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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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I'd like to know how many authors on this site have actually paid $3,000 or more to a Radio Promotion location. I spoke to Steve Friedman from the EMS Incorporated Radio Show out of Clearwater, Florida or Tampa. Has anyone heard of him?

First of all, I'd love to have that kind of money in my checking account from sales! Unless I'm wearing blinders, I feel some of these locations can really help you but who has that kind of money?

I'm going to check them out on Predictors and Editors.

The one I've heard the most about is here: . I believe that when Kiwosaki launched his book, Rich Dad; Poor Dad, he hired a publicist and got hardly any response. Then, he put an ad in this report and got big time radio interviews, which led to his book becoming a bestseller.

Again, all of this is from memory. Maybe Bill Frank or an author who has actually used the resource can tell us if it's a good deal. I've kind of thought that this might be worth paying for after I've gotten enough local interviews and such on my press page, so that if radio shows are interested, they could look on my press page on my website and see that I do well on interviews.
RTIR (Radio & TV Interview Reporter) is a good publication and is used by many in the industry. It is led by Bill & Steve Harrison who, coincidently, are affiliated with John Kremer who owns Book Marketing Network. Several authors have received an increase in the number of interviews they receive by advertising in RTIR.

The key is having some experience interviewing before advertising in RTIR. No producer wants to have a novice interviewee on the air, no matter how much the topic may interest their listeners/viewers.

Start local, as you've done Steve, and grow to regional and national exposure. Local media is easier to approach than regional or national media. There is less competition. Every author wants to be on Oprah. Not all authors want to appear on local TV or radio. (Oprah producers get 1,000 pitches per day!) You can tailor your message for the local media because you know what interests your friends and neighbors. Starting local allows you to practice your interviewing skills and build a "demo disk."

It also helps to have a press kit you can provide interested producers. Your press kit should include a color & black & white photo of you, a biography, some sample questions and a summary of your book plus your demo disk.
As several have recommended, I'm commenting on blog posts and articles that speak to the themes of my book. I'm considering doing a virtual book tour (blog tour). Have any of you done a virtual tour? Did it work for you? Do you have recommendations from your experience?
Virtual book tours are a fantastic new, low-cost option for authors. I'm a big proponent. Check with Marta Stephens on this network. She has successfully conducted and participated in virtual book tours. Check with her.

I also recommend checking with Penny Sansevieri of A Marketing Expert about blog tours. She is an industry leader in this field. I know several authors who have used Penny to lead their tours.
Hi Steve,
I planned my own Virtual Book Tour. It is a great low cost way to get your book to more readers, and you never know who else may notice. A film producer noticed my book on one of the blogs in my tour and is currently planning to pitch it to a cable movie network. I posted about how to do your own Book Blog Tour on my own blog. Here's the link. You may have to cut and paste. I hope it helps.

Whether you decide to do it yourself or have someone else help I wish you all the luck and success with it.

~Kristin Callender

That's a WONDERFUL blog post! Practical and well-written. Thanks for doing that for us. I linked to that post from my blog to tell people how to do a virtual tour.

Thanks again!

I think my biggest challenge as a self-publisher in PDF format is finding people to buy, getting people to go to my website, and getting the website found in the haystack (I feel like the proverbial needle) ;)
Funny, I have people hitting on my site. I'm over 12,537 hits but not many sales in buying my books from my site or at the stores.

Could people go to my site and see what's missing? I'd appreciate it.

Alberta, I think you have a very nice site, well done, I am not able to offer any suggestions there and I might add, your site is much better than my own. However, I don't sell many books from my site. I do sell most of my books from other efforts though and I am very happy with that. There are business people that I approach that buy fifty or sixty at a time because I have convinced them that books make a better employee/customer gift that a box of candy, a dozen roses or a bottle of perfume. These latter mentioned items will be forgotten in a short time, the book, may last forever. Also, when you make "these" business people happy, they will come back year after year. The largest number of my book are not sold through standard means, but I have my own printer who will do as few as 250 books at a time and these don't show up on any book sale tracking system. The books are, for the most part, always sent to me first for signing and then on to the customer.

I also deal with large companies that allow me to come in and talk to the employees from time to time, and I won't mention any names, but even as of yesterday, I spent an hour in the garden section of one large home improvement store, signing and selling books. One lady/employee bought all of her Christmas presents at that meet.

If you want to sell books, you may have the best product in the world, with the best message for your readers, but you will have to be creative to compete in today's market. School, (colleges and universities) prisons, and businesses are some of the best ways to get started. Keep in mind, each sale is a potential avenue into homes for future sales. I always put plenty of repurchase information in my books. Now, don't tell the other ten thousand people reading this posts because they will all rush out and grab your market.

The best to you, your books and the message you want to convey.
Dr Robert E McGinnis, author for over forty years and most recently, The Paradise Series.

PS, how many people do you think will look up my books simply after reading this post. See, this is another good way.
Alberta, I too believe that you have a nice site. One idea would be to find the words and phrases that people search to find stuff about alcoholism. Just go here to Google's tool:

Put in words like alcoholism, alcoholics, alcohol recovery, etc. You'll find all kinds of phrases that people search and how many times those phrases were searched in the last month.

Then, you can make sure that you use some of those words prominently on your site (meta-tags, headings, links, use them several times, etc.) so that people searching are more likely to find you.

Yet, in the end, I tend to agree with Dr. McGinnis. I have tons of people coming to my sites (1000 individuals per day, not "hits"), but sell hardly any books at all because of people coming to the sites, seeing my book, and going to purchase it. Rather, I'm out commenting on people's blogs, etc., which points them to where my book sells, and then, hopefully, they buy.

It's hard to compete with all the large, national alcoholism sites. Google will tend to send searchers to those large sites that have tons of incoming links.

So, we have to get out and speak or comment on blogs and articles, etc., then either sell our books at events or point them to our sites where they can order.

That's my two cents worth from my experience. Others may disagree.

And yes, Dr. McGinnis, I went to look at your books after seeing your above post!

J. Steve Miller
Author of Enjoy Your Money! How to Make It, Save It, Invest It and Give It
Hi Steve,

Thanks for the help. I feel foolish asking this but how do I find blogs that talk mostly on substance abuse? What do I key in on the internet to find them?


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