Writers are not very different from lots of other people who are working hard at building a business.
An awful lot of people in business dislike the idea of selling.
An awful lot of people who would like to think of themselves as writers also dislike the idea of selling.
Most writers’ approach to selling could be summed up as:
“I’d rather not.”
Ask people why they say this and they will explain that selling isn’t a very nice activity and it’s not something they have been trained to do.
Some writers will say that selling their work, and all the tasks associated with selling their work, are within the scope of their agent, or their publisher – or any one else they can think of.
They see the world in very stark terms. They write; others sell.
Quite a few writers who haven’t got an agent will often try – in a half-hearted way – to do a little bit of selling, and maybe a little bit of book promotion. They are often disappointed by the results.
If you are committed to making a financial success of a business that has your writing at its heart, you need to accept one thing very quickly.
Selling is a core business activity.
You outsource, or try to outsource, a core business activity at your peril.
If you are going to succeed in your business:
- you need to learn how to sell your products and services
- you need to allocate time to the selling activity.
Time is really the key here.
You need to allocate a significant proportion of your time to the task of selling.
However, before you start to think about a life spent cold calling, note that selling isn’t about telephoning people who don’t know you and don’t want to hear from you. Successful selling is about something quite different.
More next time.