Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Do You Want to be a Conglomerate or Have Control Over What You Produce?

While on a recent shopping trip, I need to purchase more dish washing soap, but they were out of my usual brand (Ajax®), so I purchased another brand (Palmolive ®).  When I got home, I compared the full bottle to the empty and to my amazement; the ingredients were both the same.

Both brands of soap are manufactured by Colgate-Palmolive, the bottle styling is the same, the ingredients are the same, the only thing different is the labels.  This got me thinking about the materials I write and sell and if I have chosen the correct path of trying to do things on my own.

Let me tell you, it is an up hill battle everyday, just trying to get customers to notice you is tough.  I could have went the easy route and just paid someone to do all the work while I just sit back and watch the big bucks flow in, but I like to be in control of my own destiny.

So, I’m in control, and the big bucks are not flowing in, like they should be, but I am working on a plan to change all of that.

What all of this boils down to is do you want to give away the rights to your content just to see money come in?  Once you toss your rights out of the window, you lose how you wish to sell your merchandise, you have to sell it for a price that they set, and you may not always see the sales promised (it has happened to me.)

I say, keep that control and learn about every possible way that you can promote yourself and your products, your bottom line could be depending on it.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Do Your Marketing Ads Sound A Call of Action?

Many authors don’t get the success they want from book marketing due to availability of very little free or affordable options. The results are simply flat due to lack of good ideas. Whether the book marketing ads are put in a local newspaper or are printed in the famous periodical or posted on a website, the money invested should gain the desired outcome. There are some common mistakes authors and professional service providers do when designing and posting the advertisement, which lead book marketing to the failure of the advertisement.

The bigger the better does not always hold true. That’s exactly what some of the small firms think when they want to advertise their product. They think bigger and select a medium where they need to invest a lot of money, but do not reach the targeted market. Like if a company specializes in designing diet plans and want to help out people who had disappointing results from their individual diet plans, and the company chooses to advertise a full page in the local paper instead of running advertisement in a health magazine, obviously not many of the dieters will notice the advertisement and the advertisement doesn’t get the desired attention.

So the point is to come up with the best campaign, which will increase the probability of the ad getting viewed and the right customers trying to buy the product or sign up for the service. Studies and research can be carried out on the market and targeted audience can be narrowed down. Once getting the list of newspapers, magazines and magazines meant for the customers in mind, find out how many readers they have and the cost they ask for posting the ad. Special deals are offered by them from time to time and can only be found by watchful eye.

The last thing missing in most of the advertisement is motivation for the customers. If the advertiser has designed the advertisement and the customer had read the advertisement, all efforts and money invested will be wasted if he doesn’t get up and do something about it. It shouldn’t be assumed that the customer knows what to do; instead the advertisement should influence the mind of the customer and should tell him what to do. Call of action is the final job of the advertisement. It should call for information, or visiting the store or even visiting the online store. The message should sound confident and clear.

Monday, July 7, 2014

6 x 9 inch Word to PDF Book Conversion – Easy!

I am seriously like two months behind publication schedule trying to figure out how to convert a 6 x 9 inch formatted book so it will stay in the 6 x 9 inch format and not up convert to the 8.5 x 11 inch format, leaving blank pages. I downloaded and purchased nearly every PDF software I could get my hands on, but no luck.

After eight weeks of trying, I opened my manuscript in OpenOffice Writer to do some dabbling when something told me to look at the commands that OpenOffice has to offer. One stood out, 'export as PDF', three little words that would infinitely change my outlook for the better. I clicked on the command, clicked save, and then a PDF Options box appeared. Thank goodness for help manuals, because I need it to tell me what options I should select.

To make a long story short, when you find yourself facing a brick wall and being backed into a corner, use the things you already have as a way of solving your situation.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Don't Let the Fear of the Unknown Stop You From Writing Success!

Fear can stop a writer in his or her tracks. If you let the doubt and negativity of others invade your mind, it can swirl with different situations where the outcome is always the same, you loose. I believe all writers fear something while creating a story or researching the truth. But does that fear have to ruin something that can be great?

With society being so technologically advanced, it is hard to escape reality just so you can write. Significant others and children always wanting you to do something for them can take up valuable writing time. Most writers need quiet so the creative juices can flow. It is up to you to create that space and not let anyone into it.

The Fear of rejection is probably number one when it comes to authors writing books. Even when self publishing, I often get upset when my books are kicked back for me to correct. But I don't let the fear of rejection creep into my mind and stop me in my tracks.

