Want support building your book marketing plan? Help is here!
I’m Stephanie Chandler, CEO of the Nonfiction Authors Association, and I have walked in your shoes.
In 2005, I self-published my first book and built a website where I shared articles and developed a community of readers. A year later, I sold my first book deal to a major publisher, then signed with an agent and sold two more books. But it wasn’t long before I resented the lack of control over my work and the tiny royalty payments issued by the publishers. I was doing all the work, building my community and marketing my books, yet the publishers were reaping the rewards. I decided to return to self-publishing and never looked back. (And that’s a story for another time.)
The point is that I did the heavy lifting and built that elusive platform that you hear about so often in the publishing industry. You’re here right now because of my platform, which simply means I’ve cultivated an audience of nonfiction writers. It’s an audience I am passionate about serving. And you can do the same with your target audience!
I went on to launch the first Nonfiction Writers Conference in 2010, an online event, delivered before multi-day online events became popular. Three years later, the Nonfiction Authors Association was born. I listened to my community and realized there was a significant need for support for nonfiction writers. If you’ve ever attended a writer’s group or conference, you’ve probably noticed that they tend to be fiction-centric, leaving us nonfiction writers feeling alone on the journey.
As an author myself, I’ve struggled with all the same issues you are struggling with. I have had wins and losses in book marketing, and eventually found strategies that work. I don’t have any celebrity friends or relatives and I’ve never been on a reality show! I started where most authors do–from the beginning with no audience beyond family and friends. If I can do it, so can you!
I am also a former bookstore owner (I left my Silicon Valley career to open a store in 2003), so I understand the publishing business from many angles. I know your struggles and your joys. I want to help you find more of the joys!
I stopped accepting consulting clients several years ago because my schedule got so overwhelming, but I have greatly missed talking one-on-one with authors and helping them map their path. We’ve built an incredible team at NFAA, so I now have more flexibility to work directly with just a few clients each month. It’s exciting to return to consulting and be able to do some of my favorite work of all. I would love to help you craft your book marketing plans so please keep reading for details.
SIGNATURE CONSULTING PACKAGE:
BUILD YOUR BOOK MARKETING ACTION PLAN
The Book Marketing Action Plan is a signature program I have delivered to countless nonfiction writers for over a decade. Here is what’s included:
STEP 1: MATERIALS REVIEW
As soon as you register for this consulting package, and prior to our first consultation call, you will be asked to submit an intake form with some details about you, your books, and what you want to accomplish. I will review your form along with your website and book sales page on Amazon, if applicable, so I have a head start on understanding who you are and can give you specific feedback when we meet.
STEP 2: INITIAL INTERVIEW
Each writer has unique motivations so it helps me serve you better by getting to know you. This allows me to craft a custom plan just for you. We will meet one-on-one by Zoom or phone for about 90 minutes, possibly longer if needed, to discuss who you are, what books you write, and get clarity on your goals. I will also provide feedback from my review of your website and book sales page, with suggestions for ways to improve both.
STEP 3: BOOK MARKETING ACTION PLAN DELIVERED
Within a week of our one-on-one interview, you will receive a custom Book Marketing Action Plan detailing specific strategies you can use to grow your platform (audience) and reach your goals. While there are countless ways we can market books and grow an audience, what works for one author may not work for another. This is why it’s essential to identify the best strategies for your unique goals and interests.
For example, you may have an aversion to social media and be frustrated because you’ve been told you should create Instagram reels and TikTok videos, but you simply don’t want to. Good news! You don’t have to! We will identify other effective marketing tactics that you ARE comfortable doing and that best fit with your target audience and goals.
STEP 4: PLAN REVIEW
We will schedule a follow-up consultation of up to 90 minutes to review your plan, discuss the details, and answer any questions you have so that you leave our meeting feeling confident and ready to get to work.
STEP 5: CHECK-IN CALL
We will schedule a follow-up call in 30 to 60 days (your choice) to check in on your progress and address any questions that have arisen as you work through your plan. During these calls, authors often share how they are far more confident and excited about their progress than they thought they could ever be!
The Book Marketing Action Plan Consulting package is a time-saving investment that gives you a clear and comprehensive path to reach your goals.
LET’S ANSWER YOUR SPECIFIC QUESTIONS
Perhaps you want to use your book to build your business (or start a business).
Perhaps you’re less concerned about how much you earn from book sales because you mostly want to make a difference in the world.
Or, perhaps you want your book sales to become a significant revenue stream.
Whatever your goals, we can craft the right plan for you.
FOLLOWING ARE SOME OF THE MANY TOPICS WE CAN COVER TOGETHER
Business Foundation Topics
- Business Name
- Business Structure (Overview of LLC, etc., but not legal advice.)
