Know when to hold ’em

by Tom Blubaugh

So how can you position yourself to handle everything associated with meeting the needs of your potential readers? Be genuine, be reliable, and be persistent and be available. People want to know that they can rely on you to solve a problem or promote them to the next level on the ladder of success.

In essence establishing a brand is only the beginning of customer relations. In the words of that Kenny Rogers song The Gambler, “You’ve got to know when to hold ’em, Know when to fold ’em, Know when to walk away, And know when to run …” is an accurate picture of how to handle customer relations. Here’s why:

  • Know when to hold em …You have to be discerning and understand the needs of your customers and be ready to deliver what they need when they need it. For example, if your book is selling really well, are you taking advantage of your analytics to draw in more customers? Remember everyone likes a best-selling author.
  • Know when to fold them … You have to know what you can and cannot do. Don’t let the promise of more book sales fool you into convincing yourself that you can do something that is beyond your capacity. For example, if you approach a large retail store to put your book on their shelves and they order 2500 books for all of their national outlets if you are a self-published author saying “yes,” may put you in serious financial distress. Count the cost of keeping the customer before you even approach them. It will save you a lot of headaches.
  • Know when to walk away … Sometimes a customer’s vision, expectation, or motive may be contrary to your overall mission as an author or the purpose of your book. Be careful when handling customer disputes, especially when they may possibly result in a bad review on your website or on Amazon.
  • Know when to run … Not all customers are good customers, just like not all people are good people. Sometimes you have to give them what they want and run quickly in the opposite direction.

Remember connecting, befriending and following is only the beginning of developing a customer relationship. Treat good customers like the jewels that they are and you will successfully build your book business.

I hope you learn solid principles to help you on your journey to success—whatever success means to you.

Change something today to make your tomorrow better.

Tom Blubaugh
Literary Strategist, LLC