Market Your Self-Published Book

One of the most exciting things I do is self-publish books. A few months ago I wrote a couple of Kindle books. I got one uploaded before having a computer crash and losing a lot of drafts. Talk about a set back. But all things work together for the good, right?

The lesson to me was to get on with it when I get a book completed. Get it published and up it where the public can find it. The last book I published was Bold Creativity.  I wrote it as a two-part series on creativity for the professional person in business. It’s only $2.99 o Kindle to take a look if that’s an area of interest.

But what about you? Are you putting your words on paper, getting them published and letting the world enjoy them? If not, it might be time for you to consider this idea. One of the best ways to start promoting yourself as a professional is to publish. It doesn’t have to be a long book. The Bold Creativity is only about 51 pages, and some books on Kindle or ebooks are even shorter.

That means you don’t have to write a lot. Just go for quality over quantity. After it gets written you want people to find it. Here are a few good marketing ideas to bring your written work to the light.

1: HARO

Get on the “Help a Reporter Out (HARO)” list. I really like this list and have put in requests for speakers on my radio show, Seasoned Women Health Radio, and answered requests from reporters for a speaker. This site is often overlooked because people aren’t quite sure how to use it. Go over there and study some of the requests. See how many you could fit. You’d be surprised. Be prepared to send a .pdf copy of your book or an excerpt if you want to discuss this online. HARO is a great opportunity to get the word out about what you’re doing.

2. Promote Yourself

As a business professional you can’t be shy about promoting yourself. If you have book to share, you need to be proud of it. That means letting people know what you have to offer. If you publish a Kindle book or a soft cover using CreateSpace you will have an Amazon page. That’s pretty big. I have probably three or four already and have a goal to get several more up this year. Set your goal to get an  Amazon page if you don’t have one by publishing your book. Then start blogging, talking, speaking, and doing everything else you can to get the word out and ASK people to buy.

3. Write Your Own Book Review

First of all, write a dynamic book review on your own site on Amazon. That’s a huge place for eyeballs to possibly see your book. I say “possibly” because you have to drive traffic there to get readers.  So start talking it up alright?  Go to book review sites and get your book uploaded. Many of these sites are for authors who want to self promote.  Then of course, write another powerful self review. Here are two sites for book reviews. I haven’t had a chance to review all of them but you can check them out. If you find out how to get on one of them let us know in the comments section.

http://www.shelfari.com

Here’s where you could actually become a reviewer for books. If you get to post your name it can drive traffic to your blog and your book.

http://www.tbrnetwork.com/content/reviewer.asp

Look up other book review sites to see where you can submit your book.

4. Donate a copy

I’ve donated a copy of my book “Yes, You CAN Succeed Online” to several silent auctions for non-profits. I usually couple that with the chance to get a 30 minutes free coaching session or maybe to review an ebook or something similar.  This has been a great way to get some notoriety as well as new clients.

5. So Some Speaking

It’s not too difficult to be a speaker at local women’s groups or business clubs. Most are looking for new speakers each month.  As part of your talk, take your book to sell. I used to gather business cards by doing a drawing for my book. But I found that people won’t buy a copy until the drawing because they might win the book. Then the meeting is over and they leave. Instead, I announce I have my new book with me for sale at the beginning of my talk. Someone will usually be wiling to go around selling the book while you speak. Then do a drawing for a free business strategy session or another item. Works much better to increase book sales!

These are some of ways I’ve tried to make book sales that have worked. You have to get exposure for your book to generate sales. Don’t expect your sales to come to you. With self-publishing, you really do have to hustle and create buzz to get things going.

What have you done to promote your book? Leave some ideas in the comments below.

Using LinkedIn for B2B Social Networking

There are plenty of reasons why a Christian business woman should use LinkedIn to build her business.  If you’re not using this social media platform, here’s a few reasons why you should.

This is by far the best social network for business networking. LinkedIn has a network of millions of other professionals who’re actively looking to network. The etiquette on LinkedIn is strongly skewed towards B2B networking.

So how do you maximize LinkedIn’s potential for B2B networking?

Get a Ton of Great Recommendations

Start by getting a ton of great recommendations. Ask former employers; ask clients; ask investors; ask partners. Ask everyone who’s worked with you in a professional capacity to give you a recommendation.

Ask them to get as specific as possible. Talking about real results and real ways you had an impact on them or their company will help lend weight to their recommendation.

Introduce Yourself to New Connections

Whenever someone connects with you on LinkedIn, drop them a quick note introducing yourself. This helps you stand out in their minds, because so few people take the time to introduce themselves to new connections.

Add a Profile Video

Don’t be shy about using video to start promoting yourself.  A lot of people who are competing for the same job position, the same client order or the same investment dollars could all have fantastic text profiles. But still relatively few people take the effort to add a video to their profile. Add a video to your profile to really make it stand out.

Do Favors for Other People

If someone contacts you asking to be connected to someone else, go out of your way to do so. If you know two people who would benefit from knowing one another, be the one to help them meet. Give recommendations generously. Help others in whatever way you can.

