AskPat 635 Episode Transcript
Pat Flynn: Hey, what's up, everybody? Pat Flynn here, and welcome to episode 635 of AskPat. Thank you so much for joining me. I hope you had a great weekend, and I look forward to this week's episodes for you, so let's just get started right now. We have a great question from Shawn.
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Shawn: Hey Pat, Sean here from snowy Ottawa, Canada. Man, you have no idea how much I wish I was in San Diego right now. My question for you today revolves around publishing a new product. I just finally finished my first book and have published it both digital format, which I distribute through Gumroad, and in print, which I distribute through Amazon's CreateSpace, which, as a side note I must say I'm quite impressed with the final product they were able to provide me.
The question is, what would you do, if you were in my situation and you had your first book, not a huge following, how would you promote it? I find that I am struggling with getting it out there, and I'm not sure where to focus. Should I focus on SEO so people can find it through search, or should I focus primarily on blogging and trying to get some traffic that way? I do like the fact that it's on Amazon and can be searched, so I'm definitely stoked about that, but I want to be able to take the bull by the horns, per se, and be able to really be in control of how much traffic and how much buzz is being created around this new product. I'd love some insight from you as to what avenues you would take or what strategies you would use to try to promote a good, new product but with a limited fan base. I'd love to hear your thoughts. Keep doing what you're doing. You rock.
Pat Flynn: Hey Shawn, thank you so much for the question, I appreciate it. First of all, congratulations on your product, your book, I think its awesome you're selling it off of your own website using Gumroad which is cool. That's a model that Nathan Berry has become well-known for. That's cool because you can make quite a bit of money off of that, and plus you can offer a lot more bonuses, you can play around with the pricing, you're not right into the confinements of Amazon and their pricing model. You can really start to control your list there too, so that's really cool. And its also awesome to hear that you're having a great experience with CreateSpace, I had a great experience with CreateSpace as well with my book Will It Fly? I found the process to be, not push-button easy, but relatively easy for what we're doing, we're writing books and we are getting them printed and they are printed on demand when people order them, and I was quite surprised too when I got my examples before the book went live and I saw just how professional it looked. So kudos to CreateSpace and Amazon there too.
So, in terms of getting your book out there, here's what I would do. You could use social media, which I would recommend, using social media. You have a following likely, no matter how big or small, that can help lead to some more customers, some more shares and that sort of thing. Really where you're gonna get the most bang for your buck, and you mentioned SEO, I mean SEO's something that will naturally come over time, but you just have to set things to the basic SEO foundational settings. At this point it's not really anything you can force, you can just set things up for success in the future. SEO takes time, but it also takes a little bit of knowledge about keywords and what people are searching for so hopefully in the book title or at least in the description on both your website, and on Amazon through CreateSpace you have these things in mind. So just putting those things, the basic foundational items for SEO, keywords that are relevant to whatever it is people are searching for relating to your topic that's gonna help in the long run. Again like I said earlier, SEO is not something you can really see results from overnight, typically.
Blogging, you had mentioned blogging, that's always good, creating content, building relationships that way. That's sort of another long-term play. People will find your website through SEO, but also sharing those articles and that sort of thing. You can take some of those articles and repurpose them on Medium.com after about a month, just to make sure that Google knows that you were the first one to publish them. That's a strategy that I heard Gary Vaynerchuk talk about and a few other people too, so that could potentially work but again that's a long-term game.
So what can you do in the short term to really start to boost sales? Well, there's three things I want to talk about. And the first one, it will cost a little bit of money, and this is the one that the most people will tell you that will work best and give you the fastest results. That is using Facebook ads. So creating Facebook ads to your book, or for example, a webinar that then promotes your book which might be even better because you're spending time to have your audience get to know you. You can test to see if people are interested in content in the first place if they register for the webinar. If not, well, then that obviously doesn't work and you need to take a different approach. Doing a webinar or even just promoting Facebook directly to your book that'll give you some immediate results allowing you to test different headlines, different strategies and language to use to be able to keep people's interest in whatever it is you have going on.
