Publishers publish. Authors write. Literary agents sell, and promoters promote.
We all perform different tasks, yet we all share similar reasons for doing what we do: we all want the same three basic things—–
- A NAME
- To make a difference
Book industry professionals with dollar signs for pupils equate publishing, writing, selling, or promoting a bestseller to winning the lottery. They dream of champagne and caviar and days spent lounging aboard a yacht in the South Pacific. If these people happen to become well-known or help someone out along the way, thatâ€™s great â€¦just not quite as great as becoming wealthy, in their eyes, anyway.
For others, creating a bestseller is about having their name appear on that list for All The World To See. These individuals want to be RECOGNIZED AND RESPECTED by their peers. Theyâ€™ll take the money that accompanies fame, and then theyâ€™ll likely spend it to purchase even more friends and admirers.
And then there are those whose primary objective is to make an impact on the world. Their primary motivation for achieving bestseller status has more to do with the effect their book will have on other peopleâ€™s lives. These types wouldnâ€™t care much if their name never appeared anywhere in it, just so long as people benefit from reading it.
So why do you do what you do? Do you want Robin Leach to profile you on the new and improved Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous someday? Are you hoping to make a guest appearance on Oprah? Or do you dream to make the world a better place before your time here is through?
In one way or another, we all view being associated with bestselling books as the ticket to reaching our goals. I know I did. But after spending a decade in the book industry, Iâ€™ve come to accept some unfortunate truths. The reality is that itâ€™s a rare and difficult thing to make money, become famous, or make a difference through book sales alone. Margins are too thin. Shelf lives are too short. Transformations are too slow.
For these reasons, I believe a better strategy is to view a book not as something to sell, but as a tool to use to get you where you want to go. Instead of trying to generate short-term profits from a single bestseller, use your book to develop your entire business or career. Instead of counting on a bestseller to make you a star, use it to build your reputation and expand your name recognition. And instead of relying on a bestseller to make a difference only for itself, use it to extend the message about all the other positive work youâ€™re doing.
Turning the book youâ€™re working on into a bestseller could be the single most important business decision you ever makeâ€”if you treat it as the promotional tool it has the potential to be to enhance your career or your company.
Questions about your marketing plan may be directed to Michael R. Drew at the Austin, Texas, headquarters of Promote A Book : 512-858-0040. You can also contact Michael via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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