Ep. #1083 - Why Entrepreneurs Should Write A Book
In today’s episode of Startup Hustle, a tell-all session happens on why entrepreneurs should write a book. Matt DeCoursey is joined by Melanie Booher, president and founder of Influence Network Media. Both author-preneurs unveil the many benefits of publishing a book to business owners.
Covered In This Episode
Are you an entrepreneur planning to write a book? You should go for it, according to Matt and Melanie.
Aside from book sales profit, you can take advantage of its benefits. We’re talking about networking, legacy building, and much more.
Don’t miss out on Matt and Melanie’s insights on why entrepreneurs should write a book. Tune in to this Startup Hustle episode now.
- Introducing Melanie Booher (02:14)
- On writing a book, its hindrances, and working with a professional (03:50)
- Why should entrepreneurs write a book? (06:08)
- Here is Matt’s reason for becoming an author (08:00)
- Consider hiring a publishing expert; here’s why (11:19)
- Writing a book and networking (15:00)
- On marketing your book (18:39)
- Going solo versus writing a collective leader book (23:01)
- What is Melanie working on right now? (28:33)
- Choosing the right people to be associated with (31:30)
- On employee motivation and signing book copies for employees (34:53)
- Transitioning from writing a book to becoming a speaker (36:31)
- IngramSpark, Audible, and other book marketplaces (38:36)
- Book writing and legacy building (43:11)
I speak about life’s too short to work with jerks, which is a powerful topic in and of itself. And when I’m out there speaking with people, the idea is that I can reach more people. Kind of like a pay-it-forward movement.– Melanie Booher
So many entrepreneurs love telling you the story about their wins. And they don’t want to tell you about how they failed.– Matt DeCoursey
Going from author to influencer, there’s a big step. There’s some change in perspective that has to happen, or you have to desire to make that happen. And we’re trying to help leaders do that.– Melanie Booher
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Following is an auto-generated text transcript of this episode. Apologies for any errors!
Matt DeCoursey 00:01
And we’re back! Back for another episode of Startup Hustle. Matt DeCoursey here to have another conversation I’m hoping helps your business grow. So if you read my book, I got three of them. And I want to talk today about why entrepreneurs should write a book. So if you’ve ever thought about doing it, I’m gonna drop a whole lot of knowledge on you that will probably surprise you when it comes to a lot of other stuff and, hopefully, demystify this authoring process. Now before I introduce today’s guest, this episode of Startup Hustle is powered by FullScale.io. Hiring software developers is difficult, and Full Scale can help you build a software team quickly and affordably and has the platform to help you manage that team. Go to FullScale.io to learn more. If you’re not aware, that’s my business. And we love talking to Startup Hustle listeners; we love helping you find some solutions. I think the worst thing that could happen during our call is that you’ll get some good advice. So reach out to me today. I’ve got Melanie Booher and Melanie as the president and founder of Influence Network Media. You can go to inmauthor.com. There’s a link for that in the show notes. I’d like to encourage you to go down and click it so you have a little bit of context about our lovely guest from Loveland, Ohio. See what I did there? So I can go ahead and say, Melanie, welcome to Startup Hustle.
Melanie Booher 01:20
I love it. Thank you. I love being from Loveland.
Matt DeCoursey 01:23
Yeah, I figured, you know, we’ll kind of work that in. So I like to start my conversations with a little information about your backstory. So let’s go ahead and get into that.
Melanie Booher 01:34
Yeah, so I am thrilled to be here. I’m a, I want to say, serial entrepreneur because I have a couple companies. But today, we’re talking about Influence Network Media. Honestly, you know, I really kind of just got into that because I wrote my own book. And as you said, you wrote yours; I’m excited to hear more about that as well. I wrote my book and kind of discovered the power of writing, right? And, for me, it became not only my solo book but writing a collective. So we talked about the lift you get when you write with other authors. And how that has really helped just from growing my business perspective, growing my main business, and the great things that it has done from that perspective.
Matt DeCoursey 02:15
Well, you know, writing a book is a lot of work, and there’s a lot that goes into that. And, you know, I mentioned having written three, and there’s, so there are a few things we can just kind of get out there. First off, I think the number one comment I’ve got from people is like, Oh, you’ve written a book. Is it available on Audible? So I’ve gotten that one. But you know, people have a lot of questions about it. I’ve found that I’ve probably seconded that in conversations that I’ve had with other people that haven’t written a book that they swear that they’re going to. So always talk to them. They’ll say, Well, why haven’t you done it? And they’re like, I don’t know, I’ve been working on this for 10 years. What do you think I should do? And I say, I think you should go home and write something. So there you go. Now, that’s today’s episode. Thanks for lunch. No, I’m kidding. There’s, there’s obviously. Go ahead, Melanie.
