Writing a bestseller, what does it take? NFT’s? Promotions? Or just to write a great book?
What a fascinating story about book marketing and book sales figures from back in November 2021 by Jason Steger, Books Editor at the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age. You can read Steger’s full article about bestsellers here and I recommend you do
The article is about how author Gary Vaynerchuk was able to massively increase sales of his latest book Twelve and Half: Leveraging the Emotional Ingredients Necessary for Business Success by offering NFT’s (non-fungible tokens) for customers who bought 12 copies in the first 24 hours of the book’s release (and had their purchase verified by ‘his team’).
The promotion worked for Vaynerchuk and HarperCollins with 1+million copies sold (40,000 of them in Australia in 4 days alone…that’s equivalent to 3,333 Australians spurred into buying 12 copies of his book each.) I do wonder what they did with their dozen (if you did the bulk buy, please let me know!), but that’s not the point…Gary pulled off an amazing promotion.
But it made me wonder about the gaming of the bestseller system. It happens within the Amazon system when authors do promotions to drive sales and giveaways across particular days and in obscure categories so they can slap a “bestseller” tag on their book. But does being on a bestseller list mean your book is one of the best? Does it mean the readers enjoyed the read? Does it guarantee your book will continue to sell after the heavy promotion period? And…when so many self-published authors use alternative avenues to sell their books besides bookstores (such as through direct sales), it’s obvious that the bestseller lists can’t and don’t capture the breadth of what’s selling week on week.
So, what’s one guaranteed way to be a bestseller? Write a truly fabulous book that the bulk of your readers find irresistible to recommend to others.
There are plenty more thoughts on how to write a bestseller, how to forecast book sales and the nitty gritty of what a bestseller actually means numbers-wise in Look–It’s Your Book!.
Until next time, happy writing and reading.