Wednesday Wisdom (Business): Why Do Readers Buy Books?

Studies show that people purchase an item because of the benefits it will bring them. The same is true when selling our books.  A reader—whether an agent, editor, or ultimate consumer–will purchase our books only because of the benefits that will accrue to him or his organization. 

But benefits are perceived.  In other words, while you may think your book will benefit a buyer, ultimately the buyer will make that decision for himself.  So, bottom-line, it is the PERCEIVED benefit that wins the day and wins the sale. 

Your marketing strategy, therefore, must take into consideration ways to affect the buyer’s perception of your book so that he will consider the purchase of your book essential to his well-being, or at least to the betterment of his life in some way. 

What, therefore, can you do to influence the prospective buyer’s perception regarding the benefits of your book to his life?  Here are a few proven tips: 

1) Believe in the value of your own book to affect a reader’s life in a positive way.  If you don’t believe in your own book, that lack of belief will come through and diminish the prospective buyer’s desire to buy your book, if, indeed, your book ever gets published in the first place.  

2) Write the best book you can write.  Ask yourself what you need to do to give your reader the highest level of benefit from your book.  Then do it. 

3) As you write, keep in mind the question the prospective buyer will always ask himself:  “What’s in it for me?”  Ultimately, a person buys because there is something in it for him.  Otherwise, he wouldn’t waste his money. 

Interestingly, “benefit thinking” stems from Christ’s command to esteem others better than ourselves:  “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves” (Philippians 2:3).  

If we are concerned only about our own profit, then we are not considering our prospective buyers better than ourselves. But if we focus on giving our prospective buyers the highest level of benefit from our books, then we will sell our books–and lots of them. 

Now it’s your turn. Why do you think readers buy books? And what can you do to sell yours?

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Source Photo: Microsoft Clipart

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