Author Strategies

Tips on Book Marketing

Many authors don’t realize that they need to treat their published book like a business.  If they don’t market their book, it won’t sell or garner them the results they sought when they wrote the book.  On this month’s SkillBites Show, Susan Friedmann discussed how to develop a marketing platform and other tips on marketing one’s book.

The first step of developing a marketing platform is to identify one’s target readership.  Without knowing this, the marketing may not reach the right audience.  With this knowledge, you can tailor your message to resonate with your audience.  To help people determine their target readership, Susan has developed a 10 question assessment tool, which she has offered to provide for free.  To get her tool, simply email her at and request the tool.

Next is determining where your target readership hangs out, and where they go to obtain the type of information you are providing in your book.  Do they attend trade show or industry conferences?  Do they read blogs?  Magazines?  That information will help you decide where you want your marketing message to appear so that it reaches your ideal reader.

Another aspect of developing a marketing platform is to think about what else you can do with the content in your book.  How can you leverage that material?  Perhaps you can create a speech that you could deliver to your target market, or create a webinar or training course, or offer group coaching.

It’s important to keep in mind that marketing is an ongoing venture.  One of the biggest mistakes that authors make is promoting their book for a short period of time, such as a few months.  To get good results, you need to put time in every day, week and month for as long as you want to keep getting good results.

If a marketing campaign appears to have stuttered, Susan counsels authors to try “CPR”, which she explained is:

  • Changing one’s perspective or mindset, such as by refining the target market;
  • Planning the campaign; and
  • Reigniting the author’s passion for his or her book.

Susan offered a 15 minute consultation to help people with their book marketing, but advised that she will be unavailable until after February 1, 2018.  To take advantage of this offer, send an email to Susan at


buy now

Manage Projects Effectively

Without proper planning, projects tend to get delayed or incur cost overruns. What does proper planning consist of? In this month’s SkillBites Show, Jon McGlothian shared a number of tools and techniques for managing projects effectively.

Jon is the co-founder and president of TMOG LLC, providing project management training and consulting. He is a Project Management Professional (PMP)® as well as a Certified Management Accountant (CMA) and is a certified Six Sigma Green Belt. He is also the author of The Project Manager’s Quick Start Guide.

Jon defined a project broadly as anything that has a start date, an end date, and a unique deliverable. That could be starting a business, or undertaking a joint venture, or completing a contract for a customer.

When starting a project, a good first step is to hold an initial meeting with the key stakeholders and project leaders to discuss the mission or charter for the project, including the goals and objectives, the authorization and boundaries. It’s beneficial to gain an understanding of the customer’s priorities at this stage. For instance, is the client most concerned with getting the project done by a certain deadline, or with the quality of the result, or with keeping costs down?

The next step is project planning. This includes identifying the team members and digging into the details of the project. Inquire into who, what, when, where, and how. This is also when the team should develop the work breakdown structure, decomposing the project into small deliverables or work packages and assigning an owner to each step. The team should conduct a risk analysis of what could go wrong so they can develop a plan and allocate the requisite resources where needed to ensure that things go smoothly. Another aspect of planning is managing the involvement of the stakeholders, including identifying who are the stakeholders, determining what to communicate when, what information is needed and what their needs are.

The third stage of the process consists of doing the work and producing the deliverables, as well as getting feedback. Closely tied in with this stage is managing the project to make sure the project stays within the charter parameters.

The final phase is closing. This stage may consist of getting paid if the project is an external one, or handing over the reins to an internal group. An important element of closing is conducting a review of the project to identify areas of improvement for the next project, or lessons learned and best practices.

Every project is different, so every project will involve a different approach. The key is to understand the issues that could arise and be prepared to adjust or change direction if needed. For more information, read Jon’s book (available on Amazon) or email Jon at Mention in the subject line that you heard about him through the SkillBites Show and he will provide a free consultation.


buy now

Finding the Right Editor or Ghostwriter

Most business owners who write a book do so to enable them to gain greater credibility. Yet, if a book doesn’t read well or contains errors, the reader is not going to view the author favorably no matter how good the content is. That’s why it is so critical to have your book professionally edited and proofread before you publish it.

Art Lizza, an independent freelance ghostwriter and developmental editor who has ghostwritten or edited over 30 books in the past nine years, joined me on the September SkillBites Show to provide some guidance on finding the right editor and ghostwriter for your book. Art explained that there are different levels of editing, so it is important to make sure that when you are comparing quotes from editors, they are providing the same level of service. The most basic level of editing is copy editing, which is ensuring that a manuscript comports with a given style, such as Chicago style, as well as cross-checking references and correcting grammatical errors. The most complete form of editing is a developmental edit, which consists of improving the flow of text, making suggestions to make a book most interesting to the readership, and polishing it so the author shines. In between is line editing.

Proofreading is different from editing in that an editor is not specifically looking for typos or misplaced apostrophes and commas. While editors often do find and correct those, they aren’t likely to find as many as proofreaders. One of SkillBites’ authors was contemplating whether to purchase proofreading services, since she had used an editor for her book who had been recommended. Ultimately, she was very glad she chose to order the proofreading services, as the proofreader found over 40 errors in her 100-page book.

