Archives for June 2016

7 Steps to Go From Unknown to Powerhouse Influencer

It’s likely you’ve heard (and you know) the more visible you are, the better. Whether you are an author, speaker, coach, consultant or entrepreneur, the more visible you are to your “sweet spot” clients, the easier it is for them to make a decision to invest in your products and services. And the more influence you have.

Yet, it’s not just about being visible, it’s about being visible to those who are interested in who you are and ultimately, what you have to offer.

With as resistant as many people are, you would think the process of gaining visibility is as difficult as climbing Mt. Everest. Truth be told, it’s easier today than ever before to gain visibility AND to be extremely targeted about it.

Often, resistance to anything happens for a few reasons.

  1. Not knowing why you’re doing what you’re doing.
  2. Fear of judgment.
  3. Thinking it’s way too difficult.
  4. Believing you’re way behind where others are, so you don’t bother getting started at all.
  5. Not sure how to start.

Visibility comes in a variety of ways; online, offline, at conferences, in the media, in your local community and through social media.

Countless books have been written on how to gain visibility. A quick Amazon.com search with the word “visibility” brings up over 2,000 choices. At the top of the list (at the time of this writing) is Visibility Marketing: The No-Holds-Barred Truth about What It Takes to Grab Attention, Build Your Brand and Win by David Avrin and Jeffrey Gitomer.

No stranger to visibility, Jeffrey Gitomer is the author of dozens of books, many of which have been bestsellers. He is a recognized authority and incredibly visible to his market.

Yet, there was a day no one knew who this quirky expert was. Like most people, he was a complete unknown.

blog pawsThen there’s Pamela Slim. My first exposure to Pamela was during her keynote presentation at BlogPaws 2016.  Entering the stage with her husband, young son and daughter and some of their four-legged family members, Pamela exuded a level of confidence and presence in a very understated way that immediately got the attention of everyone in the room.

Pamela is the author of several books including Escape From Cubicle Nation: From Corporate Prisoner to Thriving cubicle nationEntrepreneur. With her circle of influence including some of the most recognized experts in a variety of industries, Pamela made no secret of the fact at one point in her career she was a complete unknown who dreamed of being a recognized influencer.

Watching Pamela share stories of how she took her son, then an infant, on walks in his baby stroller, never imagining how one flash of insight would change the direction of her life forever.

As several hundred animal enthusiasts and business owners hung on her every word, Pamela told of the day she had the thought to send a blog post she had written to Guy Kawasaki, not sure if he would even read it. Not only did he love the post, he asked her to expand on a few points and then posted it on his blog (giving her full credit).

pam slimIn essence, here’s what she said.

“I had no way of knowing how much one choice, one action, would change my life,” she said with a laugh. “I’m fully aware how much Guy helped my career. And I’m fully aware had I not acted on my hunch, my life would not be what it is today.”

Today there is no question at all how influential this woman actually is.  Ironically, her message had similar undertones as my message during my presentation earlier in the day.

  1. Get out and be seen.
  2. Do what you are here to do.
  3. Don’t let fear hold you back.
  4. Play big… as big as you possibly can.
  5. When you focus on truly serving your customers and clients, do the footwork and keep at it, the money will be a natural bi-product of your efforts.
  6. Let intuition guide you and take action on the “downloads” you get.
  7. Remember… this is NOT a dress rehearsal; it’s the real thing called life.

It is very evident Pamela and I both have an urgency in encouraging people not to let anything stop them.

Almost verbatim, Pamela said something I had said in my session. Actually, many experts and influencers are sharing a similar message, which is, “Get out and do what you are here to do. Get out of your own way and let yourself be guided to those things you are meant to do. Don’t hide out, but rather, do what you can to get your message out in a big way. There is so much work that needs to be done and you owe it to yourself and your market to do all you can to do the work.”

If you’re reading this, you KNOW you have work to do. You also KNOW today is the day to quit hiding out and do what’s in front of you. Whatever motivated you to begin your business (or if you are thinking of starting a business) stay the course with this so you can go from hiding out (at whatever level) to being a person of influence to those you are meant to impact.

cropOne way to increase your influence power is to write a book. Better than simply writing a book is to get the book to #1 on Amazon.  Not sure how to do this? Check out my newest (and complimentary) eReport – Hit #1 On Amazon. Click here to access.

