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Ep 236 Transcript


Alright ladies, welcome to this episode of The joyful scaling podcast. Listen, are you an author or you’re thinking about writing a book you’d love to be an author? Well, I know that many of you have published incredibly valuable books. And not only just to help people which is huge, but you did it to gain visibility exposure, you were hoping to gain authority as a marketing tool to grow your business. So today, I’m so excited to be joined by a book marketing strategist and coach Melanie Hirshhorn, and she’s here to make sure your book and your brand sparkle. Online. I love it as a content marketing strategist for coaches, consultants and speakers worldwide. Melanie’s on mission to support and empower her clients to create clear messaging. Oh, I love clarity and content that shines a light on their individual experience skill set and their books. With her unique combination of entrepreneurship award winning journalism and PR experience. Melanie is masterful at guiding her clients to position themselves as industry experts so they can attract and nurture quality leads. She also provides book marketing tips and interviews authors on her show authority marketing live. Welcome, Melanie.



Thank you, Judy. I’m so happy to be here today.



Oh, gosh, I am so excited to have you here. When we chatted, I just fell madly in love. And I know that I just hear time and time again, quite a few of my friends have books. And it was so exciting. Some, you know, Amazon bestsellers. And it’s like crickets, and it becomes very devastating. And frankly, it’s just darn frustrating. So this is so important. Before we dive into the specifics, can you give the ladies an idea of your awesome background?



Yeah, how much time you got? Because I feel like I’ve zigged and zagged across North America. And I’ve worked in public relations. And I worked as a journalist for several years. And then I got laid off when I was pregnant with my first child. And I thought, oh, no, what now? So I decided to design and manufacture breastfeeding clothing.



That is so interesting.



Totally not the trajectory you think, right? Oh, not at all, not the next logical step. But it was I’d always wanted to be an entrepreneur. And I had this sort of tapping on my heart, almost do this, you have to do this. Don’t do it, you’re gonna regret it. So I did it. I don’t regret it. I made a heck of a lot of mistakes, though. But I made sure to learn from the role. And the biggest mistake I made, which was also a good mistake to have made was that I hired somebody to help me with my marketing. And she was emotionally abusive. Oh, yeah. And she took a lot of my money. And I was left and she and she would tell me how boring I was when I tried to write marketing material for my own company. And I, you know, this went on for about a year. And I couldn’t, I was afraid to fire her because I thought she would try to harm my company in some way online. And so it was just this it was it was a really bad I was in a bad way for a while. And then when I finally I closed the business and I thought all right, well, what can I do? You know, what, what have I learned? Well, guess what? I’ve learned so much about online marketing. And I’ve also learned how much people need support. And there, there are a lot of people out there who say they are marketing help, and they’re not helping.



Certainly not her with her abusive approach. My goodness, how did I It sounds a bully.



It’s amazing how she had a lot of clients. It’s amazing, really, truly. But so what I decided to do was to take all that stuff that I’ve learned and turn it around and be that cheerleader and be that support system. And now I get to do it for authors. Because it’s not like it’s not like an author is you know, they live in this vacuum. Usually the people I work with are nonfiction authors, and they’re writing a book because they want it like you said further their mission, whatever their businesses and get visibility. And I love how you brought up that people who have written a book. They They worry that well I wrote the book and it’s crickets and now nothing and I have to just leave it in a box and let dust collect. No, you don’t. The book does not fall off a cliff still exists. I want today if you’re if you’re watching if you’re listening, today’s the day you start letting people But you’re broke again.



Oh, I love that. You know what today is the day? Sister, you’re preaching my you’re preaching my words here, today is the day. All right, so let’s jump in. So and we might not go into right in the same order but this let’s just let’s just hit the deer right between the eyeballs. Okay, so why is it that? Why is it that you can have a number one bestseller? And nobody’s buying it like how is that even possible? Or like how does that even happen?



Okay, you’re ready for me to pull? Open pull back the curtain? Yes, please. bestseller campaigns, you can have them, you can pay for them. And they’re great if you want to be a best seller. But it’s not necessarily your ideal client, your ideal reader who’s going to be buying that book. It’s the people who are already in your orbit, that you’re getting them on board your launch strategy. So that that’s how, okay, and you know, if being an Amazon Best selling author is something that you desperately want to do, then amazing, go for it. Absolutely. But know that it takes much more than that sticker on your book. To to really make a difference.