Melanie Booher 03:10
Sorry. I’m so excited to talk to you. Everyone has a book, and I’m right. So one of the things I’ve been saying recently is, not only does everyone have, you may not have a whole book, you may have a great chapter, right? So people get overwhelmed. That’s kind of one of the barriers that we often see in why people don’t write. They’re worried about the time commitment, you know, how much time is gonna take how many words, you know, do I need 70,000 words, I don’t have that. Or they don’t know how to do it, right, getting all you know, getting it out on Amazon, the cover, the editing, formatting, proofing, all that stuff. And then the other one, sometimes the big one, is the cost commitment, right? What’s it going to cost me to get it done? So we like to say the book. Yeah, right?
Matt DeCoursey 03:53
Well, it does, it does cost me a lot of money to write my books, actually, because I hired a very experienced and high-powered editor who Patrick prices, his name, and he was, he’s been the editor of like, I don’t know, a dozen New York Times bestsellers. But with that, the reason I hired him is that, like all these things that you just mentioned, if you’re gonna write a book, there’s a lot of stuff to learn how to do once, and there’s, you know, there’s a whole lot of little things that go into it. Now with that, there has probably never been a time in the history of literature where it’s been easier to write and distribute your own book because Amazon does have a very, you know, like, well, a lot of people don’t know this, but a lot of the books you buy on Amazon, they print that copy just for you when you buy it, and you know, and that’s a good thing because that you know, there’s a lot of people that thought they would sell a lot more books than they did and they have a garage full of books for that reason. And you know, so the print on demand Things are real things. And it’s pretty neat. And now the question today is why, right? And, you know, when you work with people, and you know, there’s once again, go to Melanie’s site because there’s talk about helping business experts become authors and industry influencers. That’s the banner of your website. And that’s a lot of good reasons right there for entrepreneurs who wrote a book, would you ma’am, would you like to expand on that?
Melanie Booher 05:28
I would, you know, we run across people that want to write for a lot of reasons, you know, some, just to gain credibility, visibility, right, share their knowledge they have so much they want to share. We’re really looking for those, you know, thought leaders that want to grow their business, right. So they see their book as a way to whatever helped them get on stage, or help them podcast more, or maybe just grow their business, get another client, you know, we’re really looking for the people who like, hey, if I do this, it’s better than any business card that I can have out there. And I do have something to share, right, I have something I’m passionate about. One of our favorite things to do is to find a theme that we want to write about. So as an example, this year, you know, I’m a culture expert. That’s one of my core businesses, which is helping companies kind of become the best place to work, right? I speak about life’s too short to work with jerks, which is a powerful topic in and of itself. True. It’s so true and so true. And so when I’m out there speaking with people, the idea, right, is that I can reach more people, kind of like a pay it forward movement, right? I can get in front of more people, and I can impact the world in a greater way by getting my book out, getting that in more hands, maybe speaking, maybe even leading a client. I think that’d be awesome. And the best thing is, if I only had one client, I’d more than makeup for what I paid to be part of what we’re doing. Again, we really do focus on the economics behind it. And that’s out on the website. We can talk about that later if you want. But as you mentioned earlier, it can be very costly. You know, we hear people getting quotes from, like, 17 to $30,000, typically, to get something like that done.
Matt DeCoursey 07:10
And it’s about what it costs me. So I wrote two books at the same time. And I’m a little different. So people asked me a lot. First, I said, Well, why’d you write a book? I wanted to. Okay, so now also though I was on a trip, so my writing and then they will Oh, then the last bowl? Why’d you written two books? And actually, the reason is that a lot of people have written one. And there’s a there’s, there’s a level of differentiation that occurs. So I asked our good friend, chat GPT, how authors can and how entrepreneurs can benefit from writing a book outside of the actual sales of the book. And at first, it says establishing expertise. So for me, I was in, I saw a transition coming in from a business that I owned, that I actually wrote about, and one of my books, where we were going to leave that business. And so I told my wife, who is so tolerant of my crazy ideas, I said, her name is Jill. So we’ll just go ahead. And so we can identify the characters in our book here. I said, Joe, I need to reinvent myself. And she’s like, What do you mean, you’ve already been really successful? I said, Yeah, but it’s a different kind of success. I have to establish something because, in the prior business that I had, I didn’t need any street cred. I didn’t really care about it. I kind of locked myself away in my science laboratory and made money. And you know, and that was great, but I wanted to do something different. So in order, you know, there is something to be said about the cred, the street cred that comes with establishing expertise. Now, that said, a lot of people try to come up with these really sloppy products and shitty books. And as I said, I’m not publishing anything. So I hired Patrick. I was like, I’m gonna go find the best person that’s going to help me navigate through this. I did learn that writing a good book means you usually need a good editor. And I think the biggest mistake I hear people make is like, Oh, well, I’ll do that myself. Don’t be too close to it. You don’t get, you don’t get so like he made my books great and, and taught me a lot of stuff, but without I found someone so for me being an entrepreneur. So my first two book, Million Dollar Bedroom, is an educational narrative about me starting a business and the extra bedroom in my home. I had no money, I had no credit, I had no experience doing what I started, and I only had a credit card with an $8,000 limit. At the time I wrote the book, I had turned that into $30 million worth of revenue. It was a story worth telling. And I did another book called Balanced Me which was my take on how to balance the personal, professional, and physical parts of your life in a way that makes sense. It appears like a life balance book, and I quickly shattered that in the beginning. I’m like, That’s a myth. No one’s ever really balanced. And if they do feel that way, it goes away in a hurry. So I worked on both of those at the same time. Now my expense came from employing Patrick full-time, which was hard to do because he works for other clients and stuff. So that’s where a lot of that came in. And there were other things with designing a cover. I learned, so I had actually, before I got in touch with him, paid someone to make me a cover. And I was like, This is great. I showed it to him. And he’s like, this is terrible. And I was like, Why do you do it? I love it. He goes, shrinking it down to the size of a thumbnail on a web page. And I did that. And I was like, Oh, it is terrible. So yeah, experts, it is good to have an expert.
