Welcome to the 73rd episode of The Author Hangout, a podcast designed to help authors, especially self-published and indie authors, with marketing their books and improving their author platform. Authors struggle with various aspects of marketing and we are here to help!
“Becoming an author gave me instant credibility with the audience that I had been starting to build online.”– Jim Palmer
Build Credibility With Your Book
In this episode, we interviewed author and business coach Jim Palmer. He shared some great inspiration for authors who may be struggling to get their first or next book out, as well as tips for fiction and nonfiction authors about building credibility and excitement for their books.
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- FREE: The Ultimate Author Checklist for Online Book Marketing
- Jim’s DreamBiz Academy
- Jim’s Website
- Jim’s Coaching Business
He’s an internationally renowned marketing and business building expert who’s teaching fellow entrepreneurs how to build their dream business and make it profitable. Besides authoring popular titles such as The Magic of Newsletter Marketing and Decide: The Ultimate Success Trigger, he hosts Newsletter Guru TV and the Stick Like Glue Podcast. He also shares his knowledge through his DreamBiz Academy and powerful mastermind coaching programs. Here to let you in on his secrets for successful authorship and business growth is Jim Palmer.
How did you become an author and publish your first book?
Jim has a cool story:
“I wrote the book first. I had a couple of fears…thank you for mentioning the book, Decide, which is really a book about success and mindset. In there I describe several fears that were holding me back in the early part of my career and how I addressed them. When I became an author, when I was launching the second business around 2005-2006, which was No Hassle Newsletters I knew being a published author would help give me credentials. To go with the big title I just gave myself, which was Newsletter Guru. I wrote a book called The Magic of Newsletter Marketing because I’ve been writing and designing newsletters for over 20 years. They are magical in the way they work. It’s a great tool for getting more repeat referral business. But instead of just a website, or back in the day, podcasting didn’t exist. Getting interviewed on radio was a little hard. It was certainly a lot harder than it is today. Becoming an author gave me instant credibility with the audience that I had been starting to build online.”
What is your most recent book or project?
“My core business, I still have the various membership marketing stuff for No Hassle Newsletters, we have No Hassel Social Media, we do printing, we write articles for people, there’s a whole bunch of things we do to support growing entrepreneurs. But really Shawn, what has overtaken everything, well over half my business is my coaching program which I’ve grown by 2 ways. Primarily from my books sales but also by doing a live event called Dream Business Academy. Through the book sales, through all these different types of marketing strategies, we put people in a room for two and a half days and I teach them some really good marketing. How to become a person of influence, how to stand out amongst the crowd, how to grow a business and then a certain number of those people would join my coaching program. It’s the whole dream business, coach dream business academy model that’s been keeping me most busy.”
Can you tell us about a time when you really struggled as an author?
“Not recognizing that good is good enough. What holds a lot of people back from pushing the proverbial “go” button and launching their book is that they’re afraid that it’s not good enough. They’re afraid that there’s a comma that’s missing. They’re afraid that Word did not catch SON, it should have been SUN and god forbid, some people are going to laugh at them and think they’re a screwball idiot author. There’s a lot of head trash that goes on and to be honest, I know that because that was me. It took me a year and a half to push my first book out the door. I wrote the book in just a little less than a year and I waited for 6 months because my name was going to be on the cover and doggone it, I wanted this book to be perfect. That’s how a lot of people feel. Then I was blessed to attend a conference where I was listening to somebody who I highly respect as an entrepreneur. He said, “Let me tell you something about good is good enough. You want to do…it’s not license to put out shoddy work but it is recognizing when something is good enough, you go with it and you just keep improving as you go.””
If you started over today, what 3 things would you tell yourself to help you sell more books?
Jim has great advice:
“I would hire a very good editor. I would make sure the cover is professionally designed. And that means not going to Fiverr. I go to Fiverr for some fun stuff. I’m not knocking them. It’s kind of a cool place. But you don’t get a book cover design at Fiverr. There are places where I will be very miserly. One of the things I teach people is “have a million dollar platform on a shoestring budget” so I don’t spend money if I don’t need to. But when it comes to the marketing, when it comes to the brand and the position you put out there, you want to look as good and as professional as you can. So I always had professional covers designed. I’ve never paid more than $600 for a cover. I don’t know. Somebody might be gasping “that’s a lot of money” or somebody might say “that’s not a lot at all” but I’ve had professional covers done by a very talented artist. I learned a very important lesson when I wrote my first book, the one on newsletter marketing. I wrote kind of chronologically as to how you create a newsletter and I was so convinced that the book was good that I almost didn’t want to hire an editor. I really got full of myself. First of all, in total candor, I was also not flushed with cash at that time of my life. So, what I decided to do, okay I’m not going to have an editor but I’ll have somebody proofread it for spelling, grammar and clarity of message kind of the first level of proofing that you can hire for. I did that. I was really fortunate to connect with somebody who said, “Jim, I read over the book and…” I think the cost was $700 to proof it for grammar, spelling and clarity of message. This gal goes, “I’m afraid this is going to sound like a sales job but it really isn’t. I’ll do exactly what you want but I’ve been doing this for a long time. Your book is very much out of order. If you want, I can restructure it so that it’ll be an even better book.” She said, “Your content is fine but it’s completely out of order to me anyway, I couldn’t understand it.” She said “It’ll be $1,800 if you want me to re-do it.” And I bit the bullet and did Shawn.”
He also shared some great tips about how to structure your book to maximize the excitement for the book.
How can people connect with you?
“Reach out at http://www.getjimpalmer.com that’s my home base. You can find my books, my courses and learn more about my programs. Shawn mentioned my live event, it’s http://www.dreambizacademy.com and the corresponding coaching program is http://www.dreambizcoaching.com. I would love to hear from your listeners Shawn.”
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Get caught up on the other episodes of The Author Hangout that you may have missed:
- Ep 145: “Million Dollar Book Business”
- Ep 144: “Network Net Worth”
- Ep 143: “Learning to Hack Learning”
- Ep 142: “Making Of The Perfect Optin”
- Ep 141: “Coaching Breeds Author Success”
- Ep 140: “Gumroad for Authors”
- Ep 138: “Goal Setting Check-in”
- Ep 137: “Relying On Others”
- Ep 136: “Honest Conversations on Book Marketing”
- Ep 135: “Recognition of Hard Work”
- Ep 133: “Making Money Fast?”
- Ep 132: “Book Marketing & Book Launches”
- Ep 129: “Author Answers: Using KDP Select or Not”
- Ep 126: “Media Interviews & Book Marketing”
- Ep 124: “Goal Setting for Authors”
- Ep 121: “Authors Answers: DIY Blog Tours”
- Ep 119: “Author Answers: Choosing Comparison Titles”
- Ep 115: “Author Answers: Best Marketing Activities”
- Ep 113: “Writing Faster, Marketing Smarter”
- Ep 111: “Building Book Launch Teams”
- Ep 110: “Book Launches and Distribution”
- Ep 107: “NaNoWriMo, Writing, and Marketing”
- Ep 104: “Connect With Other Authors”
- Ep 099: “Maximizing Book Promotions”
- Ep 097: “Kindle in Motion & More”
- Ep 086 – How To Create an Irresistible Opt-In Incentive