Story is everything (and in everything).
We think in stories. We remember through stories. We contemplate how to fix a problem through stories we’ve been told. We innovate through stories we create. Whether we know it or not, stories are the backbone of our lives.
As authors, we know the power of stories. I mean, we write them! What we tend to overlook, however, is that stories are the fundamental way people take action to purchase a product, invest in a service or buy a book.
If you want to share your message on stages, you have to share stories so that the fundamental points of knowledge are memorable.
There’s no running from the power of story. We know it matters. But which story should we be using in our marketing efforts? Ah… that’s the question that is the game-changer. If you want to build a business alongside your book, you have to share your brand story.
Whose story is it, anyway?
You’re the author, so surely the story that needs to be told is yours, right?! The answer isn’t an either/or; it’s an and. Your story is uniquely yours and it’s what differentiates you from others out there with similar expertise to share. However, you, and only you, are uniquely poised to share your story. Only you have experienced life through your lens, and your story matters.
But when it comes to selling books and building or growing a business alongside, the story that will create conversions… the story that will emPower a reader to buy your book or invest in your services isn’t your story; it’s theirs.
A common hiccup in the book writing and book marketing journey I see is lack of clarity on who in the world actually needs your book. Knowing who your target reader is not only helps you ensure they get their pretty little hands on it, but also makes your marketing energy more focused and effective.
Your customer is the hero!
You’ve heard the phrase “the customer is always right,” I’m sure. But have you heard that your customer is the hero? It seems a bit much, don’t you think?! But it’s true! Sure, you’re the hero offering knowledge that can and will change their lives, but in your marketing efforts, you want your target reader to see themselves as heroic.
People don’t buy problems; they invest in solutions. Goodness knows we have enough issues to face on the daily, so when marketing your book, ensure you speak to the customer’s challenges through the lens of how you can help make their life easier. Ah… that’s what people invest in!
Your manuscript should be written for the reader. And your marketing efforts should be focused on them, too.
When tackling that beast that is writing a book, here is a piece of wisdom I firmly believe in. You’re likely writing at least two drafts of your manuscript.
Draft 1 is for you. It’s a cathartic release to get out a story that is begging to be released. It’s your story through the lens of what you need in life. It’s the book that inspires you to keep going. (But, as painful as it is for me to say, you are likely not your target reader. Cue Draft 2.)
Draft 2 is for them. It’s for your reader. It’s taking your story and ensuring that your future reader can see themselves in it. It’s the version that will keep people up all night reading and will change more lives than you will ever be able to count.
Draft 1 is important for you. Draft 2 is important for your reader.
People connect with people.
People buy from people. People read stories of other people. Stories help attract and repel the right people, and your right people are otherwise known as your target readers. While your story matters, the best stories are the ones that are written to inspire and change others. Your story makes emPact when it helps shape the story of another person in the process.
Each day you are writing a page of your story.
Each day your readers are also writing a page in theirs. If you’re marketing your book effectively, you may find that you have a byline in their story, too!
Stephanie Feger of emPower PR Group and Jennifer Crosswhite of Tandem Services Ink host a weekly LinkedIn Live. Listen to their insights on this topic to gain more inspiration on whose story is it, anyway.
Stephanie and Jennifer conducted a 5 part video series on the 5 questions authors need to answer. Learn more about the weekly livestream by visiting Beyond the Page.
Want more emPowerment?
The emPower PR Group is ready to help! The emPowered Writer Program is poised to help authors ensure that the books they are writing are marketable. (Who would want to write a book that isn’t positioned to sell?!) Learn more by visiting www.empowerprgroup.com/theempoweredwriter.