 

 

 

 

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

As long as we have a pulse, we CAN make a difference

With all that is going on in the world, many people throw up their hands saying, “This is terrible. Somebody needs to do something.”

The fact is, we are each that somebody. It is what happens on a day to day basis that can leave us frustrated, broken and hopeless. Or….

On the other hand, the occurrences that are happening on a more frequent basis can be the inspiration to use our God-given talents to change and heal. It is the opportunity to be the inspiration for what is possible rather than settling for, “That’s just the way it is.”

Shortly after the tragic situation in Orlando, Melissa Ethridge wrote, Pulse. The gut-wrenching song includes lyrics like, “I am human, I am love, and my heartbeats in my blood/ Love will always win, underneath the skin. Everybody’s got a pulse.”


[Read more…]

10 Simple Ways to Get Your Book Done

You’ve been thinking of writing a book for years. You’ve heard writing a book is a must-do for experts; especially in crowded markets.

Yet, every attempt to write, let alone get a book done, has ended up in writer’s block and frustration. Each time you sit down to write, staring at a blank screen or piece of paper, but can’t seem to get anything more than a few disjointed thoughts out, you feel more and more frustrated resulting in beating yourself up for not accomplishing what some experts claim is so simple.

The fact is, writing a book IS simple. Not necessarily easy, but simple nonetheless… when you have the formula.

The good news is, there’s more than one formula. The key is to know which is for you.

There are countless strategies such as writer’s groups, writer’s retreats, hiring a coach, finding an accountability partner, or simply sitting down to write. Yet, the majority of people who claim to want to write a book, never do.

In the past, writing a book meant creating something that was at least 50,000 to 60,000 words in length. Today, short books are very popular. Books that cover one specific problem in 8,000 – 12,000 words. My latest book, Power Up Your Sales, is just over 12,000 words. It has done quite well on Amazon, hitting #1 in two main categories and receiving excellent reviews.

Recently, I created an eReport, Hit #1 On Amazon, that is just under 8,000 words. It could easily be turned into a short book, loaded up on Amazon and with the strategies outlined in the report, Hit #1 on Amazon.

hit#1-amazonI was able to get both of these done in a short period of time. book cover

Best part of all, you can access both at no cost by clicking the images.

There are a few reasons for this. One, I’ve been writing for years which has turned what used to be a challenge for me into a “this is part of my business practice” muscle. Yes, writing is a muscle to be developed.

Secondly, I know how beneficial creating value-added content is to continually increase the trust and relationship with my market.

Third, writing makes me money both directly and indirectly. I’m in business to make money, thus the need to be disciplined and focused on content creation that results in books.

1.  Avoid setting yourself up for failure

Many would-be authors set themselves up for failure by thinking they have to write thousands of words in one sitting. They start with the best intentions, but quickly give up due to overwhelm. Avoid setting yourself up for failure by setting realistic goals, pacing yourself and managing your energy and time.

2.  Make a believable commitment

If you commit to writing a 50,000-word book and have yet to write a 300-word article, you are setting yourself up for frustration and failure. Rather than thinking you have to write the next New York Times bestselling self help, business, or health and nutrition book, start with the commitment to write your first short book. Doing so will make it much more likely you will stick with your commitment and see your book through to completion.

3.  Create a list of ideas you can write about

Start a running list of ideas tied into the main theme of your book. If your book is about time management, what are all the possible ways one can develop good time management skills? Write down as many ideas as you can think of. If you’re stuck for ideas, do a Google search, have a conversation with a trusted colleague or coach or visit Amazon and read book descriptions of books in the same genre as you are writing to get ideas.  

4.  Start with 250 – 500 words per sitting

It’s likely you write a heck of a lot more than 500 words a day already what with posts to social media and emails to friends and colleagues. For most people writing 250 – 500 words is something they do without much thought. Yet, when they consciously think they are writing a book, they get stuck.

Truth be told, you can most likely write 250 – 500 words in less than 30 minutes. The more practice you have, the less time it will take. In 30 days you could feasibly have between 10,000 – 15,000 words written by putting 30 minutes a day aside dedicated to your book.