Melanie Booher 10:39
And I find myself saying, you know, but for COVID, I don’t know how I would have ventured into this world, you know, I was running my own consultancy doing things and things slowed down, right. And so I really found I had time. And so a lot of people will say, hire the right people to get it done. And in that example, I had a moment where I thought I could do a lot of it myself. And I still, by piecing it all together, spent 1000s of dollars. It was really stupid. So I think that when you rely on other people’s expertise, I mean, Jody and I have built this business, based on all the things that we’ve learned. And we are businesswomen, right. And we only focus on business books because that’s our passion and helping business leaders. But we’ve learned a tonne, kind of working through this. And she’s, she’s a savant in her own right, but she has created a course. So the other thing we give our authors is a course to help them. You don’t have to go out and learn it yourself. We’ll provide it to you. And we’ve done it. With learning managers, we’re both HR people. So we have a human resource background. And so we put our what we’ve learned, you know, how to structure your chapter or your book, how if you get stuck, how to brainstorm what to do next, how to make it appealing, how to, you know, all the different things, how to market a book, we’ve put it all into a course. So if you’re like, I don’t know where to start, great, that comes with the packages that we sell, we’d love to teach people how to do it.
Matt DeCoursey 12:00
And so when you talked, you talked about the lack of expertise and things when I was first writing it. As I said, I realized I was kind of in over my head. So that’s when I went and tried to find an editor, and I was busy trying to take my voice out of my writing. And Patrick was like, Dude, you’re crazy. There you should be happy. They respect the fact that you have a voice in your writing because there are authors that search for that forever and never get it forever. You’re exactly like me because I’m not, I’m not, I don’t know me. I’m like, I probably failed an English class at some point. I wasn’t a good student of socket grammar. I’m great at talking. That’s all the book is. Like if your book is speaking to someone, you’re accomplishing what you’re doing. So that tells you how uninformed I was.
Melanie Booher 12:47
Yeah, you’re exactly right. And we say find your voice, right? Find your voice and amplify it, you know, get it out there. We all have something that we’re really passionate about. Now whether we can write an entire book or just a chapter, that’s the piece that’s really important. So I now have my solo. And then I have six collective books that I’m a part of. So I get to say I’ve written seven books. That’s what I’m able to do, you know, it’s kind of a cool thing to be able to say that I’m a part of all these books. And what I’ve enjoyed even more I think about the Collective is I didn’t have to do it all myself, you know, they always say it’s easier to sell someone else than it is to sell yourself. Yeah. So when I can come back to these leaders and say, Hey, we’re writing about, I mentioned the culture book that’s coming out this year, I reached out to my network. And I have people across the country that are interested in joining in a book to talk about all the different ways that we can create, you know, best practices and drive amazing workplace culture. Because I know I’m not the only way to do it. You really have to come from a place of abundance. And a lot of people don’t come from that spot either. Right? Where they’re like, No, I only want people to think of me when they think of this topic. And it’s just a neat multiplier effect when you can get people to band together and do it together.
Matt DeCoursey 14:01
Well, I’ve got an ultimate multiplier for you. So in my book, million dollar bed, all my books have what I call conversations in them, where which are essentially interviews if you want to look at that, which by the way is a great way to eat up some pages that you need and get some interesting people in so number two on this list is networking. So in my book, Million Dollar Bedroom, the final interview that I did with it was with a guy named Matt Watson, and if those of you that are regular listeners, you’re like, Wait, is that the other Matt, this other Startup Hustle? That’s my business partner Full Scale now. Yeah. And we ended up starting a company. We started this podcast. I had met out with and talked to him a couple times before I actually interviewed him for the book. But I will tell you that the relationship that you have with the people that you put into something like a book, a well-written book, changes your dynamic with that person. It was also that understanding that led us to want to start this podcast because I was like, If the relationship changes, and Matt and I became friends, it took six to nine months for us to come up with what we were going to partner up on. But I mean, we’re an inc 5000 company, we have 300 employees, right, even five years old, you know, so to say, what productive stuff can why entrepreneurs should write a book? I don’t know if I can come up with a better example.
Melanie Booher 15:25
That’s exactly right. Is that what you said when you put it in the ChatGPT? That’s what it came up with. The second one was networking.