Right, right. And so yes, it is a credibility marker, but it’s like, Okay, how are you going to leverage that credibility marker to get you in front of the right people to get you work? That is so good. Okay, so let’s go back now a content marketing strategy, what the heck is it? And why do we need one,



right? So I know that’s why I’ve started calling myself a book marketing strategist, because that at least kind of gives you an idea of what we’re doing. So content, what is content content is everything you put out online, whether it’s a video or a meme, or a post of some sort, where you wrote down all your feelings about your dinner? That is content? Right? So the thing is that a lot of people who are authors who are business owners, they know they need to post online, but they don’t know what they need to post online. So they think, well, this could be good. And they post something, and then they walk away. And they wonder why nobody’s responding. Content marketing strategy, is knowing what to post, how to post and where to post, and then being consistent about it. Because if you show up, you’re going to see that your audience starts to show up for you. And I’m, honestly, I can say this to you, Judy, I am. Now I’m living that now. And living that. I go live on LinkedIn. And people reach out to me, I need to, I need to meet with you. That’s what needs to happen. You know, my messaging was all over the place before I narrow down to book marketing. And I’d say like, Hey, do you need content help, and people be like, I don’t know what that is keep scrolling. But now, but when you’re clear with your messaging, and when you show up for people and you give value, then they say, oh, I need to work with her. Because that’s what I need. Right now. I need help. And I think that she can help me because show it up. She’s giving value. And I’m learning to know her a little bit. I’m learning to like her. I’m learning to trust her. Because when you and I are separated by a screen, you have to be able to trust me, but you can’t just go and have coffee with me. Right? The only way to learn about us is on line by what we put out.



Yeah. And that’s that’s the reality of the benefit of literally having the world as your potential audience that you can find the right people in like I have listeners on this podcast from literally all over the world. There are people in China. They’ve got people in Africa, various countries, you know, within the continent of Africa and Europe. It’s insane.



To me how your



Yeah, I got some ready to date. I don’t know what it’s so good. So let’s just go a little bit deeper if we can about content. Okay, so what I found in working with my clients, and it’s funny because I always say this, I’m better at seeing the obvious that my clients miss more than I see, like my own obvious that I miss right? I mean, it’s so funny how we’re kind of too close to the wheat sometimes, but as far as a book You know, what guidelines can you say? If you have a book? Where can you begin to think about your content? Like, like, give him like a framework, if



you will. Okay. So your book is your content, you already wrote it. So you’re already miles ahead of other people who have no idea what to write, you’ve already written it. So now it’s a question of going through your book and pulling out things that you think are going to resonate with your audience. So for example, maybe you’re really into quotes, and you have some inspirational quotes sprinkled throughout your book, those would be really great to post on social media, and talk about why this quote really speaks to you and ask your audience, you know, what is this quote, say to you, or what’s your favorite quote, so you can get some engagement going. So that’s the stuff that you’ve already put in your book is, is a great foundation for you to, to put out there so that people can really get to know. I will say, though, copying and pasting paragraphs out of your book is probably not the way to go. Yeah, we are gonna have to do a little bit of extra work because it’s books and social media. They’re not the same. In a book, you’re going to use full sentences. In a book, you might use bigger words. I love big words, but they don’t work on social media. Yeah.



You’re just gonna confuse the audience. I mean, like, what that’s like a that’s like, $1,000 word that’s above my.



But it’s not even like the audience isn’t intelligent enough to understand what it is they are. But it’s this the time, like when you sit down to read a book, you sit down to read a book, when you’re on social media, you’re doing seven other things at the same time. Wow, that’s true. You’re on the toilet.



You’re writing



your Yeah, you’re cooking dinner, you are hopefully not driving, but maybe you’re at a red light, you know, you are not 100% engaged the way you are. So you have to remember who you’re writing for and what your audience



is expecting you. Yeah. And when I’m on social I, you know, I’m not on social as much as many people but I kind of go there for levity. And for fun, so I wouldn’t want to read something heavy. You know? Yeah, absolutely. All right. So let’s talk about ads. Do you have to pay for ads to grow your online following and that whole aspect of getting the word out?