5.  Schedule your writing time

Years ago I learned one of the best productivity tips ever. “Use the first hour of your day to monetize your business,” from recommended business expert, Brendon Burchard.

You can take that same idea and use it for your book writing. Use the first hour of your day to write your book. Again, if you commit to a specific time of day for a minimum amount of time, your book will get done faster than you can imagine.

6.  Make writing a part of your daily routine

This ties into scheduling writing time. When you make writing part of your daily routine, it becomes a habit. Contrary to what many people believe about habits, some are actually very good for us to have.

7.  Make a public announcement

If you’re the type of person who values your word, making a public announcement can make all the difference in the world as far as how quickly you get your book done. Actually, with both Power Up Your Sales and Hit #1 on Amazon, I had publically committed to a group of people that I would complete these projects.

Since keeping my word is important, I stayed the course until each was done. While other people are still thinking of getting their first book done, I finished both the book and the report within a couple of months. Both generate leads AND revenue. Imagine how much money you are leaving on the table by not making a commitment to getting your book done.

8.  Blog your book

By far, daily blogging is one of the simplest ways to get a book done. Commit to a 30-day blog challenge that forces your hand at writing. Not only will you get your book done, you’ll also have some excellent Google juice that raises your visibility with your market.

9.  Set weekly goals

In addition to your daily goal of 250 – 500 words, set weekly goals designed to keep you on target. Having daily and weekly goals is simply one more way to get you closer to being a published author.

10. Get the cover designed as soon as possible

Visualizing an outcome is very powerful in moving us closer to the end result. For $5 you can go on a site like Fiverr to have a mock up of your book cover done. This doesn’t mean you have to use a design from someone on Fiverr for your final cover, but it is a way to keep yourself motivated. I’ve had some outstanding work done with graphics, info-graphics, eBook covers and the like from a few vendors on Fiverr. Granted, there have been some vendors whose work I won’t use, but for $5 it’s worth getting a mock up of the cover to keep you focused.

Reasons versus excuses

The bottom line is this; books increase your credibility, can be used as lead generators, are a great way to generate revenue and give you the edge over your competition. The bottom line also is that you have to want to be published more than you want to hold on to excuses. Rather than excuses as to why you’ve yet to get your book done, look for every reason you must get it done.

Once you do, then you’re ready to Hit #1 On Amazon!

 

 

 

Virtual Book Tours – Insider Secrets to Making Them Work

Book tours have been around for a long, long time. Before the days of virtual book tours, when tours were publisher-sponsored, covering several cities, book tours were very cost prohibitive.

Fast forward to today. Nowadays, most authors are responsible for their own book tours. This means they have to plan, pay for and promote their own tours.  Thus the reason very few indie authors do in-person book store tours.  The choice for most authors is the virtual tour.

In spite of minimal costs for a virtual tour compared to an in-person tour, there is still a lot of work involved. If you want to stay sane during a virtual book tour, consider putting at least one support person on your team to handle all the details.

According to Loolwa Khazzoom, in an article she had published in The Huffington Post, “The biggest mistake authors make is waiting until their books are published, before thinking about reaching out to media.”

The success of your tour depends entirely on where your interviews, posts and reviews are posted. Thus the reason to plan your tour out as much as possible.

With that said, let’s look at some of the elements of a virtual book tour.

Virtual Book Tour

A virtual book tour is a combination of online media including radio, podcast shows, teleseminars and webinars that air during a specific period of time combined with multiple blog posts during the same time period.

Many authors focus solely on blog tours, but there’s a huge advantage to incorporating media into the mix.

By combining a blog tour and media tour you definitely increase your visibility and credibility. Your writings will be viewed by new eyeballs and you will be heard by thousands, possibly millions, of potential book buyers. This is exactly what you want.

When done right, you are able to reach more of your target market. It’s important to be clear on who your market is. Also who is reading the blog you are going to post on for increased reach with the most targeted market.

There’s no point in writing for blogs that are not viewed by those who are interested in what you have to say and offer.

Guest blogging opens up opportunities for potential joint venture relationships with the blog owner. Search engines love blogs, and, when you use the right keywords, you are creating incredible opportunities for better SEO.

