The Book Marketing Network

For book/ebook authors, publishers, & self-publishers

What's Your Biggest Challenge with Your Book?

I'd be interested to learn what authors/publishers on this network think their biggest challenges are with their book. I wonder if there's any common, pervasive challenge we all face.

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Is the conference open to non-members? My editor is in Atlanta she may be a member already.
It's open to everyone. Check it out at:

http://www.georgiawriters.org/

It typically meets at Kennesaw State University in (you could guess) Kennesaw.

I always learn something new or meet someone I need to know at their monthly meetings or the yearly conference.
Wise advice there Joel.

You said, "So every book is different and you have to become an expert on where the people are who are likely to be interested in your subject, and sell it there!"

How true! Some books sell very well on Amazon simply because they are

#1 - good books with great reviews and

#2 - easily found with search terms that people use to search that subject matter.

So they sit back and watch their books sell without much further publicity.

Some do sell well in niche bookstores. I'm sure that, if we looked far enough, we could find some self-published books that were never taken by a major publisher, yet are selling well in the chain stores. It really depends on the book.
True, Steve. For instance, you can walk into a chain bookstore anywhere and find Dan Poynter's book.

It's also true that many self-published books don't look self-published because the author took the time and resources to create a book that can compete against the books of the big publishers. I know because I've created many of these, and you would never know they were self-published if you found them on the shelf at your local Border's or Barnes & Noble.
Thank you for purchasing my new book, "How to Make Real Money Selling Books." It is different from “Beyond the Bookstore” in two ways. First, it is significantly updated, as you noted. There is a complete resource list, and I go into much more detail on where to find potential buyers. I also included more interviews with people who were successful selling into special markets so readers can learn a variety of techniques to sell fiction and non-fiction. Several case histories add another dimension, too.

Second, instead of describing marketing planning as much as I did in “Beyond the Bookstore,” I talk more about the negotiation process -- how to sell books to non bookstore buyers. I go into more detail about prospecting and writing and presenting the proposal. I also discuss specifics about Market Access Providers (such as my Premium Book Company www.premiumbookcompany.com) that sell books to non-bookstore buyers on a commission-only, non-returnable basis.

I hope you find "How to Make Real Money Selling Books" helpful in your sales efforts and I look
forward to hearing about your success in doing so.
Brian,

I've almost completed it. GREAT information in GREAT detail. After I finish my initial read, I'll begin using it as a reference book to delve into the specific markets that make sense for my book. You've given me enough contacts to keep me busy for a couple of years!
Finding authors who are interested in doing a cross promotion marketing plan. In my fulltime job I work with the public everyday. Part of my job is to assist my management team to increase sales via delivering a great product, great customer service and marketing...
My biggest challenge with this current novel-in-progress THE PLAN, which I've entered in textnovel.com writing competition under the name of Lillian Watts, is to get that next chapter written and posted before the reader who's voted for it, forgets what he or she has already read. It's a challenging experiment, but fun, too and really focuses the mind most wondrously.

But generally, getting the whole novel to flow, without seams, and have it appear that it couldn't have ended any other way. That's never easy. A lot of trial and error in the process.
Bill,
Great question. As authors and publishers, we have control over our manuscript and the publishing process. Then our books are released and we are faced with having to market our books. Most authors cannot afford a book publicist and publishers expect the authors to market there own books. That's where, in my opinion, the greatest challenge lies - with book marketing and PR. As mentioned, most authors cannot afford to pay a professional publicist and doing it themselves requires learning new skills and devoting a great deal of time. All to often the returns are lack luster.

As I've been there, the solution for me was to invest the time to truly learn Internet marketing and how to leverage technology. I also had some training and development experience and used to develop student intern programs. Thus, I had good success using a student intern as my book marketing assistant. It was a lot of work because a student intern needs direction and training. So I created a book marketing plan and training program for my intern. It works and was the foundation for my Book Marketing 3.0 program.

You are welcome to visit my Website which links to my book's Website to see what I mean. You can also download a free copy of the Book Marketing 3.0 toolbar. No subscription is necessary - Its really free for published authors! :)

Thanks,
Michael
http://www.proauthors.com
Michael,

You are so right on with this. There are two ways to go as a writer to promote your book. You either go the route of hiring a professional publicist OR you learn the skills yourself.
And in today's market, it seems some (if not many) publishing houses are relying on the author to promote and market their own books.
As writers, this is not where our heart lies, however, it is the fact we must have knowledge of a marketing/promotion plan in order to get our book to our audience. Then we can either hire someone to help us or do it ourselves.
However, one thing I believe some writers miss the mark is being sure to put their name out there even before the book is completed. People buy from people they know. Writers need to allow their readers to get to know them BEFORE the book is published. It is important to establish a community for the writer so when the book comes out, the readers are ready to purchase.
I am working on putting together some local (Manatee County,FL) writer workshops in 2010 to cover the topics on the business side of writing including building a community, social networking, web presence, marketing and promoting.

Thank you for your resource you have created to help writers and authors.

Keep writing!

Sincerely,

Teresa Morrow
Teresa,
Thank you for the kind words and your points are excellent. Additionally your workshops are much needed for authors to understand that branding themselves as experts is the key to book sales.

All the best,
Michael
Biggest challenge = figuring out how to use online marketing as primary marketing tool, and connecting with ideal prospects (i.e. where do I find the time to do all the stuff I want for marketing the book while managing business and family responsibilities?)

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