Well, I don’t. I mean, I’ve used ads. Don’t get me wrong, I have. But here’s the fun story. So I have a content calendar, that I give away for free, and your listeners are gonna get it later. But I had been running an ad on Facebook for it. And when people would join my Facebook group, it’s now defunct, I gave up on I wasn’t serving me. But when they would join, and I would message them and I’d say, Hey, tell me a bit about your business. And then I had somebody respond, I don’t have a business, I just like calendars. Wow. First, I thought and this is why there is a problem with Facebook ads, because any old person who likes calendars can also download my stuff. But when you are doing organic growth, which is what I teach and what I do, which is posting and engaging, and reaching out on a one on one level, it isn’t always about you know the masses. It’s really about humanity, and creating relationships. And you know, some people call it relationship marketing or conviction. I don’t know people have all these wonderful names, or the point is, it’s human to human. It’s relationships. It’s not blasting it out and say and just hoping for the best. So



the I love what you’re saying, and the emphasis on the one on one, I went live this morning, my drive for Thursday live. And that is one of the things that I talked about that the world has too many of you duped into thinking, Oh, this Guru said, I have to do it this way. So I have to do it this way. No, and it’s really the one to masses, one to many, like this podcast is a one to many, right, my life was a one to many, but my clients and I get exposure that way. Don’t get me wrong, but where I, where I have my clients coming from is the one on one engagement in the DM. Right, the one on one voice notes through you know, pick your platform there and so I love that. Yeah, it’s organic growth human to human.



And, you know, sure you might have a question program where you want lots and lots of people to join, which is great. But it’s got to give them you. And I feel like you can’t you can’t do that with ads the way you really can, in a one on one setting. Not to say ads are bad, they are good. They add they serve a purpose. But you don’t always need them. Especially at the beginning.



Yeah, for sure. Okay, so we’re talking about timing. How soon should an author start working on this content? Marketing Strategy? Is it ever too early?



No, today’s good?



Well, I’m talking about like me, like my books been in the works now for a while. And my editor is like, Judy, when are you getting it done? Is it too early for me? No,



not at all. It’s already with the editor. You said?



Yeah. Well, well, I mean, we’re working on a book coach and editor. So



wonderful. Well, that’s wonderful. I love that you have that support. So yes, start? Because remember, it’s not gonna hold up a book. Look at me, look at my book. This is not what we do. You see that mistake every day with authors? And what happens? Their friends like the post, and they’re really excited for them? Do their friends buy the book? Maybe? Are their friends, their ideal client? Probably not. So it’s more about what’s in the book. And you can tease the book a little bit. So you could talk about something in the book? Like, what’s your book about? I’m gonna, I’m gonna coach you go,



Oh, you’re so awesome. Well, it’s pursue the impossible. I really want to embolden women to you know, that big dream that you think is impossible. That’s the one you should be shooting for.



Okay, so what if you start talking about, you know, asking a question, what is the one thing that you think is impossible? And then you can say, the one thing I thought was impossible was writing a book, guess what? I’m doing it. And it’s about this. Tell me below what is one thing that you think is impossible? Because I want to empower you to realize you can actually do it.



There. We just talked about your book. We just got people excited. And we got some engagement right there.



Wow, that’s really good. I love it. So it’s never too soon. Never too soon. Today’s today. So good.



That’s gonna be the theme of this one. Yeah,



it might be in the title, I think. But alright. So what’s the difference then, when we’re talking about content, marketing, because I’ve heard that, of course, outside of the book thing, the book realm. But what’s the difference between content marketing and a best seller strategy is that is that what we talked about earlier with the whole deal of we just want to get people to buy the book for $1. So that you get that, you know, thing on your, on your book,



think of the best seller strategy as getting the sticker on your book, and a content strategy as the long term. It’s the long game. It’s what grows your it’s basically creating your platform online, it grows your authority, it shows people that you are an influencer in your space, because hey, look at all this amazing stuff, this amazing value that you have put out online over the past 4567 months. Wow, she really is an expert. And she wrote a book on it, too. I need to buy her book.



Okay, awesome. Love it. Okay, so how about big mistakes that we haven’t talked about other like big mistakes that I know, we’ve touched on a bunch, but is there anything else that comes to mind in the way of things you’ve seen authors doing? And it’s like you, you feel bad. And you’re like, of course, that didn’t work?



