THE SEVEN MOST FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS:
1) Can you guarantee I will get a book deal with a major US publisher/get on Oprah/make a fortune as a speaker?
Short answer: No. Long answer: It's way more likely with us than without us. Think about this: your brilliance cannot get discovered, Oprah can't have you on the show, no one will buy your book and certainly no one will pay you to speak UNTIL you have a great book and an impactful speech to sell. More than that, unless you get some media momentum, your book or speech might get lost in the tens of thousands of others that are marketed more effectively. We CAN guarantee we'll help you create the very best speech and book you are capable of creating, in the ideal form and format most likely to sell; we CAN guarantee we'll work our little tushies off to get you as much media as possible. But ultimately, your dedication comes first, our expertise, connections and allegiance come second and...big AND...the public's reaction to what you offer comes third. If you want to write a book on how to raise chinchillas, chances are good you won't sell a heck of a lot of copies and you won't get on national TV.
2) Isn't the publisher supposed to do all this for me once I get a deal? Why do I have to do it now by myself?
Oh, goodness! You've been reading too many stories about how publishing worked in the 1970s when only a few tens of thousands of books were published each year - not over 240,000 like now! According to 2009 industry research, less than 20% of all books published even make it to the bookstore, and once there, they have about 38 days to make sales or get mulched! As a direct result of the plethora of competing titles, publishers still take a “see what sticks” approach. Few books sell enough copies to do much more than break even. Despite all the kindly, hopeful promises pulbishers make to authors when the publishing deal is signed, by the time the book release actually happens, few titles move fast enough to match the author's dreams and the publisher's wishes. It doesn’t take a mathematician for an author to realize that at an income of about $1.20 per book (if you’re lucky), you have to sell a heck of a lot of books to make a profit! And the publisher isn’t doing a whole lot better. Authors MUST be proactive and take complete responsibility. That’s why we help people to build a solid infrastructure of speaking, consulting and product sales around the book – before, after or during its sales cycle. We want you to view your book as the centerpiece in your empire, not an end result.
3) I already speak. What good will getting a book deal do me anyway?
Your book is a powerful lead generator. Anyone who reads your well-written, intelligent, timely book will be motivated to either buy products from you right now, sign up for your free e-zine, blog or newsletter (and thus volunteer for your monthly sales pitch list), or if they can, hire you to speak. Speakers who are authors get more engagements AND charge higher fees. There are many “insider tricks” to using a book to enhance your chances of getting the “cream puff” big-fee speaking engagements. On top of that, your book gets you media – air time. Media gets you known. Being known generates all sorts of other things, including partnerships you cannot even imagine right now and speaking and consulting opportunities. Clips of you being brilliant on media make wonderful additions to your speaker demo video. The good things just pile up once you have a book out there working for you!
4) I have a real passion for becoming an author and a speaker. There are lots of books and audio on how to do this. Tell me what makes your program different?
Our program is unique in the market because it combines authorship with paid speaking, media, brand building, traditional and digital marketing. Our two distinct programs are based on the time vs. money principle. If you have more time to learn what to do than money to delegate tasks, we can teach you precisely WHAT to do in the popular "Learn and Earn" program. If you have more money than time, we can do what needs to be done FOR you - you just pretty much show up and be the star. That's the "TCM" program. The few programs that attempt to emulate ours just provide a few pieces of the puzzle, like “how to prepare a speech” or “how to write a book proposal.” We are a team of unusually well-qualified experts who give you all the tools, techniques, strategies, shortcuts and insights you need to succeed.
5) What if I don’t like speaking in front of people?
There’s a theory that the fear of public speaking is more common than the fear of death. Of course, we rarely see people for whom this is true. (We love hams!) If you want to overcome this fear, we can help you. If you’re happy being you and don’t want to change, then that’s fine, too. But if you REALLY don’t want to or cannot speak, let us help turn you into an internet celebrity, information mogul, radio guest, book author and whatever else you can do behind the wizard’s curtain. It’s all about what YOU want.
6) What if those darn publishers don’t buy my book when we’re done?
You should know right away that not every book sells. After 20+ years in publishing, we've seen plenty of reasons why even excellent books don't get picked up. If the topic on which you are writing is ahead of or behind the “psychographic curve” of the market, there’s a chance it won’t sell (yet). If you are a bad writer but you insist on writing it yourself despite our advice, or if what you want to say is not New, Different, Better or offers readers something More (and you won’t work nicely with one of our brilliant editors or gifted ghostwriters to fix your problems), then you probably won’t sell. If there are competing books suddenly coming out, it won't sell. So if it doesn’t sell for ANY reason, we’ll help revise it. You and your literary agent can then give it another shot. If it still doesn't sell, we'll help you beat the publishers at their own game and prove “you’re right and they are wrong.” We’ll connect you the most ethical, reliable, proven collaborative publishers we know. Once your book is printed and has distribution through them, we’ll support you in growing the marketing (radio, print, television, internet, speaking and special sales) around it so that you can sell thousands of copies yourself. Once you sell those, you’ll hear the publishers singing a different tune when you return to them with your proven book in hand. (Some of the preceding applies only to TCM clients, not Learn and Earn)
7) What if you don’t accept me and my idea into your program?
Answer one: It's proof we're mean, short-sighted bullies. Answer two: Publishing and speaking are subjective businesses. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. No one company, person or publisher can be the final arbiter of all that is good, or there’d be only one book and one speech on each topic. (And thus we’d all be Communists). The great news is, even if we turn you down, there are still ways for you to get your dream out there. Perseverance is the secret to success in any venture. And heck, prove us wrong – go out there and make a name for yourself as a hot shot speaker or sell a million copies of your book. We’ll be kicking ourselves – but cheering for you!