Want to Build a Business, Not Just Write a Book?

by | Beyond Your Book, TM

Like many entrepreneurs and marketers (of which I am both) I buy a lot of books. I mean, a lot. My husband may call it an addiction – at least he does each time we’ve moved and we’re lugging dozens of boxes of knowledge up the steps our new home.

I would call it more of a passion. I get to short cut and learn what it took the author years of struggle to find out. What a win.

For our backs on moving day, it may be a loss, but one I feel is completely worth it.

My books are in two very different categories.

There are books in my collection (most of them) that I feel I barely know the author, sure I read the book and extracted a few nuggets but I don’t feel I know them or have any connection. In fact if I saw another book of theirs I am not even sure if I would buy it – or recognize their name even.

Then there are others. There are the authors I know, I love and follow.

And there is ONE difference between the two – the ones I rave about, remember their name and would buy anything from – they continued the relationship after the sale through email.

Email – the holy grail of author success.

Email – the one avenue that you control and can reach your fans with at anytime.

Email – the one thing you are NOT spending you time on (and I am guilty of this too!)

Every author MUST grow an email list if they want to build a community of fans, sell more books, services programs, event tickets and have long term cash flow. This allows them to build a business and not just write a book.

You might be thinking, but Torie I am a business owner that wrote a book, not full-time author…or maybe you’re trying to be a full-time author and so you’re busy writing books.

Either way, it’s time you added email marketing to your necessary weekly tasks. (If you say you have no time for this you have a time management issue that needs to be fixed now, there is a time audit in the Author Exposure Inner Circle Author Success Habits Course that will remedy and fix your time management issues).

There are a few easy steps to get you started. First, in your book and on your website and social media you need to offer your readers something for free in exchange for their email address. This will get them on your list. 

Make it something good, something you could sell and that has great value to your reader.

Let me give you some examples. 

Donald Miller, founder of StoryBrand and author of Building a Story Brand offers in his book a free Brandscript to take what you learned in the book and apply it. He also has a free training series called 5-Minute Marketing Makeover on his website and a sign-up for weekly email business tips.

He is continuing the relationship with you after you have read the book, and the training he gives out for FREE is top-notch. On his website and in his emails he also make offers for his other products. For him, it’s additional training and events (for you it might be something else.)

The thing is, if he didn’t offer me this cool free stuff I would have never known about his training, event or other products.

I don’t mind that he tells me about them each week in his emails because he has wrapped it in value – freely offering ways to help me grow my business and improve my brand messaging. And you can do this too.

Here’s another example.

Denise Duffield-Thomas, author of Get Rich Rich Lucky Bitch helps women move past their money blocks and create a first-class life. In her books, she sprinkles throughout downloadable resources related to concepts she is teaching.

For example, in the chapter about the importance of tracking your money she offers money tracking resources at denisedt.com/rich so that you can take action on what she is teaching you. From there you are added to her email list where she emails each week about topics regarding money blocks.

And she makes offers here and there for her other products, like her Money Bootcamp, Manifesting Course, and her other books. Notice I said she emails weekly more about her niche. Not, she emails me to buy her stuff every week. There is a method, and it’s pretty simple.

It can look like this:

Week One: Email free information about your topic

Week Two: Email more free information about your topic. Mention your other book.

Week Three: Email more free information about your topic and tie in your upcoming event.

Week Four: Email more free information about your topic and add a link to your online program.


When you email each week with more free information and resources for your subscribers they will not care that you make offers, in fact, they are getting to know, like and trust you and many will WANT to take the next step with you. This process makes them WANT to buy more from you.

If you don’t have anything else to sell just yet, you can still get started on this. Your emails might look like this:

Week One: Email free information about your topic

Week Two: Email more free information about your topic

Week Three: Email more free information about your topic

Week Four: Email more free information about your topic


Then one day, when you figure out what else you want to sell, or what event you want to host, you email them about that. AND they will probably jump up and down to get it since you have been fostering this relationship for some time…they will be ready to buy more from you because they know, list and trust you.

This is the holy grail for authors (for any business really).

It is how you build a business, not just write a book.

This is how you build longtime fans that are dying to go the next step with you. It’s how you get people like me to lug your books around the world and back and eagerly open your weekly email.

What are the next steps?

If you’re not sure how to get started or how this all works we go into this more in depth in our Author Exposure Blueprint.  Our members can also attend our coaching Q&A sessions where you can personally ask us anything to get the ball rolling on your holy grail. 

Go here to get started.



Torie Mathis helps entrepreneurs, business owners, and CEOs showcase their authority with an expert book and a buzz-worthy personal brand.  She is a best-selling author, Army veteran, speaker + trainer, and your mentor to creating the business+ life you love. She is the founder of the Author Exposure Blueprint, the Smart Arsenal, and the host of SMART AF.

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