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Sell Your First 1000 Books

Lesson 13 of 18

Outreach: The How-to Part 2

Tim Grahl

Sell Your First 1000 Books

Tim Grahl

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Lesson Info

13. Outreach: The How-to Part 2


  Class Trailer
Now Playing
2 The Impact of Books Duration:25:28
3 Setting up the System Duration:15:39
6 How to Grow Your List Duration:24:59
10 Q & A w/ Tom and Tim Duration:18:00
11 Outreach: The Attitude Duration:1:09:21
12 Outreach: The How-to Duration:34:35
13 Outreach: The How-to Part 2 Duration:48:00
14 Natural Selling Duration:19:56
15 Interview with Hugh Howey Duration:48:20
16 Q&A w/ Hugh Howey Duration:52:16
17 Q&A w/ Hugh Howey Part 2 Duration:36:14
18 How to Launch Your Book Duration:57:14

Lesson Info

Outreach: The How-to Part 2

So I want to move on from social media you know, that's mostly what I've got to say about it and so I want to move on to some things that I have seen really effective and make sure we have time to go over those so the first thing I wanna talk about is the curious case of author marketing you know, one of the things I love about working with authors is how little competition there is because if I'm interested in one type of book if I'm interested in a book by dana really who writes about behavioral economics I'm going to be much more likely to buy a book like contagious by journal era or the heat brother's books or dan pinks books or malcolm gladwell's books like I'm more likely to buy other people's books that are similar and so what I like about it is that authors can actually work together right? So they can and we see this right every time you see a book there's a blurb across the top and that's the idea of like, well, you know, why do we do that? It's? Because well, if I liked that...

