Last night I attend AuthorU‘s latest event. We met at the Tattered Cover bookstore in Lodo and Dr. Judith Briles taught us about book signings and how to get more book sales in general. It was a great evening packed full of good content as usual, and below I am sharing the highlights for you. Note, this same information can absolutely be for non-authors too – building a platform is critical no matter what you do or what product you sell.
(Learn more about AuthorU.org)
9 Keys to Be a Successful Author and Entrepreneur
- Study Others – In this day and age, with so many successful authors and entrepreneurs before us, we don’t need to reinvent the wheel. Find out who is successful in your industry and really study them. Who are they, what are they doing, what products do they have, how often do they communicate with their followers, what are they saying on social media, etc. Then either do the work yourself or hire someone to help you implement these action steps (but with your spin on it – at least that’s what I do).
- Build Relationships – Hang out with people who are doing what you want to do. Surround yourself with people who challenge you and inspire you to be your greatest self. As a budding entrepreneur seven years ago my mentor always told me to “Study the Next Step” – bet your bottom dollar I will always do that. It cuts your learning curve in half!
- Build Lists – Yes, it’s about the numbers. More than the numbers – in my opinion – it’s about the relationship you build with your list (or better named “followers” or “community”). However, you want high numbers that you have a good connection with. You must have a solid list-building strategy to be successful as an online entrepreneur or as an author. If you don’t know how to make a list-building strategy, then get help from someone who does (Amber: politely raises hand).
- Market to Lists – It’s up to YOU to market, not just as an entrepreneur, but especially as an author. One of the largest misconceptions is that publishers or bookstores will market your book for you. YOU need to market YOU. That’s why you need a rockin’ website, a big following, and products to sell. There’s even a strategy involved in marketing to make sure you are making the very most out of your time in the spotlight.
- Offer Free Stuff – If you want to sell more, or build your following, you must offer free product incentives that address your audience’s problems and help people improve their lives. Authors, I know it’s scary to consider, but give your book away for free! Yes, give it away for free but with a string attached. Ask the buyer to buy a copy and give it away to their friend. The money will come as you get more in the spotlight, but when you are starting you need to generate a lot of interest by getting your content out into the world.
- Create Joint Ventures – You want to partner with people who have a big following and similar interests. You want to spend time building those relationships and when the time is right, you can invite them to sign up for your affiliate program to sell your products and programs to their list. Setting up an affiliate program is not as scary as you’d think – you just need someone who knows about how to set them up and maximize their success (Amber: politely raises hand). Click for 4 key insights on, “Aligning with Promotional Partners to Gain Exposure, Share Your Message and Make More Money Online“
- Build Profit Streams – Judith talked about being engaged with radio, TV, teleseminars, webinars, article syndication. The key is “access.” You want to be on multiple media types to make sure you’re accessing the widest audience. The same goes for social media – this is why you want to be on Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, etc. Be accessible and have products to sell. A super cool thing about being an author is that your book is FULL of great content. All you need to do is create a content and product strategy based on the material you’ve already written. Repurpose it, go deeper on topics, develop the product and charge for it.
- Create a Plan of Action – Everyone is different, so everyone needs their own unique plan of action to build their online platform, sell more books, make a profit, impact more people, etc. Imagine how easy your life would be if someone created a list-building, product development and marketing strategy *just for you.* Wouldn’t it be SO easy to just go out and follow it, and hire someone to do the things you didn’t want to do? Well guess what? It can be that easy! I make and follow a strategic plan and I’ve seen great success not just in my company, but for my clients as well. I invite you to get a plan in place!
- Use Bookstores and the Internet – Authors, you must get yourself out there. Make connections with your local bookstores, take advantage of the online world. Never before have you had such an EASY opportunity to access reads all around the world. Yes, I even said EASY! All you really need is a plan – a schedule – and to get it done. I know you are a doer – that’s how you were able to finish your book or start your business or create your website etc. You CAN DO this. You can be successful and get your message out to millions.
My most fun takeaway from last night: Judith said, “You must understand when your time arrives.”
Is it your time? Will you make the conscious choice to make a plan and execute it?
If you’re ready to commit to your success, share this article on your Facebook or Twitter wall – just click the share button at the top of this post (or just below) and say,
“It is my time and I make the conscious choice to be successful.”