When you are about to achieve something great, the doubting Thomas' of the world always come out of the dark to taunt and hinder you from the task at hand. Fear is just a thought of the imagination, it has no power. The things that we fear rarely come to pass because fear can be overcome, defeated, and thrown in the garbage.

Never let the fear of rejection or negative reviews, stop you from making your dreams come true. If you let fear win, it will! It will knock you down and keep knocking you down and how are you suppose to get on your feet again?

Friday, May 23, 2014

Using the Past to Shape Your Advertising Future!

Advertising is defined as communications to a person or group of people that effectively persuades or manipulates the person to try or purchase a product.  It is the roll of the advertiser to change a persons behavior and make them spend, spend, spend.

Although digital technology did not exist a century ago, advertising did.  In fact it was the golden age of advertising when most common place products were born. Individuals, companies and non-profits use advertising to convey they Who, What, Why when and Where to the customers.

Who do you plan to sell that to? Children, Adults, Men, Women, Babies
What are you selling?  Car, boat, house, toys, food,
Why are you selling these things?  Save time, save money, make the day run smoother
Where do you plan to sell them?  Online, retail store, infomercial?

Advertisers can employ different styles of marketing but they all achieve the same results.

A lot can be learned from advertisings past and these lessons can be applied to the ads you create today to create successful marketing campaigns and drive hordes of people to your products.

Wikipedia (Advertising)

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Using Teasers to Promote Your Books and Other Projects to Gain Customers

We live in a world that is obsessed with creating advertisement or teaser ads to get you, the consumer to purchase products you usually don’t need.  In fact, over $1,000,000,000,000 worldwide has been spent in 2013. 

Think about the ads that you have seen on television, at the movies or online.  How did the ad(s) appeal to you?  What made them great?  Is this greatness something that you want to obtain for your personal teasers?

Steps To Advertising

There are six steps of advertising developed by Clow & Baack that a person must go through in order to get people to part with their money and purchase your products.  Learning to advertise in the correct way saves you money in the long run and allows you to grow your customer base quickly instead of slow and steadily.
  • Awareness – You have to create a buzz about your book in order for it to be noticed.
  • Knowledge – You have to create information about your book and post it online so others can read it, and get a sense of what you and it are about.
  • Liking – The potential customer must like whatever you are doing in order for them to make a purchase later.
  • Preference – Where your potential customers choose one product over another.  This is usually depends on who is attached to your project.
  • Conviction – There must be a strong urge created that they must have your product right now!
An Overwhelming Desire to Purchase – If you have done your job right, everyone will be beating your door down because they what your products.  Think of the success Apple® has had with every product release.


A Teaser can be best defined, as a series of ads that pose a challenge that must be solved.  It is most commonly used, very effectively, before a product launch.
All advertisements, including Teasers are a form of advertising, and all advertising is meant to persuade people to take action in this case, to part with their cash.  Everyday, companies use teasers to get you to purchase their products.  Commercials are teasers that appeal to your situation and make you react to purchase something.
In the book publishing industry, a book teaser is more commonly known as a Book Trailer, although a photograph can also be turned into a teaser as well.  Just like a movie trailer, a book trailer is used to preview what is to come in a book.  The best parts of the book are chosen and acted out by real and sometime famous actors and actress. 
There are businesses that you can pay to produce a book trailer, but why pay when you are the only one who knows what your book is about and you are the best person to convey and direct the trailer.  You don’t want to pay for something you can’t use because the person doing the work missed the mark.
  • To create your own trailer, first you must summarize the juiciest portions of your book into a short one to two minutes video spot.  You can use your family and friends for the actors, actresses and extras.  Give each person a part in the movie in front of and behind the scenes. 
  • Use the book as the script.
  • Dole out the parts, rehearse, rehearse, and rehearse, until your crew can recite their lines without reading the lines.
  • With the use of your smart phone or hand held video camera.  (Note: if you record the sound separate, you’ll get a better sounding trailer)
  • When you have edited it just like you want it, post it on Youtube, linked in, and other social media sites for instant free promotion.

Closing Thoughts

Whether or not a Book Teaser will work for you is really anyone’s guess.  It truly depends on the quality of the work produced, and whose hands the work was seen by.  Youtube is an excellent resource for watching Book Teasers and getting an idea of how you can promote your very own book.
Sarra Cannon offers excellent step by step instructions on how to make a book teaser out of a photograph.
When it comes to marketing your book, stepping out of the box sometimes makes sense.  Book Teasers turn the black and white world into a very colorful and possibly sound filled one and marketing a product to all senses not just one will ensure that your pockets are lined with royalties in the future.
Note: Video Teasers can earn you money if you become an affiliate marketer on Youtube and post a teaser video.  For every like you receive, you earn cash.
Paid Teaser:
Outskirt Press - $108.00 – 30 second spot

Thursday, March 27, 2014

the US Access to Free Preventive Health Care (ebook) Available Today!

