By k | November 7, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

Many of us know
the moment
we decided we’d eventually
be our own bosses.

My moment was
when I set up a veggie stand
with my siblings
and we made more money
in an hour
than I usually made in a month
AND we had no one
making rules for us.

When entrepreneur Kevin O’Leary
was a teenager,
he had a job at an ice cream parlor.
The owner asked him
to scrape the gum off the floor.
He said no
and was fired.

His Mom told him,
“There’s two types of people
in the world:
those that own the store
and those that scrape
the shit off the floor,
and you have to decide
which one you are.”

He decided to be an owner
and never worked for another person
after that.

When business gets tough,
and it DOES get tough,
remember the moment
you decided to build businesses,
the moment
you knew this was what
you were MEANT to do.

By k | November 6, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I was on the subway yesterday
and a mattress company
had ads everywhere.
The ads were great
except for one thing.

They all proudly proclaimed
the mattresses
were made in America.

The problem?
I was taking the subway
in Canada.

Proudly announcing
that your product
is made in a different country,
especially a country
that is in a trade dispute
with the country
in which you’re advertising,
is NOT going to sell
your product.
It will make people
LESS likely to buy.

Tweak your marketing
for every region
in which you’re advertising.
A selling point
in one region
might be a reason
NOT to buy in another.

By k | November 5, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

One of the dangers
of working for yourself
is not being accountable
to others,
especially about deadlines.

We can do our work,
unveil the next product
any time
- today, next week,
ten years from now.

It is tempting
to put off these tasks
until tomorrow
again and again.

If I did that,
in the constant release loving
Romance Industry,
my sales would plummet.

So I give myself deadlines
and I share those deadlines
with others,
business partners
and customers.

Seth Godin
shares

“If you’re having trouble shipping,
it might because you’ve hesitated
to put a date on it.
“Soon” is a very different concept
than, “11:00 am”.

If it’s important enough
to spend your day on,
to pin your dreams on,
to promise to yourself and others,
it’s probably important enough
to guarantee a ship date.”

If it is important,
give it a deadline.

By k | November 4, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I alternate types of posts
on Facebook.
One post will be something silly
- a joke or an interesting story
or a funny photo.
The next post will be about my books
(my products).
It will have buy links and other information.

The funny posts get quite a few likes
and shares and comments.
The book posts often look like
there’s no interaction.

The thing is…
the funny posts don’t directly give me sales.
The book posts sell.
It might look like
no one is paying attention to the book posts
but my sales tell a different story.

Seth Godin
shares

“…one thing to measure
is attention.
How many likes or shares or views
did it get?

But if you’re going
to optimize for attention,
not trust
or results
or contribution,
then you’re on a very dangerous road.”

Attention is great
but it doesn’t put product
in customers’ hands.
Make certain you have a mix
of different posts.

By k | November 3, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

A poll says
more than 55% of white folks
in America
believe white folks

are discriminated against.

Only a small percentage
have personally been discriminated against.
The majority think
it is happening to other people.

An aspiring romance writer
complained recently
about being discriminated against
because her books featured all white characters.
She blamed the diversity in romance movement
(which hasn’t yet been very successful)
for her rejections by publishers and agents.

Here’s a quick test
for whether or not true discrimination
is happening to you
- if the majority of successful people
in the industry/group/company
are like you,
discrimination isn’t likely the reason
you didn’t get the job/contract/opportunity.

It was something else.
And blaming discrimination
won’t help you fix
that something else.

Study the company/person
who was successful.
I suspect that company/person
has something else
you don’t have
yet can obtain.

Set yourself up for success
next time.

By k | November 2, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

When someone says,
“I want an honest opinion,”
they usually DON’T truly want
an honest opinion.

They usually want validation.
They want you
to agree with
whatever they’ve decided.

People who truly want
honest opinions
don’t usually preface their statements
that way.

They, instead,
will make it easy
for you to have
a different opinion.

They might give you
alternatives,
giving you the sense they’re undecided.
(I couldn’t decide
between this light blue or another color.)

Or they will guess
at a different opinion.
(Does this make the book
look too dark?)

Consider saving your honest opinions
for folks who really want to hear it.

By k | November 1, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in New Business Development

The first thing I do
when I complete a book
is register the copyright.
Yes, technically,
a literary work is copyrighted
as soon as it appears on screen or paper
but registering the copyright
adds an extra layer of protection.

Publishers and movie studios
and other companies
know this.

Which is why they’ll register
their own copyright
as well.

Kristine Kathryn Rusch
shares

“It doesn’t matter
if your copyright is registered,
the expert said.
They’ll register anyway,
even before they’ve started
production on anything.

The strategy is
to create confusion
over who owns the copyright,
and it’ll take litigation
to straighten that confusion out.”

One of the ways
copyright squatters
strengthen their claim
is by uncovering your copyright number
and then inputting that
on the new application.

Be careful about
sharing your copyright number
and information.

By k | October 31, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Tonight,
kids in North America
will be dressing up
as their favorite characters.

They are telling us visually
‘I have chosen THIS costume
out of all the thousands
of costumes available.
THIS is the character
I want to be.’

As I’m in the writing business,
I look for the fictional characters,
the characters with strong stories.
What about these stories
appeals to the kids?
What is common in all of them?

If I was in the marketing business
(and aren’t we ALL in the marketing business?),
I’d look for colors.
Is there a certain shade of blue
that is popular?
(With book covers, the hot color
is turquoise.)
Is there a unique color combination
I can borrow and use?

Kids might not be
our current customers
but they will be our future customers.
Pay attention
tonight
to what they like.

By k | October 30, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

One of my writing buddies
has a very successful series
(product line).
Her covers (packaging)
for this series
is distinctive.
As soon as I see the cover,
I know it is her book.

So, of course,
another writer (the competition)
is now
copying her style,
putting similar type covers
on her books,
hoping to interest
my friend’s readership
(customer base).

There’s not much
my friend can do about this.
The covers, titles, etc
are different.
Copyrighting a style is difficult.

So my friend changed
her style,
hoping to differentiate herself.

Yes, I can hear that collective groan.
That was the worst thing
she could do.
She has handed her readership
to the other writer.

If the competition imitates you,
that’s a great opportunity for a
‘When you’re the best,
others imitate you’
campaign.

It is NOT time to change
your product.

By k | October 29, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Sales

Arguing with people
sucks up quite a bit of time
and
accomplishes
very little.

When I was young,
for example,
I would try to convince everyone
they should read romance novels
(use my products).
I argued with thousands of people.
I didn’t change one person’s mind.
Not one.

Now, I don’t bother arguing.
If someone tells me
they don’t like romance novels,
I shrug
and move onto the next person.

I prefer to spend my time
selling to the people open
to my product.
They are more likely to buy.

Your time is limited.
Don’t spend it
arguing with people
who will never buy.