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102 - 3 Quick and Easy Strategies to Gauge the Success of Your Book


Hey Guys! Nicole Gabriel here! I’m the host of the Let’s Get Your Book Published podcast. I’m also the author multiple books, a Book Designer, and a Publishing Coach as well as an intuitive Business Coach.

I’ve been in the book business for awhile now and I’ve helped many clients get their book published. On this podcast I share personal stories, client stories, and the truths about the publishing industry. Ultimately, I shoot to give you the truth about the publishing industry from a girl that’s been there and done that.

On today’s podcast I’m going to give you 3 Quick and Easy Strategies to Gauge the Success of Your Book…so let’s get into today’s show!

I read things all day long all over the internet about how to write and market a successful book. There are strategies for content creation, tools for marketing, guidelines on printing or distribution and so much more.

There really are two ways to look at success…one is to attract more readers or relate to reader and the other is to produce a book that is in alignment with what you are doing successfully already. Just about every system or strategy you will find when you do a random search for any specific area of interest as it relates to your book will guide you on how to make a better book, better content, how to speak to your reader, how to market and launch your book and sell copies, and all the specifics as it pertains to only your book and how to position yourself as the author of it. But, the better approach is always going to be related to how your book works for you.

I was reading an article in the ibpa magazine awhile back and of course I love to read through trade journals to see what’s trending and to gain an insight on the industry. But, time and time again I find the same content. It’s, of course well-written, by a seasoned editor or writer, but the content speaks to the book specifically and not the industry, subject, or topic it supports. Now, of course, most of the readers of such journals are likely looking at book writing as a creative endeavor for their novel or other similar pieces of work. Much of the speak is about selling books, but, some of it is about learning to speak to an audience. This particular article I read talked about product testing. What’s interesting about this approach to creating a better book is that as an entrepreneur you have likely already done a bunch of product testing and that’s probably why you’ve now decided to write your book…to better speak to your already engaged audience.

Since my coaching system focuses more on the entrepreneurial mindset author - the author-preneur - I wanted to breeze through some of the content of this article with my slant on things. The article states that product testing will help you learn what appeals to your readers so that your book can be more successful. So, we will re-work this topic just slightly by stating that you are already aware of your audience and selling books isn’t entirely your game. The book you are writing is likely more a way to put a stake in the sand to begin creating your platform. This platform is both a foundation for your personal and professional message, slogan, and/or topic of interest and a launch pad for the business you are either stepping into or highlighting by publishing a book.

The article speaks of the idea that authors are not doing enough up-front work to test their content to determine if their reader is able to engage with their work. As an entrepreneur, this is likely something you are already going to know something about if your book isn’t random but rather laser-focused on your ideal customer. With all marketing plans, you are identifying the audience you are gearing your messages towards. It’s not different with a book. In fact, this might be more important with a book than a 30-second infomercial for typical branding initiatives. You are looking to engage a reader for a more long-term relationship with a book. And, if you’ve done this right then they will seek you outside of the book for more of what you are offering.

There are probably touch-points in your business where you already know your audience and who is drawn to you for whatever your core offering is outside of the book. If you are a fitness instructor and you’ve been doing this for awhile you know that you attract clients that are looking to get in shape. So what else can you offer them in a book that you can’t offer them in a 30-60 minute workout or training session? Generally this is content that you know every client can use but you can’t possibly squeeze in in the time of your engagement. It’s also likely the items that you repeat regularly can be captured once in the book and then referred to by chapter to provide additional value to your client when you are not able to be physically present with them.

The article talks about surveying your target reader. If you are running a business like fitness instruction then every time you are doing a training session with a client you get an opportunity to ask what they need, want, desire, or could use to enhance their experience. Is there a common theme? Are they looking for help with diet? Are they looking to be motivated? Is there a certain way that you have been able to motivate many over the years that has worked well? When you take the time to know your audience and you really listen to their needs and desires then as you write your content for your book, your website, your podcast, or any other content, you know who they are and what they want. When you perfect this and really know your audience you develop a relationship with them as if you are speaking directly to them. They are going to pick up any or all of your materials and want to call you because they really think you are talking to them.

So, let's identify this strategy as probing to learn how to target content…


Strategy #1: Probing to Identify & Target Content

When you begin to move from going through the motions of doing what you do daily and into an inquiry role is generally about the time you are beginning to put your leadership shoes on. You are now in a position where you’ve mastered your craft and you are looking to identify yourself as not just someone that practices your subject of interest but now as someone that is prepared to be known as a leader it this particular field.

As you engage with each of your clients, or deeper into facets of your business, you are beginning to form specific topics or subcategories or your core business. When you begin writing you likely have a general concept of the topic you want to write on. But, now as you begin to identify the sub-categories of your business you will start to see these become subcategories in your book. You can now start probing your clients about the book topics. You might identify particular stories that the client can relate to that can be shared in the book. These might be motivational or inspirational or stories of what another client in their same situation has overcome or how they have excelled. You might even draw up fictional stories or characters that can be followed on the journey. Perhaps you can categorize the clients into particular funnels…in the case of the personal trainer…maybe one group is lazy, another group are self-starters but unclear on method, or maybe some are trying to run a marathon. You can identify characteristics that are relatable to the reader that streamline the personal training experience. A new client may come in and say I’m that character but show me how to become the other one…or something like that. You’re probing who you are already working with to further blow out valuable and meaningful content. And when you write your book you can even develop a questionnaire that your client finds in the book with entry lines for them to write in so that their book is now personalized and a value-add in the experience they have with you. If you are providing clear value I think it’s pretty clear you have built a model of success.