author's book and I like what they have to say about this book, I'm more likely to buy this book that's authors working together, but I think there's lots of opportunities here a whole lot of opportunities because what you see is that if one author takes their community and introduces an author to their community, this author's community will grow while there's will also stay the same. And then, if that reciprocates, his community will stay the same and his community will grow. And what you'll find is they will both grow together. You both get up so it's not like, you know, I don't know iphone, verse, android, where if I switched to an iphone, I don't care about anything android, I don't care how many commercials come on tv and how many great apse they have. I'm not even listening because I'm an iphone guy now, right? So it's disparity, but with this, if I am interesting, this author's writing and he writes fantasy books and this author also writes fantasy books and they work together, both of their communities will grow, and both of them will sell more books as a result. And so I feel like and this is something that business well any author can take advantage of, but I really do wish I was would seem or fiction writers take advantage of this. I feel like a lot of times fiction writers kind of sit in their own world and try to get people to buy their book when if everybody kind of worked together, especially and we're gonna talk about this in a minute especially with authors kind of on their same level, so with a bunch of authors that are trying to start out, but they're all working together and sharing their people around, what will happen is everybody will grow together, and then as you as some of you take off, you'll bring other people along. So when it comes to author marketing really look for ways I feel like there's tons and tons and tons of opportunities to work with other authors, you have the same goals you have a lot of time, if you're talking about genres, you had the same people that are reading these books and they're going to be interested in, and we're going to talk about specific ways to do that, but there are so many ways to do it some we don't even have time to go over here, and some I haven't even thought of yet, but because you can be more creative than I came on my own, and so just look for ways that you can partner with authors, because this is a community where is not as much competition there stuff where we can all work together. So one of my favorite things for outreach is live events, and this entire thing has been talking about online marketing, but I want to stop and talk about. How important it is to meet people face to face when you can meeting people face to face changes everything five minutes in front of somebody can make them a lifelong fan, you know, I mentioned dana really, how he would he puts his entire calendar online so anybody can kind of email that he can go have coffee with him that's a great idea you do that long enough, you're gonna have tons of fans out there. When dan pee came out with this first book on free agent nation when the paperback came out, he put in there that if you were within, he lives in d c so I think it's fifty miles if you're within fifty miles of d c and there was more than one of you reading the book together, so if two people arm or reading the book, he would drive and meet you somewhere to talk about the book and just talk about whatever if you're outside of fifty miles, he get on the phone or get on skype or something like that and have a conversation with whoever's reading the book and he talks about this idea of shoe leather of like that's how you do marketing, you just do that long enough, and the man has some diehard fans that I swear would like jump in front of a bus for him you know, but that's because they have that direct connection they remember that time when dan drove thirty miles outside of d c thru the traffic to meet with two people at starbucks to talk about his book like you know, so any time you can meet people alive it makes a big difference in the best place to do that is anywhere where somebody else has spent all the money and done all the work to congregate people in one place conferences, workshops, any kind of event where people are pulling other people together for you like they're doing that show up and take advantage of it and I have some very specific ways to do this and I'm going to teach you this is to me a lot of fun and a lot of people go to conferences for the content and you know, there's good content of conferences but the best thing to do is forget the content remember that there are people there there's a group of people there that never before in the history of time and never again in the history of time well, that same group of people be together in one place so if you can show up and take advantage of that that's a huge win so three years ago I was working with josh kaufman as my business coach and he helped me to side to focus my business one hundred percent on authors the problem was I had an employee, I have a family, my employees had a family, we need to continue to pay the bills, and I had exactly three authors as clients. I wasn't making enough money off of those three authors to run a business, and but what I did have was a ticket to the south by southwest interactive conference in austin, texas, and so before I went there and I'm going to give you a step by step now, so get ready to take notes on exactly how you take advantage of live events. So, four to six weeks before the event I started researching, I started finding anybody I could possibly find in publishing that was going to be at south by southwest. I haunted the website I haunted twitter, I asked people I e mailed the event organizers and said, I'm looking for people in publishing who should I talk to? And they would send me names, so I built this list of people, and I made my hit list, right? A list of everybody that I could find in publishing, whether they're in agent, whether they're an editor, whether and especially authors, I found every altar that was going to be at that event that I thought might be a good client, and I put him on a list. Then I started contacting them, I would email them, I would call them I would find them through lincoln, several people I would email they didn't respond, so I hit him and leaked in and they responded right? And I started setting up meetings and I started far enough in advance, so that had time to do the research and I had time to email them and get get meeting set up and I would set up meetings from six am until midnight and all in between and actually I think dan was there with me and every day I was the first one out of the room and the last one in and not because I was partying it was because I was meeting people and so I went and I had when I landed, when my plane touched down, I had meetings throughout every day of that conference set up as much as I possibly could id lunch meetings, I had breakfast meetings, I had coffee meetings, I was meeting people for drinks at night, everything I possibly could, but of course I couldn't get everybody ahead of time, so I also had a hit list of this is going to be kind of embarrassing, so I had a list of, like fifteen people that I hadn't been able to get ahold of that I want to meet, and I had their head shots next to them so I would recognize them, and I carried that around in my bag with me, and I would literally be walking down and see one of them and just walk over and introduce myself, right? And what I found is that if I could get five minutes three minutes with somebody and I could just talk to them a little bit, I'm not pitching them, I'm not telling them I want to work for them. I'm of course, like when you meet somebody, they're going to ask you what you do and you get to tell them that's how I started working with dana really is I emailed him ahead of time. We e mailed back and forth he's like, well, let's, meet outside of this this one workshop, I met him ahead of time. We talked for five minutes that I followed up afterwards, and we've been working together ever since, right? And so when it comes to meeting with influencers, influencers, air going to events, they're speaking, their attending find