You have written your book, gotten it published, obtained some favorable reviews, given a few talks here and there, and gotten some press. Despite that, you have sold a hundred or fewer copies, just like the overwhelming majority of non-celebrity, first-time authors.
Where did you go wrong? Like me, you thought, build it and they will come, write it and they will buy it. As recently successful author, program developer, marketer Danny Iny of Firepole Marketing explains: one must build one’s audience first.
Makes sense, actually. Celebrities have successful memoirs because they already have big audiences, and unless the book is a dud, they are going to sell myriads, or at least a whole lot.
Iny’s book is THE AUDIENCE REVOLUTION: The Smarter Way to Build a Business, Make a Difference, and Change the World. It lives up to its title. Well, maybe “change the world” is a bit premature.
Iny has a great line: “failure is only failure if it happens in the last chapter. Otherwise, it’s a plot twist.” This 2015 Easter morning, minister Joel Osteen spoke about one of the messages of Easter: it’s not over just because it seems to be a failure; something better beckons. A sage is said to have remarked, when asked what is universally true, “This, too, will pass.” We must persevere.
Those of us who have not yet built an audience can still do so. In the next chapter of our lives, we should take Iny’s advice: examine our passions, find what others have asked of us already, and look for the intersection of these that marks our best choice for making a contribution others will value.
This book offers a link for a site with a video and worksheets to help in this exploration.
Excerpted from my Write Your Book with Me, available from amazon.com and other online booksellers as well as from Outskirts Press, its publisher.