Strategy #2: Speak to Your Target Audience

We’ve already hit on this one, but when you know your audience and learn what they are looking for you are speaking directly to them and their needs. You probably have a few pretty wise clients that have engaged with you over the years and that are happy with the service or partnership you provide. Seek out some of your top clients and ask them where you succeeded and where you fell short. I know many of my clients are busy and I tend to offer them far more information than they need about the book writing or publishing process. I get that most of them are hiring me because I’m a supposed expert in my field. But, because I love what I do I love to talk about every facet of it. Most people just want to get in and out and back into their core competency. So, where can you streamline your offering? Can you learn what your strengths are by talking with those you have worked with? You might start to draw up content then bring in a few of your top clients for feedback. You might even suggest that as a gift of appreciation you want to offer them a bonus for their time. If you are a personal trainer you might comp a session if they provide you valuable feedback on new concepts or ideas or programs you are looking to roll out in the content of your book or as a new program you are offering clients. The idea here is that you are getting crystal clear on your offerings and further defining the specific content of your manuscript and how this can be leveraged in income-earning programs, classes, workshops, or the like outside of your book. The interviews with clients will secure a relationship with them as a trusting partner and solidify your appearance as someone dedicated to enhancing your craft. When people have a stake or an interest in your book, whether you share stories or testimonials or highlight them as a content provider in your book they will be sure to promote you because they have a vested interest. There are a lot of writers that showcase respondents of their material as a way of building a following…it’s like a built in marketing tool to create awareness. Everyone wants to have their 15 minutes of fame! If your clients feel they are a success, then you are a success!


Strategy #3: Involve Your Audience, Readers, and Clients

If someone has invested in you in any way they want to feel good about their interaction. They want to know they hired the best. They want to feel good about their investment. If you hired an editor to edit your book and he had only written one book you might wonder if they were a good editor. But, as your editor writes more books or excels in their career as an editor or an author of multiple books you know that your guy loves what he does and you feel good about getting the best. It’s the same, if your fitness coach is carrying a few extra pounds…you might think twice about the relationship or the results you can expect. As you excel in the thing you love to do, don’t be afraid to share the journey with everyone in your circle. Your book is going to define you as a subject matter expert in your topic so be sure to pick one you’d do just for the love of it. Be sure that you are investing your time in content that aligns with your interests.

I love helping coach people through all facets of writing a book and I could talk about it in my sleep. I love what I do! But, also be sure as you pivot into your niche that you leave some room for interaction beyond your niche. If my clients aren’t writing a book again they will have no reason to interact with me. Sometimes this is a good thing, but most of the time I’ve developed a partnership and friendship with my clients during the process of writing and publishing their book and I enjoy the relationship. I’ve built out my business over the years to engage with my clients on every step of the publishing process. Once the book is written, my background in marketing and advertising is useful to help them bring their book to light. Since I am an author of multiple books I can also help them as an author myself. I know all the steps along the way. I can help them with the eBook, distribution, and marketing as well.

So, use the research gathering phases of pulling your content together to also identify how you can reach out to your reader in multiple ways outside of the book. Showcase them in stories or interviews to help showcase where you provide value but also to showcase them as a subject matter expert on their topic. Does the fitness instructor offer classes and if so where? How can you hire them or engage with them, do they have a YouTube channel or podcast. Share their details in and outside of the book. Think of all engagements as partnerships in promoting each others book and business. And, this approach is also fabulous when it comes time to launch or market your new book. In all things covid more and more book are launched virtually and over a cross-platform of like-minded subjects and authors. Every testimonial you gather for your book is also an opportunity to share the love by asking the author if they are ok being featured on your platform. Of course they are if they have an entrepreneurial mind-set!

On this note, I read something the other day that identified 7 effective ways to make others feel important. I think any time you make someone feel important you have a success! These ways are from Roy T. Bennett’s book The Light of the Heart and they are:

Effective Ways to Make Others Feel Important

  1. Use their name.
  2. Express sincere gratitude.
  3. Do more listening than talking.
  4. Talk more about them than about you.
  5. Be authentically interested.
  6. Be sincere in your praise.
  7. Show you care.

Have you figured it out yet? The success of your book reaches well beyond the book! When you step out from behind the book you will find the book plays a pivotal role in identifying that you are serious about your subject and you’ve provided a professional and well-detailed tool for success and engagement. The real test of success is did the book do the thing you hoped it would? You have to set goals to measure against. Have you set them? Before you do all this, start there!

It’s been a wonderful start to summer with so many new books coming to print. I have countless books going off to the printer in the next few days. I will do my best to showcase these as soon as they are available over on my client portfolio on my Let’s Get Your Book Published website so check them out there.

I look forward to assisting you with all facets of your book publishing project when you’re ready. For now…wishing you peace, love, and light!

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