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Publishers: Avoid Grading an Author’s Social Media Status

Grade-Author-Social

When I was in college, my initial major was landscape design and architecture. For some strange reason, I had visions of designing golf courses with fancy clubhouses around the world. But, my dream was crushed as a sophomore student when I was graded on our biggest project of the year. I was given the task to design the structure and landscaping for a new county library near the college. Each of the six professors in my department would assign a grade. When the big day arrived to receive our grades, I was stunned. One of the six professors gave me a failing grade of D, while another professor gave me a quite positive grade of B+. Likewise, my scores from the other four professors were all over the place. I remember feeling bewildered by … [Read more...]

How to Recover from a Marketing Injury

Marketing Injury

True confession time: I’m a guy who finds it difficult to accept my real age. Many people don’t know that I’m actually 47 years old. I guess my blond hair has a way of hiding most of the gray that’s on my head. And, when people try to guess my age, they usually think I’m in my late-30’s or early-40’s. Due to this misconception, I sometimes find it hard to act my age and accept the realities of life. However, I had a wake up call earlier this year when I decided to go trail running one afternoon along a river near our house. As I ran down part of the path, I hit a patch of loose gravel that caused my right ankle to slip out from under me. The result was a violent ankle sprain, and I had to limp back almost a mile through the … [Read more...]

He Who Owns the Reader Owns the Sale

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Imagine the pressure of trying to walk on a tightrope. It’s scary enough just attempting to keep your balance. But, what if maintaining your balance isn’t your biggest worry? What if you’re afraid that the tightrope itself might break? This anxiety represents how many of my publisher clients can feel in today’s economy. Not only are they trying to balance selling books on razor thin margins and still turn a profit. The tightrope that they walk, which is the retail arena where books are sold, sometimes looks like it could snap. For example, Borders disappeared in 2011 (686 stores), there are half as many indie bookstores today as there were in the 1990’s (2,000 vs. 4,000 stores), and Family Christian Stores is fighting to stave … [Read more...]

10 Steps to Create a Sensational Speech

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There’s an old adage among professional speakers that says “The brain can only absorb what the behind can withstand.” This means that the longer you talk, the less information your audience tends to remember. When a speaker covers too much information, it all tends to run together and cancel itself out in the listener’s mind. Worse, rushing through a ton of content sends a signal that you’re more concerned with covering your material than trying to help the audience. In essence, you generate an emotional cue that says, “I’m more concerned about myself than helping you.” Unless you’re a popular celebrity with rabid fans, this selfish approach will hinder the power of your presentation. The reality is that most people … [Read more...]

The Promotional Power of Success Stories

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One of the secrets to spreading your message like wildfire is to get other people to act as “word of mouth warriors.” Imagine hundreds of people singing your praises to the public. A great way to make this happen is by utilizing the power of success stories. For example, Dave Ramsey, radio host and New York Times bestselling author of The Total Money Makeover, uses the power of success stories better than anyone I've seen. Dave openly invites people to share how much personal debt they use to carry, explain how Dave helped them get out of debt, and then scream with glee, “I’m debt free!” Dave congratulates them, plays a funny inspirational soundtrack, and you can’t help but feel happy. Watch the following video called … [Read more...]