In addition, you can increase your own opt-in subscribers, if you do have a link in your bio at the end of your post.

If you're wondering how to increase your subscriber list, check out the Insider Club where you can learn tons of great information on gaining market reach, online visibility and increase your audience engagement.

How much work does it take?

The amount of work for a high-traffic blog or a low-traffic blog is exactly the same. Your goal should be to find blogs with high visibility.

You must find the blogs, gain permission from the owner to guest blog, write the post and help promote your appearance. Although this does take time, when done correctly, the benefits are plentiful.

Although not always possible, most blog owners will let you add in your short bio with a back link to your blog or website. Do not write anonymously. After all, this is for visibility and selling books, not just to be writing.

In some cases, you will be asked to write original content, but in many cases you won’t. You have to determine if it is worth the time invested to create original content.

When your systems are in place, such as a conversion funnel, you can gain incredible benefit from blog tours and guest blogging.

Blog Tour

  1. A blog tour is a tour of various blogs and websites. It is recommended to post on blogs that have a similar readership as those who would be interested in your book.
  2. A blog tour is a great opportunity for an author to reach high numbers of potential book buyers and readers.
  3. A blog tour contains blog posts, interviews, reviews and/or guest posts that are posted to a series of blogs during a specific period of time.
  4. A blog tour can be done live where the author actually visits each blog and answers questions by the host. You can also do a tour where your information is submitted ahead of time in order that you have greater reach without being restricted by the clock.
  5. Virtual blog tours are a wonderful alternative to a “live” bookstore tour. There’s no travel involved and costs are minimal.

Media Tour

There arecrop many similarities between a virtual blog tour and a virtual media tour. The major distinction is the medium.

As an author, it is essential to be on the lookout for creative and effective ways to promote your book(s). Virtual book tours definitely fit the bill.

They are also a great way to increase your position on Amazon. With the right plan, enough effort and lots of sales, you can also Hit #1 on Amazon. 

Save

Ethical bribes create trust, “value first” and leads

If you’re like most experts, you’re looking for ways to reach more of your market in order to build trust, create value and ultimately do business.

One of the best ways to do this is to give potential customers and clients a “taste” of what you do by way of samples. Someone who perfected this model is Debbie Fields. As the story goes, when she first came up with the idea for a business Debbie tried to sell her cookies. Not many people were interested.

Rather than give up, she put a “sample” plate together, going door to door, offering free cookies to whomever was willing to take some.

Within a short period of time word got around how good the cookies were. Debbie Fields aka Mrs. Fields, quickly went from giving her cookies to reluctant strangers to building a multi-million dollar enterprise. Granted, there was a lot of work building the business, but had Mrs. Fields not been willing to give people a taste of what she offered, she would have ended up like countless others; throwing in the towel, chanting, “This stuff doesn’t work.”

Actually, giving people a sample of what you do can work great. In the online space you can offer eBooks, eReports, videos, audio files, podcast shows and articles to name just a few of the many ways to create value first before asking for the sale.

Make sure whatever you offer is of very high value. The notion that it can be low quality because it’s free is way off base. After all, in many cases this is the first touch point potential customers have with you.

Additionally, make sure that you have a clear path to where you want to take people. What is your end game? Where do you want potential buyers to end up? What needs to be put in place to make this happen?

If you’re a consultant who uses free reports to secure leads, do you have a process in place to follow up with those who have expressed interest by opting in for your report.

An obvious path would be:

  • Opt in
  • Series of follow up messages
  • An invitation to complete an assessment
  • A complimentary coaching call for those who put effort into the assessment
  • A discussion on what solutions you provide via various consulting programs

cropAuthors, a chapter of your book turned into a report is a really nice giveaway. Another idea for authors is to shoot a short video that explains something written about in your book.  Then there’s the idea of hosting a webinar on a topic that is directly related to your book.

Bottom line is this; whatever industry you’re in, if you are a service based business, offering free content is one of the best ways to gain trust, generate leads and grow your business while serving your market.

Access Hit #1 On Amazon FREE eReport.

