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Posts Tagged ‘success mindset’

Learning something you didn’t know you didn’t know

I had an interesting experience with a client this week. He’s writing a book about job search techniques and has hired me to put the book together for him. Now, he asked me at the start of our project to be patient with him, as this is his first time through the publishing process. I usually try to keep that fact in mind with every client – to remember to meet them wherever they are. While there is generally some overlap in terms of the things people need explained, by and large the questions are always different. This one surprised me, though.

I sent the client the front matter and first chapter in the format I’d designed for his book. He wrote back, almost immediately:

At the top of each page appears my name or the book title. I printed out a page this AM.  

It is the first time that I have seen such a format, and I’m a bit uncomfortable with it. Is this something new?  What is the rationale behind the format?

Please share the reason for the format.  Then, I will give you an immediate response to keep or eliminate it.

As I’ve alluded, I hear all kinds of questions from new authors, but this was a first. I scratched my head a bit, and then responded:

Pull almost any book off your shelf. There is a header at the top of most books. It is not by any means a requirement. Just makes for a more finished look.

I can remove it if you don’t want it, so just let me know.

Microsoft Word - Stan Finds Himself for TFOB

Then came his sheepish response:

It’s unbelievable, I never noticed. Keep it.

So I think there are two lessons here. First – it’s helpful to hire an expert, but when you do so, you’ve got to be willing to trust them. You’re hiring them because they can fill in a lot of the blanks you have, particularly about things you don’t know that you don’t know.

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More important, though, is the underlying statement my client made: “I’m a bit uncomfortable with it.” REALLY? He’s a bit uncomfortable with having his name on his own book? Why might that be? He spent a lot of time writing it. He’s clearly an expert on the subject and is offering some very good advice that he knows has already helped many people find jobs. He’s willing to put his name on the front and spine of the book. But the idea of putting his name in the header – that concerned him.

I’m guessing it’s all just a part of putting his work out there for the world to see. If we ever hope to have any success at all, we authors must get over our fear and worry about what people might say about our books. Yep – it’s human nature to focus on the one bad review or lose sleep wondering how we’ll get the negative critic to come around. But we get what we focus on. So while we’re in thluke quotee midst of the publishing process, we really need to focus on why we’re writing, discovering ways to connect with our audience, and keeping our end goal in mind, whatever that may be.

You wrote the book – you deserve to put your name on it, and to proudly display it and talk about it and sell it to the right person in the right situation. Go ahead – I dare you. Claim your success and let your author’s light shine for all the world to see.

Laura

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We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

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If you’re getting ready to launch your book and would like help to put together a successful event, download my free special report: Anatomy of a Book Launch. Then CALL me at 602.518.5376 to schedule your complimentary 15-minute consultation. It’s never too early to begin planning!

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Celebrating other authors’ successes fuels our own

Originally ran on Sunday, October 26, 2014.

I learned to read fairly early – at age 3-and-a-half or 4 – not because I was particularly precocious, but because I wanted to be able to read the Sunday comics on my own. So I demanded that my dad teach me how to read. Over the years, as the comics have waned in column inches and volume in daily newspapers, my interest in them has simultaneously declined. No longer the first thing I reach for, days can go by without my even seeing a comic strip.

Yesterday, however, I noticed and read the color comics, and this Pearls Before Swine strip caught my attention because it so well captures the human condition – including the attitude of many authors. I’m sure neuroscientists and sociologists and psychologists have studied what it is about human nature that so routinely causes envy rather than celebration when we hear of someone else’s success. And if it’s someone in our field (e.g., a fellow novelist, business coach, financial advisor, or guitar instructor), our envy level is likely to go off the chart!

It’s an abundant universe – someone else’s success does not mean my failure – yet we so often view it that way.

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Sometimes aphorisms have their place, and this is certainly one such situation. Even if it may not feel like it in the immediate moment, your fellow author’s self-publishing success is a good thing for you! And it would be much better for you if you could celebrate with him or her than let the green monster consume you.

Reasons to celebrate your fellow author’s success

  • Envy is one of the surest causes of self-sabotage, so find a way to be genuinely happy for your successful author friends.
  • Being less than happy for others who are succeeding – particularly in the area where you want so badly to do well – inhibits your own chances for success. When you see another person’s win as a success for you, you open the door to hope for your own success.
  • Celebrating with others multiplies your opportunities to rejoice. When you are able to congratulate your fellow authors on their successes, you invite them to be willing to celebrate when your book does well.
  • When you’re truly happy for others, they are more likely to be truly happy for you. But real relationships invite the sharing of the highs and the lows. You want to develop the habit of empathizing when things are down and rejoicing in the good times.
  • The law of attraction teaches us that we manifest that which we focus on – and what we resist persists. So if we resist others’ happiness at the expense of our own, we’re likely to be chasing our own happiness while never really fulfilling it.

But let’s say that  you’ve been trying everything and nothing you’re doing to market your book seems to be making any difference. In spite of your  best effort, you’re still struggling, and the last thing you can do is be happy for your friend who just got picked up by a sizable publisher. Here are a few things you can do to lift yourself out of your blues so that you can be truly happy for your friend. They’ll take some work, but with effort, you’ll get there.

