7 Traits for Indie Author Success

Every book is a startup business. A book needs a mission statement, a marketing plan, and a budget. As an indie author, these are all your responsibility—making you an entrepreneur. Do you have an entrepreneurial mindset?

7 Traits for Indie Author Success

Indie authors are entrepreneurs. Successful entrepreneurs have a number of things in common. These individuals have a way of thinking and acting that is different from other people. The good news is that anyone can learn to think and act like an entrepreneur and reap the benefits. Following are seven distinct traits of entrepreneurs.

1.  Have Passion

Entrepreneurs tend to be highly passionate about their work. In truth, this passion is what often propels them to success. After all, passion is contagious. As an author, no one else is going to be as passionate about your book as you are. Don’t expect others to sell your book for you. As the author, you are the one with the belief in your message. Let your energy shine through when you talk with others.

2.  Try New Things

An open mind is required to try new things. Don’t stay set in your ways. Successful marketing requires that you adopt new strategies. Instead of just hearing or thinking about new great marketing ideas, try some out. Watch what other successful authors are doing and use what makes sense for your books.

3.  Willing to Take Risks

Little is gained without risk. Entrepreneurs have to be willing to take risks to move their business forward. As an author, both publishing and marketing your book involve risks. Sometimes you have to risk money for advertising and promotion with no guarantee that you will have a return on your money. Be willing to take risks, but be wise about the risks you take. Do your homework to minimize your losses.

4.  Network with Others

Business is all about relationships. Solid relationships are the pathway to success. After all, the number one reason people buy a book is because they are familiar with the author. The more you work on building relationships with readers, the wider your audience will be for your book. Building relationships with other authors can also help pave the way for more success. Collaboration is a powerful tool.

5.  Think Outside the Box

Entrepreneurs are creative problem solvers. They are able to apply unconventional approaches to overcome challenges. As an author, your challenge is to get your book noticed. This takes creative, out-of-the-box thinking. Being able to brainstorm creative techniques for your book promotion strategies is important.

6.  Ready for Roadblocks

Entrepreneurs understand that they will face problems and challenges. Being mentally prepared to deal with these setbacks is crucial for success. Life and business are not easy. As an author, you will run into roadblocks and become frustrated when your efforts don’t produce fruit. A mindset that is ready to overcome challenges will serve you well.

7.  Determination

Determination is all about the firmness of your purpose. Determined individuals don’t easily give up. They stick it out for the long haul. Entrepreneurs know they must do hard work to succeed. Determination will get you where brains and brawn cannot. So, be determined, be resolved to do what it takes to get your book and message to the people who need it.

I encourage you to incorporate these seven traits into your life and act like the entrepreneur you already are as an indie author. When you do, you will experience more success.

Related Posts:

Overcoming Roadblocks to Marketing
What Successful Authors Do
Three Lessons from a Successful Entrepreneur

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Photo courtesy of Tumisu.

The Five Steps of Effective Marketing

If only marketing were as easy as writing the book.” These words of lament were spoken by an author who was struggling to market her book.

I agree. Marketing takes work—lots of work. It also takes time and some money.

However, understanding the five steps to effective marketing, based on E.M. Rogers’ Diffusion of Innovations Theory, can help you better focus your marketing efforts.

5 Steps of effective marketing

Step 1:  Knowledge

First people have to be introduced to you and your books. They must know about the books you are offering. It’s about name recognition. It takes repeat exposures before people notice and retain information about your books. Getting known in a saturated world is not easy. If you run an online ad for a book and that ad receives 5,000 impressions (meaning it is shown to 5,000 people) only six people will remember  seeing the ad.

Step 2:  Persuasion

Just because someone knows about your books does not mean that they will buy them. You have to persuade them that doing so will improve their life. Zig Ziglar said that there are five obstacles to every sale: no need, no money, no hurry, no desire, and no trust. You must overcome these obstacles to persuade people to buy your books.

Step 3:  Decision

Once someone has the knowledge of your books and the persuasive reasons to buy them, the next step is decision. The person must decide to purchase your books. Sometimes people decide “yes”, sometimes they decide “later”, and sometimes they decide “no”. You can encourage people to make a “yes” decision by giving them the urgency to act now. One technique to create urgency is to offer a limited time sale.