The quickest route to manifesting your book to #1 on Amazon

I consider myself to be very grounded in logic. As well, I understand the principles and energy around the law of attraction. As such, on Facebook I belong to business groups, spiritual groups, groups that talk about manifesting and health and well-being groups.

Often, in the spiritual groups there are discussions about how to manifest one’s dreams. This is a topic that always seems to spark a lot of interest. It’s as if people are waiting for some untold secret on how we manifest what we want.

In a recent post I read, “Does anyone have recent blog posts or new offerings they would like to share with other members that might assist in the creation and manifestation of their dreams? Please post anything you think might help others!”

My response, “One of the best ways to manifest what we want is to “do the work.” I mean that sincerely in that a lot of people think it's only a matter of “thinking” about what they want. In reality, you have to have the actions behind the thoughts and the more focused the actions, the better.”

It’s amazing how many people do whatever they can to avoid “the work.” I see this with authors who want to get their books in the hands of hundreds, even thousands, of readers. They put time into writing their book with very little, if any, thought on how they are going to market the book.

They visualize their book reaching #1 on Amazon, but fail to take daily action to make this happen.

They create vision boards filled with images of their book being featured in top publications, but never send out a media release.

They dream of selling books during speaking engagements, but don’t reach out to meeting planners and organizations where they would be welcomed with open arms to present their material.

The fact is, vision boards and visualization work… if you put the actions behind your vision. As an author, you have to map out a plan of action and then work the plan.

It’s not a matter of simply writing the book. Nor is it a matter of “omming” your way to the top of the charts.

Now before anyone defends the need to work on the invisible level, I DO know how powerful this is. I also know that the invisible, coupled with the visible, gets you a lot closer to your outcome than simply wishing for your book to get in the hands of lots of readers.

A few considerations for marketing your book are:

  • Amazon preparation including your Author Central page as well as well thought out keyword selection for your book description and categories.
  • Media releases sent out to online media sources as well as those in your local market and industry specific media.
  • A formal launch to let your community know you have a new book.
  • A book website.
  • Social media marketing to include blog posts, tweets, wall postings, infographics and video trailers.

There’s so much that can be done to make readers aware of your book. The type of readers who are eager to buy every new book you write.

If you dream of selling lots of books, the quickest route to manifesting your dream is to “do the work.” And do it frequently, consistently and with extreme focus.

cropAccess Hit #1 On Amazon FREE eReport.

 

 

Authors… are you invisible to your readers?

I’ve been consulting with authors for many years now. The one question that always comes up is this, “Why am I not selling more books?”

Without fail, it’s usually because the author is doing little, even nothing, to promote their books. Sure, they may tell family and friends, post an announcement on Facebook and Twitter, but beyond that, they have no strategy.

Countless authors have not understood nor have they been willing to take responsibility for sales of their books. Many still believe all they need to do is get a book to market and somehow readers will find it. Nothing could be further from the truth.

As with physical books, it is necessary for authors to take control of marketing their books, regardless of the chosen format.

In the past few years, online book launches have become very popular. In the late nineties a few progressive marketers gathered together dozens (even hundreds) of joint-venture partners, who would help spread the word about the author’s book.

In trade for promoting the book, the partners would offer an ethical bribe in hopes of getting lots of opt-in subscribers. Launches came and went in one day. There was a big hurrah for 24 hours but then things fizzled out.

Although an author could feasibly sell hundreds, even thousands, of books with a one-day launch, most had no plan for what came next.

Additionally, most book buyers are no longer interested in a bunch of useless bonus gifts they will never use. Today’s reader would much rather get a quality book. Bonuses can still work, but fewer are better, and they absolutely need to be a high complement to the topic of the book.

Today, more than ever, an author needs a more sophisticated approach to a book launch. Not only does the author need to plan for what I refer to as a rolling launch, but to get the greatest result, the launch needs to begin as much as 6-12 months before the book-release date.

A rolling launch simply means it is ongoing and has more benefit than simply being able to say the book hit bestseller on Amazon.com and BN.com for a day.

Fortunately, many authors are finally realizing that in order to have a successful book launch they need a long- term view for the success of their book. Below are a few considerations for your own book launch.

To get the most out of your book promotions it is best to have a three-pronged approach.

