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How Can Personal Marketing Support Your Book Sales?

One of the interesting points of pre-publication conversation between me and the co-author of my last book was how to balance the relative value of online marketing and relationship—or referral—marketing. Paula Hope is an experienced and well-respected referral marketing expert and I’ve been in the online marketing world for well more than a decade, with 20 years or so of offline marketing experience piled up behind that.

We wanted Your Personal Marketing Playbook to reflect how beautifully the online and offline marketing realms can connect and in the world of book marketing, I think it’s a priceless combination. Especially now that Covid-19 has sent the world scurrying to Zoom rooms.

Paula and I defined Personal Marketing as “the combination of new business development methods used by professional service providers to create and leverage a dedicated network, so they can develop ongoing high-quality referrals for business that is easy to close.”

To be successful, we need to rely on informed and targeted personal activities (referral marketing), and a strategic and active online presence that provides ongoing value (content/online marketing).

Referral Marketing + Content Marketing  = Personal Marketing

Anybody can do this well, but it is easier for some people than it is for others. Anyone who is highly introverted will find it more challenging to engage in the personal conversations that make referral marketing work.  And if I’ve learned anything over my decades in business, it’s that almost everything required to create business success eventually comes down to a conversation.

Many of the  people I meet dream in my work as a book coach and editor dream of becoming best selling authors, making a cool million out of book sales and retiring to a luxurious home somewhere warm where they can sit by the pool and crank out their next best seller. The reality is quite a bit more sobering. Few people make it to best-seller status and even becoming a best selling author doesn’t automatically mean you’re raking in the dough. As the traditionally-published author of five fiction and non-fiction books, I get a much-appreciated $2 every time one of my books sells on Amazon or through a book store. I would need to sell a whopping 500,000 books to hit $1,000,000 in book sales and much as I respect and admire my publisher, and I love being an author, I make way more money doing the other things I do to invest a ton of time generating book sales.

At the same time, being the traditionally-published author of five books does a lot to bolster my authority in the book coaching and editing space, and it is an enormous support to my ability to generate revenue in other ways.

Self-published authors and those who choose a hybrid publishing model have the opportunity to make significantly more money on book sales, but it still requires a lot of marketing time, effort, and dollars to get there.

Enter personal marketing

Here are some of the tips Paula and I shared in Your Personal Marketing Playbook to help you get started with personal marketing:

It’s a journey. You need to prepare Physically. Financially. In every way.

You need a plan.

You have to work hard to advance every day. Consistency pays.

You need to track your progress.

You have to believe in yourself. No second- guessing yourself, no personal


You have to believe in the mission, and that you will succeed. Passionately.

You need a personal support system to maintain your positive attitude.

You need to be a lifelong learner.

You need to be ready to course-correct.

You need a guide. Always.

Stay tuned for more on this topic in future blogs!


[1] For more on how to overcome the personal saboteurs that might be keeping you from earning the revenue you desire and deserve, read Paula’s book, “Stop The Saboteurs: Conquer Negative Thoughts that Hurt Your Revenue and Your Brand.”

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