Matt DeCoursey 15:30
It just said networking. And some of that is like the people that you could, but you look, you can flex this into a lot of things like interview, get sources, talk to people about it, it’s a good, it’s a good reason to call, it’s a good reason to reach out. And it’s a good way to get people that are busy to pay attention to you if they normally wouldn’t. One suggestion with that is to make it as easy as possible for these people to help you. Don’t make them come to you, don’t tell them when you’re available. You say I will come to you. At any time that you tell me you’re available for however long you say you’re available, I’ll make that happen, and then do it. That’s a big thing. So a lot of people are how can you get people to pay attention? I’m like, What are you doing? I’m trying to get him to come meet me for coffee don’t. So I will come to you. I will make it easy. If you want help from people, make it easy for people to help you.
Melanie Booher 16:26
I think that’s what we’re trying to do. Take the uncertainty out of writing a book, right. And so the way that we’ve set it up with the course and we heard all the cats, you know, we do all the backend stuff. You mentioned having great editors, we hired two editors, a marketing person and admin, just kind of removing those barriers. And so one of the biggest questions that we get is okay, I have a book now. What do I do with it now? And the idea, again, in the business world is, what are you going to use it for? Right? What is that thing? You know, that you really? Is it just for expertise, right? You think it’s what you said and share your expertise, establish it. That’s awesome. You’ve got to do the work and get it out there. I think that’s you know, if I can get my 10 co authors to spread my name for me and get it in front of their networks, that’s really important. But I think there’s a lot of a lot of people that kind of do that step back and say, Well, should I write a solo? No, I already have a solo. So I don’t want to write in your collective book. And I would say that’s kind of short sighted. Because, again, not everybody has. I know you’ve had some tremendous success with this, but I’m not JK Rowling. You know, I’m not Danielle Steel, you know.
Matt DeCoursey 17:34
None of us are.
Melanie Booher 17:35
And it’s hard. It’s hard. The average book doesn’t sell 300 copies. Yep. That’s a huge statistic. So yeah, the average book does not sell. I think it’s like 95% of books that don’t sell 300 copies are successful authors that are celebrating selling 10,000 units.
Matt DeCoursey 17:51
Like that’s a lot. That’s a lot. So with that the next on the list was marketing. And that’s the main thing for me. So first off, there was the establishment of the street cred. So all my books have been number one on Amazon at some point, which by the way, isn’t that hard to do? Right? Because Amazon’s based on it’s dynamic velocity. So if you come out and you promote it, well, for three days, you’re going to be number one on Amazon, and for the rest of your life, you will have been number number one. And some people take exception to that. You know what, suck it I left. That’s all I needed. I got a screenshot and then number one, I have a problem with that. Go write your own fucking book.
Melanie Booher 18:34
Because I totally agree with you. And the thing is, they’ll say, Well, that’s a misnomer. You’re Miss No, actually, it’s not. I’ve got the screenshot. And there’s something to be said about the fact that you can get the Amazon number one new release.
Matt DeCoursey 18:47
There are both categories. Yeah.
Melanie Booher 18:49
Yeah. So that is a real thing. And that’s why we do say the screenshots just in case people can’t really
Matt DeCoursey 18:55
take the screenshot. But, you know, here’s the reality. Anyone that’s trying to call you out on that, ignore it, tell him to go write a better book, but the big thing for us, so there’s something I want to point out that people listen to haven’t thought about how many times you go somewhere and you get a handful of business cards, and you just throw them away? Because I don’t, I mean, I’ve got a stack of them. They fell. As I was cleaning up my desk, I picked up a little notebook, and it sprayed business cards all I was like, Oh, wow, I guess I needed some follow up that I didn’t do. Right now. I throw them away. Like they’re, they’re in a drawer or something. People don’t throw away books. It feels weird to throw away a book. It’s almost like burning it. You know, it’s like two steps down from that. But people don’t throw away books. And if it looks good, it feels good. And you know, it’s on the shelf. It’s a constant reminder. It’s just and it’s a neat thing to give away. It’s a nice gift. You know, my book that a million-dollar veteran has been the most popular to give away. Well, I’m 25,000 units deep on that. And most of them I’ve given away great marketing, great marketing. Some people read them, some people don’t whatever, but it’s a nice thing to do, it’s a nice thing to give away. So make sure if you’re going to do it for that purpose, you know, look, take a different approach, put a QR code inside the cover that leads to something you want, or like, I don’t know, like, if you’re gonna give it away, it’s okay to ask someone to do something like, knowing that today’s episode Startup Hustle is brought to you by FullScale.io. Or you can build a team of software developers, testers or leaders quickly and affordably. See, that’s why we do this free podcast for everyone to listen, because we know you’re going to tolerate the one minute
Melanie Booher 20:44
of that. That’s okay. And it’s okay. Yeah, well, I think people forget about the marketing piece too. So you’ll get editors, right people that want to do your book, and they’re like, well, I’ll do the publishing, I’ll do the editing, Amazon can print on demand. And then you’re like, but wait a minute, what about the marketing. And so we have been very intentional to make sure we have a pre launch. And post launch plan Yeah, that we work into all of our packages with our leaders.