  • Prelaunch
  • Launch
  • Post Launch

Your prelaunch efforts should be to build a community of potential buyers. You can do this by being highly visible on social networks, building your opt-in subscriber list, submitting articles to various online article directories, guest blogging and interviews.

Your launch will include many of the same aspects as a prelaunch but now you are driving traffic to either an online book store or your own website.

Post launch is where you create other opportunities for readers to invest in other products and services you offer.

To get the most out of your efforts you need to identify your ideal readers.

  • Who are they?
  • Where do they hang out?
    • Forums
    • Social networks
    • Blogs
    • Magazines
    • Radio programs

You should also prepare as much of the following as possible:

  • Media releases
  • Interviews opportunities
  • Blog posts for your blog and guest blogging opportunities
  • Articles for your ezine
  • Book video trailer
  • Affiliate partners who will promote your book with an up sell opportunity on the back end.
  • Optimize your profile on all your social-media platforms
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • Slideshare
    • Goodreads
    • Pinterest
    • YouTube
    • Pinternet
  • Images, videos, presentations to be dripped out during launch
    • Prepare images for Pinterest
    • YouTube videos
    • Develop a series of videos with tips that tie into your book
    • Slideshare can be huge for a book launch

If your goal is to simply write a book and get it listed on Amazon, then you need not do much else other than write and publish the book. However, if your goal is to make money from your writing and generate multiple streams of revenue then you absolutely must have an extremely strategic approach to all you do.

Ready to Hit #1 on Amazon? Check out my FREE report that teaches you exactly how. crop

 

Turn Your Book into a Powerhouse List Builder

kindleWriters like to write. That’s a given. When you’re an engaging writer you do tend to build a following. One of the main reasons to have a loyal fan base is to generate a sustainable revenue stream.  The more of a following you have, the more likely it is every book you put to market will make money.

However, building a strong fan base is not always a given. To optimize your efforts, it’s best to have strategic systems in place.

To achieve this, it is necessary to think beyond your current writing project. You have to look way beyond the present moment. Basically, you have to take your readers beyond one book, blog post or article.

Start by asking yourself a few key questions.

  • Where do you want your readers to end up?
  • Do you have plans beyond them simply reading one book?
  • Do you want them to attend a live event, enroll in a coaching program or hire you to mentor them?

Based on your answers, there are many things you can do to engage your readers… beyond the book.

Regardless of whether you write fiction or non-fiction, you will be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor when you think in terms of where you will lead the reader.funnel

For example, many non-fiction writers offer more, much more, than a book or two. They may offer information products, home study courses, or coaching and consulting packages. If this describes you, then it’s important to think beyond the book.

The best thing to do is determine where you ultimately want to drive the reader and reverse engineer how you will get them to the end result.

One of the most important steps to take in filling a coaching program, signing consulting clients or filling an event is to engage your market. To engage your market, you have to have control of when they get your information. To control when they get your information you need to encourage them to get on your subscriber list. To encourage them to get on your subscriber list you need to make a very enticing offer.

One of the best ways to do this is to have lead bait strategically positioned inside any book you write. Additionally, the days of simply offering something to get a name and email address are long gone. You have to offer something of very high value that solves a specific problem.

Here are examples of two complimentary offers I have in my book Power Up Your Sales. Not only am I able to provide high value to my readers, those who want to obtain more of my information can do so by requesting these gifts.

funnel2Before driving traffic, it helps to have what is called a conversion funnel in place. In essence, a conversion funnel is the journey you take prospects on that ultimately converts them into buyers. This is a very strategic process and one that does require a well-thought out plan.

The following two examples demonstrate how making a complimentary offer in a book strategy can work regardless of the market.

Let’s say you’re a business strategist for consultants who work with corporate clients. Perhaps you teach your clients how to generate leads, have productive sales conversations and close more business.

Assuming you have a yearlong coaching program designed to teach them how to find more of their ideal clients, you can use your book as the first point of contact to position your expertise.

Based on the above scenario, create four to six topics to write on that would be of benefit to your potential clients. Each topic would solve a specific challenge for your potential clients.

