Tags

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


The Modern Independent Author = Author + Entrepreneur = The Authorpreneur

Historically, literature and the business of literature seemed to be two mutually exclusive events that existed in isolation of one another. Writers wrote, wished on a shooting star that their work would make the cut, hoped for an agent, and prayed to get published. Being “published” was a mark of distinction, and it meant that your work was a cut above the rest, you could make it through the gatekeepers, but lately the gatekeepers have been proven wrong.

Technology is breaking barriers and leveling the playing field. The old rules to the game of publishing don’t apply any longer, it’s a brave new world out there, you don’t necessarily need a publisher for mass distribution, and anyone can make it, given the right tools. It’s all about strategy, finding the right one that works for you, and above all persistence and perseverance (we’re talking blood, sweat, and tears – We’re firm believers in the value of honest hard work, so if you’re looking to make a quick buck, you might want to look elsewhere).

There are no more excuses. No more reasons why you can’t be successful as an author. There will be someone somewhere who will appreciate and understand your work or help you make it better, you just have to find them, communicate you exist, and convince them you are worth spending their money. Sounds like a difficult task? Well, it’s certainly not easy, but then ask yourself again, “Why do I write?” It’s something of an artist’s dilemma. Do you write for love or for money? If it’s love, then it doesn’t matter how much or how many you sell, you’ll never be disappointed because you’re only writing for yourself. However, if it’s for money, well then that’s a different story and you have to be completely attuned to the needs of your market.

The author is an entrepreneur. Think about that. It’s a powerful statement. Each book is its own small business, with an individualized target market, a message it’s trying to communicate. It has financial needs as well, requires investments and expenditures, risks, and hopefully will ultimately provide rewards. In order to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to be equipped with the right tools, and the right strategy. You need to know your market intimately and be able to effectively communicate how you can solve their problems.

Over the next few weeks we’ll be starting a series of blog posts called the Author + Entrepreneur examining the self-publishing process from a marketing perspective, because that is my background, and that is what I know. The fundamentals of marketing state that the customer has an unfulfilled need, and you will somehow be fulfilling that unmet need. So to be really fundamental here, there are five Ps of marketing: Product, Price, Place (Distribution), Promotion, and Positioning.

So here is a little taste of what we’ll be covering in each of the topics:

Product

  • Fiction
  • Non-fiction
  • Length
  • Genre
  • Editing and Refining

Packaging

  • Cover Art Design
  • Bundling

Price

  • Pricing models
  • Perceived vs. actual value
  • To free or not to free

Promotion

  • Target Market
  • Public Relations
  • Advertising
  • Earned vs. Paid
  • WOM
  • Personal Selling/Relationship marketing and engagement

Placement

  • Distribution channels

Positioning

  • Mind mapping
  • Assessing the competition

We can’t make any promises that you’ll sell a million copies, we can only tell you what we know about the topics we’ve listed. And perhaps if you can understand the concepts a little better and try to implement some of them, you’ll be a little wiser about the whole process.