As an author, it is important to give in to what your readers want. Here are the 3 things readers love and the third might keep you up.
Making No Connections
Bill couldn't figure out why he was unable to get his existing readers to go about buying his latest books. His issue was that he wasn't connecting with his readers by doing the things that they love. That's the reason why in today's topic, we are going to talk about 3 things readers love (#3 might keep you up).
So, Bill is one of the clients that I've had. He lives in Montana and he's an author of grilling books. This is a really popular theme, especially during the last couple of years.
People have been wanting to use a lot of the equipment and gear they have around their house. Bill is a grilling expert. He knows everything there is to know about how to properly grill.
He thought maybe I could go about selling that on Amazon and other sites by writing books in this exact category. The thing is that he wanted to get his existing readers, the people who had already purchased his first book to go about buying his latest books.
The problem though for him was that he was not able to make a close connection with these people. So that once they had purchased the first book, they just would disappear. He would never hear from them again.
He was trying to figure out what the issue was. He had heard though that making close connections with your readers are incredibly important when it comes to getting recurring sales.
This is especially the case when we're talking about how many touch points, we have to make with somebody before they're going to make a sale. Then people who buy, their likelihood of making additional purchases is massive. Compared to people who've never even heard of you.
So, the ability to focus on the people who've already purchased and are happy with your books is a powerful technique. To ensure that not only do you make sales on your next book but your original sale. The people who bought the original book will purchase the next book.
In addition to the other people who are coming in. So, we're running ads, money's coming in, and recycling back to draw more readers in. We're building up a mass of people who are excited about your latest books if you connect with them.
The thing was that he realized that if he did not get these readers to connect and purchase his books, then each book would just sell several copies and then die out over time. Then he wasn't going to be able to see this building of an audience which is the power of self-publishing.
It is not about selling one book to this person, to one book to that person. It's about building an audience around your books who are enthusiastic to buy your latest book. But he began to doubt that maybe he just wasn't the type of person who was very connectable.
Check out this related article: Dangers Of Publishing Low Content Books!
That people just really weren't all that interested in the types of books. They liked the books but maybe not that much that they'd want to be in contact with him at any level. He wasn't completely sure how to go about doing that in the first place.
He had heard from some fake gurus that if you simply dump copies or links to your book in lots of Facebook groups, of course, many of these fake gurus will sell you their marketing services. Where they'll just pay for space.
I can paste it to a thousand whatever and I can give it to all my fake followers who are not even interested in your grilling book. For some reason, that is supposed to translate into lots of sales and close contact. Well, what he discovered was it didn't help build any connections at all.
He did pay for the service and so they pasted it. They pasted it in groups related to romance and placed it in groups related to this or that group. Or whatever the case might be, on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and all of these things.
They promise it sounds wonderful because they can reach an audience of hundreds of thousands of people. Those who are not interested in grilling but they can reach those audiences. They don't like or respond to any of these posts either.
So, these posts just die. It's just the equivalent of just spamming the whole internet with your links to your book. So, that technique did not work for him. The second thing was that he created a lead magnet and started building an email list.
Then any time, he would be coming out with a new book. He would send an email to them to show them the list. The problem was that nobody replied and nobody clicked on any of the links.
He was making zero progress with the email list. He had even heard from me in a previous video that email lists are the most important asset. You have three assets that are the most important.
One of them would be your books themselves of course. Number two is your email list; nobody can take that from you. And number three will be your blogs that you're going to do, pushing your books.
So, these three are very powerful and the blogs, of course, take time to build up. As Google begins to search your site and see what you're writing about. Then pulling in traffic and then those people get on your email list.
Sending An Email A Week
We're back to the email list again in terms of telling them and connecting with those people. To see if they're interested in purchasing your next book. As they begin to know and trust you as an author.
But he tried with the email but kept in mind to listen closely to what he did with the email. He would send out an email only when he'd come out with a new book. It would be thought to be two to six months, the cycle that Bill was on.
So that was his grand plan which is just sending them sales letters every six months and that was not working. The thing is that he decided to book a free discovery session with me because he had watched my videos. I told him exactly that we can break up.
We can take a closer look at exactly what's happening in your books. We can see how your audience is responding. We can figure out how they use an email list to ensure we drive traffic to your newest books.
Building up that connection with people so that we can get recurring customers. The first thing we commented on is that the thing that your customers love is a book that delivers what it promises. But I looked at Bill's books and that wasn't a problem at all.
The second thing is we need to make sure that you as an author are easily accessible. That is where you have an email they can easily get. That you're on social media.
So, if they respond to your comments or your blogs or your YouTube channel or any of these other places, it may be that they're responding regularly. So, you're going to get back to them quickly within 24 hours.
It is a reasonable amount of time to respond to somebody's comment. Positive or negative, we respond to everything. We ban spam but otherwise pretty much we're open to almost any comment that would be coming in.
Then the final thing is that for accessibility is the email list. But the thing he was not doing with his email list was that he was not maintaining contact with his readers. He wasn't sending out regular emails at least once a week.
If you're going to do an email list effectively, you need to be sending at least one email a week. It doesn't have to even be very long. It needs to provide some value and you should have some sort of a value ladder.
That is the person who loves the content of the email. Then you tell them the next step, right? They get onto the email list by getting a free eBook from you.
A free report, a free checklist, or something free. And then once they have joined your email list, now we're ready. That's when the fun begins because once they join the email list, we're going to be back and forth with them regularly.
Check out this related article: Creating an Email List For Self-Publishers
We want to be in a one-on-one dialogue with people as quickly as possible. This is a very important thing and so we do whatever is necessary there. One of the techniques is using the nine-word email.
