The Mama Bestseller Video

When Terry McMillan’s first novel Mama was published in 1987, she wrote more than 3,000 letters to bookstores, colleges, chain stores, African-American groups, and other groups asking them to stock and/or promote her book. She offered to do readings wherever they would give her space.

The response was so great that she ended up doing her own book tour to 39 cities. Her efforts gained plenty of rave reviews for her book as well as two re-printings in six weeks.

The key point of this story is not who Terry sent the letters to, but how many she sent. It’s a numbers game, and few book authors or even Internet entrepreneurs make full use of the numbers game.

For an ebook, you would send 3,000 emails or letters to online book sites, ebook reviewers, book bloggers, potential JV partners, other authors who write books like yours.

First rule: The Numbers Game.

Second rule: Create relationships around those who respond.

Third rule: Build from there.

Someone on Facebook shared this information after seeing the above video: My friend got books in nearly 100 libraries by sending approximately 400 emails.

Mama by Terry McMillan

Source: How Terry McMillan Got Her Bestselling Start

About John Kremer

John Kremer is author of 1001 Ways to Market Your Books, the Relationships Matter Marketing program, and many other books and reports on book marketing, Internet marketing, social media, and book publicity. -- .

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  1. Pingback: Author Promotion: How Terry McMillan Got Her Bestselling Start | Book Marketing Bestsellers

  2. Thank you, John, for printing these inspirational accounts of self-publishers. I just had my first big break in a long while. A feature story in the July, 2017 issue of Guideposts Magazine which has a really large circulation. But it is not the magazine that will sell our book “No More Secrets – A Family Speaks about Depression, Anxiety and Attempted Suicide” which is on Amazon. It is the NUMBERS game which you talked about. I need to send the link to the story to LOTS of media, bloggers, promote on FB, etc. And pray like crazy that the story idea gets picked up by The 700 Club or Good Morning America, etc.

  3. That is such great news about Guideposts. And, yes, it still is a numbers game to get the word out. Again, congrats!

  4. Pingback: Book Marketing Resources for Book Authors | Book Marketing Bestsellers

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