where they're going, find where they're congregating and show up and meet them in person again. Do not pitch them, do not tell them, you know, you got to buy my book, I want to do this, I want to do this just build a connection with them get to know them ask a lot of questions you know just be interested in what they do and build that report and that gives you something that it creates a connection that you'll be able to maintain later and so I'm going to now give you another specific way to use twitter that I found really really helpful so when I say you're supposed to meet an influencer at a conference I do not mean go to their talk wait till afterwards and then wait in line to talk to them because you they will not remember you because you are one of twenty or fifty people that were dying to talk to them and got two minutes with him and you're on to the next person so I do not do that that is not the three minutes that you want you want three minutes where they're actually going to remember it later and it's not because they're rude or me and I've been in the same situation you know so many people are coming at you you're not going to remember later so here's what I do I leave the workshop so I go to the workshop and I leave and it's honestly usually because I have something else I got to do because I've set up all these meetings and then about twenty thirty minutes maybe an hour later I tweeted them and I say you know at dan I really loved your talk. Um, I wasn't able to stay after is there somewhere that I could meet you for five minutes? I just love to meet you in person. I have got almost one hundred percent success rate on this. The only time it didn't work is when people left right after and lee respondents said I'm already on a plane, right? I'm on my way to the airport and, like, one time, this guy really wanted me he's like I'm hanging out in this lounge, you know? Come hang out with me and I got, like, an hour and a half to hang out with this guy, and it turned into a really good relationship, right? And so you're really looking for how can you meet people face to face and then follow upon that later? And this works really well for fans, too. If you're already going somewhere, let people know you're going to be there so they could meet in person when we meet was doing his book tour for I will teach you to be rich. Hey, I forgot I think he went to like ten cities, and one of them was d c and so I'm a few hours from d c, so I drove up to meet him there. And he did this he did this thing where he wasn't like up talking he just pulled some tables together and he sat there and we all just kind of hung out I think about twenty people showed up but twenty people got to hang out with her meat and I watched those people and those people they liked her meat when they showed up they loved for meat when they left because they got to talk to you in person and hear from him and he'd give advice and he talked a little bit everybody would listen and ask questions and he became you know, of course he's the man of the hour there and that's how he creates these these one on one connections with fans and that's where if you're already going somewhere I did this when I was in portland a couple months ago and this gets a little technical but inside of male champ you can actually see where people are the kind of guests where people are so you can email people within like a certain mile radius of the city. So I found everybody on my list that was within, you know, certain mileage of portland I just e mailed them and said, hey, I'm gonna be in portland if you'd like to go to lunch you know this day would work for me and I got to meet someone for lunch and so, you know, I'm already there, I might as well do it, and it creates that long lasting connection. So yeah, no quick question, we've got this all sounds amazing. We've got a lot of really good feedback on it. Terra maya's, though, says you're suggesting talking to someone for five minutes, but what do I say? I'm so shy, I freeze up when talking to someone, okay, I think I know terror, I think we've talked so here's a thing, so I used to be terrified of networking. I'm an introvert by nature, like yesterday, when this is over, I went to one of the people here creative live I said, just give me a quiet corner and I'm like ducked down behind the couch just to be alone for twenty minutes like that's, where I feel comfortable so I'm terrified of networking too, but, you know, I was growing a business and so I was talking to this one guy and he's like this networking guy and I was like, I was like, I hate networking is like, why it's easy! I'm like it's easy for you you're an extra for he's like two questions what's your name, what do you do? Ask him what's your name? What do you do? And then just keep asking them questions, be interested in what they're doing, and I have done that ever since. If I meet somebody new, I'm like, I don't know what to say, so I'm like what's your name? What do you do? And then they tell me why I do it like, well, what do you do with that? And just, like, keep asking questions a ziff as if you're interested in them is a person, right? And what? And people love to talk about themselves? Everybody loved to talk about themselves. In fact, penelope trunk. I was reading some advice from her own networking is she's she's like? Actually, you know, we tend to think the best networkers or people that talk a lot in the real boisterous she's, like the best networkers actually don't talk that much. They get other people to talk and she's like it's actually really annoying when you get two really good networkers to talk because all they do is asking other questions because they're like, I'm not supposed to be talking. You talk you no, no, no, no, no, I'm not supposed be talking utah, right? So as somebody that's an introvert you know I've gotten better at it I've been running my own business now for seven years I've had to get better at it but early on I was terrified like any time I got around a group of people I would just you know I'd be the guy on the wall you know with my drink just kind of standing there you know, bopping to the music and I for you and I know writers of shy like in most cases were writing so we could be alone and so I that's what I recommend those two questions changed my life just do those two questions and follow questions and just let people be interested in what people are talking about let them talk about themselves and at the end they're going to walk away and be like like that terror she was really nice and it's because you let them talk about yourself and your interested so that's my networking in three minutes so so live events should go ahead and shell okay so um authors and talking about their own books so I've been to two writer's digest conferences so far as an aspiring author and uh so I can tell you that going to those conferences you get very practised it talking about your book really really quickly because they have something called a pitch slam where you you meet maybe twenty agents in the span of however long the session is, but once you get in front of the agent, you only have ninety seconds to talk about your book. And so you get your spiel down really quickly because you're in the hot seat. And so, um, I would just say that for authors in particular, I mean, my experience has been I've gotten a lot of value out of going to those types of conferences. I've only been to writer's digest ones. I don't work for writer's digest. I'm not. I'm not plugging them for a reason or anything other than that being in one of those conferences help me find my agent on dh s o that kind and those kinds of conferences I've found can be really helpful for writers, too. From the standpoint of there's, just a lot of love going on at these conferences. Writers, a lot of affection. Everybody is so supportive of one another and encouraging and willing to discuss their failures and humiliations and challenges that you know, if you're feeling stuck as a writer, if you're feeling, you know, not inspired, my experience has been, you know, you you put yourself into one of those situations where you're surrounded by people who are dealing with the same issues, and you leave feeling much, much better, and the