Promoting a New Book
post # 341 — March 29, 2007 — a Careers, Client Relations post
For some time now, I have been saying that a book is a “20th-century artifact” and that the way to serve your market (and to get your market’s attention) is to write a stream of articles. That way, you educate your audience to expect new ideas and thoughts from you on a regular basis.
However, once you’ve written the articles, nothing stops you from going for the double benefit of compiling the articles into a book and issuing it as such. That’s the strategy that worked so well for me in launching my career with MANAGING THE PROFESSIONAL SERVICE FIRM and TRUE PROFESSIONALISM. Both of those books were compilations of previously published articles, and people really like having them between hard covers.
I think I’m now ready to put together my next book, based upon the articles I have been writing over the past 18 months (and which are all available for download on my website.) With a little rewriting, I think I can bring out my common themes and major messages. (Strategy as determination and courage, management as the willingness to be accountable for the managerial role, going behind the facade of peoplle who claim to want long-term relationships, etc. )
The challenge I face – and the topic on which I’d like your input – is thinking about marketing the book.
Book marketing has always been a complete mystery to me. I long ago learned that traditional publishers are useless, so I’ll be self-publishing (as modern technology allows me to do) with both on-line versions (pdf) available for sale and “dead tree” versions (hard- and soft- cover) sold through Amazon, Barnes & Noble, etc.
My past history also taught me that it’s incredibly expensive and completely uncertain to hire specialist book publicists. Over the course of 5 books in the past 14 years, I spent an average of $200K per book on publicists and publicity, and never came anywhere near getting much attention from the audiences I was targeting. All publicists SAY they will get you interviews and reviews in key media, but it never really worked out that way for me. There are over 50 business books published in the US each week, and breaking through the clutter is very hard.
So, here’s my latets thoughts:
Self publish and send out free copies to CEOS and managing partners of key firms
Send out free copies to every business blogger I can think of
Send out free copies to every traditional journalist I can think of
Send out free copies to every university professor in a professional school
Develop a new series of “you-Tube” style videos, 3-minutes long or less
So, as I get ready to think about marketing my new book, what activities do you think I should be doing or preparing for?