In a perfect world, every author would make millions of dollars with each book they write. In the real world, most authors make little, if any, money from their writing. The majority make less than a living wage.
Jennifer Baker details the truth of an author’s earning potential in her post, Most Authors Don’t Make Money from Writing Alone.
“According to a survey commissioned by the Authors Guild, average earnings for authors went down from 2009 to 2015. From the survey’s results it was full-time authors with more than 15 years of experience who saw the largest drop in annual revenue from 2009 to 2015: $28,750 to $9,500 for those with 25–40 years’ experience and $25,000 to $13,500 for those with 15–25 years.”
For many, this is very discouraging news. For others, it’s a reality check. The sale of books is only one way for an author to generate revenues.
It’s not unheard of for an author to make a very comfortable six-figure income from the various revenue streams. Monetary earnings tied to books are information products, speaking engagements, coaching and consulting. Even top selling, million-dollar authors, utilize various revenue streams to generate income.
Do the Footwork
Revenues won’t generate themselves. It takes work and lots of it. Besides creation of revenue opportunities, there is the sales factor. To generate sales, marketing is a factor. Authors will be well-served to learn how to market their books, products and services.
To assure the best results, create a solid foundation including a good web presence, an enticing giveaway offer (ethical bribe), conversion funnels and engagement campaigns.
This allows for long-term success. Once you have your foundation in place, be relentless about driving traffic and gaining visibility.
Choices in Marketing
The most common ways to market are social media, blogging, guest blogging, video marketing, radio and podcast, speaking and television appearances. If you were to pick three methods and put effort into these avenues every day, you would likely be among the small percentage of authors who make a respectable living.
One of my favorite ways to market my books, products and services is through podcasting.
When I promoted my book, Power Up for Profits; The Smart Woman’s Guide to Online Marketing, podcasting was one my “go to” marketing strategies. During the official launch, I appeared on dozens of shows resulting in hundreds of thousands of people learning about me and my book.
Did everyone who heard me on a show buy a book? Not at all, but many visited my website, downloaded a free offer and came to an event I spoke at resulting in an investment in my consulting and coaching services. The financial result over the years from the one book and all the ancillary products and services has been hundreds of thousands of dollars. That’s from one book. I’ve written others and continue to do so.
With my soon-to-be-released memoir, podcasting will be at the top of my list for marketing strategies. During the official launch, my goal is to schedule as many shows as possible.
There are a few things to keep in mind when looking for shows to appear on.
- A targeted approach works much better than throwing mud on the wall and hoping something will stick.
- Be very clear on what you bring to the show. It’s not about how wonderful you are, but rather how much the listeners will benefit.
- Be prepared when you approach the host.
- The more shows you appear on the more shows you appear on.
Your goal should be to find shows that have listeners you want to reach. Rather than simply going for ears, go for targeted ears.
If you are a nutrition expert, seek out shows specific to nutrition, health, fitness and anything aligned with your message.
You will waste your time, and the show host’s time, if you try to get on shows that have nothing to do with your expertise. It’s worth the extra effort to be very narrow in your approach.
Be clear on “Why You.” Why should the host have you on the show? If you can’t answer this simple question, you’ll have a very difficult time getting booked.
Part of the prep has already been mentioned, clarity on why you. Additionally, it does help to have an expert one sheet, an intro and questions, a bio and head shots. All of this streamlines the process as you are seeking out opportunities.
Think of the prep time as the foundation of a house under construction. If the foundation is not solid, you may be able to get the framework, walls, windows, and roof put up, but it will not last.
Lots of Shows
The more shows you appear on, the more shows you appear on. What?!?!
Simply put, the more people hear you, the more opportunity you create. It’s not uncommon for hosts of shows to listen to other shows in their genre. If you are heard on lots of shows, hosts will approach you, thereby increasing your opportunities.
It takes time to use podcast shows effectively. Finding the right shows is often the greatest use of your time.
Avoid the “Starving Author” Syndrome
Can you guarantee your success as an author? Absolutely! That is, if you are willing to avoid the #1 mistake most authors make… believing their book will miraculously sell itself.
When you have various ways to generate revenue, put effort into your marketing, consistently market, and are willing to go the distance, you can be among the small percentage of highly profitable authors.
Find Podcast Opportunities
To get the most out of your writing efforts, put time aside to seek out interview opportunities.
Not sure how to go about finding opportunities, knowing how to prepare for a show, or what to do following your appearance?
Access my FREE checklist for Podcast Interviews. This is a brand new resources and yours at no cost. http://www.powerupforprofits.com/podcastchecklist