It is the idea that you're going to send out once a month an email that just says “Are you still struggling with getting your grill to light?” Or “Getting your food to cook fully through?” Or “Knowing which utensils and things you should buy if you're grilling?” Or “Knowing the right temperatures to grow your food out?”
You see, there are lots of things to do on the grilling front or recipes or whatever. We choose a problem; we ask a question like that. It's nine words long and then there's no other text.
That's it, no name, nothing, just that. And what happens during these particular emails is that you get a large response from your audience. This is powerful for your readers because then you're able to pull them in.
So, they both will tell you where they're coming from. Then just keep a list of what they're struggling with. Go back and forth with them when you come out with a new book. Especially if the book is covering one of the problems that they have self-identified as a problem.
Then you're able to say “Look, I can help you.” It's perfect because when you're going to help them with their problems, we're going to have a relational connection with our readers. In addition, we're going to be able to sell a copy which will bring more money.
Giving us the ability to produce more books and keeping our motivation level high which is exactly what they want to do. Amazon, the dealerships, and the people who are selling the books, they're also happy.
So, it is a win across the board. That was one of the reasons it sort of connects back to the first point which was “Do we have a book that's delivering value?” It is what you should do because if it isn't, well then, it's a scam, right?
You have a book that is lower-level value than what it's delivering. But usually, those books will get one-star reviews anyways. So, people will just quit buying them.
So, if you're getting a bunch of one-star reviews, well you're not delivering on the value. You should take a closer look at your books. The final thing is the ability to buy the book in whatever format they wish to get it in.
You should have an eBook version, a paperback version, a hardback version, and an audiobook version. Because we don't know who our audience is and it does two very powerful things. The first thing is that it shows them that we're series authors.
Receiving Traffic Through Blogs
We are going to have lots of formats and lots of ways to buy the book. That is just a way to signal that you're a series author. It doesn't require that much more work to learn those things but that's one way.
Number two, different readers have different ways in which they like to read their books. Some like to hear them on audiobooks, some like to have them as paperbacks. But some people like hardcover books, they only like hardcover books and if you're offering that, that's the one they're going to buy.
The final thing is that some people like eBooks. I'm an eBook creator myself and I even take books and turn them into audiobooks. So, I can listen to them as it's a balance between the two.
I both like to read through my ears and my eyes. But books are perfect. I can just take out my phone and I can just put it on the Kindle device on the phone. Then from there, I'm able to have my books at any given time.
I've got about 50 to 100 books on my phone right now. So that's very useful when it comes to getting our books in a format that people enjoy reading. But Bill was thinking a lot about these different topics that we were discussing and was considering different ways in which he could implement them.
That was one of the things he found. Just like every single client I have; they have also found that the discovery session is very useful. It's sort of clarifying where possible, a vision of where we can go in the future.
So, I would highly recommend you check out the free discovery session and we can take a look at your book. You have no requirements to buy anything or even give a credit card number or anything. I'm doing exactly the very same thing I'm teaching here which is I'm telling you to build a connection.
Which is delivering a result or a value out into the world with your books. Whether it's entertaining based on your fiction books. You know mystery horror or romance or whatever it might be. Or nonfiction showing them how to do or solve specific problems that they have and then building a connection.
That's exactly what I do and there's no commitment either. The thing is that when you book a free discovery session, there's no commitment. So, I have people in parts of the world where they never would have the money to buy anything beyond that and that is just fine.
I enjoy helping people. I enjoy self-publishing and that's one of the reasons we do these free ones. But let's get back to Bill for a sec. The final thing is he decided to double down.
He wasn't going to just keep on doing the same thing which wasn't delivering any results at all. But he decided he was going to take a harder path regarding the email list. So, he started sending out these nine-word emails.
Check out this related article: Why An Email List Is Essential For Self-Publishers
He started sending out weekly emails on a normal weekly basis and getting in one-on-one contact with people. Keeping track of where people are with regards to their grilling experience. Are they having challenges with things?
That's the part we care most about. It's what problems people are having. Then writing more blogs and going that route. Blogs on the subject more emails, covering the same subject.
Remember, you can use your blog content for your emails. You can also make a YouTube video and a podcast out of the same content. It's not a problem just like the books people like to take in information in different ways and this is a very powerful way of doing it.
So, what happened was after going through this cycle and making closer connections with his contacts, he suddenly discovered two big things that changed. Number one, if you're using a good email service provider, I go with Active Campaign. You can check that out.
Then you're able to see how many people are opening these emails, right? Then you're able to see how many people are clicking on the links in the emails. He started looking and he noticed the people who were connecting with 1-On-1 regularly were clicking on the links in the emails.
When his new books were coming out, then came the sales email. Where he's like, “I'm releasing a new book, I want you to check it out.” He's also able to leverage it to say “Who would like to get a free copy of my book in exchange for an honest review on Amazon?” And that was another thing.
So, he was able to get more reviews on his grilling books. He saw when his new grilling books were coming out, that he was getting more sales on them. Google started sending him traffic as a result of the blogs that he had been putting out.
So, it was a win across the board. And it was all because he was figuring out what exactly his readers love. What are the things that are necessary to make a connection with your readers so that they will know, like, and trust you?
So that they will be in contact with you tightly. And by your next book, it's all about connection and this is something that a lot of authors don't understand. Do you think you can write a book without connecting to your audience and they're just going to buy it?
Sometimes yes, if you're in the correct niche. But there are also things that you do need to avoid that your readers hate. That's one reason why you're going to want to hear more about 3 Things Readers Hate (#1 Might Surprise You).