Matt DeCoursey 21:12
So different, we’re talking about two different kinds of marketing. And for those of you listening to our audio programme, I’m holding my hands very far apart out in reality, not only will confirm that, because she before apart, so like the marketing for you, and your product is different than the marketing of the actual book, which by the way, is kind of tough, because there’s the thing most people don’t know, there’s, this year, approximately 1.4 million new books will be available. And that is going to be on top of the entire history of literature. So you’re a drop in the water in the ocean. And so how do you stand out and it can be kind of hard to do that. But you know, there’s, and that’s where expertise like Kol, Melanie, they know how to do it. Because once again, you’re probably writing your first book and you haven’t done it. You want it to be successful, like what is your what is the end result you have in mind, that’s to promote yourself or promote your book, do whatever. Now look, a lot of the stuff if you promote it well, and it can stay at the top of the charts. But the reality is, you probably experience a boost, and then these things kind of come back down to reality. And you’ll decide whether you want to keep promoting it or not. Is that fair to say?
Melanie Booher 22:21
That is totally fair to say. And it’s, it’s kind of the difference between two different kinds of books, right, you can write a solo, you can write one of these collectives that we’re talking about, where I give you the topic, and you’re just passionate, great. That’s like the culture book, I’m gathering leaders. Or you could be that person that’s like, Hey, I already have a tribe of people. And I want to write about this. And what we would say is you only need to try and get between six and 10 highest. We’ll go it’s 14, but six to 10 authors that are going to write in your book, whose name you want to see on the cover with you. And I think that’s pretty powerful, right to say I want to see these people write with me, we’re gonna do this together. We’re behind the scenes corralling all the cats. And you bring those people to the table, your name gets to be bigger on the cover, right there name is with you. And we figure out what that plan looks like. We do all that, you know, herding of the cats editing, formatting, proofing, getting it out. And here’s the best part, if you’re We call those collective leaders, if you’re the collective leader, we set it up in a way where you get all the royalties, like we’re not trying to collect royalties, we’re trying to set people up for success. And so we’re teaching people how to do that too, you know, will tell me if I did it, right, because my third book, the realistic guide to a successful music career.
Matt DeCoursey 23:28
What do you know about a music career? Well, I worked in the music industry for almost a decade. And people are like, Oh, are you a performer? No, I worked for a musical instrument manufacturer that does like $5 billion a year in sales. Now with that I met a lot of interesting people along the way. I’m very passionate about the industry. I believe that bands or startups to some of the cleverest entrepreneurs I know are actually musicians. So I got to be friends over the years with a guy named Joe Collins who’s the keyboardist in a band called unfreeze McGee, they just had their 25th birthday, they sell out venues like Red Rocks, that’s 10 910 1000 people. So Joel had wanted to write a book and we thought he would have a lot of expertise. So he, a member of Dave Matthews Band, wrote the foreword for us. All just bought some land right there. Thank you, Jeff golf, and now Joel, brought out so what I did, I’d already written two books. I had some experience and I funded it so I paid for the purpose of writing the book. Joel got other people like Huey Lewis, if you are old, like me, you know who who is and the power of lobbyists. I was one of the most popular artists in the 80s Susan Tedeschi who’s one of the most well known female guitarists in the world Chuck Labelle was the music director for a little old band called The Rolling Stones. Taylor Hicks won American Idol like it goes on and on and on. And these names are all on the cover with mine and I think that’s cool. I just think it’s cool. I just, that’s like I enjoy it. I enjoyed that. And more than the books I wrote with just my name on there.
Melanie Booher 25:10
And again, that’s hard. That’s hard to quantify. Right. So when we talk about the multiplier effect, I think that’s pretty cool. And you, you have to come at it from a place of okay, yeah, I wrote mine. And I don’t know, I’m a consultant leader, a thought leader out of Cincinnati, Ohio, like, I don’t know that I’m doing anything. Amazing. But I absolutely take that stance of bringing people with me, right? How can I help others? How can I help grow businesses? We’ve gone through so much in the world in the last couple years, right? Whether that is so we don’t want to head down that rabbit hole, but a lot of turmoil, right, you know, whatever political, social upheaval, COVID. And whatever we’ve gone through, I think the world needs a little bit more of that, like coming from a place of abundance to lift others as we go, like, let’s do this together. I know, my husband says it sounds a little like Pollyanna sunshine sometimes, but I think we need a little bit of that.
Matt DeCoursey 26:03
Well, some of it’s just collaboration. And I so that was my first co author. And I don’t know if I want to write a book by myself again, because first off, Joel wrote more of that book than I did. Just full disclosure there. Because he knows like, now here’s the thing is I did have a career in the music industry, the music industry is like an iceberg. The part you see on stage is like 1%, the rest of it behind the curtain. And there’s a lot of different things. So I was able to bring up, I wrote probably the first 25% of the book, and then the last 10%, because I was able to speak on behalf of startups and, and business and a lot of that stuff. And then Joel kind of took it over because he has 25 years of running a successful touring company, essentially, I mean, they generate 10s of millions of dollars in revenue every year. Like, there are little tips and tricks that are in there. And so many people were like, man, after we read the book, I was like, Dude, there’s a lot of people that don’t even work in the music industry or want you, they’re gonna love this frickin book. Because you kind of like music and shows and stuff like that, if you’re curious about how that operates, or what goes into that. And also, like, it’s risky. You don’t realize that it’s expensive, and you don’t know how many people are going to show up every night? Can I open the lot? Sometimes they don’t. So there’s some funny stories in there, too, including the story about when Joe fell off the stage and of the orchestra pit and the rest of the band didn’t immediately notice. I said Joe, would you do it? Guess what, I tried to get back on stage as quickly as I could before they realized they didn’t need a keyboardist. So yeah, that’s great. co authors as a good one. I mean, I love like, so you’re working on a collective book that’s got like, 10 authors on it.
