Eight Keys to Becoming a Rich Author

Douglas Winslow Cooper, Ph.D.

I heard a terrific telephone seminar by Steve Harrison, the title of
which was, “Seven Things That Rich Authors Do Differently
from Poor Authors.” Actually, Harrison added an eighth key
to authorial financial success, and so I re-titled this summary
piece, “Eight Keys to Becoming a Rich Author.” To give Steve
and his brother Bill Harrison their due, let me recommend that you
go to their website: yourquantumleap.com and sign up for their
future offerings.

The kind of book under discussion here is a nonfiction book
that logically lends itself to some formulation as a “How
To…” offering.

Steve Harrison asks what business we as authors think we’re
in. The answer is that we are primarily going to have to be
in marketing and promotion and public relations if we are to
disseminate our tools, our information, our good advice to those
who would profit from the same.

Here are eight keys, paraphrasing Steve Harrison’s talk:

Number one: a good book does not in general sell itself. You
need a marketing plan.

Number two: an author should promote not only his book
but other offerings. Examples were given of the expensive
[$195] game marketed by the author of Rich Dad, Poor Dad; food
supplements marketed by the author of Body for Life; and the

various offerings of Stephen Covey whose The Seven Habits of
Highly Effective People yearly ranks high on the best-seller lists
and who gets $65,000 per speech.

Number three: more valuable than the copyright on your
book is the list of customers who bought your book. From
that list you can make offers which eventually will produce
income. You have to be setting up to be able to offer something to
those whose names and addresses you capture this way.

Number four: as part of your book, perhaps as an appendix,
you should be offering services and / or products, or at least
soliciting e-mail addresses so that you can contact them later
with such offerings.

Number five: where possible, try to sell the books in volume
to organizations rather than one by one to individuals. A good
example is the success that this technique has brought the author
of The Purpose-Driven Life, Rick Warren.

Number six: the publicity that you can generate from a
news event or an interview is not enough. You need to find
other methods of exposure, such as writing articles, having a
website, having a blog, entering into a joint venture, presenting
tele-seminars such as the one I just listened to along with 1200
other attendees, regular seminars, a radio or television show, a

Number seven: in general, the real money is not to be made
from book sale profits but rather from follow-up activities
such as training workshops. An example was given of a woman
who puts on 10 weekend workshops a year, getting 15 attendees
at $1200 per person.

Number eight: finally, don’t operate alone. Develop a
support team. Hire others, work with interns, find designers, use
temporary help, whatever is necessary to get the job done.

As a memory aid think of the word “FAME:”
Focus your plan for the next 90 days.
A lot more exposure needs to be obtained.
Models proven to work must be your guide.
Execute. Or as Nike says, “Just do it.”

The tele-seminar was informative and interesting. I presume that
the Harrisons get their benefit by the mailing list that they develop
through those who register at their site, yourquantumleap.com.
Some who register will likely become paying students of theirs.

I have book-writing clients who will benefit from some of the
suggestions for getting clients for their agencies or in producing
how-to seminars. For myself, this suggested ways to expand my
book- writing-coach business, and perhaps to take a portion of
our book Ting and I: A Memoir… and develop a handbook on managing skilled nursing care at home.