I got a GREAT question in my email today from someone who runs a service-based business and is writing a book.
One part of the process I recommend when people start to write, is to check out what is selling and how other books like yours rank on Amazon. She’d done this, and was worried that the rankings for similar books were low. Which meant her book might not sell in big numbers.
Is it worth me writing a book if I’m not going to get ongoing sales?
Here’s what I said to her…
In your kind of business I wouldn’t think so much about how many books you can sell but how many clients you can bring on board. And also, whether you can raise your fees for each of the clients you do have. Your positioning changes when you become an author — you’re the expert; the person who, literally, ‘wrote the book’.
In your position, you’ll be invited to speak, or do online seminars, and all of this will bring you more, better-targeted clients. People who know that they want to work with you before you ever speak to them.
So write that kind of book — one that makes potential clients really want to work with you.
If you sell 50 copies a month and 25 of those readers join your email list, and then one becomes a client — what is that worth to you? $100 in book sales potentially, and a client who could have a lifetime value of — what? $2,000? $5,000? $10,000? If that’s your model, then that’s a pretty good return on 50 book sales a month.
She was thrilled. It was a new perspective for her.
But how might it work in practice for you?
- You want to write a book that people want to read. Write for that potential client. The person who doesn’t know you yet. Write really great content.
- And you want to position your book to sell. A great title, an eye-catching cover. Confident marketing material. You’re capturing the attention of people who are browsing for books in your topic area.
- Or maybe you don’t even want to sell your books online? I had one client whose sole means of selling her book was in person. She would attend business networking meetings, sell a print copy of her book, and then wait for clients to connect with her. She attracted her ideal clients this way — people who loved her method and wanted more. They called her. She filled her one-to-one coaching practice and created mastermind groups and retreats. Her business flourished. Yet she probably didn’t sell more than a few dozen books a month.
- If you have a service business then you probably already have a robust sales process to move people from interested readers to signed-up clients. The book is just a way for people to get to know you and decide if they want to work with you. Marketing. And you don’t have to sell a lot of books to take a considerable jump in revenue.
There are other models and other ways of expanding your business. This is just one.
If you have a service business; if you’re a coach, a consultant, an expert of some kind, then don’t think about the book sales. The important part is how the book positions you, what else you are doing in your business, and how you can leverage your book to shift your business and your profile to the next level.
You become a star. Enjoy it!