  • Effective prospecting
  • How to have powerful sales conversations
  • Making offers that sell
  • Knowing how to follow up on sales leads

Now let’s assume you’re a fitness and nutrition expert. You have a program designed for women over the age of 50 who need to lose 30 – 50 pounds. Your potential clients are in relatively good health, but they know that if they don’t drop the weight they are putting themselves at risk of heart disease, cancer and stroke.

Based on the market, what are the top 4 – 6 challenges they deal with?

  • How to resist foods that pack on the pounds
  • Dropping the first 20 pounds
  • Easing into exercise
  • Sticking with your new eating and exercise program

Although these could be the topics for articles and blog posts imagine how effective each could be if they were books loaded up on Kindle, iTunes, Nook or Kobo.

It is essential that whatever your complimentary offer, it does match the theme of your book. Otherwise, your opt in rate will be minimal at best.

With the right offer in your book you are likely to get a 10 – 20% conversion rate for opt ins. From there, you must engage your subscribers with continued value.

Today, more than ever, subscribers don’t want to waste time. They are looking for high value solutions in the shortest amount of time coupled with ongoing value.

The more you recognize this fact, the more success you will have.

Ready to Hit #1 on Amazon? Access my FREE report to learn exactly how. crop

 

Someday I’ll… get around to writing that book

How often have you said, “Today’s the day!” regarding something you are committed to changing. Yet, by day’s end you either didn’t do what you said you would do or you did something that directly sabotaged your success?

This often happens with experts who swear up and down they are going to write a book. As with anything, whatever you want to happen, it will only occur if it is in the forefront of your thinking and you put actions behind the thoughts.

In the years I’ve been consulting with clients who want to write a book, it never fails that those who have the vision, take daily action and stay committed are the ones who get the book done.

On the other hand, those who simply talk about it are likely to still be talking a year, two years, even five years down the road.

Time and effort

What many people fail to realize is that writing a book takes a considerable amount of time and effort. The number one reason I hear from those who continue to put off writing even the first page of their “I’m working on it” book is time.

“I just can’t find the time to stay focused on writing,” is the battle-cry of those who hold tight to the dream, but put no effort into the outcome.

“I don’t like to write,” is yet another roadblock for many experts who know getting a book published would be an asset to their credibility, expertise, and market perception.

Fundamental changes

There are simple solutions for both the time issue and not enjoying the process of writing. First, you absolutely must be willing to make some fundamental changes to your belief around the process of writing. You also have to be willing to let go of what’s blocking you.

Regardless of what you say you’re committed to it takes more than simply saying, “Today is the day.” It takes focus, dedication and the willingness to get uncomfortable.

With the time issue, there are likely things you are doing that a minute at a time are sucking precious time you could be using for writing. Whether it’s your “guilty pleasure” television show, checking posts on Facebook or watching a cute animal video on YouTube, there are likely things you could let go of in order to block out time for writing.

With the “don’t like to write” issue, you can simply record your thoughts. An easy process is to outline the chapters of your book. From there, create questions for each chapter. Then hop on the phone with a friend, colleague or coach in order that they can ask you the questions. Record your answers, have the recording transcribed, send the transcripts to a copy editor, review the edits, rework as needed, send back to the editor and badaboom… you have your manuscript!

The reality is, no matter what you say you want, your actions determine how badly you really want it. Saying we want something and doing something about it (on a consistent basis) requires we get really honest with ourselves.

No matter what you want to achieve it takes work. It takes trial and error. It takes being willing to fail until you find the formula for success. And it takes risk.

If your desire to write a book is greater than your desire to watch the next episode of Bloodline, Dr. Phil, Judge Judy or Dancing with the Stars, you are on your way to achieving your outcome.

If the act of writing is not your strong suite, but having a conversation about what your book topic is about is, you now have a solution to getting your book done in a reasonable time-frame.

It all boils down to what you say you want, what you really want, and what you put time into.

Ready to Hit #1 on Amazon? My FREE report shows you exactly how. Click here. crop

Benefits of Using CreateSpace for Self-Published Authors

messageofhopeWhen I wrote my first book nearly 15 years ago, being a self-published author carried a stigma. For some reason, you were not considered a “real” author if you went the self-publishing route.

Fast forward to today and it’s a completely different reality.  Authors have a plethora of choices in how to take their work to market.

