When It’s My Own Book
When you’re marketing and selling your own book just about everything changes. And not always for the better. I’ve authored several books prior to Getting to Know Jesus and each has been unique in both its content as well as the journey from concept to bookshelf. And here is what I have experienced thus far with Getting to Know Jesus:
First, it took a full year to write the book. Second, it took three months to have the manuscript properly edited by a good and engaged editor. Third, a great deal of thought and effort went into creating an attractive package. Fourth, I hired a strong marketing team eight months before pub date. And fifth, I had no illusions that the world would beat a pathway to every bookstore to get a copy of my book. In fact, I thought that it would take about a year to lay a foundation that would begin to support my own credibility as an author.
Right now, we are about half way there, but even if sales are not that great, I know that the more I network with radio and TV appearances, the more I speak to audiences and the more word of mouth begins to build, the more I will live up to my own expectations for the book and for myself.
Three Undeniable Truths about Selling Books
It is one thing to advise authors on how to promote and sell their book, but it is an entirely different thing to do it for yourself. Over the course of my publishing career, I have handled literally thousands of titles. Sometimes I dive into the trenches and become deeply involved in packaging, printing, sales and marketing and at other times, I play a peripheral role. Let me share three undeniable truths that I tend to live by when dealing with someone else’s book.
No one can predict how well a book will sell. Very wealthy authors have spent millions promoting their title with little to show for it in the end. People with a strong personal brand will always have an advantage, but even fame can sometimes disappoint when it comes to book sales.
The public is usually indifferent to your book. What may be important to you just may not mean very much to the rest of the population. It is up to the author to persuade the public to care. Writing a book may primarily engage the intellect, but selling is all about heart. You really do want people to care, almost as much as you do; authentic passion about your book will open all kinds of doors. An important corollary to this is finding the best way to communicate your passion to the wider world.
Little details are important. The book jacket should catch the eye. The text should be attractive and easy to read. And the publishing team should be well informed and committed. While it is your vision and ability that was of greatest importance in the beginning, it is the quality and commitment of your team that will carry you toward the finish line.