more you do it, the more confident you get about doing it real quick. I know you had a particular way that you were doing your pitch with your ipad and stuff, and I think people listening would be really interesting that so just share in that ninety seconds. What did you do? Because you got an agent as a result, and so it obviously worked. So tell me just real quick. What what would you say? What did you do in that ninety seconds to kind of make yourself stand out from the crowd? Sure. Okay, it's a great question, because there are hundreds of writers competing for the attention of these, you know, a couple, a couple dozen agents, and so it gets pretty intense, and but it was very helpful. Tohave, you know, because because you had helped me develop the possibility box as a platform, and so I had possibility box dot com and I had my eye was one of the few writers who had an ipad with me s o the when I sat down in front of the literary agent, I was able to say, look, here's, my platform and they had a visual, it was like, you could see that do sit for us, sit forward in their seat and look, oh, you've got a platform, you've got something I can look at, it was really, really helpful toe have not only my pitch, but also that visual of the platform, I could show them the possibility box meant to go along with the possibility book and that really, because you because you only have ninety seconds to get the agents attention showing that you already have a platform kind of in progress, it just you're you're far ahead of the game as opposed to ah writer who's just articulating what the book is about and so anyway, that was that was my experience, it is really useful, I have that so live events, I can't really recommend them overly recommend, and they're they're really helpful looking for ways to meet people in person, and I was somebody that I don't travel very much. I try to stay in my cave in lynchburg, virginia, but the few times a year that I get out, I really try to take advantage of it and meet is many people as I can establish those connections and again we're going to mention in a minute but we're not doing this quid pro quo thing I'm not liked looking at them is a mark of like, okay, I'm going to sell twenty books off of them and one hundred books off of them and fifty books off them like I'm being a person I just like to meet people I get to know people and well, you know, if you like people want to get to know them, you'll establish a connection and then down the road when when the time comes you're going to be able to do something with them and so live events you know as much as I'm talking about online stuff a cz muchas I'm talking about all the digital stuff nothing beats in person nothing will ever be in person and so I highly recommend any time you can meet people in person do it I've I've driven one time I drove four hours one way just have lunch with somebody because I knew it would be good I'd be able to help them out and be a good connection for me to have um and so I really look at how can I establish that in person connection? Um, any chance I get so another way that works really well to do outreach is to write for influencers and sasha admission guest posting on popular blog's there's, a guy named scott densmore he started a site called live your legend dot net and it kind of floundered for a couple years and he you know he kind of wood right and kind of not do much with it and then he started writing guest post for popular blog's and he would go to a blogger and he would look at their content and he would find something that he could write that would be perfect for that platform and he would write a really good belong post and submit it and they would run in his guest posts and of course and it would link back to his website where people could connect with him and he did that in his platform exploded in the book I have exact numbers but it's absolutely crazy how many followers he gained and now it's his entire business it's his full time job and he has a really great time building this and helping people work off their passion and but it was all from blogging on other people's platforms again the number one way to build your own platform is to introduce yourself to existing ones so when you're connecting with influencers you're looking for opportunities to introduce yourself to people that have never heard you before that's all outreach is right we're moving people from not knowing use this to knowing you exist and then inviting them and to get permission so looking for opportunities to write for other influencers provide content for other influencers I would also put being on podcast in this category is well even though it's not writing you know you're taking it you're doing again that vin diagram every podcast needs guests they need content they need people to talk if you're on you get to promote yourself you get to show that you're an expert people will follow you follow up on that while at the same time they're getting content and they're getting what they need and their their platform is going to grow a cz well and so I'm always looking and you know, depending on who you are and you know sometimes the way that people tried to especially with podcast will try to build their their listenership is get popular people on their podcast to try to get those popular people to promote it and that khun b not great but if you're like me and you're trying to really get your own platform often running I really tried to promote them as well. So whenever I'm on a podcast I make sure I promote their podcast because I want to make sure that I'm helping them as much as they're helping me so another one that I just want to mention here go ahead steve yeah our favorites in terms of influencer blog's but if we want to get outside of our are already bookmarked sites what's the recommended resource on finding those influencers I have a couple I have a couple of things that I do here, the first thing that I found is to ask people so like, if I, um, if I've connected with some other influencer and so I'll give the example, um, that I was talking to you about yesterday, so, um, earlier this year on dh, what I do, I pretty much own the business book market like I've worked with lots of business book authors, I'm kind of the go to guy now, but I really want to help fiction writers too, but, you know, I didn't really have any like credentials in the fiction world, right? I knew that my stuff would work. I've talked to some authors and help them, but I couldn't be like, look, I worked with this awesome author, you should pay attention, so I wanted you, howie, I wanted to take what I normally do in the business world and start applying it in a new direction and so identifying okay of all the fiction writers out there who would I love to work with? I'm already a fan of his books he's really blowing up he's, doing a lot if I can work with him and list him as a client is going to make me look good and help other fiction writers come to me to so I took what I did and I refrained and I went and started offering to help him and that's how we started working together. So what I would recommend is if you have an idea of where you want to go like say you want to reach, you know tom was talking about he wants to reach marketing people and this content marketing magazine is a really great place toe teo go um start asking people, well, who should I talk to if I want to talk to this group of people? Where would I go? What do you listen to it? Go through your own linked in your own leaked and profile and say, well, you know, I know this guy that's a marketing and just shoot him an e mail and say what's three web websites that you read on a regular basis a lot of times when I'm when I've been on a podcast is it as a guest? I'll follow up with that person and cinnamon email and say, hey, what are three other podcast that you think I should connect with that you think my content would be perfect for? And this does a lot of things right? So so if I say sasha, you know where should I blogger? And he said, oh, you've got a blogger on steve's block that would be perfect if you get on his blogged it it's going to be the perfect audience? Well, now I can come to you and say, hey, sasha, it's me, you