Melanie Booher 27:53
Yeah. So that’s what we aim for. So my that’s what we’ve been listening to leaders, we’ve been saying, hey, well, what do you want to see books about? Think of it like, you know, best practices, right? Or you bring together multiple minds, and they write about it. Last year, we did a business series. So it was sales, fusion, marketing, fusion, people fusion, leadership, fusion, and then talent fusion. And so that was a little bit of an HR spin to it. But we had such a great response that we’ve been listening for what are some of the things people want us to write about? Shocker entrepreneurial, you know, being an entrepreneur is one of those hot topics. So this year, we plan on putting something out around that. So imagine everyone coming together and what are your best practices for entrepreneurs? Like what are some things people do to see success in those areas. We’ve got one woman that wants to write about, you know, her whole chapter about how to, you know, Bootstrap and build things up and find, you know, finances even. There are so many ways that you could approach some of these different topics. Another big one is technology. So in 2023, and beyond, like, what are we doing to improve our technology for business, think differently, think outside the box, streamline, be more efficient with technology, and that’s another element. So always, we’re always looking for those things.
Matt DeCoursey 29:09
You mentioned the entrepreneur thing and million dollar bedroom. What I say it’s an educational narrative. I found a fun way to tell you a story about how to start a business and all the little crap you have to go through and like, and I think Patrick really beat into my head because I was overly verbose. He’s like, dude, this, you need like a paragraph about this, not two pages, keep it moving. And so it was it was but but with that being open and transparent, people can smell your lack of authenticity through the book, like, you know, and the thing that drives me nuts about entrepreneurs is so many entrepreneurs love telling you the story about their wins and they don’t want to tell you about how they failed. We have the opposite approach here on Startup Hustle, and well, you know, like that was the whole purpose. We want to tell the real story of stuff and that’s what people get into, you know, in the The probably the top comment I get from listeners about the podcast is though Well, first off, thank you for producing so much free. Good advice. You’re welcome. Thanks for paying attention. And then they’re like, Oh, I love that you keep it real, you know, just talking about wins. So you know, there’s, people are gonna learn more from your failures, because the blueprint that you may have created for success as an entrepreneur is kind of already done at this point. Like, it’s, you know, it’s not real. I even said that in the first part of million dollar veteran, like, if you’ve, if you bought this or you’re reading it, because you want a blueprint to do exactly what I did, then put the book back, because you’re going to be disappointed, it’s done, that stuff’s already happened, and then kind of exploited because once you’re successful, it puts a signal flare up, and other people just start doing it, and then it’s not as awesome.
Melanie Booher 30:50
So I’m thinking of, as you said, that I’m thinking of areas where I have failed, that I could share with those who might be listening. And when we get we’ve, we’ve been in business a short while on this Influence Network Media side. And the biggest thing that comes to mind is choosing the right people to tie your name to right, so they’re gonna remember these, these things are not easily erased.
Matt DeCoursey 31:14
Yes, yeah, I have a story about that. So as we were looking for, as we were looking for people to contribute to the book, there as we were, like, we needed a DJ. And we almost had a guy named bass nectar, who has very, very much been canceled at this point. And for just doing creepy shit. Now, no one knew that. But it came out after the book and like, we probably would have gone back and like removed, like to read trends, like, do a lot of stuff. So some of that is I would encourage people to understand who you’re, I think if you’re going to think if you’re going to collaborate with people, then for me, okay, Joe’s a lot more famous than I am. shop shop a punch above your weight, you know, find people that have an audience or, or whatever. And, you know, like, I don’t know, they’re out there. And they are.
Melanie Booher 32:16
With that, though, you have to find people that are willing to still be a part of it, right? Because people when you’re punching above your weight, they’re like, I’ve already made it. Why do I want to write with you? And it’s hard sometimes to find those people. They’re like, yeah, let me help you level up. Let me help you.