Most people fail to realize that not everyone who signs up for health insurance on the Health Care Exchange can afford to pay for coverage.

Do You Know That:
  • Over 31,000,000 people do not qualify for coverage because they are the working poor and low income Americans.  
  • the US Congress spent nearly $1 billion dollars ($1,000,000,000) to support a program that no one's talking about, and that this program may be your medical salvation.
  • If you live in a Republican controlled stated that opted out to increase Medicaid and you are low income or the working poor, you can't get health care coverage without paying out of pocket.
  • The working poor and low income American are less likely to have health insurance through their employers.
  • If you have a true medical emergency, what will you do?
I spent six months compiling, editing, and proofing this massive book for the 31 million people who don't qualify for health insurance.  You don't have to go without health care, especially if you need it to stay alive.  Programs still exist to help you, you just have to know where to look, and whom to call.

Now is the time to make a game plan and have all of your ducks in a row 

the US Access to Free Preventive Health Care (ebook) is apart of my 99 cent eBook Spring Sale that starts today and runs through May 4, 2014.  Print book coming soon.

Title: the US Access to Free Preventive Health Care
Sub Title: the Ultimate Free & Low Cost Health Care Choice Directory
Price: 99 cents
Pages: 163 approx.
Format: eBook (Kindle)
Editor: Billy D Manus II
Publication Date: 3/26/2014
Publisher: Manus Publishing

Friday, March 14, 2014

Take -N- A Break!

I'm working on a couple of books for print/digital, and I don't seem to have enough time to write and post to this blog.  After I get these books out of the way, I do have a few ideas on how to increase sales and to get more customers.

I'll start posting again soon!

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Dealing With Writing Deadlines

As a writer, we are always faced with deadline of one type or another.  We have to manage those deadlines or they will get the better of us by stopping the creative juices and robbing us of valuable sales time.

The deadline monster can be tamed if you know the right formula.  I personally use 5 steps to keep me on track when I face writing deadlines and I know that they can work for you too.

  1. Remove all distractions.  Things you may not even think of as a distraction away from the task at hand usually are.  From the ever ringing cell phone, television & the internet, to your spouse and even your children, anything that steals your attention from writing has to be removed.
  2. Create special times during the week just for writing.  This may not sound important, but it can help you to get a handle on removing your distractions.  Anyways, creating special writing times allows you to focus 100% of your attention on writing and not on other tasks.
  3. You must create an Outline.  Outlines are not just for grade school, they help you to create a ‘business plan’ for your book.  You can later use this plan when you get stumped or confused about your storyline. 
                      Title: The Withering Shrub
+Chapter One: Caleb and Beth are introduced into the town.  Madness  insures when Beth is kidnapped by bank robbers.
+Caleb’s hand is forced, and he gives up looking for Beth.
+Chapter ends as Caleb exits the bar.

  1. Focusing on the task at hand.  If you are like me, your attention span may be really, really short.  If you follow the suggestions above, you will create a perfect space in which to write that removes everything else.
  2. Treat writing your ‘whatever’ as your other job.  If you have a primary job and you write on the side, then you may not be giving your book the justice that it deserves.  If your book becomes wildly successful and popular it can give you thousands of dollars in extra income.      
When it comes to writing, a master plan is everything.  Take time know to develop your plan of action before you start writing to ensure that your book is written with time and profits in mind.

Good Free Reads:

Writing Under Pressure (pdf) by Susanne Weingarten
Procrastination, Deadlines and Preformance (pdf) by D. Ariely

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Using Literary Awards to Improve Your Marketing Image

If you have never written a book before, or you wrote a book and had it published, but the only sales you had were your own, then you can benefit from using the power of literary awards to increase your authorship standing in the world.
In the literary award bin, there are contest that are free to enter and those that cost to enter. According to, there are over 4,800 literary magazines today.  A contest may be for a magazine or a book collection and may range from a very short story to a very long story.  When a person wins a contest, instant notoriety is created. 

