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Dr. Marshall Goldsmith – Top 3 Tips for Creating a Bestselling Book

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Tip 1: Do not get lost in the content

Excellent. Oh, look, let me get I don’t know much about much. I know a lot about that question. I have sold two and a half million books. There are people that have sold more than me, but not too many. We get lost in the content of writing a book. Content is one small part of the success of the book only. If you get lost in the content, you’ll probably never have much success overall. People think I have this great idea. It should be a best-selling book. Oh, maybe it’s a great idea. That doesn’t mean it will be a best-selling book.

Yeah, let me put this in a context most people can’t imagine. I’m gonna have some fun. We’re gonna have a guessing game for the group. Amazon.com has about 30 million titles, 30 million titles? Approximately how many copies in one year do you have to sell to be in the top half of all of those books? There are 30 million books about how many copies in a year do you have to sell to be in the top half of all the books. We’re all guessing here, just give me a number. The answer is two. Two, in one year, you have to sell two books to be in the top half. 15 million books sell zero to one copy in a year. Most of the books in that bottom half sell zero. And by the way, only one book out of maybe 10 ever even gets published. Yeah.

So here’s my point. I’ve sold a lot of books. This 15 million books that sold zero to one copy on that list last year. I’m not so arrogant to believe that all my books are better than those books. I’m sure their books on the bottom half sold zero copies last year that are far better than anything I ever wrote.

Nobody bought them.

Nobody bought them. The woman that wrote the Harry Potter books was rejected 21 times before someone accepted her book. She got 21 rejection letters. Well, most people sell no books. And it doesn’t mean you don’t have good content. So the first thing is content is only one small piece of the equation when it comes to selling books. Okay.

Tip 2: Get professional help in writing your book

My three best-selling books. I’ve done three New York Times bestsellers, they are Mojo, Triggers, and What Got You Here Won’t Get You There, all three New York Times bestsellers. I did not write any of those books. I didn’t write those books. Now those books are incredibly well written. I can say that without bragging. Why can I didn’t write them? I have the ideas. So I come up with ideas, record them. He and I work together. He writes in and we have a book. I am an excellent writer, he is much better than me. I could not have written any of those books. He’s much better than me.

So if you want to write a book, see people say have great content or whatever. But can you write? Writing is hard? Yeah, writing is easy? Writing is incredibly difficult. If you’re not a great writer, find someone who can write to be your partner.

Tip 3: Have a book marketing strategy

You have to focus on marketing. Because if you write a book, even if it’s a brilliant book, and well written that mean, nobody’s gonna buy it.

So you need to have a very clearly thought out strategy for how do you market the book and sell the book? Because if you don’t, it’ll be a brilliant book that no one reads. Do you really want to write a book that no one ever reads? Of course not. You want to write a book that people read.

So, writing a book, don’t get lost in the content. And don’t think because you have a good idea that you’re going to write a best-selling book. No, wrong, wrong, wrong. Good idea, great writing, fantastic marketing, equals bestseller.

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