  1. We’ve mentioned this one before, but it bears repeating in the #1 spot: Keep a gratitude journalRecording the things for which you are grateful on a daily basis will help you stay focused on the good stuff and enable you to shrug off any emotion that resembles envy.
  2. Slow down and meditate. When the jealousy monster threatens to rear its head, take a moment to take a breath. Slow down. Stop. Meditate. Getting clear about the direction you want your emotions to take will enable you to put the envy to bed, if only momentarily.
  3. Recognize that positive emotions are as contagious as the negative ones. Read the next sentence out loud and with as much gusto as you can muster: BOY, AM I ENTHUSIASTIC! Read it aloud again, this time like you mean it. Say it one more time, with a big smile on your face. I obviously can’t see you, but I’m pretty sure that if you did the little exercise above, you feel better now than before you began reading this post. You have the power to propel positive emotions to the forefront, so why not use it?
  4. Look for opportunities to celebrate someone else’s success. This may involve gritting your teeth or even facing the envy and doing it anyway. Send a congratulations note. Blog about your friend’s success. Buy an extra copy of their book. If you can find a way to celebrate in spite of the awkward feelings, you’ll get the goodwill flowing, meaning that it will soon be flowing right back to you.
success of another

Use this mantra whenever the envy threatens to throw you off course.

Here’s to celebrating your fellow authors’ success!

Laura

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We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

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PHOENIX-AREA BOOK LOVERS: Come out to meet me and 50+ other local authors for this one-of-a-kind book Logo w backgroundlovers’ event. Several first-time authors, award-winning authors, and authors of a wide variety of genres will be on hand to sell and sign books. Genres of all sorts – from fiction to spirituality to leadership to personal finance. The first 200 attendees to register will receive goody bags! Giveaways on the half-hour. Learn more and get your complimentary ticket at HolidayAuthorEvent.com.

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Planning to sell books during the holidays? Better start thinking like a sales superstar!

Yes, we often talk about this concept here at the Marcie Brock blog. The reason is that for quite a few authors – and holiday booksother professionals and business owners – marketing is the most difficult part of doing business. My friend Connie Kadansky is an international sales coach and trainer. I recently asked her to come speak to the Phoenix Publishing and Book Promotion Meetup, which I organize. The topic I asked her to speak on? How to Ask for What You Want and Get It.

There are two people in my life who get what they want just about every time an idea comes to them: Connie, and my 22-year-old niece, Samantha. What makes them so special? Do they know some secret? Do they have magic powers? Would you believe me if I told you that the answer to both questions is YES!

Both Connie and Samantha have an uncanny ability to get very, very clear about what they want. Then, they visualize the end result they are trying to achieve as already complete. And the last magic steps are accepting that it’s done and being grateful for the outcome. After that, they just sit back and watch the Universe conspire to support them in achieving their goals – whatever they may be. Whether it’s traveling around the world or landing a coveted speaking gig at a rock-star event, both Connie and Sam ask for what they want and get it nearly every time. I am personally getting much, much better at this, but I’ve got a way to go before I become the master of manifestation that they are.

So what does this have to do with sales? Absolutely everything, because your success as a salesperson is directly related to your mindset. You’ve got to see yourself achieving the results you want before you even pick up the phone, walk into that bookstore, send that email, or begin that conversation with someone at a book signing. And the only way you can see yourself as successful at sales is if you admit that you’re actually in sales.

It was a relatively small group that Connie spoke to for the Publishing Meetup, but it should surprise no one to hear that at least half of those in attendance were incredibly resistant to her message. Why? They don’t see themselves as salespeople. They are authors and writers (and perhaps other professions, too), but they are most definitely not in sales. Is it any wonder, then, that they struggle with selling books?

Connie shared a great story with us. A recent survey of plastic surgeons found that those who are willing to embrace sales PSP-Magazine2and marketing have 6-month waiting lists. On the other hand, those who insist that they are Board Certified Doctors who wouldn’t dare to stoop to the indignity of becoming salespeople are closing their second offices and working only three days a week. Of all the medical disciplines, plastic surgery is the one most reliant on marketing, because it is largely an elective procedure. People don’t generally flip through Physicians Monthly making note of cardiologists or oncologists, in case they should ever have a need. But if plastic surgeons are unwilling to do what it takes to get in front of prospective patients, common sense tells us that those prospective patients are going to use the doctors who are willing to market their services.

It’s a mindset thing. Are you a lead generation specialist first, or are you an author first? Seems to come back to that chicken-and-egg question from our last post, doesn’t it? Except that the answer is clear. If selling our books is important to us – that is, if we wrote them with the intention of finding readers for them – we have to embrace the sales and marketing side, adjusting our mindsets and making time for it.

There are just 115 days till Christmas. What are your sales outlook and marketing plans for those 3-1/2 months? If you don’t have any, sit down right now and sketch it out. It doesn’t have to be elaborate. In fact, the simpler, the better. Just make sure you do have a plan. And that you take action every day to implement it.