You may be asked to do a television, radio, newspaper, or online interviews, and this is when it is important to be in the process of finishing or to have a book already published and for sale.  Any shout out you can give yourself will create instant sales of your book or books; especially if you can win an award that is well known.

Also, literary contest may be specific to your state, city, writing genre, gender, et cetera.  Don’t let this get you down because it may be to your benefit because it artificially creates a smaller constant pool.  You have to follow the money trail, which is usually with magazines.

All contest that have a website will also have a submission page that you can use to review the expected writing styles and to also read past winning stories.  You won’t win a contest if you don’t conform to what they are looking for.  You have to be flexible and adapt your style, but if you don’t want to win, don’t change a thing.

Popular Writing Contests

Literary Magazines

Glimmer Train – Publishes unsolicited stories and pays out over $50,000 to fiction writers.
The New Yorker – Accepts Fiction, poetry, Shouts & Murmurs, and newsbreaks.
Zoetrope - 2014 Short Fiction Contest opens July 1, 2014.
Boulevard – Short fiction contest (closed) and the Poetry contest for Emerging Poets closes on June 1, 2014.

Science Fiction

Strange Horizons - Speculative fiction, broadly defined, 5,000 to 9,000 words.  They pay 8 cents per word if accepted.
Asimov’s Science Fiction – Accepts character oriented short stories and poetry and pays accordingly.  Visit website for complete details. 

Other Contests

A listing of other contest can be found at Poets and WritersMagazine -
When it comes to being successful in the writing world, we have to get our names in the heads and our books in the hands of book reviewers and book editors.  Any additional effort that you can put fourth towards your writing career can only benefit you in the end.

Writer’s Market
Poet’s and Writers Magazine
Yes, You Can Make Money Writing Fiction, by Patricia Fry
Forty-four Literary Magazines To Submit To, by
(book) Let’s Write A Short Story by Joe Bunting
Library of Congress Photo-stream -






Friday, February 7, 2014

Co-op Publishing, Is It For You?

How Can A Co-op Help You?

So, you want to publish a book, but you don’t want to use an indie title such as Kindle, Create A Space, and you don’t want to pay to have your book published through a vanity press, so what do you do?

You join or create your own co-op publisher.  A co-op is when a group of people get together to form an entity that benefits the group.  In this instance, the group formed is writers, literary agents, sales people, and publishers that help to drive down the cost of publishing and marketing books.

Book publishing co-op’s were created over eighty years ago as a way to help book publishers and bookseller’s during the great depression.  Normally, literary agents are not a part of co-op publishing process.

There are a few true co-op publishers that exists.
With co-op publishing, authors have to pay to have their books published, but in return, they receive a higher percentage of royalties.  Co-ops usually work very well for self-published writers.

Current co-op publishing uses a model set during the Great Depression and usually lacks the benefits of traditional publishing such as marketing and advertising.  But all of the members of a co-op publisher must belong to the co-op to have use of the co-op services. 

Co-ops offer authors and writers an excellent platform for getting your books published if you don't want to try self-publishing.  Co-ops offers its members nearly every service it takes to get your books published.

Benefits of Co-op
  • Lower Publishing Costs
  • Higher Royalties
  • Lower Promotional Costs
  • Very Low Membership Fees

Publishing Co-ops:

Author's Publishing Cooperative  :

New Mexico Book Co-op :

Independent Book Publishers Association :

Northern California Publishers & Authors :

Ocean Cooperative Publishing :

Columbus Creative Cooperative :

  • The Advantages and Disadvantages of Cooperative Publishing by Donald Bastian
  • The Absolute Write Water Cooler
  • Nathan Bransford
  • Backstory : A publishing co-op: An idea whose time has come?




Thursday, January 30, 2014

Can Old Fashioned Barn Storming Win Over Customers

Back in the day, when someone had something to sell, everyone in town knew about it. No matter what you were selling from snake oil to lightening rods, a sells person coming to town was a big event.  Although this no longer holds true, you can still exploit their ways and use them today to help you succeed in selling and promoting your books.
Back in the day, when someone had something to sell, everyone in town knew about it. No matter what you were selling from snake oil to lightening rods, a sells person coming to town was a big event.
When the circus came to town via railroad all of the towns people would welcome theses strangers with open arms, assist in setting up and pay real money to see the attraction.  As a writer and book seller, you have to make a huge commotion when coming to town.  You can achieve this via free public relations.  From getting on your local news, to having book signings at the local library or hangout spot, you have to put your name out there to be seen.