The cool thing about Facebook specifically is you can get really targeted with who it is that you're serving. Of course each of those different markets or sub-markets or niches are going to have different messaging, so there's a lot to go here, and the reason that I actually wouldn't recommend Facebook to start off with is because yes, it does cost money but more than that B, it's not something you can just throw money at and then it's gonna work. There's a lot of testing that has to happen, there's a lot of knowledge with Facebook and how it works and its environment. There's a lot of experts out there, Amy Porterfield, Rick Mulready, they've been doing this for a while and so I would look to them if that's something you're interested in. They also have courses available that you can use to jump start or launch your track or journey into Facebook advertising, but it's not push-button easy. And you could, if you don't do it correctly, lose quite a bit of money quite fast, because you have a lot of people clicking on your ads, you don't pay for stuff until people click on your ads, but if they don't convert, well then there's a problem there too.
There's also testing that needs to happen on your website in terms of conversion so I'd also make sure that you're keeping track of numbers fairly well. I know Gumroad will tell you where the referrals were coming from or what websites were coming from in order for people to find that sales page and then purchase your book. Gumroad has some metrics that can help you understand what's working already, if anything's working, and you can just do more of that. So that's another thing. So if you have any sales just try to understand well, what is working right now, and you can maybe double or triple up on that if possible.
The other thing I would say, and I had mentioned this a little bit was referrals, well, what I mean is affiliate marketing. You can have connections with other people who have trust with a larger audience already and get them to promote your book in exchange for commission for selling your book. When you're selling your book on your own website, it's a lot easier to do that. Gumroad also has an affiliate program built in so you could offer however much money you want, typically it's around 25 to 50 percent but it changes, and different industries have different rates of affiliate commission. You don't want to give away the whole thing, but you also want to make sure you make it worth that person's time and money to promote that item that you have. So affiliate marketing can be great because you're giving people an incentive to promote it, and if you have built a relationship with anybody who has a large audience, that's where I would start.
I would start with your network, reach out, offer them the book for free and follow up with them. Definitely follow up with them. Don't be rude about it of course but the fortune is in the follow up sometimes. Reaching out to other people and building a relationship with them. If you mentioned anybody who has a large audience already in your book, that could be a great place to start too because they're gonna want to share with their audience that people have featured them in books and things like that to their own audience too, so that's a good place to start.
That's where I would start. Those are the top two things, so Facebook ads like I mentioned does cost money, but it could be a quick way to determine the success of your book and actually get it in front of large amounts of people in a short period of time. Also working with other people in an affiliate relationship. If you have the opportunity to be in front of another audience without affiliate relationships that's cool too. You could, for example, guest post or be a guest on another person's podcast. I would look on iTunes and find the podcasts that relate to your target audience and reach out to them and see if you could become a guest on their show and talk about some of these important topics that you had in the book, for free, to help their audience. In exchange, you'd likely be able to promote the book and share it using your own voice and that's very powerful. As you know you guys are listening to me right now and hearing my own voice that goes quite a long ways, in terms of really getting people to understand what you're about, and get interested in what you have to offer, a lot more so than sometimes a guest post.
So Shawn, those are a couple things you can do and hopefully that gets your gears going in your head so you can take action from here and make progress. If I were you, I would focus on trying to be a guest on another person's podcast who has that audience already or write a guest post for them, and if possible you could also set up an affiliate relationship with them so that they'll be more likely to promote it and continue to promote it because there going to get something in return too.
So Shawn, best of luck to you. I'm going to send you an AskPat t-shirt for having your question featured here on the show. For those of you listening, if you have a question that you'd like potentially featured here on the show just head on over to AskPat.com, you can ask right there on that page. If your question gets featured, Jessica's gonna reach out to you in the next couple weeks after your question's featured and we'll collect your information and send that to you free of charge.
Shawn, thanks again, I appreciate you, and as always I like to finish with a quote here and today's quote comes from Tony Robbins himself. He says, “If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always gotten.” Love that quote, it reminds me of one, I think it;s from Jay Abraham, or I heard it from Ramit Sethi, he said, “What got you here won't get you there.”
That's why I'm always evolving, always changing, always trying new things. Complacency is dangerous sometimes, so keep pushing forward and know that if you're not happy with where you're at right now, you can't continue to do the same things. So congrats Shawn for taking action, making change, and to everybody else out there who's taking action, you're awesome, keep going and I'll see you in the next episode of AskPat. Bye.
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