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Booklet Tips From Paulette

Writing, producing, and promoting tips booklets for marketing, motivating, and making money.

Friday, June 30, 2006

Think Outside What Box?

There's a couple of publishing discussion lists I subscribe to. Yesterday someone posted something on the list suggesting me as a resource to approach about crafting foreign rights agreements. Yes, I have done a few foreign rights deals, however I am far from an expert. Even though the conversation is often about traditional book publishing, there are things to be gleaned that can and do apply to booklets as well.

In applying some of my innate logic, I offered a suggestion to one of the people who approached me about a possible deal for her children's book with a Greek publisher. She found my off-list suggestion useful, so I encouraged her to share it with the discussion list. You, too, may find it helpful in concept. Here is what she wrote:

I sent a question to the list yesterday and received help in a very unexpected way. I was encouraged to share it with you.

Authors naturally have active imaginations. Our words flow as our ideas flow and they get transferred to paper. We're capable of creating incredible flights of fantasy and we get our fictional characters out of a miriade of sticky situations. Then come our real-life author and/or publisher roadblocks and what do we often do? We think inside the box.

How many times have I asked myself if I'm thinking inside the box? Not enough obviously. It's something we need to do more of, something we need to remember when we come to a stumbling point.

A brief description of my recent roadblock:
A publisher has asked for foreign rights to two of my books. We've spoken several times, he has agreed to my Foreign Rights Agreement in principal, the only outstanding issue is the amount of the fee for the rights.

I'm totally unaware of the state of children's books in other countries. In many countries the economy is so poor, or literacy rates are so low, or childrens' books are so undervalued there is almost no market for children's books. For me to suggest a fee in total ignorance of the local economy is silly. The publisher on the other hand doesn't want to reveal his hidden card. We are at a stand-still, both not wanting to kill the deal by making an inappropriate move.
This is real life. I immediately start thinking inside the box. If I ask for too much I insult him and the deal is dead. If I ask for too little I'm doing an injustice to myself and he thinks I'm a fool. You've been there - round and round it goes.

I asked for help and one of our listmates - Paulette at tipsbooklets.com - came to my rescue. She suggested that I offer a range depending on a number of variables. Now that's thinking outside the box! One thing it does is set the negotiations free for a flow of dialogue. By having the price within a range both parties immediately know that it is negotiable, and no one need be insulted by the higher end because a variable can be eliminated to move the price toward the lower end.

As well as appreciating the advice, I also realized that I had been thinking inside the box . I became more creative in trying to determine what a reasonable fee would be for the rights. In the end I contacted several Greek publishers by email and explained the opportunity I had - and asked if they would care to comment on the state of children's books in Greece?
Will they answer? Who knows. But if only one answers I'm in a winning situation. Also, as I'm always thinking promotion - there are now several publishers in Greece who know about my children's books. :-)

So the nugget inside this rather long email is - think outside the box more.
Children's colouring book on bully issues Includes questions and answers for both children and caregivers


Until next time,

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Booklets - to Jargon or Not to Jargon

How do you know if your booklet has words in it that are unique to your expertise, that someone new to your information just would not know? It's very likely you are so close to your own knowledge that it is difficult to see an industry-specific word in your own writing.

A simple solution is to do a search on that ever-popular resource, www.Google.com Do a search using the word best representing your industry, followed by the word 'glossary.' An example is Mortgage Glossary. I found several decent online glossaries when I did that search. It's a great way to see the words you might have glossed over in your own writing, plus it can trigger some ideas you hadn't thought to include in your booklet.

Include a glossary at the end of your booklet if you have room, and if you've used words that would be new to your reader. Doing this will further earn the trust of your reader.

Until next time,

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Booklets Solve Problems

What challenge does your booklet solve? Say so right in the title. My own booklet, "110 Ideas for Organizing Your Business Life," solves the challenge it states -- getting organized in your business life. It's not about the number of tips. It's about the solutions it provides.

State the solution plainly in the title, and deliver what you state within the booklet. Yes, it is as simple as that.

Until next time,

Monday, June 26, 2006

Booklets - an Entire Series Out of the Gate

Several weeks ago I posted a question on this blog as an incentive to get a free copy of a publication I recently published. I asked what word I use when referring to a booklet that includes information from multiple related topics. The correct answer was a Sampler Booklet. It's what I consistently call that kind of a booklet. In fact, it ended up serving the purposes of my own business at that time so well that I never wrote another booklet of my own.

