As you plan an upcoming vacation, you probably give it a lot of forethought. First, given your budget and schedule, you would choose the destination and dates. Then you would decide the price range for the hotels, restaurants and attractions you would prefer. Then you would make reservations at specific places and be on your way. That is the same sequence of events you incur when planning to sell your book.
Every publisher wants to increase book sales through bookstores. However, sales through other retail outlets can also increase the volume and velocity of your revenue. These include discount stores, airport stores, supermarkets, gift shops, specialty stores, pharmacies and many others. Each of these segments has a pre-ordained distribution network, and you must work within that structure to get your book on the stores’ shelves.
How does your book get to retailers—including bookstores? There are several critical distribution factors that cannot be missed. Your choice of distribution channels and partners can be the critical difference in your success. Discover how you can avoid the top 24 mistakes most untrained authors make.
What makes a book a winner? There are several critical factors that cannot be missed. Discover how you can avoid the top mistakes most untrained authors make.
- Successful marketing starts with a high-quality book. Use professional designers and copy editors, even if you have a relative or friend who can do it less expensively. Good marketing will kill a bad book quickly.
- Find a need and fill it. Your content should address a market need. A conversation that begins “I read about a new trend…” will usually yield a better product than will a conversation beginning,” I saw a great manuscript today.”
Much of the discussion about Steve Jobs’s biography centers on his management style, or lack thereof. But after reading the book, I found information that is relevant to the publishing industry. I will offer my interpretations of Steve Jobs’s philosophies and actions as they could apply to book publishing in two parts.
The most expensive part of publishing is a mistake. If you can avoid the most common traps into which unsuccessful publishers fall, you increase your chance of success significantly. You may be on the right path to publishing success… but heading in the wrong direction. Let these tips be your GPS to becoming more profitable.
- There is no “one way” to market a book. There is no formula for book-publishing success. Learn what works best for you and your circumstances, create your plan and then give it your best effort.
- Understand marketing. Marketing is a process that begins with recognizing the needs of your potential customers, and then moves to developing, pricing distributing and promoting products and services to build profits by creating and expanding demand.
- Know your target reader. No book is saleable to “everybody who likes [your topic].” Use a PAR (Problem-Action-Result) statement to define the typical reader as carefully as possible in terms of gender, income, age, education and shopping preferences. This will help you focus your marketing activities.
When you first publish, nobody has heard of the author or the book, so your initial promotion is the key to success. But if you focus only on social media you will miss many opportunities to reach prospective buyers. An assorted, persuasive and targeted promotional mix should maximize your sales, revenue and profits.
Promotion can use up your money faster than any other marketing tool. Use it wisely and your investment will pay off maximum dividends. These tips will show you how to do that:
- 26. Sell your book as a premium. A premium is an item the recipient is given for doing something or buying something, i.e., a free gift—your book— in conjunction for your action.
- 27. Sell your book as an incentive. An incentive is something that you earn. It requires that you do something extra in order to deserve or be given that item. It is usually something of considerable value to the potential recipient – such as a coffeetable book.
An energized Publishing Business Conference and Expo, Book Business and Publishing Executive magazines’ annual event at the Times Square Marriott Marquis, March 19-21, was grounded in optimism and realism, and primed for a promising future in the digital age for book manufacturing and print-based book production.
Addressing the overflow audience at the Marriott's Astor Ballroom, our very own Joan of Arc at the ramparts, Editorial Director Noelle Skodzinski—fully armed with the arguments of comon sense and history to support her—sounded a much-needed balancing and defiant keynote to prevailing “stiff upper lip” scenarios about the decline of the publishing industry. She reminded us, paraphrasing from both Monty Python and the Holy Grail and the Encyclopedia Britannica blog’s notice that it had discontinued its venerable print edition, that publishing is not dead, change is okay, and that the future is alive with new opportunities in our pursuit of continued success and excellence in the publishing business.
Recently Barnes & Noble announced that it would not sell books in its brick and mortar store that are published by Amazon’s new print publishing division. Shortly after this, Books-a-Million, Canada’s largest bookseller Indigo Books and Music and the American Booksellers Association also announced that they were joining the boycott.
These are, indeed, interesting times we live in. Have you ever heard of an instance like this? In ANY industry? Competitor B launches a boycott of competitor A, paints it as being for the good of the industry, and gets support from other competitors? Not I.
Book Business' own Eugene G. Schwartz was on the scene at the third annual Digital Book World Conference. He filed this comprehensive report from the proceedings.
Attendees at the third annual Digital Book World Conference heard reports that while publishers are in fact healthy and thriving in the new digital age, a lot more work is needed to let go of the habits of the past and live in the new interactive, multi-platform and vertically patterned business world of the future.
The cohort of newly minted consultants in attendance—emerging out of downsizing and transformation—are witness to their price as well as their opportunities.