When you need their help – it could be a couple months or a couple years from today – they won’t forget that you helped them when they needed it.

Answer Questions on LinkedIn Answers

Spend any down time you have in your day answering questions on LinkedIn Answers. LinkedIn Answers is LinkedIn’s platform for people to ask business-related questions. It’s a great place for you to demonstrate your expertise, as well as for you to build your network.

Ask for Introductions

First of all, try to only do first degree and second degree introductions. Third degree introductions might work, but should only be used if you have no other alternatives. Keep in mind that you don’t need an introduction if you’re in the same group as someone else.

When you’re requesting an introduction from someone, drop them a note first telling them why you want the introduction. Don’t just send an introduction request.

In summary, start by making your profile as credible and as memorable as possible using recommendations, a great profile and a profile video. Build goodwill with others by helping them, by personalizing your connections and by answering questions. Then reach out for introductions when you need them. People will be more than happy to help.

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By the way, did you know there’s a complete set of Social Media Training Programs in the Member’s Area of NACWIB?  Join NACWIB today to get these resources and plenty more valued at over $600. http://nacwib.com/join

 

 

Why Christian Business Women Need to Increase Referrals

I recently visited a new restaurant that had great food and exceptional service.  Before leaving I was looking for their card so I could start referring people to them.  Getting referrals is imperative to every self-employed business owner.  Referrals can mean the difference between not having new clients and having a thriving business. Christian business women need to get know how to inspire customers to give them referrals on an ongoing basis to improve business.

One of the best features of a customer who comes as a referral is that they come with a mindset to make a purchase.  Therefore, you have to do very little if any selling.   What you have to do is have consistent service and products that make that new person want to buy based on the referral and to become another person that does effective referrals for you. That leaves you more time to run your business and make money.  So what are some secret to getting better, and more frequent referrals?

Referrals Come by Word of Mouth Marketing – So Encourage People to Talk 

People make a referral by talking about you.  This might be one of the only times when you want to encourage people to make you the target of their conversation.  Word of mouth marketing seems like a natural thing but it really doesn’t always just happen.  Just think about how many great places you’re been to that you don’t talk about with others?  With so many places to visit and so much on your mind, you probably just don’t think about different business you’ve enjoyed or even more simply, you just forget.  That is why the ability to get good referrals is an art as well as a marketing skill.  You need to control the thinking of your customers to make them want to pass the word along about how great you are.

Know Your Referral Sources and Track Them

Hopefully you can tell the people who have referred others to you in the past. Consider creating a special plan to keep track of these referral sources and keep them talking.  For example, you might send them a coupon for your products or services just to let them know how much you appreciate them. That means you need to set up some type of system to start tracking your customers and the people they refer. Do this by getting them on an email mailing list and sending them a notice of specials, sales, discounts, or special events.  Offer them something special when a referral drops their name, and then get the new referral on your mailing list too!

Be Great at Saying Thanks

As soon as you receive a referral, connect with the source and thank them. You can automate the process to make it easier. For example, when you receive a referral, generate an automatic email response to the referral source to thank them for spreading the word.  Come up with some type of gift such as a discount code to thank them. Depending on your niche and your business model, offering a discount can be a great way to motivate repeat referrals.

Apply the 10 x 10 Rule

The 10×10 rule works like this. Make a list of 10 complimentary industries to yours. For example, if you make health food for dogs, complimentary industries could be dog trainers, groomers, and pet retailers. Once you have your list of ten industries, do a bit of research and find 10 professionals from each of those industries that you can connect with for referrals. You now have 100 potential referral sources. Get busy and find ways to connect with these people. Introduce yourself, learn more about their business and educate them about yours. Suggest a mutual system of referring business to each other.

Be Sure to Ask for Referrals 

When a client says she enjoyed your service or product, or that you do a wonderful job for them, thank them and ask for a referral.  The best time to do this is when the good service or product is in the mind of the customer.  Asking for the referral helps to solidifies you in that person’s mind.  Ask the customer if she has a business card and say you want to put them on your business email list or special mailings. Be sure to send a thank-you card to that customer. It never hurts to include something special such as a discount or gift card as appropriate.

As a Christian woman in business, you really need to make the person who referred you feel glad that they did. Now, they will be more likely to do it again. Referrals are a wonderful business builder. Create a strategy to build your referral business; then you can focus more on providing spectacular products and services while satisfied customers help to drum up new business.

Should Christian Business Women Hire a Marketing Consultant?

Depending on your business and how far along you are,  a marketing consultant may be important in helping your business to grow.   Christian business women are now starting to work with marketing consultants to assist with entrepreneurial firms,  large corporations or non-profits.  Marketing consultant have client businesses that span a whole range of different industries. Essentially, any company that’s focused on marketing, that cares about their brand or wants to bring in new customers could use the services of a marketing consultant. Knowing exactly which types of clients you’re targeting will help you attract and close more of those clients.

Here are some of the most common types of clients marketing consultants encounter.