should, uh, we should do something together, and now I have a direct connection, and I'm not going to be just some random guy emailing you have that connection and so that's what I've done a lot, I've done it with my with the author's I've worked with two is else, so let me give a very concrete example, okay? So one of my clients I thought jonathan fields, this great author and writer andi starting this great project called the good life project go and watch all the videos, they're fantastic, a lot of creative lives, people have been on there as well. Um, I really wanted one of my authors to be on his blawg, and so I went to his balog and I'm scrolling through it, and I noticed that he likes to do skype interviews with his with the people that when he reviews a book, he'd like to do a skype interview with the author, and so I did a little bit of research five minutes of research. To know what kind of content he likes what would be perfect for him and I e mailed him and said, you know what? I'm working with this author I think he'd be great for what you do he's willing to do a skype interview because I know that's what you do and I think his content works with your content for these three reasons what do you think? And I got yes you know what I have found what here's what most people do they go to a website they click contact and say hey, can I write something for your website? I don't know can you like who knows? So what I found is like if you do literally I'm not I'm not exaggerating less than five minutes of work you will be in the ninety ninth percentile of people that reach out to them and all that work is is go to the website and look at what they write about and how they write it and you know michael hyatt is another guy he has a really big platform and uh he does a lot of content he accepts guest post every one of his block post looks exactly the same there's a picture of the top and intra paragraph bullet points and out your paragraph he's done if you want to submit a guest post to him, you should write about a topic that he's interested in and do a picture at the top a paragraph a few bullet points in another paragraph and keep it within a word count that's close to his and it will show that you've done a little bit of homework because so many people are blasting these people would just crap if you do a little bit of work it shows that you actually care enough to do it well and you'll stand out from the crowd will you get nose still absolutely will you get ignored still absolutely but you'll get way more yeses than most people and so what I have found is you know a great way to find new places for you to kind of start poking in and that's that's another thing that I bring to this is I think when I think of this I think of constantly poking at new things I don't push cause pushing makes people mad but if you just kind of tap him on the shoulder and if they ignore you okay and new taps taps somewhere else and they have a few taps my oh so you'd get their attention you can start a dialogue but I don't sit still I don't wait for things to come to me I'm not constantly out there pushing people say hey pay attention pay attention I just kind of tap in different places and see what comes out and I find if I do a little bit of research show that I know a little bit about them and what they do and I care a little bit about them if they have a ted talk I watched the ted talk, you know, if if they blogger I'll just I'll just scroll through the last few block post they've done the last couple weeks worth and just kind of look at what they write about in their format get to know them a little bit and then if I send an email inside of that kind of context, I get so many more responses because just like I care about them, they're not just I'm not just taking them off a list somewhere, you know, I'm actually doing a little bit of homework and I have found that, like the publicist that just, like, print off thes dear sir, madam stuff and just blasted out to a thousand people get way less results than me that just tries to talk to fifty people because I get at least half of those fifty people to actually respond to me and we want to do something together. And so remember, we're going back to empathy like we're looking at what do they need out of the world? Like, what are they doing? What where is interesting that they're doing and where do they overlap? You know, one of my authors that I that I've worked with before he was really concerned because he kind of works in the like, psychology realm, and when he looks at other people in kind of his same ecosystem, all he sees is how they're different. Well, I want to do things that way. I don't want to do anything with them, what he said here is crap that doesn't help people that actually hurts people, I don't want to do anything with them, I was like, you've got to change the way you see things instead of looking at that vin diagram and focusing on how you're different, see where you overlap somewhere, you agree on something, and if you focus on that, you have a relationship that you can start building, and they'll say, hey, my people would like to hear that, too. You should come on and introduce yourself to my people, and so and what happens is, is if you do it this way, if you take your time, you do a little bit of research, you reach out and you tap him on the shoulder and you get them to pay attention. That is not on ly see that's not even just a relationship that will help with this book that's now relationship, you're going tohave forever, you know, you do that long enough, and you've got so many people that are like pen I just I just love that guy. I just loved that girl like she's always looking out for me. And when you say have got a book coming out, you won't even have to say, can you do this? You'll say, and there's so many my authors that say, I heard you have a book coming out, you let me know what I can do, you know, and that's what comes as a result of this. And so, if you are focused on, if when it comes to somebody's blawg or somebody's podcast or somebody's email list and you're like, look, I would love to provide some great content that would be perfect for your audience hears what it'll look like. I know this is what you normally do from what I can tell, I will do something like that. You will stand head and shoulders above other people and get so many more responses, and even if you get get a no, they'll be good feelings there that will follow up later, right? You help enough people get what they want out of life, you'll get what you're want out of life too. So this also goes into another direction of playing in other people's worlds, and this is um, hugh and I are going to talk about this in a little bit, so I don't want to spend too much time here, but looking this kind of goes back to authors working together, but amazon just released this really cool thing called amazon worlds, where you can actually write fan fiction and make money off of it, right? If somebody opens up their books to let you write, you can write fan fiction and make it for sale and actually make money on it and there's a lot of great waste of reasons to do this there's an existing audience that people are going to want to read about there the you already have a world to plan it allows you to start writing with having to develop your own characters and develop everything else around it, and it gives. But to me, from a marketing standpoint, you have a built in audience that you can introduce yourself to invite them back to see your other writing, and I know there are riders that think this is crazy, and this is awful and like you should never do this, but as people that are trying to step into this new world of publishing, nothing should be off limits. You should not immediately say no, I would never do that to pretty much anything. You want to always be looking at something with an open mind and looking for ways that you can connect with new people and create a long lasting connection because they're any questions uh, any questions coming in there are always questions coming alright looks like we've got one here that's mark you know quickly with all of this interacting with people and you mentioned that you were, uh, shy going in, but you had to