Add to the mix eBooks and authors now have a lot of control over their writing, their revenue and their message.

According to a post on the Publisher’s Weekly blog:

  • The Big Five traditional publishers now account for only 16% of the e-books on Amazon’s bestseller lists.
  • Self-published books now represent 31% of e-book sales on Amazon’s Kindle Store.
  • Indie authors are earning nearly 40% of the e-book dollars going to authors.
  • Self-published authors are “dominating traditionally published authors” in sci-fi/fantasy, mystery/thriller, and romance genres but — and here is the surprise — they are also taking “significant market share in all genres.”

For the uninformed, self-publishing is where a writer has their work published at their own expense. They pay the full cost of producing their work and are responsible for marketing and distribution. They usually work independently and have control of the entire creative and selling process.

Regardless of what your publishing choice is, writing your books is a game changer.

Highly seasoned and respected book expert, Denise M. Michaels says, “Authoring a book is the time-honored way to elevate your perception professionally from where you’re at now to a national or even international level of prominence and expertise. It still works. In fact, authoring a book is the best way to open you up to a world of new prospective, new clients or customers, and be seen in a new light.”

Although you can hire companies to help you with the publishing process, as the author, you are ultimately responsible for what happens with your book. Even when you go with these type of companies, you are in reality a self-published author.

Self-publishing is the fastest growing segment of the publishing industry. As a result, there are new companies coming on the forefront every day to assist authors to get their works published.

logo-csp-no-tmMany of these companies actually use CreateSpace for the printing and fulfillment of the author’s work. If you have the budget, and don’t want to do anything but write the book, you can hire any number of companies to help with all the details.

When you hire a reputable company they can handle as little, or as much, as you would like including cover design, editing, formatting, ISBN number, and most every detail required to get the book done.

Some claim to offer marketing services, but often that simply means they post something on their website and send a media release to a few locations.

If you do decide to hire a self publishing company, have all agreements put in writing.

DIY

When you handle all the details, your costs are considerably lower, but you do have the responsibility of bringing all the pieces together.

You will need to have a cover designed, editing of your manuscript, formatting, and if you plan to sell online, making your book available on the major bookstores such as Amazon.com.

NOTE: Not matter how good of a writer you are, you definitely want to outsource the editing. Many authors mistakenly assume they can handle this aspect of their work. Huge mistake in that there will be things a seasoned editor can do for your work that you may not be able to. They will also find mistakes you likely missed.

Do yourself a favor and invest in an editor.

Should you go the complete DIY route, CreateSpace is an excellent service provider for self-published authors.

CreateSpace

CreateSpace is one of the most recognized self-publishing vendors available. They offer a fast and easy way to self-publish paperbacks. CreateSpace also offers on-demand printing, eliminating the need for you to maintain inventory.

CreateSpace also offers very affordable professional services that you can pick and choose from including editing, layout, publishing and marketing services.

Even if you choose to use some of their marketing services, it is a great idea to learn as much as you can about marketing your book in order to get the greatest results possible.

Benefits:

  • No membership or set-up fees; zero cost to get started
  • Great customer care
  • Amazon affiliation
  • A flexible royalty model; You earn royalties every time Create Space prints a book to fulfill a new customer order placed on Amazon.com, Amazon's European websites, your CreateSpace eStore, or through sales channels offered with Expanded Distribution. Plus, you can set your royalty payment option to local currencies including U.S. dollars (USD), British pounds (GBP), and Euro (EUR).
  • Community forums for resources and tips. This is a great benefit for new to seasoned authors.
  • A non-exclusive agreement allowing future publishing and distribution options. This means you are not bound to one company.
  • Free CreateSpace ISBN or UPC. Although you can get a free ISBN, it is recommended to pay for at least the $10 level.

Today, more than ever, there is no excuse for an author NOT to get their work out to market. The days of, “No one will publish my work,” are long gone.

After all, books change lives. They are powerful tools to satisfy a reader’s need to escape reality for even a little while. Books impact how we run our businesses. They are great resources for those who want to get healthy. They provide insights into how to transform our mind, body and soul.

And isn’t that reason enough to finish your first, or next, book?