How to Make Your Book a Best Seller

Nothing makes my mom prouder than when she hears me introduced as a "Best Selling Author." Know who else is impressed? Prospects and clients. The title "Best Selling Author" doesn't go away, and in my experience has never lost its luster.

Let's talk about what a best seller list is, and how they work. Best seller lists come in a variety of shapes and sizes from a variety of sources. There is the granddaddy of them all, The New York Times, but USA Today, BusinessWeek and several other publications all have their own lists.

Then there is Amazon. As the master of online book sales, selling over $5 billion worth of digital, print, and audio books a year, Amazon has created its own best seller lists. They maintain a best seller list for each category of book, and separate lists for printed books and Kindle ebooks.

What does this mean to an authority author? It means it is easier than ever to become a best selling author due to the number of lists available to target.

The biggest difference between the Amazon list and those of more established publishers is the time horizon each covers. Remember, a best seller list is merely a snapshot of sales at a given moment in time. So Amazon updates its lists hourly, whereas The New York Times is a weekly list.

The objective of a best seller campaign is to simply generate a sales pulse during a specific time period to concentrate the sales and make an appearance on the list. The strategy is the same regardless of which list is targeted. With a longer sales period like the New York Times, a lot more sales are needed to make it onto the list. With an Amazon best seller, you can have several bites at that apple in any given day.

As you gear up for a best seller run, it is important to get the word out to your network. This is not the time to be modest or shy. You are proud of your book, it really helps people, it looks great, and you need sales to reach the list.

So it is time to take to social media, email, and your company newsletter, and ask for the sale. If your book is available as a Kindle download, you may decide to lower the price to $0.99 for a short period of time to get that first wave of sales flowing. This also helps to add a deadline -- people in your network, knowing that the price is going to go up at the end of the week, will be spurred into purchasing your book.

The other really effective way to get the word out is with a series of press releases announcing your book coming up for sale on a specific day/period, and then a follow-up press release announcing your best seller status.

Remember, the goal is to hit No. 1 in a given department or category. You don't have to aim to break into the Top 100 overall Amazon best seller list (though that would of course be amazing). You just want to be able to legitimately call yourself a Best Selling Author. Whether you are No. 1 in Real Estate Investing on Kindle (subcategorized under Kindle eBooks > Business & Money > Real Estate > Investments) or No. 1 in Money Management in Print (Books > Business & Money > Personal Finance > Budgeting & Money Management), you can trumpet your top dog status to your prospects and clients!