By k | August 31, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I’ve talked in the past
about how being Indie
can be a great advantage.

There’s a strong
Independent/Small Business movement
right now,
with customers more likely
to support small business.
Small businesses are also banding together,
supporting each other.

This is happening
in the writing community also.

When I first started
self publishing,
I had tremendous support
from both the reading
and the writing communities.

Then one of my series
became successful.

The reading community
continued to support me.
The writing community
didn’t.
They felt I was too successful
to be Indie.

That’s reasonable.
There has to be some
line drawn
between Indie and not Indie.

Thankfully, I’d added
most of the readers
to my newsletter subscriber list.

Right now,
you might have the Indie advantage.
Don’t count on having
that advantage forever.
Secure those customers.

By k | August 30, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

When I worked in
new business development
for some major companies,
I put in 70 hour weeks.

But that’s nothing compared
to the hours
I invest
in my own business.

In September/October’s
The Costco Connection,
Roy Stevenson-Roy,
Co-Founder of Sweet Lollapalooza,
shares

“If you’ve got a great idea
and want to turn it
into a business,
you have to be prepared
to roll up your sleeves,
because there’s not
too many overnight successes
out there.”

Building a business takes hard work
but the rewards,
the pleasure we gain from this
often makes it worth the investment.

By k | August 29, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

A salesman loved one
was given a patch of very large companies.
None of these companies
had an existing relationship
with his employer.

His employer expects
sales to close within months.

That’s not possible.
Large companies buy slowly.
Large deals close slowly.

There are other vendors
they’re required to look at.
There are layers of decision makers
who need to sign off on the deal.
It could take a year, two years,
five years.

If your company needs
business-to-business sales immediately,
look to smaller companies for these.
Smaller companies can make
decisions more quickly.

Big deals take time to close.
Give them that time.

By k | August 28, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I read a brilliant post
by an up and coming
female-run business blog today.

Excited to support
this new blog,
I found a topic
and a quote
that I could use
in a clientk post.

The blog didn’t allow
copying and pasting of content.

I understand the urge
to lock up our content
and not allow anyone else
to use it.
I’m a writer.
My books are pirated all the time.
Spam blogs
mirror my blog posts.

One issue with locking content is…
the best form of marketing
is viral.
For word of mouth to work,
we have to put something
in that mouth.
Folks need something to share.

The bigger issue is…
We want readers to trust us,
to believe we’ve done the research,
to listen to what we’re saying,
to buy from us,
yet this lock down is sending the message
that the bloggers don’t trust their readers.
We instinctively don’t trust people
who don’t trust us.

Think before you lock down
your content.

By k | August 27, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

A couple of weeks ago,
I contacted a normally super polite,
super nice
book blogger.
I sent her details
on my upcoming book release.

I forgot one piece of information.

She sent me a nasty message back,
ranting about how I disrespected her
by not following instructions,
etc. etc.

My knee jerk reaction
was to get angry,
to send an equally nasty message.

Instead, I waited.
I calmed down.
I sent her a deeply apologetic message.

She featured my upcoming release
yesterday
in a high profile spotlight.

Everyone has bad days.
Everyone loses their cool.
Usually we lose it
with someone who doesn’t deserve it.

If we’re that someone,
the best thing we can do
is be understanding.

Make that grumpy person’s day
a little bit better.

By k | August 26, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

The commercials for the horror flick
Don’t Breathe

scare me.
I get anxious and jumpy
every time I see them.

When I told
one of my horror film loving buddies
this,
he said,
“If the commercials don’t scare you,
why would the movie?”

THIS emotion is key.

Yes, we all know
the quality of the marketing
should be as good as,
if not better than,
the quality of the product.

But what many of us
don’t realize is
the marketing experience
should reflect the product experience.
That ‘experience’ is truly
emotion.

If the movie scares the ticket buyers,
the commercials for the movie
should scare them also.
If the romance novel gives readers
a lovey dovey feeling,
the marketing should do this also.

Does your marketing reflect
the product experience?

By k | August 25, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

When readers buy a book,
Amazon usually recommends
another book
by a different writer
for them to try.

I was excited
because my September release
was being recommended
to readers of a huge August release
in the same niche.

My preorders lift was huge
when this other release
was merely available
for preorders.

Now, it has released
and readers are disappointed
(I was one of those readers).
Suddenly, my book is associated
with that disappointment.
My preorders have plummeted.

That is always the danger
when our product’s success
is tied to another product’s success,
especially a product
we have no control over.

I didn’t have a choice.
Amazon didn’t consult me
before they tied our sales together.
You might have a choice.

Think before you tie
your product’s success
to another product’s success.

By k | August 24, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

A salesman loved one
lists all of his sales calls
and other accomplishments
in his online calendar.

When he needs motivation
or optimism,
he looks at these entries,
reminds himself
of everything he’s accomplished.

Barry Moltz
shares

“Once an item is checked off
the to-do list,
consider adding it to
a daily or weekly
accomplishments list
in order to feel proud of
what has been achieved.

This may prevent you
from getting dragged down
by the size of the list,
and may help you acknowledge
all the work you’ve done.

Tracking your accomplishments
may also help you judge
whether the completed items
on your to-do list
are contributing to
the company’s overall mission,
and if you should delegate tasks
to a member of your team
to free up your time.”

Consider keeping
a parallel accomplishments list.

By k | August 23, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Every salesperson or marketer knows
it is easier to sell or to market
to existing customers.

One way to do this
is through loyalty programs.
Reward customers
for buying more.
These rewards could also create
a party-type atmosphere
at your store or restaurant.

Erika Napoletano
shares

“You can host drawings,
daily giveaways
and peak-hour promos—
like a special on margaritas
from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. daily—
exclusively for
loyalty program members.

And always requiring
an email address to participate
may help you
keep your loyalty program members
up-to-date on seasonal marketing
and other news all year long.”

A beach read writing buddy
gives her best readers
unique items like dolphin pens
and inflatable hearts.

Have fun with
your loyalty programs.
Offer your best customers
something creative and unique.

By k | August 22, 2016 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Many people don’t think of
marketing
after release day/week/month.

Writers are especially guilty of this.
Release week usually signals
the end of their marketing,
even though the book will continue
to be sold for years.

Seth Godin
reminds us
that there’s a last
but not least important
marketing step.

“The last step is
so often overlooked:
The part where you show up,
regularly, consistently
and generously,
for years and years,
to organize and lead
and build confidence
in the change you seek to make.”

Marketing doesn’t stop
after the product/service
has been released.
Continue to promote it.