Written by Guest Blogger, Mark Anastasi
Joel Comm was the keynote speaker at my annual Traffic Generation Summit in London last year, and it gave us a chance to finally connect in person.
Having seen Joel's career and level of recognition in the industry take off after becoming a New York Times bestselling author in 2006, I decided to follow in his footsteps. A month after our meeting in London where Joel shared with me some invaluable tips, I started writing my first book, 'The Laptop Millionaire'.
These strategies are illustrated by the success stories of more than one hundred of my students from around the world and from all walks of life.
I wrote the book as if telling a story to my friends or my sisters - people I really care about and that I want to see succeed thanks to Internet marketing.
Three months after starting I had a finished manuscript.
At first I was tempted to self-publish in order to get the book out faster, but a conversation with Joel persuaded me to contact some of the biggest New York publishers instead. He said 'take advantage of their billion-dollar infrastructure: printers, distribution networks, publicity channels and bookstores! Besides, the credibility you gain from being published by one of the big publishing companies is priceless. You don't get that from self-publishing.'
John Wiley & Sons liked the book, but their first question was, 'Do you have a platform?'
It turns out that publishers are particularly keen to find out whether you have a large following - this means do you have a lot of clients, subscribers on your mailing list, readers on your blog, Twitter followers, and/or Facebook fans? Having a large crowd of people already waiting to buy your book vastly reduces their risk in publishing it, and is a great selling point when shopping around for a publisher.
My publisher mentioned to me that if my book sells 10,000 copies in its first week, it will probably get listed in one of the major bestseller lists. This would create great publicity for the book and international publishers would become interested in translating it and publishing it in dozens of countries around the world.
So I set about creating a 72-hour giveaway, where my clients could buy from 5 to 500 copies of my book each, and get rewarded with thousands of dollars worth of prizes. I had seen Tim Ferriss do this quite successfully. (check it out here).
I sent some advance copies of my book to bloggers (Yaro Starak, Carl Ocab, and many more reviewed it on their blog), let my mailing list know about the Giveaway, held a Virtual Book Tour with Alex Mandossian, and in the space of 21 days before the book had even been released, I managed to pre-sell just over 11,000 copies.
The book hit #1 on Amazon.com, #1 on BarnesandNoble.com, #2 on USA Today 'Money' bestsellers, #4 on The Wall Street Journal and #6 on the New York Times Bestseller list!
More than 50,000 copies have been sold since the book came out, and there's talk now of me doing a 20-city publicity tour across the US, TV and radio show appearances, and hopefully get a lot more people finding out about this book.
But the best thing to come out of all of this is hearing that people actually enjoy reading the book. Quite a few people have told me that the story was so engrossing that they 'couldn't put the book down.'
That's the most rewarding part of all.
Click here to get a copy of The Laptop Millionaire: How Anyone Can Escape the 9 to 5 and Make Money Online