Want help creating a holiday marketing plan? Email me at holidaymarketing@writemarketdesign.com to book your complimentary half-hour consultation.

Wishing you great success in mastering your sales mindset!

Laura

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We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below."Practical Philanthropy" book cover

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Check out Laura’s newest book, Practical Philanthropy: How ‘Giving Back’ Helps You, Your Business, and the World Around You. A percentage of all book sales is donated to Art4TheHomeless.org and the Society of St. Vincent de Paul.

 

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Are you planning for SUCCESS, or planning to FAIL?

It’s been a while, but I’ve written a number of posts in the past about mindset — the reason being that it’s an immeasurably difficult uphill battle to succeed without a positive one.

Here’s a tiny case in point:

I am a member of the Facebook group, “The Writer’s Tools.” Mondays in the group are Marketing Mondays, and members are encouraged to share marketing ideas, links, blogs, and articles. So I shared a great idea I heard recently from a fantastic new business connection:

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If you’re giving a presentation to a smaller group, you’ll increase your sales by as much as 40% if you put a book on every seat BEFORE the talk begins. People have a chance to look at the book. You mention a passage from a particular page during your talk. And then at the end, you say, “If you want to purchase the copy you’re holding, just pay So-and-So at the back of the room. If you don’t want it, just leave it on the chair when you go.” Sure … you may lose one or two that walk out the door – but you’d probably give those away anyway. And you’ll more than make up for it in increased sales. Idea courtesy of Jason Nast.

Here are the two responses so far:

ED: Great idea Laura. I would have to hold myself in check and not go all Oprah… “And YOU get a book, and YOU!” But if I could contain myself this would probably work brilliantly.

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DANIEL: Let’s say you paid out of pocket for 100 copies of your book for such an event and everyone left afterwards without buying a copy, what would you do with those books? Give them away for free, donate or something else.

It’s pretty obvious, isn’t it, which of these authors is planning to succeed, and which is planning to fail? Please, please, please don’t let yourself be in the “planning to fail” category. So what if you haven’t sold a book yet and you’ve been at it for a year? Who cares if you’re the only one who seems to believe in your dream so far? Get out of the mindset that is prompting you to self-sabotage and look for reasons to fail!

Instead, try one or more of these ideas:

  • Write affirmations about your success — first person and in present tense. Readers are flocking to buy my book, as opposed to Readers will flock to buy my book.
  • Paste those affirmations all over your house, your car, your computer, your cell phone and repeat them to yourself continuously.
  • Cut out photos that inspire you and create a vision board that denote success to you: a person signing books, books on a shelf at a bookstore, a large number in your checking account, goal destinations for public speaking events.
  • Watch movies, read books, visit social media sites, and drink in images that reinforce SUCCESS thinking.
  • Sign up to receive daily inspirational messages via email.
  • Find a Meetup group of like-minded writers who will be your support network.
  • Rejoice with EVERY success, even a single book sale.

It may take some effort, but you CAN shift your mindset from why you won’t succeed to why you will. If you have other ideas that you’ve implemented to help steer you toward success, please share them in the comments section below.

Here’s to your SUCCESS MINDSET!

Laura

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We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

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Getting ready to launch your book? Be sure to download our complimentary special report, “Anatomy of a Book Launch.” Even if you’re not a novice and have a book launch or two behind you, this report will give you the timeline to help you experience even more success.

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Book Marketing Goals Pyramid – Breaking the process down into bite-sized bits

So after yesterday’s Writing Goals Pyramid, you pretty much had to know we’d be applying the same principal to book marketing, right? And voila book marketing goal pyramid… here it is. The fact is that book marketing is an ongoing process. It should properly begin as soon as you decide to write your book, and continue until you decide you don’t want to do it anymore (or forever – whichever comes first). I know a gal who wrote a book almost 10 years ago, and she’s still booking seminars and classes all over the country based on that one book. How is that possible? Because she never stopped marketing it.

The first step is setting an overall goal. Yours could be a number of books sold, or it could be hitting #1 on Amazon. Whatever it is is probably achievable if you’re willing to do the work to get there.

Next we move to monthly goals. Again, adjust this pyramid for your schedule and your needs. This chart gives you an overview of many of the steps you can (and should) use to market your book, but there are certainly other approaches that are not listed here.

My favorite step on the Weekly section is “Offer a giveaway.” With eBooks, that’s easier than it’s ever been before, but if you’re printing hard copies, be generous in giving those away, too. It will come back to you – I promise! You might want to investigate a service like Rafflecopter.com to help you manager your giveaway processes.

Lastly, we have daily goals. You’ll notice these are less about the marketing, per se, and more about creating a success mindset. That’s because ALL of your success stems from your belief that it is possible. So on a daily basis, take steps to foster the most positive environment in which to grow your success thought garden.

By the way, we’re participating in BlogHer’s January National Blog Posting Month Challenge … to write and post 1 original blog post per day. You can read posts from other participating blogs by clicking here.

Here’s to a brilliant and successful 2013!

Laura

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We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

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Ready to make your dream of writing a book a reality? The Empowering Women Writers program will walk you through all the steps, at your pace and on your schedule! Launching January 15, 2013!

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