STEP 1:  Create

STEP 2:  ?????

STEP 3:  Profit!

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Married Man Sex Life: The Marketing Plan

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The elevator pitch is that I write a blog (Married Man Sex Life) that teaches how Nice Guy husbands can add a little bit of Bad Boy to moisten the wives panties, without turning him into a Total Douchebag and ruining everything.

Obviously I want to make money from this though, so here's my approach so far....

The blog is the a marketing platform for the book(s), the book(s) = expert, expert = the golden goose of coaching/speaking/whatever. The first two years of this project have been to simply break even, by which I mean earn about as much as I would have earned if I had an extra part-time job instead of blogging. I started MMSL on 1/1/2010, so coming up to the 2 year mark. $15,000 net for the first book so far... might hit $18,000 before it's life cycle ends, so that is a win and meets the first two year mark goal.
I always assumed the books would be stolen to some degree, but I'm also a unique product for the moment as well. No one else writes about application of pick up artist a.k.a "Game"theory for marriage. I purposely priced at a very reasonable $10 kindle/PDF and $20 print which Amazon discounted to $14.39 for ages. (Game stuff is usually that whole $199 value, but wait discounted to $129, and if you buy it right now it's $79 for a 80 page eBook!!!!! bullshit.)
I also purposely tried to intimidate any potential competitors in the marketplace that I was (1) first to publish and was the best and brightest on this topic, (2) going to revise my flagship book annually, (3) plan to do this for the next 30 years. The inspiration for this was the book "What Color Is Your Parachute" which makes up 93% of all job seeking books sold year after year. As yet, no one else has dared to publish anything in my tiny little niche within the larger Marriage/Sex market.
The flagship book is called "The Married Man Sex Life Primer 2011", or Primer 2011 for short.The plan is to drop the price for the 2011 edition down to $0.99 Kindle/PDF a few months before the 2012 edition is out. So the 2012 Primer sells at $10 and the 2011 Primer at $0.99 side-by-side on Amazon.Then rinse repeat that process for 2012/2013, 2013/2014....  Thus anyone can steal my 2011 Primer *now*, but it's devalued to $1 in a year and zero value in two years.  And yes it does require a meaningful upgrade to the Primer annually to make this work.
Then every year I plan to release a new book that stands alone and doesn't get annual updates. So ten years from now, I have the 2021 Primer, plus a backlist of ten other books. This is where I really start getting concerned about piracy. I can keep ahead of the curve with the Primer updates, but if someone rips off a backlist book, that's going to hurt me.
My primary problem for the moment is time - I still have to work full time. I'm 41, wife, two kids, the whole nine yards. So everything I'm doing with MMSL is evenings and weekends. The books really do have to pay over the short term, or I can't keep doing this.
Also I've had a period back in May where life was crazy - Jennifer (my wife) and I were on Inside Edition, and you would *think* that would have resulted in an epic influx of interest... nope, just an extra 1000 hits to the blog. I. Shit. You. Not.  All the mass media stuff has proved worthless to me, the blog > all.
Anyway, all this is in process. The 2012 edition is slated for Feb 1st 2012 release, and I'm squeaking out a second book "before Christmas". So how well my book model works will be roughly known by April 2012. 2012 might be huge, or less than 2011, I won't know until I'm there. Seriously, even another $10,000 means life is vastly easier for me and I can throw some money at book covers and so on.
The big win is that I've had around 500 emails from people saying MMSL saved their marriage from divorce / restarted their sex life / averted marrying the wrong person. So that's an epic win. I need more money for a better computer, better product presentation and not to have to go to work anymore so I can do this full time. Sure there's an element of personal greed, but it's really about getting to do the work I want.

So my basic questions are...

(1) Is this a viable plan for book sales long term?

(2) What can I do to increase sales/profitablity of the individual books?

(3)  Obviously I am bridging toward a speaking/coaching aspect of the business, but concrete ideas for doing that are something I'm struggling with. What's the next step?

(4)  What don't I know that I should have a question about? Seriously any ideas would be great. I can create content all day, but marketing I'm lost on.



initiated Oct 17, 2011 in Business Models by Athol Kay (710 points)   2 3 6
edited Oct 17, 2011 by Athol Kay

28 Responses

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I'm glad the book has helped!

Overall my sales per unit have dropped about 20% for the month and I'm only making 40% of what I was per book, so I've just got to stop this experiment.