Yeah, there are a few. Now, I want to say that having a publicist is a great thing. And it’s also a great thing to have your platform created prior to hiring the publicist. Some people think that it’s one or the other. And I am on a mission to show you that when you have a publicist, as wonderful as that is, if you’re on the today’s show, you know, and somebody sees you, and then they start looking you up online, and there’s nothing there. They’re probably not going to buy your book.



That’s a myth. Yeah.



Yeah. So so don’t think that hiring a publicist is going to be the be all and end all. So that’s one thing. That’s one mistake. I see. Another another mistake is people giving up too quickly. I, I know that it’s arduous. There’s my big word for the day. I wouldn’t put that on social media. tough. It’s tough.



It’s hard.



Really hard. If I know it’s really hard to be consistent, it is. And that’s why, you know, when I work with my clients, I am that support system too. And I am that cheerleader and I am going, Okay, here’s what you got to do this week, because you have to do it in order to be consistent to keep showing up and show people that you are there for them. Like you go live every Thursday. It’s amazing. I go live three times a week. And



really amazing.



Here’s the thing. I love going live, like I could stare at myself talking about things all day long. And it’s not that hard for me. For some people. That’s like the worst thing you could ever ask of them. And they would much rather sit and type out 1000 word blog post. And that’s okay. The point is to show up in whatever way works best for you.



Right, because if it’s your thing, you’re not going to be prone as prone to put it off. You know, I’m always telling my clients look, go video. And look, I think I look pretty cute today. But they’re most days when I’m like, Oh, my chin looks awfully big. And look at all those wrinkles and things so and I always tell them, Look, you’re not going on live because you know you’re entering a beauty pageant, okay, you’re going live to serve. And nobody really cares about what we look like except ourselves. That’s That’s the fact. And it’s interesting. You will never hear a man, even an unattractive man, he will never look at himself in that camera and say, oh, boy, look at that double chin. He won’t even think it. Did you ever realize that? They really don’t think like we



used to think that. But I had a client who, you know, he was not happy with? Yeah, I was actually surprised. But they definitely don’t wear makeup. You know, I definitely every time I’m putting makeup on in the morning, I’m thinking well, there’s no man who’s going live is putting makeup on? He’s worrying about the dark circles under his eyes the way I am. So that I get



that funny. Oh my gosh. All right. What about this before we get into you know where they can grab the content calendar, because that’s just an amazing offer. Thank you. So that free freebie really for them? Thank you for that. What do you think about a live book tour? Is that something that you can do on your own without a publicist? Or is that like so beyond what any one person could or should attempt? I’m curious.



Okay, so you’re talking about like live in person going to bookstores? Yeah. So you can start on your own, you can reach out to a local bookstore. And you can say, hey, I wrote a book. I live in your city. And I’d really love to do a book signing here. And I’m going to invite everyone I know. So what does that do for the bookstore? Well, it gets them more traffic, which is what all stores want. So I think that that’s a great place to start. And I do believe that publicists will set those up. And sometimes when people go the traditional publishing route, those are set up through their publisher as well.



Yeah, that’s true. I know. It’s so funny. I know, a couple of women who have more traditional publishing houses involved in their books, and so many others are self publishing. And so I don’t even know how much a publicist cost. But I’m thinking many 1000s of dollars a month on retainer, right. So, yeah, that’s what I thought. So they do great work. But ladies, if you don’t have a couple, like two, or three, or four or $5,000 a month to throw at your publicist, then it’s one of these things where you go down and dirty. As I say, you pick up the phone and you do things you probably don’t want to do, which is talk to people and say hi, you know, but I’ve learned to love that. I’ve learned to really love that and embrace the fact that I could wear my yoga pants. As I do that. And right now even I’m wearing my comfy. No,



no one would have any idea. It’s true. You know, if you are if you really believe this is one thing I want to say, if you really believe in your book, and you really believe in your mission, then you can do anything, man. And and that is what I try to instill in my clients. The first thing we do is we work on refining why they’re doing what they’re doing. Like why why so let me ask you this, Judy, why are you writing a book about how women can make the impossible possible?



