Thomas Gray’s Business Techniques in Troubled Times offers practical, readable advice for authors and small business owners.
Subtitled, A Toolbox for Small Business Success, it provides the business perspective necessary for authors who want to profit from their books.
As the Mindjet mind map at left shows, Business Techniques for Troubled Times describes the 6 areas crucial for small business success. Unfortunately, many authors starting businesses based on their books may not be familiar with the topics.
Books are businesses
Although there’s a certain mystique to writing, it’s important to remember that each book is a small business!
Unless you’re writing solely for pleasure, i.e., discovery, self-expression, creative satisfaction, each book has to earn its way, either immediately through book sales or later, through back-end profit opportunities.
This is especially true in these troubled times, when there’s so little room for error.
Business Techniques in Trouble Times describes the fundamentals of small business success in a way that makes it easy for authors to build a profitable business based on their books.
It’s fascinating to reflect on the parallels between successful books and successful small businesses. Both require:
- Vision, a business plan, a target market, in addition to a competitive analysis and a sales funnel.
- Effective marketing and marketing communications.
- Day-to-day management and cash flow planning, as well as addressing issues like family employees (or writing partners) and continuous improvement.
One of the most useful chapters is Chapter 8, Pricing. Like many other chapters, Pricing begins with a helpful summary of pricing techniques, before discussing some suggested approaches. In an age where authors have more freedom to price their self-published books as high or low as desired, Chapter 8 provides needed advice.
As always, authors have to remember to make book pricing decisions from a long-range, career, point of view, rather than simply viewing their books as an important profit center.
Organized for success
One of the things that most impressed me about Business Techniques in Troubled Times is the way a complex topic has been logically organized for efficient reading. As you can see from the mind map, above, the book’s 17 chapters are organized into six logical categories.
A table of contents with 17 chapters would present a daunting reading task. But, reading is much easier when the chapters are organized into logical categories.
When you visit Business Techniques for Troubled Times on Amazon.com, I encourage you to select the Click to LOOK INSIDE! icon above the front cover and explore the table of contents. Notice that there are 2 versions of the table of contents:
- Overview table of contents. This provides an at-a-glance view of the book’s sections and chapter titles.
- Detailed table of contents. This provides a detailed list of the topics covered in each chapter with specific page references within each chapter.
Business Techniques in Troubled Times also contains a visual table of contents in the back of the book to help go directly to specific terms or topics. As a result, you can read the book from cover to cover to familiarize yourself with the basic topics, or you can go directly to the terms or topics you’re dealing with.
Business advice for authors
Whether you’re a new author simultaneously writing a book and starting a new business based on your book, or an experienced author looking for a deeper understanding of the concepts and terms your accountant and banker keep bringing up, you’ll find the advice you’re looking for in Business Techniques in Troubled Times.