumers: Will you buy my book?
* To the media: Will you interview me?
* To anyone online: Will you read my blog or social media post? Will you share it?
* To bloggers: May I guest post on your blog?
* To consumers: Will you post a book review?
* To organizations/conferences: May I speak at your event?
* To friends and family: Can you do me a favor?

So how do you get people to say yes to anything?

Well, the smaller the ask, the easier it is to get a yes. Ask for something that benefits you but costs another little by way of time, money, mindshare, or physical obligation.

It is a numbers game. Ask more people, more often, for more things, and you are bound to get yesses. Don’t worry about your sales close rate — the percentage of asks that yields a yes — and zero in on the quantity of yesses obtained.

Of course, if you can show a mutual benefit, a win-win situation, all the better. Explain what they will get for saying yes.

Some will say yes out of guilt, obligation, or to repay a favor.

Some will say yes in order to stock up on a favor to be used down the road.

A few will do so because it makes them feel good to help you — or to further a value, message, or cause that they believe in.

With some, start out with a big ask, hoping to get lucky. If not, counter with an achievable ask.

For those who say yes to what you propose, follow back by scaling up the ask or seeing if they can offer additional help.

Be ready to beg, trade, or pay for what you need to get done.

Anyone you ask something of, whether they say yes or not, ask for a referral or suggestion as to whom else you can approach to get what you need or want.

Once you get some yesses, your confidence builds and you start to do better. Further, people like to see that others have recognized you as worthy of being helped. For instance, few want to be the first to give you a review or media coverage. They like to follow the leads of others.

Your goal is to find out what will work with whom to get a yes out of them. Keep at it, daily, until you establish a foundation that can start to generate tangible results.



Please Contact Me For Help

Brian Feinblum, the founder of this award-winning blog, can be reached at He is available to help authors promote their story, sell their book, and grow their brand. He has 30 years of experience in successfully helping thousands of authors in all genres.


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About Brian Feinblum

Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2022. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This blog, with over 4,000 posts over the past decade, was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” For the past three decades, including 21 as the head of marketing for the nation’s largest book publicity firm, and two jobs at two independent presses, Brian has worked with many first-time, self-published, authors of all genres, right along with best-selling authors and celebrities such as: Dr. Ruth, Mark Victor Hansen, Joseph Finder, Katherine Spurway, Neil Rackham, Harvey Mackay, Ken Blanchard, Stephen Covey, Warren Adler, Cindy Adams, Susan RoAne, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Godin, and Henry Winkler. He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and has spoken at ASJA, IBPA, Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post. He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult: 

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