Don't Sell. Build!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Don't Sell. Build!

If you are like most authors, the very thought of having to go out and “sell” your book, is overwhelming. You aren’t sure of where to begin. You don’t want to take on the role of a salesperson. You don’t have the money to advertise or hire a marketing professional.
Here's my advice: Don't Sell.
Instead, build an author platform and let it do the selling for you.
Think of your author platform as a literal stage. You use this stage to raise yourself above the crowd, making it easier for people to take notice of you. You use this stage to engage your new audience. Not sell, but engage. You do so by entertaining, teaching, inspiring, or motivating. This turns a general audience into a loyal fan base that keeps coming back for more. Your influence and connection with your fans will almost completely eliminate your need to “sell” anything. Your fans will already want whatever you have to offer – including your books.  
You now have an idea of what to do on this stage, but you still have to build it. So, how do you build your stage? Plank by plank.
Each plank represents and supports who you are and what you have to offer. Each plank is cut from:
Your personal and professional story,
Your experience and expertise,
Your message,
Your activities,
Your connections (online and offline),
Your brand,
Your personality,
Your beliefs,
Your credibility,
Your awards and endorsements,
Your previous writings, and
Your following
... all carefully joined together to fully support everything you do on that stage.
You probably already have at least some of what it takes to build a strong platform ... your stage. Make an honest assessment of what you have and what you still need.
Once you do that, start building!
Post by Deana Riddle; Deana is a publisher and publishing consultant who provides authors and business professionals with the tools needed to become successful independent publishers. She also offers the Independent Publishing Program, found in the WOW! classroom.


Unknown said...

Like your analogy to a stage!!!

Margo Dill said...

This is a very helpful post. Thanks for the tips. I have a couple books coming out this year, and I "hope" I have already started to build my platform/stage. We'll see--of course, we can always make it stronger!


Anju Gattani said...

Hi Deana,
This is wonderful advice and so true! In the hurry and worry to get the book out... I've been following pretty much all the advice you've outlined. Not sure how well it's working, but have had back-to-back author events since my debut novel, DUTY AND DESIRE's, release in Dec 2011. Flying to CT this weekend for 2 author events. Fingers crossed!
It's true, people want to know who and the validity of the author behind the book more than ever.

Karen Wojcik Berner said...

Great way to look at it, Deana. Thanks for the post.

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