The Bottom Line
With this blog post I'm going right to what you need to know - bottom line - your book IS your business.
Not your business and no one else needs to know, but your business as if you owned a general store or were a dentist. You need to live and breathe knowing your book IS your business and you need to treat it as such. Writing your book was the fun part. Whether it was creating characters or collecting data, you spent hours at your keyboard churning out words, paragraphs, pages, chapters, until you finally had your book. Now what?
Now it's time to think and perform as a businessperson. You need to market your book and yourself. No one can sell your book better than you!
The intention of this blog is not outline how to run a business - save receipts, make business cards, file your taxes, etc. The purpose here is to let you know that you have to be in the mindset that your book IS your business. Just because you got your book listed on Amazon doesn't mean it's going to sell. They are nearly 328 million books for sale on the giant internet retailer (in 2014) according to Amazon. How are you going to stand out from that crowd? This is where your business mind and a bit of 'thinking outside-the-box' need to come into play.
You need a plan. The same way if you were starting up a business to operate a small general store, you need a plan for marketing your book. You need to know who your audience is and more importantly HOW to reach your audience. This is where most authors fail. They have no plan. In today's world you need to have a plan for social media exposure, you have to set up presentations so people can connect you to your book, schedule some book signings so you can interact with people who are interested in your subject matter or your characters and story, and think of ways to get the word out about your book. Do all of this in the mindset of a businessperson.
If a businessperson was coming out with a new product, they don't simply put it on the shelf and hope it sells, they have a process in place. A plan! They market the new product, they share samples (if applicable), they have promotions or specials, they fill up social media about the new product long before it reaches the shelf.
So, take a look at your book, put your business-thinking hat on and come up with ways to get your book out to the masses.