Brand Oriented Companies

Brand oriented companies tend to be larger companies with larger marketing budgets. Their primary goal when they’re spending marketing dollars is to win mindshare and associate specific emotions with their brand.

In other words, they don’t expect to make a sale right away. Their primary concern isn’t response or sales, their primary concern is brand.

What the marketing consultant does:  In this context helps guide the business’ brand along and makes sure that every ad the company puts out adheres to the brand’s core message.

Response Based Companies

These are the polar opposite of brand oriented companies.  These companies don’t care about branding at all.  Their main objective is to turn a profit from every ad.  If they spend $10,000 on advertising, they expect $12,000 in revenue to come in. If they don’t make back their initial investment, the campaign was a failure.

What the marketing consultant does:  With these companies, a marketing consultant can help choose what kind of media the company advertises in (radio, mail, internet, TV, etc.) They can help direct the copy or the creatives to ensure they convert. They can also help pick specific publications or channels to advertise in.

Small Businesses

Marketing consultants can also specialize in helping small entrepreneurial businesses succeed. For example, a marketing consultant might help a local dentist figure out how to attract more clients from surrounding cities.

What the marketing consultant does:  Small businesses tend to expect very measurable results. You either get them more customers or you don’t.  If you succeed, many small business owners will be more than happy to refer you to other local business owners.

Service Providers

Service providers can include Software as a Service (SAS) providers, industry-specific consultants (e.g. software consultants), debt consolidation specialists and really any other company that provides a service. Many of these companies operate on the internet or operate on a nation-wide basis.

What the marketing consultant does:  Marketing consultants in these contexts tend to be tasked with establishing a pipeline. These companies don’t just want you to come up with one or two successful marketing campaigns. Instead, they want you to help them develop a repeatable system of generating clients on a regular basis.

You and a Marketing Consultant

If you decide to find someone to assist you with your marketing, your job will be to identify ways this professional can bring in more customers and convert more customers, then make sure their staff can actually execute on that plan consistently.  At least you now understand some of the more common kinds of clients you might encounter as a marketing consultant.  You can target everyone from very small businesses and solo-entrepreneurs to multi-million dollar corporations.  Being a Christian women in business mean understanding resources available to assist with making her business or organization as successful as possible.  Planing your business operations and understanding your growth patterns will help to know when hiring a marketing consultant is most important.

If you don’t have a plan for your business you might not know when to expect the type of growth the warrants a marketing consultant.  Every type of business including a small business and non-profit needs to develop a business plan.  You can work through a plan with the NACWIB business plan program that’s simple to understand and easy to complete.   Work through a business plan for your Internet based business or find a detailed business plan for your company or non-profit as a resource in the NACWIB membership area.

Services to Promote Your Business

You might now have heard of Microservice sites, but these sites make it easy for website owners and web marketers to get design work, video work and other media work done at unprecedentedly low prices.  An example of this type of site is Fiverr, where you can have a logo done for $5, three draft logos done, have voiceovers done or have special effects done. It’s one of the most incredible money-saving opportunities on the web.

Design Work

I can personal say I found a great book cover designer at Fiverr.  Did it take time to find this service – yes!  I went through several design services and almost gave up.  Fortunately, I learned to do some background research before hiring one last person and it paid off.  The best way to use a service like Fiverr is to hire not one but a handful of designers. For example, by spending just $25, you can get five different logo designs for your new website. Simply pick the best one. Designers on other websites would easily charge several hundred dollars for just one logo.

You can also use microservice sites for other design jobs. For example, you can have them design a header for you. You can have them color correct a photograph for you. You can have them create the buttons for your website. The services are practically endless, just go to the site and look at the e

Voiceovers

Since I started my radio show I know how important voice over work can be to create and sustain a brand.  Let’s say you want to create a web video. You know exactly what points you want your video to touch on. However, you don’t think you have the greatest voice for web video. Instead of forcing yourself to do it, you can ask me to speak your message for you or go to Fiverr to find someone to do your voiceovers.   Many voice over artists have a sample YouTube track uploaded.  For me, I have several of my radio shows on my Seasoned Women Health Radio site.  Check out a few different voiceover providers and listen to their samples to figure out what type of  voice you’re looking for. Then go with the one that resonated with you.

Video Special Effects

Another area you can use microservice sites in is special effects. If you were looking to hire someone to do special effects, on other sites you can easily expect to pay hundreds or thousands of dollars. On these sites, expect to pay $5 to $10.  Special effects on microservice sites tend to be limited to one effect per provider. For example, one provider might provide 3D exploding text. Another provider might help you create a flashy intro scene. So on and so forth. You can’t tell them exactly what kind of effect you want, but you do get to choose from a wide array of different special effects.

Custom Drawings

A lot of artists are willing to create brand new artwork for you from scratch for pennies on the dollar. Want your concept mascot brought to life? Or perhaps you want a stick figure doing various kinds of martial arts? Maybe you want a cartoon version of yourself? It’s all available for $5 to $10 dollars.  Microservice sites are fantastic for design and media. Use these sites to help improve the design of your site, without having to break the bank.