I do have a lighter book coming out soon, and plan to keep the Primer as the flagship book. Another lighter book due out after the Primer. So I'm in agreement with your ideas of differing styles offered.
response added Nov 9, 2011 by Athol Kay (710 points)   2 3 6
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I'm thinking about something that hasn't been mentioned yet.

Have you considered that the title of your book may be inappropriate? I am not saying it's a bad title, but some people may hesitate to buy it, because it may appear in their profile and such, and people may think, "ahh this person is not getting enough sex" and they'd not want this to happen.

Instead if the book had a more "innocent" looking title, maybe they'd consider it?

Just a suggestion: What if you proposed the same book under a different title? Or one that uses euphemysms / humor instead of serious stuff? I don't know just how hard this is to do.
response added Nov 23, 2011 by I B (700 points)   1 1 5
@inf that's actually a really interesting point.  I wonder if you could segment the market with *different titles* but for the same book?  sure, some people might figure it out, but most would not.  Then you can charge a lot for the folks like those above who seem to *want* it to be more expensive, and still get the cheap sales from the longer tail who won't spend as much for the same material.
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there was no 2010 book, so there isn't a 2010 version at $0.99. The 2011 edition was published 3/30/11. I'm aiming for 2/1/12 for the 2012 version.

The pricing question is difficult. Like I say I've massively undercut my competition at $9.99, and the book is 344 pages long, so by no means a "little ebook". That being said, I've always planned to drop the price, the question is simply when I drop it.

I think dropping to $3.99 or $2.99 as an experiment prior to $0.99 would be interesting. I'm very near finishing a second smaller book, so that would potentially be a good time to "drop 1, release 2". People might scoop up both at the same time. Could do this in about 2-3 weeks.

The email question thing is a good idea, but also difficult. Some people have an itty bitty question, others have major drama with spousal cheating in process, totally sexless marriages etc. I can't just pop off a quick reply. I answer email about 1-2 hours a day at the moment. So the answer to that is really transitioning into coaching for $$ or $$$ as opposed to the $ for the books.

I've worked extremely hard to create a fanbase, so I think my fans buy at $9.99 and I've done very well with that, but it's kind of maxed out.

response added Oct 18, 2011 by Athol Kay (710 points)   2 3 6
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Just a suggestion, with the $10 book offer a "Signature". Could be an audio file saying thank you or a signed picture. The $4 price is a point where I'll buy e-books, I think it would be a good starting point. If I really like the book, I would probably invest more the next time around.
response added Oct 21, 2011 by Randy Wieck (460 points)   1 1 4
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I'm live at $3.99 Kindle and PDF. I'm waiting on Createspace tech support to respond to dropping the print price to $12.99. The minimum price threshold is bugged on me.
response added Oct 21, 2011 by Athol Kay (710 points)   2 3 6
@atholk Share the link to the ebook! Let people know the price has fallen. Start your own advertising campaign online.
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I thought about weighing in with a few suggestions for you.  I'm aware of a few PUA that have found success in meetings, showing their experiments.  I believe there's a few things you can do to help with your unique viewpoint.

One of the CwF ideas that I saw some PUAs use was to have a mailing list at least once a week.  Some are better than others, because after a while, you would have a recycled list.    If you're going to answer questions submitted, once a week could work well.  Take two or three of your best letters/emails, make a response that works for you, and answer in your mailing list.  Every year that you update the book, you can also update the letters you've received.  Another option is have the letters as a separate product in a larger list.

As I'm aware, a number of PUAs throw out a sense of urgency with their price changes.  People go out to buy the newest ones and see the differences.  This is one way to ensure a different product every year along with your other ideas.

While forums work, I would suggest that you begin asking your audience about sessions.  The most money to be made is actually at seminars where some people are willing to pay up to $1000 for seats depending on the demand for you.  Of course, bring the missus... And talk to these people as you would in your letters.

Hope that helps.
response added Oct 22, 2011 by Jay (580 points)   1 2 5
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response added Oct 22, 2011 by Jay Bryner (300 points)   1 1 2
This book is likely available in your local library.  But worth buying.
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Your price of $ 9.99 is a bit high. In a time when you can get apps for < $5, people have started thinking that digital goods should be priced around $5 and not more.

So what can you do about that? Lower the price. Your profits may go down, but you will make more in the long run as more people will be ready to sample your book. $9.99 a sample is a bit sharp, but $5 a sample might just cut it.


response added Jul 17, 2014 by jeniffer homes (140 points)  

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