- Target Audience/Niche
- 30-Second Pitch
- Business Startup Tasks
- Business Licensing Requirements
- Budgeting and Finances
- Bulk Sales
- Launch Plan
- Sales Tracking
- Best Practices
Book Development Topics
- Manuscript Writing
- Hiring Editors, Ghostwriters, Designers
- Copyright Protection
- Self-Publishing Steps
- Traditional Publishing
- Ebook Distribution
- Audio Books
- Foreign Rights
- Pricing Strategy
- Website Sales
- Bulk Sales
- Launch Plan
- Sales Tracking
- Best Practices
- Personal Site, Book Site or Magazine Site
- Domain Name and Registration
- Email Setup
- Audit Existing Site for Improvements
- Professional Design (WordPress, responsive)
- Blogging Essentials
- Blog Content Strategy
- Ecommerce Set-up
- Essential Pages: About, Speaker, Book, Media, Services, Contact
- Website Content Development
- Traffic Monitoring
- Site Navigation
- Elements: Social Media Links, Newsletter Sign-up (with incentive)
- Photos/Images (branded?)
- Video (optional)
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Keyword Strategy
- Email List Building
- Website Audit
Social Media Topics
- Social Media Goals
- Facebook Live
- Content Strategy
- Memes, Info Graphics
- Royalty-Free Images
- Scheduling/Time Management
- Social Media Automation
- Paid Advertising
- Best Practices
Professional Speaking Topics
- Foundation for Starting
- Locating Opportunities
- From Free to Fee
- Fees and Contracts
- Topic Development
- Presentation Development
- Slides and Visuals
- Speaker One Sheet
- Website Strategy
- Skill Development
- Pro Strategies
- Business Practices
- Speaker Marketing
Monetization and Revenue Stream Topics
- Consulting and Coaching
- Professional Speaking
- Live Workshops and Classes
- Online Classes and Events
- Certification Programs
- Membership Programs
- Information Products
- Freelance Writing
- Bulk Book Sales
- Corporate Sponsors
- Revenue Plan
- Sales Strategy
- Client Generation Strategy
- Building a Part- or Full-Time Business
Book and Author Marketing Topics
- Amazon Reviews
- Amazon Author Central
- Amazon Ads
- Book Launch Plan
- Content Marketing
- Launch Copy
- Book Reviews
- Guest Blog Posts
- Paid Marketing
- Social Media
- Email Marketing
- Print Publications
- Publicity/Media/Press Releases
- Purchase Media Lists
- Media Training
- Build a Media Portfolio
- Internet Radio/Podcasts
- Book Awards
- Online Groups
- Offline Groups (Meetup)
- Book Tours
- Marketing Collateral
- Website Optimization
- Website Traffic Strategy
- Ebook Promotions
- Lead Magnets
- Essential Online Tools
- Direct Mail
- Trade Shows and Events
- Monitor Mentions
- Track Results
- Hiring Help (virtual assistant, PR firm, etc.
I refer to the list of topics above as the Thought Leader Checklist. We can address any of these topics during our consulting time together. You can also download a printable version of this list when you register for a consulting package.
ARE YOU ONE OF THE 5%?
Recently, while speaking with some publishing industry friends, I was asked how many authors I believe are FULLY committed to doing the work necessary to build a platform and sell books.
My answer: About 5%.
And I think that may be a generous assessment.
While 5% sounds pessimistic, and I live my life as a hardcore optimist, this is the unfortunate reality. Though all authors WANT to sell their books, only a small percentage are willing and able to dedicate the time needed to create long-term success.
Meanwhile, book sales statistics are wildly depressing, especially for self-published authors. An estimated 4 million books are published each year, yet the average book sells less than 200 copies per year and 1,000 in its lifetime. And the typical self-published author sells just five copies. (See stats.)
You MUST Be Committed to Doing the Work
I get emotionally invested in the success of my clients and have worked with several over the years who have elected not to follow through on the effort required to market their work successfully. This always breaks my heart, especially because nonfiction books can make such a tremendous impact on the lives of readers.
If you believe you are here for a purpose, want to broaden your reach, and you’re committed to devoting at least three hours per week toward your book marketing efforts, then we are likely a good match to work together.
If you’re not able to commit the time to marketing your books, regardless of the reason, this consulting program isn’t likely a good fit for you right now. (Unless you plan to hire one or more people to execute your marketing plan, which is certainly an option. Though keep in mind it’s incredibly difficult to earn back your investment in marketing firm services based on book sales alone.)
“I enlisted Stephanie Chandler’s consulting services to assist with preparing my book launch and to ensure that I looked my best in front of clients. Stephanie made sure that the messaging for each of my activities matched my client’s needs, assisted in guiding production of all my websites, and worked with me to make my book stand-out on Amazon. If you don’t know it already, you, your book and your services all need a digital presence.