That's not to say some booklet authors wouldn't do well to write a series of booklets. There's definitely justification for doing so. I rarely suggest that as a first line approach, right out of the gate. Instead, do one booklet that has 10-12 tips from 10-12 different and related parts of your subject area. It will give you a chance to see what the greatest appeal is within your market. It will let the readers of your booklet know you deal in a range of related areas. It will market your entire business in one simple booklet. And you'll be able to better decide if a series is needed to best support the goals of your business.

Give them a sample so they'll come back wanting more of what you've got.

Until next time,

Thursday, June 22, 2006

What Makes Booklets Such Great Promo Pieces?

Tips booklets are excellent promotional tools for a bunch of reasons. Here's the start to a list of what those reasons are.

  • Longevity - very difficult to discard a booklet of tips
  • Size - fits in pocket, purse, envelope, or bundled with products
  • Cost - less expensive than many other promotional items
  • Credibility - an expert wrote it so the information has merit
  • Flexibility - the booklet can be customized to suit promoters' purposes
  • Simplicity - content is written so reader can learn in bite-size pieces
  • Format - appeals to people who like to read and want information fast

What reasons would you like to add to this list? You can do so in the Comments feature of this blog.

Until next time,



Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Booklets as a Way Out

Many booklets authors (you're probably one of them) look at booklets as a way out. It's a way out of earning money in exchange for time. It's a way out of certain aspects of customer service. It's a way out of having to be articulate and brilliant every waking moment. It's a way out of keeping someone else's schedule.

In lots of definitions, yes, it is a way out. And, like everything else, it needs to feed a part of you in order to sustain you and it. For you, it may need to be interesting, lucrative, motivating, comforting, easy, varied, unlimited, and a few other things. Only you know (or discover) what those requirements are.

It reminds me of the whole conversation about whether a move to a new location or a change in a relationship is going from or going toward something. I've done both and you probably have, too.

Developing, marketing, and selling products might look like a way out for you if you're feeling limited and burdened by either a solely/primarily-service business or by being employed by someone other than yourself. No question that there are many rewards in product development. Don't be surprised, however, when you notice that it could be just different challenges, easier challenges, more satisfying challenges, and challenges nonetheless. These challenges are probably a whole lot more manageable.

Until next time,

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Booklet Manuscript Edits and I'm Done

Not a chance. You're only just beginning. I had a client tell me a variation of that this week. "I just need (want) your help with the writing and editing, and then I'll be fine."

Yeah, well, um, okay, if you really think so. There is no question that some people have beliefs that the writing side of this stuff is their biggest challenge, and I don't doubt that. In fact, the writing side, as important as I agree that it is, is the starting point. Yes, it's crucial to create the very best product you can, and choose the best materials to share with the reader. I do think just about anyone in any form of publishing will tell you that the product development side of it is the starting point.

So what's the rest of it? It's the marketing!!! It's lining up with your buyers. It's pricing and packaging. It's delivering the content in the best way for the client, in the most timely and cost effective manor.

Now, about that client who thinks that getting the manuscript written and edited is all that is needed? Well, I've already started dropping bread crumbs towards what's next in the process. That way it won't come as a total shock when the booklet comes back from the graphic designer and the printer. Our work is far from done.

Are you of the same belief as the client I cited? If so, treat yourself to some of the Rent-a-Brain services I offer because you'll have only yourself to thank for the experience. Those details are at http://www.tipsbooklets.com/services1.htm

Until next time,

Monday, June 19, 2006

Don't, Avoid, Wait, and Other Non-Useful Suggestions

Do you remember your parents telling you NOT to do things? Don't go there, don't do this, stay away from that. Of course they were understandably concerned for your well-being.

Then you grew a bit older, and it was a different series of what not to do. Don't stay out late, don't go out with that person, don't go to that part of the city, don't smoke, don't drink. Your parents and your teachers wanted and still want what's best for you.

And a little older yet when you heard from your doctor what not to eat, what sunlight to stay out of, what air not to breathe, how not to over-exert yourself with too much exercise to fast.

There is a theme here. You've been told what NOT to do. Does it leave you wondering what TO do?