Wow, that is such a great question that why question. I mean, I feel like when I look back, I didn’t know I was doing this all along. But as I look back retrospectively, I really think that I have done that all my life. I came from poor stock. We had no money. Certainly dad was a factory worker mom stayed home. We did not know Old people in high places. So, but I always had these big dreams. So I went to college, even though I didn’t know how I was going to pay for it. And then I later went to law school. And I had all these great experiences that are only a result of me doing what everybody else said was absolutely impossible. And so I really want to empower others. Don’t look at your past experience your trauma, I was a victim of domestic violence, my first husband beat me up on my wedding night. So I’ve overcome some stuff. And I’ve overcome eating disorders or agoraphobia, anxiety, you know, so I really want to help any woman out there that has these big dreams. And yet the enemy the devil is saying, Who are you? You can’t do that. And I’m here to say, yes, you can, you know, with God, nothing is impossible.



That now that lead with that, that is your story. That is an amazing, incredible story of triumph. And if that doesn’t enroll people in your mission, nothing can enroll anybody in any mission, you have overcome so much. And you, you’re like a phoenix rising, basically.



Thank you. You’re welcome.



So that is the beauty of it. Right? That’s your mission. And when you talk about your book, and you talk, you tell people, you know, this happened, this happened, but here, and you can do it, too. That’s everything.



Yeah, yeah. But you know, before I made it here, and I’m not even halfway there, halfway to where I want to be, you know, with the impact, I used to look at people who said this and thought, you know, they don’t get it. But I’d be like, I’d hear women say, if I can do it, you can do it. And I think, you know, the natural human brain, we will think of every excuse, and the self deprecating thoughts. And it’s like, oh, well, it’s easy for her to do it. Because blah, blah, blah, but I can’t because of xy and z. So now that I’m here and looking back, and I can think of how I used to be and it’s like no, if believe me, when I say if I can do it, you can do it. It’s are you called to it is God, you know, telling you this is this is your mission, because if he called you to it, he promised to equip you to get there. And he is trustworthy. So that’s why you just got to pursue that impossible thing. And I so believe that it’s like, it’s really why I live what I what I live in, in my work. And I live it with everybody that I come in contact with. And with my kids too. It’s like, okay, my youngest son is into cryptocoin, whatever the heck that is. Right. And he quit college after the first year. And Mama was upset only because I don’t want them to feel lost. The guy made more money in 30 days than my dad used to make in a year. And he cashed it out. So it’s not like you lost it again. So, you know, it’s like everybody has their path. And if that’s where you feel called, and you don’t feel called to college, and you you know, we’ve got to pursue the mission that God put us on. Love that. Yeah. Yeah. Well, thank you for that. Alright, so let’s talk about this content calendar that you have made available to our listeners.



Absolutely. So because planning is required. I’ve created a content calendar for you. And it’s printable each month, you can print out, it’s got examples of national days and holidays so that you can kind of tie your posts to whatever’s happening in the world. And this way, you’ll kind of get a you can get a bigger picture, look at what you’re going to be posting about so that you can stay consistent and make sure that your message is really resonating with your audience.



That is so good. That is so good. It is I’ll put the URL in the show notes, but I’m just going to verbalize it here because I know when I listen to podcast, it’s like just tell me okay, it’s VIP digital dot live slash content, calendar, VIP digital dot live slash content calendar. Two more things. Number one, I want to know when do you go live on LinkedIn because I want to make sure to put it in my calendar and catch it.



Oh, well, it’s most it’s Monday, Wednesday, Friday. I go live around 9am Mountain Time. Okay. Okay, awesome. And yeah, and I also have a live show, but that’s noon Mountain Time on Fridays. So Monday, Wednesday at 9am and then noon Mountain Time on Fridays.



Okay, beautiful and where’s the best place for everyone to find you online otherwise,



oh my gosh, I’m everywhere. But so if you want to if you want to do on Facebook or on Instagram, my company is VIP digital content. And you can also find me on LinkedIn. My name is Melanie Hirshhorn. I’m the only one as far as I know in the world name.



That’s pretty much Well, Melanie, thank you so much for being here with me, you have dropped so many great nuggets. I’m sure. And I can think of three of my friends who have written books, and I’m going to make sure to shoot this out to them, make sure they don’t miss it. So thank you so much for being here.



Hey, thank you so much.



You’re welcome. Well, ladies listening, thank you for being here each and every week. And if you haven’t yet left a review, would you please take a moment and do it right now? I’d really, really appreciate it. And also reach out go to my new podcast page on my website, Judy Weber co slash podcast. And there’s a cute little feature there. You can drop me a personal voice note. Ask a question. Leave your feedback, and then listen for yourself coming up on an upcoming episode. Once again, thanks for watching and we will see you next time. Well, that too.


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