I was speaking to a potential client today and they said, “We just want to write the book and then think about marketing later.”
This is a common misconception, I call the Field of Dreams Book approach. If you write it, the readers will come, but this could not be farther from the truth. Marketing begins the day you decide you want to write a book. There is nothing worse than a well-written book, sitting on your shelf collecting dust because no one is reading it.
There should be a plan associated with the publishing and the printing of your book from the time you begin to conceptualize the book. The biggest struggle I see authors have is a place to start. For many first-time writers, the ideas of marketing and publishing can be foreign and downright overwhelming. Where do you start? Who do I talk to? What are my options? What should this cost? HELP!
I am a proponent of virtual everything, except when it comes to actually connecting with people. No matter how sophisticated we have become in our ability to communicate instantly over large distances, nothing compares with actual face to face interactions. It is in these moments we can network and learn in ways we just cannot through any other medium.
This is why, as part of my own business model, that I go to conferences throughout the year, not only as a participant but also as a teacher. I have one main goal from any conference, and that is to make connections, and through these connections, I learn more, and I also grow my business. Most importantly, I can share and have a positive impact on others.
As an author, you are missing opportunities to learn and grow by not planning on going to a conference that includes not only people like you but connections within the publishing industry. This is huge.
Not all conferences are created equal or cost the same. If you are an author, the cost is always a factor and so is value. They really have to match up. You don’t want to pay too much but not get value for your investment. Here are some things to consider:
- Where is the conference being held?
- Who is going to be speaking at the conference?
- What do you receive for the price?
- Are those attending like you?
- What are the reviews of the conference?
I attended the SmartFem Summit in Las Vegas this past Spring, and so let’s see if how it measures up using the questions above.
- This past year’s conference was held in a beautiful country club setting just minutes from the strip in Las Vegas. The venue was perfectly sized for the number of participants and there was food served during the conference on site, which made it easy for everyone to network, and you did not have to search for food and hope you got back in time. In the evenings’ people paired off and went to the strip to eat and be entertained.
- The founders of Barefoot Wines, Judge Tiller of Divorce Court were some of the celebrities in attendance imparting their wisdom about marketing and media. There was also a panel from different aspects of the publishing industry- a literary agent, a hybrid press editor, and even a ghostwriter (me). 2019 has Erin Brockovich, Lisa Guerrero (Inside Edition) just for starters.
- There was a track for people who just wanted to attend the conference. For those who had already published their books, they had a VIP author track which included an on-air interview to be broadcast on SmartFem television, who has distribution in hundreds of markets. There were plenty of networking opportunities in which participants could interact directly with the presenters.
- Those that attended the conference were mostly authors and entrepreneurs. They were at different levels of their book process and growth of their businesses. If you are an author, this was the event to attend if you really want your book to stand out.
- People absolutely loved the conference, and immediately signed up for the 2019 conference in Los Angeles. There were, of course, some technical bumps that few people noticed and did not detract from what was being presented.
The one thing that has set SmartFem and the summit is that they not only promote the empowerment of women, but they also promote a luxury lifestyle. They want people to succeed and provide them with tools to achieve that, and at their summit, experience it.
What conference are you planning on attending this year?