That's the reason I advocate writing tips that start with a positive verb, telling you (and your reader) what TO do, to accomplish, enjoy, experience, and energize. After all, what fun or usefulness is it to focus only on what NOT to do?

Until next time,
Go there now because you will find products and services to take you to the next level of enjoyment, satisfaction, and accomplishment in your own life.

Friday, June 16, 2006

The Prospect Will See You Now

'Just saw this in one of my favorite ezines, SpeakerNetNews.com It jumped out at me for all those calls to bulk booklet sales prospects, who really do want to hear from you, no matter how hard they are to reach.

According to the American Telemarketing Association, you have a 5 times better chance of reaching your prospect over the phone between 9 and 10 am their time than any other time of the day.

Furthermore, research shows that you are twice as likely to close a prospect that you see or call at the end of the day, after your "last call," than at any other time. Maybe it's because you are relaxed or in a good mood because you are done working. So when you're all done for the day, make one more call. It might be your best.

It may be worth experimenting to see how your results are impacted.

Until next time,

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Could I Taste a Sample, Please?

This is so simple it's almost embarrassing to mention for fear of insulting anyone's intelligence. (I know I'm fortunate in being surrounded by lots of very intelligent people, which is why I say that.)

Do you include samples of your tips from your booklet when you are marketing your booklet, so people get a flavor of what's in your booklet? Do you have a few sample tips on your website? I don't mean the entire booklet as a free giveaway, just a half dozen or so of the tips. Do you put that same few tips in any letter or email you send to your prospects? What about in the articles you write, and even those posts you put on discussion boards and other people's blogs? And your own blog? And when you're interviewed for print or on air? Or, or, or...?

Look through your booklet to see which 6 or 7 tips are the most unique, the most representative, or the ones you feel are the best. Using them often will entice more people to buy the entire booklet from you.

Until next time,
http://www.tipsbooklets.com -- where you'll find sample tips from my booklet on the bottom of the home page.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

My Knowledge is Worth More than $4.77

Yes, you're absolutely right. It's worth much, much more than $4.77. So then why do I sell hundreds and hundreds of ebooklets at my website for $4.77 per download when I agree that your knowledge is worth so much more than that?

It's because people are paying for your marketing materials. They are paying for a sample of your knowledge so they can get an idea of what's in store when they decide to buy more of what you've got and who you are.

These ebooklet buyers are sampling your knowledge any time of day or night anywhere in the world. These same buyers may be decision-makers to buy thousands of copies of your hard copy booklet, license your PDF in its native language or some other language, hire you as a speaker, consultant, or coach, or any of dozens of other possibilities.

So, we're not chargeing $4.77 for your knowledge. We're charging $4.77 for people to buy a greatly-enhanced version of your business card. Looks a little different that way, doesn't it? Yes, I thought you'd think so.

Get your booklet uploaded to the ebooklet catalog of our site now by going to http://tinyurl.com/p377n to see the details.

For now,

Friday, June 09, 2006

I Wanna Publish a Book, I Wanna Be on Oprah, I Wanna ...

Why? I truly wonder how often anyone who says these things asks themselves why they want to do that. It is so time consuming, such a tough road to hoe, so little compensation when it's all said and done, and so potentially unsatisfying in so many ways. The ROI is in the pits. Speaking of Return on your Investment, the traditional publishing industry is fraught with returns, on top of everything else! Not my idea of a good time. Is it yours?

The week of May 16, I was in Washington, DC presenting a workshop of my own (How to Sell a Million Copies of Your Info Products to Corporations) and speaking at two sessions of a conference. The conference was the Publishers Marketing Association annual university. (www.pma-online.org) Lots of authors, publishers, and vendors to the traditional publishing industry. Lots of people who wanna publish a book and lots of people who already have. Lots of people who see the end-all-be-all as getting onto the Oprah show.

Is it fame, glory, ego, 15 minutes in the splotlight? Or is it a desire to get a message to as many people as possible and earn some decent money in the process. My hunch is that it's one of those two things if not both.

There's so many easier and more lucrative ways to get your message to a large Universe of people. Write a tips booklet or two or even three. Sell them in bulk, by the hundreds of thousands or millions, to anyone other than traditional bookstores. Your message will reach many more people faster and easier, and your bank account will fatten out much faster.

For now,