And when a sells person came to town, they would visit every residence and shop in town, and you should do the same.  Although it is no longer free to walk door to door in most places, you can build a huge hometown following without using Twitter and Facebook.
In today's world, you have to not only expand your mind but also your way of thinking when it comes to marketing yourself and your product.  The further outside of the box you can get, the better for your bottom line.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

How to Get Customers to Buy Instead of Window Shopping

Customers can be very fickle, always wanting things for free or wanting a sample before making a decision to purchase or not.  As book writers and sellers, we want customers to buy, buy, buy; but how do you entice them to buy when they don't want to.

Everyday you go through the experience of window shopping, in fact since the early 1900's customers have been window shopping and deciding if they want to purchase items of interest or not.   One of the most used ways of determining the shopping habits of people is by doing or completing a survey before or after a purchase. Both retail and online chains still use employ this method to learn about everything from customers experience to product quality to their personal wants, needs, and demographics.

The Urban Dictionary defines 'Window Shopping' as a term referring to the browsing of goods by a consumer with no intent to purchase, either as a recreational activity or to plan a later purchase.

Retails chains ensure repeat purchases by offering coupons usually printed on the receipt its self such as CVS, Walgreen's, Dollar General and Family Dollar.  The real idea is to find out why these types of customers don't make a purchase.

Customers only like to purchase things that make them feel good or products and services that solve a problem.  You can use surveys to hone in on the problem and solutions very, very well, to assist you in creating that 'it' product.

Another way to get inside of your customers head is by looking through your customers eyes.  Is the information that you create or write about relevant to them.  Is the price something that you would pay?

Remember that perception is everything.  If your customers feel threatened or cheated, they will not visit your store or purchase your products.  If you can give your customers what they want, fulfill their needs and answer there questions, then you will have a customer for life.

Yes, converting window shoppers into real customers can be both tricky and rewarding, but finding out what your customers like and don't like will always ensure that you'll always have a  steady stream of eager buyers waiting at your door.

Keep Customers by:

  • Do what you say you are going to do
  • Do it when you say you’re going to do it
  • Do it right the first time
  • Get it done on time
 For the Author or Book Publisher:

  • Look for Trends before they happen, then write about them
  • Look at what you are doing before leaping.  Ask yourself how much is it going to cost you?
  • Move quickly on an idea.  Trends are literally over with in the blink of an eye.  Move to slow, and you'll miss the boat.


Can Online Window Shoppers Be Your Key to Growth? By Morgan Brown
How To Win Customers & Keep Them For Life, By Michael LeBoeuf, Ph.D.


Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Multiple Income Streams From the Next Book You Write

The normal aspirations you have for the books you toil over is to write it, market and advertise it, and sell, sell, sell!  What if you could get multiple income streams from the same book, would you want to?

These ideas involve selling space within your next book and the income you receive can be used to further your marketing dollars.

First Income Stream Idea - Sell Advertising Space

You can sell pages in the front of your book so others can advertise there now available and up comming books.

If you can predict how many sales and/or downloads in advance you'll have, you can offer a potential advertisers a quarenteed number of page views they can accept. 

Page one after the title page could sell for $300.00 or more with the perfect pitch on E-bay.

Second Income Stream Idea - Sell Review Space

Selling ten or more pages so a writer can include a full excerpt of an upcomming book can also net you some real cash.  

In Closing

Use these ideas to build your case for receiving multiple income streams.  If you are planning to give away your books for free, having cash up front for the space you've sold can go a long way in helping the bottom line.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

It Pays To Get Creative

Sometimes, the only way to get customers to look at your work is by going left field on them.  You can only give away so many  titles, use the same old pitches to your social media crowd, and keep on doing the same song and dance routine to continue to beg for sales and attention.

Successful Marketing For Your Books by BD Manus, Manus Publishing, gives you an outlet for some of the best, unique, and outlandish marketing and advertising schemes that you can use to get both the sales and customers. 

Successful Marketing For Your Books is also the name of my newest blog, where every Saturday, I will write about what I have been doing to get and keep sales up. 

You won’t know what works, unless you try it.  Successful Marketing exposes the reader to low and zero cost marketing and advertising solutions that fit in today’s world.  From standard advertising (TV, Radio, Newspapers), Social Media (Twitter, Facebook, Pintrest, Linked In), digital advertising solutions and more.

This week’s post (1/11/14): How to Start Your Own Home Based Ad Agency (part 2), will walk you through how one would go about starting an Ad Agency and in (part 3), how to use it to not only create revenue for yourself, but how to help others market and advertise their works.

Kindle Book