Matt DeCoursey 32:28
Yeah, well, I had done it. And I offered to pay for it. There was no financial risk for Joel to commute to participate. Now on the flip side, what I realized is So Joel, you know, when they go out on you can buy this book, our book, the merch stand, which is not subject to royalties, and actually is for sale for $5 more, because Joel signs them. And that was good. I recover my money pretty quickly on that. So you know, as all right now, with that, I will say we didn’t do a great job of marketing. Some of that was in this is like a cautionary tale. So busy people are busy people, and they’re doing busy people things. And sometimes, like, you look at selling a book, and the reality is like, if you’re doing all right, you’re gonna sell a few copies a day is fair. And that’s not that. I mean, realistically, that wasn’t super entertaining, didn’t rank very high on my priority list and missed the growth I was experiencing at Startup Hustle and at Full Scale, so probably could have done a better job with that. And as another thing too, as you talk about, like, what are the trickle down opportunities like we could this could be like a workshop, it could be like, kind of like what you’re doing with your business and you know, kind of put you into a programme or give you advice or something like that. But I don’t know if that’s hard, because dude goes out and plays 80 to 100 shows a year across the world. And then I travel the world because I have 300 employees in the Philippines. So yeah. All right. Well, would you like to know what’s next on the list?
Melanie Booher 34:10
Yeah, please. We’re on number four.
Matt DeCoursey 34:13
employee motivation. I was surprised by this, but it makes a lot of sense. So I mentioned I worked for Roland. And Roland has a very inspiring founder. His name is Eric Atari Takahashi, and better known as Mr. K. But he wrote a book, a great book, but I’ve experienced the same so like I’m leaving in a few days to go travel to the Full Scale office in the Philippines. And I always throw a bunch of books in my suitcase, because it is really popular amongst my employees. They like reading them. They like, you know, I actually sign autographs, which is still weird, you know, and I think it’s harder to figure out what to write in everyone’s book than it is to write the book, like the inscription.
Melanie Booher 34:53
So I have you customize your inscriptions. That’s
Matt DeCoursey 34:57
usually all right. Keep on hustling or quit your day job is another favorite of mine. Yeah, because yeah, I like it to be somewhat first. I tried to do that as well.
Melanie Booher 35:08
And you’re right. I have a couple of tags that I probably do mine too. But I don’t have 300 employees in the Philippines that I’m signing.
Matt DeCoursey 35:16
I haven’t signed up for all of them because of the office, but yeah, that’s that’s the thing. Okay, next on the list is and I think that’s good. And it’s still a crap Thing. Thought Leadership, if you want to be a thought leader, I think you got to write a book.
Melanie Booher 35:31
So we see that. And so what we’ve done so in 2021, and 22, we did the whole help business leaders become authors. And now at 23, one of our focuses is, I alluded to this before, okay, hey, I have a book now, what do I do with it? And so we’ve created a couple workshop type things, a couple of courses on okay, how do I turn this into speaking, not just speaking gigs, but paid speaking gigs, right? How do I get out to podcast more often? Or what’s that next step? You know, I carefully use the word How do I become an influencer? I don’t know if I don’t love that term. But we know what that means. And so going from author to influencer, there’s a big step, there’s right there’s some change in perspective that has to happen, or that you have to desire to make that happen. And we’re trying to help leaders do that. I mean, and again, we’re starting off with what we know. And it’s, you know, coaching on a small scale. But we’ve already seen a few success stories. So that’s been fun as well.
Matt DeCoursey 36:28
So I have I’m, I don’t really Chase public speaking gigs, but I did. You want to talk about how your book helps you get. So I got paid five or six grand to give a keynote to the fraternity executives of America. And they had a finite budget for it. And they were kind of waffling a little bit, I was like, Well, let me give you 200 bucks with the speaking fee. So the lady that ran it turned around and found a sponsor for the books and basically paid for it. If money was back and had a budget for something else. So you can throw it in. Now, if you’re already speaking or you do stuff, there’s no better place to sell your book than right after your speech.
Melanie Booher 37:13
There really is, you know, we always coach leaders to to think, okay, sometimes when you’re getting started, people will say, Well, I can’t afford to pay you for that. And so we’ve heard that a couple times. And the answer then is if and when you have your book, you can say okay, but what if I throw in you know, if I throw in this many books, would you buy them and again, you can give them a discounted price, do your print on demand math, let’s let’s just say Amazon charges $5. Ish. And you can get them to buy him for 15. Right? So you’ll make $10 per book. So quickly, right? If you say I’ll give you a pick your number. All right, 100 books, then you’ve quickly made $1,000. So that’s just a quick example of why it is important to have your book and how you can turn something that might have been an unpaid gig into a paid one as well.
Matt DeCoursey 37:56
For books that I don’t sell directly through Amazon, I do not print them at Amazon, I use Amazon’s competitor, which is Ingram Spark, which sends like to Barnes and Noble and a bunch of places and they actually have a much, much more competitive printing press. So I will order them, man. Okay, so first off, if you don’t realize how many books are 2500. So that’s a pallet. So I had ordered 2500 copies of each of my books, and then a guy showed up in a truck. He’s like, Yeah, where do you want me to drop these, you have a loading dock, right? And I was like, nope. So I spent the next hour and a half, taking books, boxes of books off of the back of a semi truck, and then re-stacking them in the back of my office. But no, it came out so that if you’re going to print more, I mean, that was like a couple bucks, a book landed, like delivered everything. So like $2 apiece. And I think it might not even have been that much. So if you talk about that business card now my average client at Full Scale pays 20 grand a month. So if I give out 10,000 copies of my $2 and a cost book gets me one client, I recover that in one month. And that’s why I give away a lot of books. So you know other things, too. We mentioned audibles there. So if you want to be a baller on a budget audible actually has a marketplace that if you taught it so I paid some we paid someone to be the voice actor for the real sky just successful music career. But in that same marketplace, there are people that will do it for a percentage of the sales. They kind of they’re your partner though. They’re your partner, but if you can’t pay for it, I don’t think we paid a lot. I think it was maybe like three grand.
