Market Research | Karen Williams Book Mentor Librotas

market research

When do you need to start marketing your book?

start marketing your book keyOne of the things that many people don’t think about when they start to write their book is marketing it.

They start with an idea, they may well plan it out, develop their structure and then they begin writing their book.

Many brilliant authors fail to market their book until the writing is well underway. And this is too late. You can have the best book in the world, but with a poor marketing plan, it will struggle to be successful.

If you’re writing a book to build your business – or indeed any book – you need to start marketing your book before you start to write it.

This was wise advice given by Helen McCusker from Bookollective at our recent Author’s Journey event and I agree totally. That’s why I’ve written my new book, Book Marketing Made Simple, to tell you where to start. Continue reading

What do your clients want?

When was the last time you took the time to find out what your clients want? Perhaps you talked to them directly, maybe you did a survey or held a focus group.  Or have you?

Knowing your clients and what they want is an essential part of being in business.  You want to be at the stage where people look at your website and follow you on social media, and ultimately they feel like you are talking directly to them.

To do this, you need to know their pain and their problems and how you can help them to solve these problems.  But you’ve got to speak their language, and provide what they want rather than what you think they need.  Otherwise, you’ll just have an expensive hobby!

If you haven’t done your research for a while, what needs to have happen?

Well you could carry out a short survey, just like this one: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/FMGDJVB (and if you haven’t answered this, I’d love you to respond – it will just take you 5 minutes).

The basic www.surveymonkey.com tool is free so all you need to think about is asking the right questions for your audience.  So where do you start?

1. Give people an incentive to complete the questionnaire – you could give away some of your time, a prize draw of one of your products or something else your audience will benefit from.  Tell them this in a short summary before you start the questions.

2. Ask a mixture of different types of questions.  Get quantitative results by asking questions that require your respondents to tick boxes, as this will give you statistics and numbers (just don’t provide too many options).  Also get qualitative results by asking for their comments using an open question.  This will give you a real insight into your clients thoughts, language and problems.

3. Make it easy for people to complete.  Tell them how long it will take them to complete and why they should do it.

4. Test your survey with a friend or a colleague to make sure that the questionnaire works, that the questions are logical, and make sure you proof read it too.

5. Give people a chance to add other comments through using the ‘other’ button.  Comments here are invaluable as you can find out what people think.

6. Ask people to share your survey so you can get decent data.  Send it out to your list, share on social media and ask others to do the same.

7. Do something with your research.  Produce a summary for respondents, blog about the results and ultimately make sure you act on the information!

I’d love to hear what you think – so please add your comments below and feel free to share!

When did you last work ON your business?

Sorry for the lack of posts over the last couple of weeks.  I’ve been getting back into the swing of things whilst getting my business structure in order, following my recent break in Australia.  Although my supervisor can’t see my mixed metaphor – and I’ve talked to her today about getting more swing in my life and less of the structure!

But in saying this, one of the things I’ve noticed is that I need to take more time to work on my business rather than in my business.  If you listened to my recent teleclass, you will notice that I talked about the Emyth Revisited and this is one of the key messages. 

When you work on your business you check what you have in place, you plan for the future and you celebrate your successes.  Otherwise, to use another metaphor, you find it hard to see the wood for the trees, or you feel out of control or generally feel out of sorts. 

If you work on your business, this is what you can do:

  • You can focus on your plans and dreams and then when you work in your business, you can check that everything you do is getting you to this end goal.
  • You can make sure you are meeting your clients needs by refocusing on your service or product.  By evaluating what you do, you can ensure this provides what they want.
  • You can also make time to do some market research to find out the current needs of your clients.
  • You can take time to evaluate your options to increase your company’s visibility and who you need to contact to do this.
  • You can work out what you can delegate to others and what you need to do yourself.

What else can you do when you take time to work on your business?

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