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QUESTION: Hi
Don't know if you remember me,but I wrote you regarding my ebook short stories. Your ideas are interesting but they depend on how black women would react. I didn't get the desired response from them when I tested. It may very well be me.

Anyway, I have edited a vampire book and I don't want to release it unless I first have a good marketing plan. Should I be letting people know it will arrive later the way movies do? How should it be promoted?

ANSWER: Firstly, it is you :)

That's not a bad thing, it's just a fact. Some people have "it" and others don't. That type of approach is REALLY bold so don't fret. If that approach isn't your cup of tea, then try something a little simpler...

Guerilla marketing might be a bit more appealing to you.

You're right in the dead center of Black History Month and this is your way to represent your city. Buy a journal and six different types and colors of pens. Label the journal in bold wording, "Pre-Orders for _____________ (insert title) and then a launch date. Inside, write, write, write... page after page after page... fill it up with nothing but names and email addresses and vary the pens you use. Whatever you're going to charge for your book, let's say, $20... put how much of that they have paid and if they paid in full. Below is an example...


Gary Pierce     gpierce@sharjahbrandknew.com    $5
Tom Smith      tsmith@yahoola.com          $20 pd
Alison Watts    awatts@anyinternet.com          $10
Eli Wilson         ewilson@whoyouwith.com          $10
Evereet Jones   ejones@yoyoyoyo.com          $20 pd


Find a website that is filled with names and email addresses and start writing them down. Fill about 40 pages with names and email addresses and dollar amounts (where "pd" represents paid in full) Everything must be handwritten. Fill it up! 40 pages at roughly 20 entries per page equals 800 pre-orders. At this point, you have none. These will all be fake names and email addresses that obviously have not paid. We just want to give the impression that your book is really taking off. This is similar to a movie being named the number one movie in the country knowing darn well that it's not. They can get away with it when it's based on one single person saying it's the best movie in the country. Just like lemonade can be voted the best lemonade in the city if only one person votes for it in a private vote. This is your approach. Post to your Facebook that you are so excited to have received over 800 pre-orders for your book. It should look something like this:

Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU! I am so blessed and never knew this would be happening!!! I am at just over 800 pre-orders of my new book _______________. I have the most amazing family and friends! I'm keeping a journal of this entire experience and would love to add your name. The book is coming out ___________ and is $20, but pre-orders can be any dollar amount because every dollar helps me market it. Thanks everyone!!!!!!!!

It's up to you if you doodle in your notebook, or put notes and paragraphs in there like it's really a journal to provide some authenticity. You also have the ability to set up paypal and provide a link via facebook so that people can actually pre-order and pre-pay.

This is a gray area. This is a marketing technique. If you truly believe in your product, then I recommend this. Once. It takes balls. But, people seeing a journal filled with 800 names will want to get on that bandwagon.

Lastly, walk everywhere with that book. EVERYWHERE. Go to local bookstores and show them and see if they will pre-order at 50% off... go to cafes, and doctor's offices and anywhere you can think of. Showing them your journal will make them feel like they are supporting local. Remember the plan I gave you for the movies? Take that same concept and make it a flyer and print it out and hand it to those places while holding your journal and look them in the eye and just let them know you're trying to do you your city proud.

Enjoy!

-G Pierce

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: I am sorry I forgot to tell you something important. Forgive me, but although I plan to have hard copy books in the future, presently I have two short stories on Amazon Kindle edition and an upcoming vampire novel may be in the same format. They are  ebooks for ereaders.
They are inexpensively priced to sell.

Answer
Same answer as above.

The only that changes is what your full price would be that you would be listing in your journal. The goal is the perception that loads of people are believing in you enough to pre-order your book. If they give you $5 on the spot, add their name at the very next spot in your journal and their email address. From then on, all names and email addresses will be legit. You will email them upon launch of the ebook. Accept that they may not pay the balance, so think of a dollar value that you are comfortable asking for as a pre-order.

-G Pierce

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G Pierce

Expertise

If it pertains in any capacity to marketing, I can answer your questions. Many of the reasons people seek my counsel is because I actually answer questions while giving direction. Many of you may have questions because you are literally still in the starting blocks. Some of you may have a brand that is forty years-old and are desperately seeking to breathe new life into your efforts and visibility. You will always see enthusiasm in my answers regardless of what level you are at. I've had a great deal of success through my career and have helped countless others along the way. I do this because I get excited about helping others and my passion will always be conveyed in my answers. While they may not always be what you'll want to hear, I'll alway base my answers on fact in lieu of emotion. Many of you might have questions about how and when to market yourself. You may be looking for real-life guerilla marketing approaches. Others may want to reconcile how they want to be viewed with how they are actually viewed. Whether it pertains to public relations, advertising or marketing—all of these are areas that I am comfortable sharing my knowledge.

Experience

G Pierce received his start at the headquarters for the world's largest US-Hispanic advertising agency, Bromley Communications. There, he conceptualized and managed the brands of clients such as Proctor & Gamble, Nestlé, Coors, General Mills, Reynolds and numerous others. A few years later, G Pierce would start his own brand strategy company, Sharjah Brand Knew, in order to provide consultation on marketing, advertising, and public relations for clients both in the US and abroad. His clients include opera singers, major league gamers, musicians, artists and anyone else he feels might mesh well with his talents. Recently, he launched a company called Who Knew Cities that is now his primary focus. Who Knew Cities allows 100 locally owned businesses per city to promote themselves on a pristine and powerful website, for $10 per year and has already received numerous awards and the eyes of countless investors.

Organizations
G Pierce speaks at universities and serves as his own organization, pulling unique speakers along the way to share their knowledge and skill sets.

Publications
Graphic Design USA—American Graphic Design Awards Who Knew Cities online (whoknewcities.com)

Education/Credentials
G Pierce went to St. Andrew's College in North Carolina where he studied international politics and business.

Awards and Honors
G Pierce has had work published in national magazines, been featured on television weekly and his newest venture, Who Knew Cities has been awarded best local website by the editors of San Antonio Magazine, where the company planted its roots.

Past/Present Clients
Proctor & Gamble, Nestlé, Reynolds, General Mills, Coors, Shannon Curtis, Art Incorporated, Contects Architects, NAdler's Bakery, Eric Violette (Free Credit Report band) and too many to list.

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