drive about this. What kind of drive do you find with the authors you work with who do all this versus the ones that don't do it? Is there a what component do you notice that people were doing this even if they're shot like you, yet they were able to something pushed them to do that right to go beyond to do these kind of things? Because it does require especially not in your comfort zone to do these things, teo something behind you pushing that uto, you know, to move that, but is there something that you noticed the authors you work with? Yes, oh, michelle and I were talking about this yesterday morning, um, because you know, I'm I'm not naturally like this, you know, as your as I mentioned earlier in this is part of the job now, so I'm going to talk about both sides of this I'm going to talk about the good dr and I want to talk about maybe the pushing that that's behind you pushing you to do whether you want to or not the problem is the world's changing and if you want to be the writer that sits in the cave and never meets anybody and just turns out writing, that may not be an option anymore sure there's always going to be out liars there's going to be things that had happened but the typical rider that's not an option anymore, so you're going to have to learn how to do this it's going it's a to me it's a part of the job now it's just a part of the job if you're signing up to be a writer, this is what you're signing up for now if you want to be successful when you want people to actually read it, you know and stephen king's fantastic book on writing he talked about this not this particular subject, but you talked about like if you want to be that kind of writer, just write something, put it in a safe deposit box and don't worry about it because you're just writing it for yourself anyway, but if you actually wanted to like go into the world, this is part of the job now as somebody that runs my own business, networking is part of the job, so I have to do it the other side though now that's kind of the like well, I got to do it, you know, I'm going to do it the other side, though, to me josh kaufman is a good example of this is he's kind of like me in this, like, he's happy sitting in his office upon the mountain and four collins and nobody really, you know, knowing he's there and he does everything from his own and he's probably loving that I'm saying this about him right now I mean, but, you know, he doesn't like to travel, you know, that kind of thing to, um but his bent is I really want to help people like in his latest book, um, first twenty hours um that's a really helpful book. Um he discovered the tenants to how you can learn, uh, learn something really, really quickly, whether it's playing the ukulele or windsurfing or playing go this ancient game and he really wants he truly wants people to be able to take what he's learned and apply it to their lives and learn and get what they want out of life and that drives him so the riders, you know, pam slims, another great example she's finished up. Her new book is coming out the end of this year it's called body of work and it's going to be a fantastic book, and the reason that she wrote it is because she wants to help people it's because she truly believes that if people read her book is going to change their lives for the better and so she's going to go out and she's going to promote this book because it's good for people to know what's going on and how I think of it as is that if I get an opportunity or if one of my off, if josh gets an opportunity to write an article for a major website where he's teaching people how to do rapid skill acquisition and nobody buys his book, but they take what he wrote and they apply it in their life gets better, he's going to be happy, you know, we're going to talk about selling in the next segment, and I talk about it in a way it's natural selling if you do that, if you write an article that helps people and you say, hey, I talk a lot more about this in my book, people are going to buy the book, you know? You know what I always come back to is people don't buy books for the author, people buy books for themselves. I buy books because I want to buy books, you know, last night, um, yesterday morning, I finished reading a book, and last night I would have bought another, another book of that author I was so excited reading, and I got halfway through page and fell asleep, not because of the book that I was just exhausted, and but like, I bought that book, because I the first one, was so good, I got to read another one of the authors write, and so if I, the tonto question the bit towards I'm going to spread this message as far as possible, I'm going to help us. Many people is possible because I know if I help enough people, book sales were naturally follow, and we'll talk about how to make sure those book sales naturally follow and how to invite people to do that. But that's the best. So one thing is, make sure you don't just focus on a listers. A lot of times, when we start thinking of promotion, we go straight to the top, and sometimes that works. I've had it worked before, but in most cases, if you are starting and you don't have a lot of clout, and nobody knows who you are, and you try to go straight to a list, you try to get a uh, gig writing for the new york times blawg or you try to get a gig, you know, riding for a major website it's not gonna work. You don't have the connections yet. And so what I recommend is focus on people below that tear the b and c listers for lots of reasons, first of all, goes back to that working together thing. If I'm a c lister and I start working with a bunch of c lister authors, we will all become we will all grow together write the other thing is they don't get near a cz many, um, request, you know, if I draw a line like this like a typical chart like this, right? And this is request this is amount of request the a listers get that many request, they get ninety percent of the request if you just drop down to b listers and I'll try to give an explanation of what I mean by that, but basically, people that don't have his big of a following, you are not drowning in a hundred other people that want their time there's a lot less just competition for their time, and what that means is not only are they more likely to say yes to working together, they're more likely to actually, like, get on the phone and talk to you about it, because they're not that busy, you know when I was starting out you know I would talk to anybody because I don't have a lot going on you know? And so if you're if you're looking to work for people that aren't those a listers that like ten times new york times best selling author that everybody wants something from but you're looking for that somebody that has had some success is selling books and you want to work together with them on something that's their going much more likely say yes, they're not getting his money quests they have more time, they're more likely to be open to something new from a fresh author because they're the idea of them being an unknown is very fresh in their minds they're much more likely to do that kind of stuff so I highly work him in you don't you don't scratch them off the list don't say well, I'm not even going to try but you know really spend your time looking for authors that are closer to where you're at or just a couple runs above you and I know it's uncomfortable to think about this we don't like to think of other people better than us or higher than us through that kind of thing and I don't anyway think anybody's you know fundamentally it you know, a better person or more worthwhile person but the truth is if somebody successful they don't need you if you're not successful, they don't need anything from you maybe and you really got to show that you're somebody that they should pay attention to. But if you go to somebody that's that mid lier mid tier of success that's has some success but not overly busy, they have time, they are still looking, they want to become an a lister, right? So how can you help them become an a lister? You know, they're more open to this kind of stuff, and again, you can start creating those connections with people that will last a long time, and as they become an a lister