Step 4:  Implementation

Implementation involves carrying out the decision to buy. Once the decision is made, the person must carry it out. Yet buying in and of itself is not the end of the marketing cycle. The second part of implementation is for the buyer to read the book.

Step 5:  Confirmation

This is the final step in effective marketing. It is an important step. Confirmation is when the buyer reads your book and becomes a fan. Because they become a fan, they help spread the word about your book to their family and friends. Remember, word of mouth sells books. Confirmation from buyers is what grows your marketing cycle. The buyers tell others who then come to knowledge of the book, increasing your marketing reach, which grows your audience.

Related Posts:
Awareness Is Always the First Step
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Follow these Four Steps to Success

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Networking Is Easier Than You Think

What’s the best way to land a job? By networking.

networking is easier than you think.

Often getting a job is all about who you know and who knows you. That’s why LinkedIn is so popular. It lets professionals network online and expand their connections.

Good marketers also network. Most good opportunities come from making a connection with someone who has connections that will help you.

Networking for book marketing is simply making connections with others to find new opportunities to grow your audience and sell more books.

I am sure you have heard of the Six Degrees of Separation. This idea is that all people are six (or fewer) social connections away from each other. Meaning that you are six introductions away from any other person on the planet.

According to this belief, it follows that with networking you will be able to find any opportunity you are looking for. You just need to ask.

  • Do you want to speak in schools? Ask the people you know if they have contacts at local schools who you could talk to.
  • Do you want to speak at conferences? Ask the people in your life to introduce you to the women’s or men’s leader at their church.
  • Do you want to do an author event at a library? Ask authors you know who they have contacted to do an event.
  • Do you want more book reviews? Ask your social circle if they know anyone who would be interested in reading your book in exchange for a review.
  • Do you want to partner with a nonprofit? Ask your current network if they know of any nonprofits doing the kind of work you want to partner with.

Many people are averse to asking. Meaning that they feel like they are imposing on others if they ask.

Ask and you will receive

Jesus said, “Ask and you shall receive.” Of course, Jesus was speaking of asking God.  Yet the principal is true for asking others for things we desire. If we don’t ask, we won’t receive.

There is no shame in asking. For the most part, people want to help others—and that includes helping you.

You probably have a larger network of people to ask than you realize. Your network includes:

  • Family
  • Friends
  • Neighbors
  • Church community
  • Colleagues and coworkers
  • Followers on social media
  • Members of the groups and associations you participate in

Lean on these people. They are your support system. Use them to expand your circle of connections, then enjoy the new opportunities that open up for you to expand your marketing reach.

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Do You Need Marketing Confidence?

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Photo courtesy of Geralt.

Write Up, Speak Up, and Change the World

Today is World Book Day in the UK and Ireland. World Book Day is a celebration of books and reading.

The slogan for World Book Day is: Reading is Power. Read up, Speak up, and Change the World.

Reading is power. Many, many lives have been changed through reading a good book. Some readers have received hope or inspiration to get them through a tough time. Others have received eternal hope through the Gospel message found in a book.

Reading is power, but writing is also power. Reading cannot be power without having life-changing words to read. Authors, take heart. Your writing is important and powerful.

The world needs Christian authors writing and publishing books that point people to God. As Romans 10 says:

How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: “How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!”

I believe the same is true for the written word. Beautiful are the hands of those who write good news!

But all your writing and publishing will amount to nothing, if your books don’t get into the hands of people. People have to read your books to be impacted by your words.

Your Guide to Marketing Christian Books

If you are struggling with promoting your Christian books, help is here. The Fourth Edition of my award-winning book, Your Guide to Marketing Christian Books, is now available for purchase.

This book provides authors and publishers the advice and resources you need to effectively promote your Christian books. I recently received the following message from a reader:

“I’ve read your book. It’s fantastic!  I’m definitely going to use it as my guide for marketing!”

The hardest part is not writing or publishing a book. The toughest part is marketing the book—getting the word out to let people know how your book meets a need in  their life. Marketing involves speaking up in numerous ways.

The slogan for World Book Day in part says, Read up, Speak up, and Change the World. Authors, our slogan can be similar. Let’s make it:

Write up, Speak up, and Change the World

If you would like a copy of the Fourth Edition of Your Guide to Marketing Christian Books, the price for the print book is just $24.99. You can order your copy today direct from the publisher or from Amazon.

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Marketing Is a Mindset
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The Influential Power of Books

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