Monthly Archives: August 2011

Blogs Boost SEO

Dr. Robert Puff, Ph.D. is one of the nation’s foremost licensed clinical psychologists. He’s based in Newport Beach, CA, and has been in private practice for over 20 years. He was recently accepted as an expert contributor to Psychology Today‘s blog. His posts will focus on meditation.

 

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Seth Godin’s Advice for Authors

The marketing guru and New York Times bestselling author posted the following on his wildly popular blog. His tips are still relevant in this post-Borders, iPad world:

Advice for authors

It happened again. There I was, meeting with someone who I thought had nothing to do with books or publishing, and it turns out his new book just came out.

With more than 75,000 books published every year (not counting ebooks or blogs), the odds are actually pretty good that you’ve either written a book, are writing a book or want to write one.

Hence this short list:

  1. Lower your expectations. The happiest authors are the ones that don’t expect much.
  2. The best time to start promoting your book is three years before it comes out. Three years to build a reputation, build a permission asset, build a blog, build a following, build credibility and build the connections you’ll need later.
  3. Pay for an eidtor editor. Not just to fix the typos, but to actually make your ramblings into something that people will choose to read. I found someone I like working with at the EFA. One of the things traditional publishers used to do is provide really insightful, even brilliant editors (people like Fred Hills and Megan Casey), but alas, that doesn’t happen very often. And hiring your own editor means you’ll value the process more.
  4. Understand that a non-fiction book is a souvenir, just a vessel for the ideas themselves. You don’t want the ideas to get stuck in the book… you want them to spread. Which means that you shouldn’t hoard the idea! The more you give away, the better you will do.
  5. Don’t try to sell your book to everyone. First, consider this: ” 58% of the US adult population never reads another book after high school.” Then, consider the fact that among people even willing to buy a book, yours is just a tiny little needle in a very big haystack. Far better to obsess about a little subset of the market–that subset that you have permission to talk with, that subset where you have credibility, and most important, that subset where people just can’t live without your book.
  6. Resist with all your might the temptation to hire a publicist to get you on Oprah. First, you won’t get on Oprah (if you do, drop me a note and I’ll mention you as the exception). Second, it’s expensive. You’re way better off spending the time and money to do #5 instead, going after the little micromarkets. There are some very talented publicists out there (thanks, Allison), but in general, see #1.
  7. Think really hard before you spend a year trying to please one person in New York to get your book published by a ‘real’ publisher. You give up a lot of time. You give up a lot of the upside. You give up control over what your book reads like and feels like and how it’s promoted. Of course, a contract from Knopf and a seat on Jon Stewart’s couch are great things, but so is being the Queen of England. That doesn’t mean it’s going to happen to you. Far more likely is that you discover how to efficiently publish (either electronically or using POD or a small run press) a brilliant book that spreads like wildfire among a select group of people.
  8. Your cover matters. Way more than you think. If it didn’t, you wouldn’t need a book… you could just email people the text.
  9. If you have a ‘real’ publisher (#7), it’s worth investing in a few things to help them do a better job for you. Like pre-editing the book before you submit it. Like putting the right to work on the cover with them in the contract. And most of all, getting the ability to buy hundreds of books at cost that you can use as samples and promotional pieces.
  10. In case you skipped it, please check #2 again. That’s the most important one, by far.
  11. Blurbs are overrated, imho.
  12. Blog mentions, on the other hand, matter a lot.
  13. If you’ve got the patience, bookstore signings and talking to book clubs by phone are the two lowest-paid but most guaranteed to work methods you have for promoting a really really good book. If you do it 200 times a year, it will pay.
  14. Consider the free PDF alternative. Some have gotten millions of downloads. No hassles, no time wasted, no trying to make a living on it. All the joy, in other words, without debating whether you should quit your day job (you shouldn’t!)
  15. If you want to reach people who don’t normally buy books, show up in places where people who don’t usually buy books are. Media places, virtual places and real places too.
  16. Most books that sell by the truckload sell by the caseload. In other words, sell to organizations that buy on behalf of their members/employees.
  17. Publishing a book is not the same as printing a book. Publishing is about marketing and sales and distribution and risk. If you don’t want to be in that business, don’t! Printing a book is trivially easy. Don’t let anyone tell you it’s not. You’ll find plenty of printers who can match the look and feel of the bestselling book of your choice for just a few dollars a copy. That’s not the hard part.
  18. Bookstores, in general, are run by absolutely terrific people. Bookstores, in general, are really lousy businesses. They are often where books go to die. While some readers will discover your book in a store, it’s way more likely they will discover the book before they get to the store, and the store is just there hoping to have the right book for the right person at the time she wants it. If the match isn’t made, no sale.
  19. Writing a book is a tremendous experience. It pays off intellectually. It clarifies your thinking. It builds credibility. It is a living engine of marketing and idea spreading, working every day to deliver your message with authority. You should write one.
To read the post on Mr. Godin’s site, click on this link.

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Search Engine Optimization Isn’t Just for Big Business

Client Provides Real Estate Update

In Myra Nourmand’s blog, the First Lady of Beverly Hills Real Estate shares about stressed out buyers, sellers, banks, and brokers. In this tough market, the gloves are coming off quicker than you can say, “Home inspection results.”

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FAQ: There are already so many books out there that relate to my area of expertise. Why bother?

As the saying goes, “There’s no such thing as a new idea.” Whether you’re writing about finance, psychology, real estate, or even yourself, nearly every book written is related to something else that was on the online bookshelf before.

Let’s say that you’re a therapist and you want to write a book about anger. If you log onto Amazon’s Web site and type “anger management,” you’ll find over 5,500 titles. So how would writing a book benefit you?

There are two reasons. First, your book will reflect your one-of-a-kind perspective on the subject. You’ve worked hard to acquire your level of knowledge, and you’ll add to the information that already exists. A book will allow you to share your expertise with others in the most significant way.

Second, from a marketing perspective, your audience doesn’t care how many books have been written on your subject. Again, let’s take the example of the therapist writing a book about anger. When a prospect calls, and the therapist tells him that she has published a book on anger, she’s gained unparalleled credibility.

Furthermore, newspapers, magazines, web sites, radio, and TV are always looking for an interesting story to cover and expert advice. Whom do they usually consult? A published author.

Your book will work hard for you. It will help you reach your goals faster, and unlike newsletters that get read (we hope) and tossed in the recycle bin, people keep books. It’s the world’s most impressive business card.

 

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FAQ: I’m already at the top. What will a book do for me?

You’ve invested countless hours building your career. After the long workdays, the respect you’ve earned within your profession, and the many people you’ve influenced, a book will be the highlight of your career.

Furthermore, many believe that peak performers have a responsibility to pass their knowledge to others. And a book is the most powerful way to spread your wisdom to a wide audience. Your book will become the legacy you leave to your readers—It will improve their lives.

As the saying goes, “Success breeds success.” Highly motivated individuals, like you, are always setting new goals and taking on new challenges. A book is one of the most worthwhile goals you’ll ever accomplish. Once you publish a book, you’ll leave a permanent mark on your profession.

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