now, you you were helping them when they were in nobody. Now they're much more likely to help you. You know, there is a balance to play here, you know, sometimes when I have these conversations with authors, they they get they feel like I'm going to foreign looking at people is marks right? I've tried really hard to show like this is not what I see it as, but this happens everywhere like if you want, if you run a local business and you want to grow that business, do you go to the networking event and have drinks with people that are other also running businesses? Or do you go to the bar where all the locals hang out? Right, you go to the networking event, right? Because that's, where people that are going to help you with your business is like, well, you're just marking them is people that can help you it's like, well, yeah, I only have limited time I'm going to spend it doing the thing that's more likely to get me what I need in life, and so when I talk about going to these live events and working with people, getting to know people, I'm doing it on purpose like I'm getting to know this person because I hope that somewhere down the road this will turn into something good, but I'm a tte the same time not crossing that line into like the on ly the only worth this person has to me is how many books they represent selling like I'm just want to get to know them, knowing that if I get to know enough people like that it's going to come back so real quick, let me hit a couple of things again, some practical things a great way is to interview other people when you if you have a podcast, if you have a blawg on email lists, you know this is great content for an e mail list we're talking about how did create content at the same time again overlapping things I'm doing outreach while creating content um, doing interviews is great because it helps promote other people and that's actually, my next point is look for ways to promote other people's work ah, great place to start if you want to get to know and author and again like a b c list author, review their book and put it up on your block and then sent an email and say, look, I put a review on your blood and that will start a dialogue, right? Who want to do that every person I have, I have found people that have posted reviews of my blood and tracked them down and then track down who gave them my book and then track down where they heard of my book because I'm just interested in people that are passing my book around, I want to get to know them and say, thanks, and now I have that connection will last a long time, and if you're on the other end of that and you're reviewing people's books and letting people know like, hey, this is a great book, I really enjoyed this that's going to create a connection long term and it's looking out for their best interest, what is an author want they want to sell books if you're helping them sell books, they're going to like you okay, um, I'd like people that sell more of my books they start off on a good footing with me, right? They can only go down from there and so that's what we're trying to do so you know, a few things not to do this is not a quid pro quo. I am not I do not have a secret list somewhere of every favor I've ever done anybody in while they better pay me back when the time comes there, there on the hit list, right? No, I don't even know have to I've had people email me and say, thanks so much for that that advice six months ago and I honestly don't remember keeping the advice, you know, somebody put a quote on facebook the other day from a podcast I was on and he just put the quote on there and put tim girl and I'm like, yeah, what when did I say, I don't remember saying that? And they're like, oh, is this podcast and like, oh, all right, well, it sounded smart, so yeah, I was definitely meet, you know, but, uh, but yeah, don't we're not keeping a quid pro quo list, I'm not keeping track of everybody I've ever done a favour for I'm just helping enough people get what they want out of life knowing that it will circle back around it can't help but circle back around make sure you have those assumptions and check like we talked about yesterday, assuming that people are busy assuming if they say no it's for a good reason, I'm revoking my right to be offended in any of this if I try that thing that tim told me about tweeting somebody after an event and they say, no, I don't have time for you that's all right? They probably they're probably busy, you know, who knows, maybe, like, right before they came there kid fell on, break their broke their arm and they're worried about, you know, you never know what's going on behind the scenes, so you have to revoke your right, uh, to be offended, and so, you know, again, we're going to continue to take questions on the next couple sessions, and I really want to help with this outreach thing, and but I really feel like, you know, this is if you have your bucket and you're plugging those holes with permission, outreaches, how you actually feel that bucket and if you're going out and you're looking for ways to help other people help other content providers, find influencers, find people that air getting other people to do things and you helped them and you give them what they need and create these long lasting relationships and look for new people that you can help ask for recommendations on other people that you can help you will start spreading you will start becoming known as somebody that helps people and that people should spend time healthy. Russ, what is great? We've got so many questions coming in and I think every is really appreciating this morning session to him as always, it's been great stuff, but just jump back a couple of moments when you're talking about live events, we actually have a couple of questions there. Jennifer kent is asking how do you go about finding those conference event? What if you're writing a book a support for your business rather than authorship? Xena is also asking something on a very similar vein, but what if you don't know any other fiction writers in the newbies? How do you meet other auto authors who'd be willing to work with you? What type of event should they attend? So so I haven't I haven't interesting problem with who I talked to authors are everywhere, but they're nowhere in particular in most cases outside of like a writer's dead digest conference there's very few places authors congregate, so I kind of have to shotgun things right? Like, if I talked to a group of entrepreneurs, I know that there's a certain number of those people in that group that air probably interested in writing a book, so I kind of have to shotgun um one thing that I do I was I was just on the phone the other day with a girl named jamie tardy she runs this great log are this great podcast she interviews millionaires it's called eventual millionaire dot com and I asked her what happens when you become a millionaire and she says I already own eventual billionaire dot com um so she s o I was talking to her about this and I said, hey, you know, I need to go to some conferences next year what do you recommend? I go too, and she ticked off three that I should go to sew back teo steve's question of like, how do you find places to try toe interact? It's you know, a lot of this stuff seems like it's magic, but it's not it's just ask somebody that you think might know so if you're in an industry, ask other people in that industry that you worked with hey, what our conference is you go to or what do you events that you think I should attend if I'm looking for these type of people and as faras connecting with authors pretty much every author has a website now they're at least on social media go to amazon here's a great here's here's something I personally do if I'm looking for authors in a certain type of vain um, I go to a new author that I know in that genre. I look at their books on amazon, and I look a tte. Customers also bought line, and I look at all of those authors. Those air, all authors that are in the same vein, is this author in most cases, and then I just start googling them, finding them on facebook, finding them on twitter, find them unlinked and finding their website. And I just emailed them that's. The simplest way to do it.

