An entrepreneur is defined as someone who assumes risks, a problem solver, and does not shy away from pursuing unconventional ideas or businesses. If you are an authorpreneur, you imbibe an entrepreneurial mindset to start thinking about the bigger picture than merely creating your books.
You are an author first and foremost. You start from a place of creating and sharing content you are inspired to create. After that, connecting readers with your content is now your utmost priority. Sadly, this is where I see many authors are failing to do. They are not proactive in promoting themselves.
Successful independent authors must closely resemble entrepreneurs in their approach to promoting and selling their book. An entrepreneurial mindset is a direction you need to take if you want to succeed. And most of the time, you need to stand alone if you're going to stand out among the crowd.
This shift in thinking results from the change in publishing trends toward independent self-publishing and away from traditional publishing. If you pitch your book to an agent and land on a contract with a traditional publisher, you are still expected to act as a salesperson for your book, but others will drive the strategy. As an authorpreneur, you will drive these strategies. You become your brand's ambassador. You become the brand you carry.
I hope this does not scare you because the rewards of self-promotion are satisfying.
Improving your skills as an authorpreneur is not an overnight task. Your journey as an authorpreneur is continuously evolving and changing. You may be doing today can be very different from what you will be doing in the next couple of years.
Here are some of the ways you can develop an authorpreneur mindset so you will thrive amid the changes and competition out there.
Build a diverse, marketable set of skills. Once a diverse skill set is built, it gives an authorpreneur a toolkit that he can rely on when he is faced with the certainty of challenging situations. Copywriting is one example of a lucrative skill to learn nowadays. Bestselling author and marketing consultant Allan Dib stress the importance of appealing to emotions when writing our content. He said, "Copywriting is salesmanship in print." Therefore, I encourage you to learn as many skills as you can relate to building your author brand.
Consume valuable content across channels. Sources of content include podcasts, YouTube tutorials, webinars, blogs, etc. An authorpreneur should stay abreast with the latest publishing industry changes to maintain a fresh perspective and flexibility. Keep a watch as well of the best practices of the highly successful authors in your niches, and as they say, "copy the greats."
Target the pain and offer solutions. Always remember that people buy with emotions first and then justify with logic afterward. Your goal is to be a problem solver. Create value for your audience. If you feel as if you heard them and create books that matter to them, you also ensure they know that you'll be successful. Targeting the existing pain of your readers will result in much higher conversion and customer satisfaction. Only through adding value to a specific problem or pain point does an authorpreneur become successful.
Ignite that passion. I always love to be reminded of Oprah's words: "Follow your passion, it will lead you to your purpose." People often ask me where I get the energy and joie de vi-vre on a day-to-day grind in my writing and publishing pursuits. My answer is simple: I love what I do, even if it causes me pain. My co-author James Fantone has enlightened me on the true meaning of passion. Passion is not all about fun; it is more about sacrifice.
Be ready to get your hands dirty. To get your hands dirty means to get involved in the aspects of your job. When starting, it is essential to handle sales and other customer interactions whenever possible, personally. Direct client contact is the most explicit path to obtaining honest feedback about what your readers like and what you could be doing better. Not only does this make customers feel empowered, but happier readers are more likely to recommend your books to others.
Cultivate an authorpreneur mindset. Do something every day that will add value to your brand. The marketing side of being a self-published author is the toughest part, and it behooves authorpreneurs to be notoriously strategic. After all, going through the entire process of conceptualizing, writing, designing covers, etc., employ strategic thinking. That kind of mindset is definitively entrepreneurial and necessary for succeeding at business and at selling your book. If you have not figured this out yet, being a successful author is a business.
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