How To Grow Your Platform To Land A Book Deal

by | Apr 22, 2024 | Business Development

A book deal is an agreement between a publisher and an author, by which the author agrees to write a book or a certain number of books to be published by the publisher.

Book deals for nonfiction business advice authors are getting more and more rare.

If you want to get published by a big-name traditional publisher like Penguin or McGraw-Hill you are going to need an author’s platform. Editors at the big publishing houses in New York tell me they don’t want to look at a book proposal for an author unless that author has a great platform. Agents don’t want to talk to you unless you have a great platform.

So what the heck is that?

Platform is a catchphrase in the publishing world. It means you have the ability to reach out to an audience right now. It means you are the kind of author who could easily sell 10,000 or more copies in year one.

If you do not have a platform, you need a terrific plan on how you will build it in the near future.

Here are some elements.

Public speaking. You are regularly booked as a speaker.

Popular blog. You blog and people read you.

Podcast. You have fans who regularly listen to your podcasts.

Opt-in email list. You have a large list of people who regularly receive your email tips or articles.

YouTube. You have a significant YouTube subscriber list.

Business. You have an existing business with a big client or customer list of people who will buy your books.

If you want to attract high-paying clients, you need to be on YouTube. If you are like me, you are going to YouTube as much as you are going to Google to search for answers. Google is ok with that since they own YouTube.

To build platform, provide links to your live speaking engagements. This will help leads get more information about you in action. Media appearances are another great source of videos that build platform.

Just remember, for attracting high-paying clients a book is the number one marketing tool and speaking is the number one marketing strategy. And YouTube videos are a form of speaking.

Bottom line: The bigger and wider the platform, the more opportunities that will arise.

Henry DeVries

Henry DeVries is the editor of Agency Owner News and the CEO of Indie Books International. He is the host of the Agency Rainmaker TV Show, editor of the Agency Rainmaker Newsletter, and the author of 20 books including Marketing With A Book For Agency Owners.