Class Description

Self-publishing has turned authors and photographers into business owners. In this new era of publishing, you are your own startup and your book is your product. In this workshop, self-published author and book marketing expert Tim Grahl will teach you how to help your book find its audience.

Book sales depend not only on the quality of your work, but also on the strength of your marketing. You will learn how to develop a strategic outreach plan to engage your current audience and introduce yourself to the right new communities. Tim will also show you how to develop a reliable email list, use content to drive sales, and negotiate with publishers.

Whether you’re publishing a novel or a coffee table book of lush images, Tim will give you the marketing playbook your talent deserves.


Sonja Dewing

Loved it! A lot of great tips on what needs to be on your author page, even some helpful plugins for WordPress! Love the extras. Well worth it.

Mark Leruste

This was my very first Creativelive class and it was amazing! In short it's the course I wish I took before self-publishing my first book. It covers all the basics and highlights all the mistakes you're most likely to make as a first time author or a serial writer. Everything you need to know about selling and marketing your book is in here. I've been recommending it to everyone interested in writing a book! Thank you Tim Grahl for a brilliant course.

Rachelle Ramirez

I've had the blessing of training directly with Tim Grahl and this class pulls all the basics together. Master these techniques and you've leveled up as professional writer. Why write a book and not get it to its readers? These are the tools that not only sell your book but get readers interested in reading YOUR book when they a million other choices. Worth the money.