When looking for an editor or ghostwriter, pay attention to the questions the prospective editor or ghostwriter asks. In either case, they should inquire about your goals for the book, for instance. Find out how much experience they have with the subject matter. If they know very little about the subject, they likely won’t be able to point out issues or make suggestions that could have been made by someone with that expertise. A few other factors that are key to hiring the right editor or ghostwriter are whether they are enthusiastic about your topic and whether there’s a good fit or rapport; whether you like and trust each other.

To find editors and ghostwriters, you can use the Editorial Freelancers Association website, or sites such as Upworks. Alternatively, if you don’t want to spend the time and effort to search for and interview prospects and call references, you can contact SkillBites. We’ve vetted our editors and ghostwriters so you’ll get highly professional people working on your manuscript.

Ghostwriting is an area that many people are still uncertain about, as it seems wrong to claim authorship of something that someone else has written. Art shared that over 40% of non-fiction books are actually ghostwritten! Ghostwriting is not that different from hiring an accountant to do your taxes – the accountant takes your information and fills out your tax return. A ghostwriter takes your information and writes your book. Using a ghostwriter is much quicker and results in a much higher quality book. For a 100 to 120 page book, which Art identified as the sweet spot for today’s non-fiction books, the author need only spend about 10 to 12 hours of her time in interviews with the ghostwriter, plus some time to review manuscripts, and a draft can be ready in a few months, as opposed to the many frustrating hours of writing and months of delay while the author is trying to write a book while running a business.

Art encouraged all business owners to write a book. Authors are instantly perceived as experts, and business owners can gain credibility and visibility when they publish a book. There are many forums online that offer help and SkillBites has an online book writing course as well as book coaching services. For more information about Art Lizza, visit his website at or email him at


buy now

Find Your Mission

Ever feel like you are stuck, that your job doesn’t provide fulfillment or meaning for you? Alexandra Figueredo talked in this month’s SkillBites Show on how you can find your mission and bring meaning back into your life.

Alexandra is the founder of Mission Based Branding Institute, which helps mission-driven entrepreneurs get clear about their mission, create a brand that stands out, and share their message with a greater audience. She’s worked with startups and small businesses as well as Fortune-500 level organizations. She’s written bestselling books Sculpt Your Life From Sketch To Masterpiece and Wake Up Women: Shift Your Beliefs To Get What You Want (with fellow internationally-renowned co-authors Sharon Lechter and Dame DC Cordova).

Finding your mission starts with determining what you are passionate about; what brings you joy or fulfillment. Ask yourself what you have done in the past that you have most enjoyed. Then ask who you love to work with, or want to serve. Another way to find your mission is to ask what you would want to do with your life if money weren’t a factor. Assume you have won the lottery, so you don’t need any money; or that you could receive the compensation you desire for whatever you choose to do. What would you want to do?

When you identify an area that helps others that you are passionate about, you will find much greater satisfaction and meaning in your life. If you’d like any assistance with finding your mission, Alexandra offered a 30 minute one-on-one clarity consultation. Just email her at to request your clarity consultation.


buy now

Book Marketing and Promotion Tips

Dan Smith, CEO of Smith Publicity, appeared as the guest on this month’s SkillBites Show, where he shared a number of tips for authors to promote their books:

  1. Authors should begin promoting their books as early as possible, and should think about how they will want to promote their book even before writing the book. Knowing how the book will be used can help an author write a book that can be more effectively promoted.
  2. Getting publicity for a book is a powerful way to spread the word about the book and the author, whether by radio, TV, newspaper, podcasts or other media. When an author is interviewed by the media, it’s a terrific credibility boost for the author, and the author can share the interview on their website, in marketing collateral, in social media and other places.
  3. When determining the right strategy for book publicity, Smith Publicity considers the topic of the book, the author’s background and whether there is a reasonable opportunity to secure media interest. Only after determining that they can help an author do they then discuss the appropriate services that fit within the author’s budget.
  4. Authors can gain media exposure for their book themselves if they:
    1. Are willing to educate themselves on how to gain media exposure;
    2. Have the right personality to promote themselves;
    3. Have the ability to write a good press release;
    4. Know their target market;
    5. Are willing to put in the time and effort to determine which media outlets cater to their target market and determine the right contacts at those outlets
  5. Common mistakes that authors make when doing the publicity themselves include:
    1. Sending a press release out on a news wire without any personal approach or follow-up;
    2. Being too overtly promotional;
    3. Writing an amateurish press release;
    4. Responding inappropriately to rejection;
    5. Cold calling media personnel;
    6. Not educating themselves on how to conduct a publicity campaign.
  6. There are many good resources to help authors educate themselves on book promotion, including:
    3. The Smith Publicity website,, which has many free resources and tools, and a helpful newsletter;
    4., run by John Kremer, author of 1001 Ways to Market Your Book.
    5. Various podcasts and blogs.
  7. Regarding social media, it is widely expected that authors will promote their books on social media, but this should be considered just one tactic out of a set of tactics for promoting a book. Also, it is much more effective if the author is active on the social media channels being used to promote his or her book. If the author isn’t actively posting, then a post about the book won’t have as much credibility.
  8. When determining which publicity firm to hire for a book marketing campaign, talk to multiple firms and do research on them to ensure a good fit or connection with the firm. Read their testimonials and even follow up with some of the people who gave the testimonials. Make sure the firm has experience in the same genre as your book. Remember, there are no guarantees that the firm will be able to secure media exposure for your book.


buy now


SkillBites Exclusives

Click Below to receive a FREE eBook in your preferred category!

Business SkillBites Lifestyle SkillBites