Stephanie knows digital, not just what looks good on a website, but what combination of platforms will work for you, your target audience and your book. She has the experience of hundreds of other successful book launches that she can put to work for you. She can help you save both time and money in launching your book, speaking services or consulting practice. Thank you, Stephanie, I couldn’t have done it without you.”
“My calls with Stephanie far exceeded my expectations. Highly recommended if you are in the final stages of writing your first or second book… Amazed by her knowledge on the subject and kindness to share it in such detailed and actionable ways. Stephanie is quickly turning into my trusted go-to source for anything book creation and promotion related.”
“I found Stephanie in the blogosphere and through one of the dynamic web conferences she hosted. Just by asking her a few questions, I knew she was super knowledgeable, helpful and clear about what success looks like. She has the experience to know what works and what doesn’t. Stephanie put me on a structured marketing plan that is already delivering results, after just 2 months.”
My Personal Marketing Philosophies
- Social media has been over-hyped and rarely meets expectations. You don’t need to be on ALL of the networks. I recommend choosing one or two networks where your audience spends time, but only if you WANT to be there. If social media isn’t your thing, we can find other effective options for you.
- Single day book launches on Amazon aren’t what they’re cracked up to be. While launching a book with a mission of reaching #1 in one or more Amazon categories might be fun, these campaigns have little long-term value. (Unless you generate enough sales to reach a real bestsellers list, like the WSJ, New York Times, or USA Today.) I also feel these campaigns don’t justify using the term “Bestselling author.” Did you know you could sell as few as ten books in a single day on Amazon to reach #1 in a category? Many authors do this and then claim bestseller status, which is why this term has been greatly eroded. We will focus on getting your book to the top of Amazon categories on an ongoing, consistent basis, not just for one day.
- There are no easy shortcuts. I wish there were and I’d certainly share them with you if shortcuts existed. But just like anything worth doing, such as finding your ideal life partner, finishing school, growing a business, raising children, curating friendships, it takes time to build a successful author business.
- You’re an entrepreneur, whether you realize it or not. This is good news! You could enjoy some tax savings and other benefits by treating your book like a business. Talk to a professional accountant or tax planner.
- You can create revenue around your books. It’s no secret that profit margins on book sales are slim, but have you considered how you could get paid for speaking, consulting, corporate sponsors, and more? I’ve personally done all of these things and can guide you on the path to do the same.
- We have an obligation to reach readers. Maya Angelou said, “What you know, teach.” I believe this is what makes nonfiction books especially powerful. They have the ability to impact the lives of readers. If you want to make a difference, learning how to market your books is essential.
- Book marketing may not always be fun, but the results are worth the effort. I like to compare marketing to gardening. Some people love gardening, but I am not one of them. I don’t like heat or dirt or bugs. But I do like the results from gardening and spending time in my beautiful yard, so I do the work. If you want your books to sell, if you want to reap those rewards, you must do the work. I challenge you to plant three seeds in your book marketing garden every day and water them. With time, they will grow. I promise!
here is what we can accomplish together
All Nonfiction Genres Welcome
I can help you craft a plan whether you write memoir, how-to/prescriptive nonfiction, narrative nonfiction, or any other nonfiction-related genres.
CHOOSE A CONSULTING PACKAGE TO FIT YOUR GOALS
Get the Bonus Workbook
As soon as you register for a consulting package, we will mail you this 230 page workbook: The Nonfiction Book Marketing and Launch Plan, which is not currently available to the general public. It’s loaded with step-by-step instructions on how to implement marketing strategies. This book will be a key tool to support your efforts to execute the plan we create together.
Are you committed to marketing your books and ready to accelerate your progress?
Let’s work together!
Choose a consulting package below. As soon as you complete registration, you will receive an intake form and instructions for scheduling our first meeting.
3-pay options available in cart.
PRICING AND REGISTRATION
2-HOUR CONSULTING STRATEGY SESSION ONLY
BOOK MARKETING ACTION PLAN CONSULTING PACKAGE
BOOK MARKETING ACTION + ACCOUNTABILITY PLAN
CONSULTING NOT in your budget? Here are some alternatives
We understand that our marketing consulting packages require a significant investment and don’t work for everyone. Here are some alternatives:
- Join the Nonfiction Authors Association community to find a vast variety of support resources to assist you on your journey. Membership includes templates, checklists and reports, a monthly Zoom meeting for members, private Facebook group, special discounts and much more.
Learn more about membership in the Nonfiction Authors Association here.
- Visit our directory of book coaches and inquire about consulting rates.
- Read through our free blog and find all kinds of helpful resources.
Don’t like to pay online?
Prefer to pay by phone?
If you have questions about membership or prefer not to register online, please send us an email.