[Life After College Book Project] Superbowl, Super book!
Sent Sunday, February 6, 2011
(Such a cheesy
subject line, huh? Couldn't help myself! Consider this the Nachos of
updates - lots of random little bits of goodness all thrown onto one
Superbowl Sunday! This is officially one of my favorite holidays of the
year. Yes, I have just officially declared it a national holiday. And
don't worry, this newsletter is on scheduled delivery -- I'm off
watching the game somewhere, as hopefully you are too!
Our official countdown to launch is: 1 month, 3 weeks, and 1 day. As David of Launch 52
recently said to me in an interview, "So, I see your book comes out
next month." Next month?! NEXT MONTH!! It has been a distant speck on
the horizon for so long that I almost didn't register what he said. When
I wrote the first draft of the book in 2008, I thought for sure I would
self-publish and have it out by graduation season in 2009. That came
and went, as did graduation season of 2010. Those were real rough
patches, ones I spent KICKING myself for letting yet another year pass
by. But here we are, February 2011, and my book comes out NEXT MONTH. What a ride...
are two questions almost everyone asks when I tell them I have a book
coming out: "Is your publisher sending you on a book tour?" and "How are you
going to market your book?" For the former: no, but I am sending myself. Holla!
For the latter: for fear that I scare you away with my to-do list of hundreds
and hundreds of spreadsheet rows, let me summarize as follows: it's like
buying lottery tickets (with various marketing efforts as tickets).
Instead of buying one ticket, sitting on it and hoping for the best, I'm
buying as many as I possibly can until the launch. Online promo,
offline outreach, networking, speaking, you name it - I'm working on it.
I may not finish everything I want to get done, but I'll have built
myself a fort of tickets that will hopefully pay-off! The book Guerrilla
Marketing for Writers covers this concept brilliantly.
Oh! And in case you missed it on the blog, be sure to check-out the video of me opening the box with my book
for the very first time. Such a fun moment, and it was so great to feel
like I could experience with all of you by capturing it on camera.
I'd love your input on two things:
Book Trailer Videos! I
have a blog post going up tomorrow with the backstory of how my
"failed" online date from December turned into a great friendship.
Although we weren't a romantic match (and I've since signed-off for good), he just so happened to be a
four-time Emmy award winning film producer, and generously offered to
film and edit my book trailer. Amazing, right?! We worked on this thing for 40+ hours
over the last few weeks, and I'm really happy with the result. Now the question is: which version
to post on the Amazon page for the book? Version One is ~3 minutes (with more narrative from me and more quotes from college grads), and Version Two is ~2 minutes. Which one do you like better? Fill out this form and let me know (it will tally the results on the confirmation page).
Search inside this book - Alright,
I need your feedback again. I requested that my publisher ask Amazon to
enable the "Search Inside this Book" feature. The good news is that
it's now available. The not-so-sure news is that they've scanned almost
the entire book! I don't want to be a digital curmudgeon, but I'm not
sure if it makes sense for sales to leave almost the entire book up for
perusal. I would LOVE your feedback. Please vote here and tell me what you think.
Author Central - Snapshot of my pre-order ranking.
Publishers are notoriously slow about sharing sales statistics -- some
authors I've talked to only got updates twice a year. HUH?! Coming from
an environment as metrics-driven as Google, I would expect some kind of
sales dashboard where you could see updated sales figures every day,
then match those statistics to various marketing efforts. If publishers
want to sell books, wouldn't the best way be to give authors
frequent feedback and information as motivation? Thankfully Amazon
recently launched a solution -- it's not perfect, but light years ahead
of where things were before.
Author Central provides statistics from BookScan by geography and by week. From Amazon: "Figures are provided by Nielsen BookScan
and include approximately 75% of all retail print book sales in the
U.S., including most of Amazon print sales." Because the book isn't in
stores yet and BookScan doesn't track pre-orders, I can't see much yet.
However, Author Central does provide "Amazon Bestsellers Rank History"
which is an interesting graph. It shows what number I'm ranked (over
time) out of 8 million+ books. Click here to see my stats for January - notice the spike on January 22? That was the day after I posted my video opening the box of books. Cool, huh? On that day my book was ranked 42,974 -- it's no bestseller status, but hey! We're still in the pre-order phase.
you believe in yourself and have the courage, the determination, the
dedication, the competitive drive and if you are willing to sacrifice
the little things in life and pay the price for the things that are
worthwhile, it can be done." -Vince Lombardi
"If you can believe it, the mind can achieve it." -Ronnie Lott
"In life, as in a football game, the principle to follow is: Hit the line hard." -Theodore Roosevelt
aren't born, they are made. And they are made just like anything else,
through hard work. And that's the price we'll have to pay to achieve
that goal, or any goal." -Vincent Lombardi