Melanie Booher 39:48
Yeah. And so we probably right now have a way to do that. Where we have people that we can get in touch with and we don’t ask for a percentage of sales. So that’s probably, you know, if you have people that are like, hey, I want to get on audible, what should I do? We’ve got some options for that, too. There’s a lot of audio.
Matt DeCoursey 40:07
And so I’ve taught oh my god back to that, like, hey, I’ll do it myself. Don’t oh my god, do you know how hard it is to make an eat an audible?
Melanie Booher 40:17
Yeah, it’s the editing of the file.
Matt DeCoursey 40:22
it’s about four or five times the amount of time that you get in the finished product to produce it. So like, and that’s I actually didn’t do audible on my other two books. First off, I should have done one to balance me and maybe I well, that I struggled for a Million Dollar Bedroom that was like my story. And I didn’t want it read by anybody other than me. There may never be an audible for that, because I don’t know if I’m ever gonna find time to do it.
Melanie Booher 40:50
Exactly how I feel about my audible though is that it doesn’t cost you anything.
Matt DeCoursey 40:53
And they let you do what you can do there, they’ll give you like five days a year or something to give it away for free. And then you know, some of it’s like, I don’t know, it’s, it’s just another way to do it. People always asked me they’re like, dude, what’s the best book you’ve read? What’s the last book, you’ve read the one, the last one I wrote. I’m an audible guy. If I even do that, I’m getting an email, I got an email this morning telling me to spend my audible credits because they’re piling up. So that kind of tells you where I’m at on that.
Melanie Booher 41:25
You know, there is a weird thing that happens with Audible and will and even ebooks, when you send them out to people. Amazon keeps a large portion of the proceeds unless people actually click through or mark it as read. Have you seen that?
Matt DeCoursey 41:40
Yeah. Yeah. So that’s kind of like royalties, like if you’re an artist on Spotify. So the thing that people don’t realize is, if you listen to 33 seconds, not or 30 seconds, 31 seconds, excuse me, on Spotify, that triggers a fraction of a penny for a royalty. So Amazon has something similar to that where they have the Kindle subscription. So you’ll get paid per page, which doesn’t seem like a whole lot, but whatever.
Melanie Booher 42:09
No, it doesn’t. But you know, I encourage people now that I’m kind of in the industry, like if you know someone and like someone and you have their book, click that you’ve read it, even if you haven’t, because they deserve the royalties more than Amazon keeping the money themselves, you know, so I’d much rather my money go to the person that put the effort in than just the big conglomerate, you know?
Matt DeCoursey 42:31
All right. So, man, we’re whizzing through this. I love this topic, by the way. Last on this less in the legacy building. I think this is a real thing down like, I mean, Google mean, if you’re listening Google Matt DeCoursey I got the cool little side bar and all that other stuff. It just kinda looks like it’s back to that credibility thing. So why is that important? Because look, man, most of the people you want to reach they don’t know who you are yet. They’re gonna go Google you look good on Google.
Melanie Booher 43:02
Yeah. Amazon right now you can put in your name and your something findable they can find and buy your books or content there. So also show up on Google.
Matt DeCoursey 43:13
Yeah. Yeah, yeah. So by the way, Amazon is a really valid marketing tool. Because when you’re an author on Amazon, you get to build a cool little page and I’m like, sitting here making notes about all the shit that I need to update. So you got to keep up with that too.
Melanie Booher 43:30
If you need some book coaches, I know people that can help you with that.
Matt DeCoursey 43:33
I think I just like life coach, or maybe a life coach like I don’t know.
Melanie Booher 43:41
You’re gonna get it done for you. But yeah, there’s, Oh, God.
Matt DeCoursey 43:44
I told my wife the other day that I hit a milestone today. And she’s like, really what I said, I’m officially 100 years behind on my to do list she’s like, congratulations, I knew you could do it. Yeah, that’s a little that’s the inside look on what it’s like backstage. So as we proceed to the founders freestyle, which is like how I like to end my episodes of the show want to remind everyone today’s episode was brought to you by FullScale.io That’s probably what I need to write a another book about because I ended million dollar bedroom right around the time we started that and that it’s just crazy how much of the connective tissue that can have as an entrepreneur can come from one thing to the next to the next to the next. The next the people that I hired or Kay the guy that was the quote intern and million dollar bedroom is Darrell Blackburn who is Full Scale CEO. He is an award winning dude now, he was an intern at my in my extra bedroom of my home. Yeah, so shit happens and you know these connective tissues business partners from one of them, you know, like, I don’t know, man, I’ll hang out with dudes from day man. He’s banned and I have so Thanks, Joe, you know, for introducing me to people, it’s just fun, it can be fun. I don’t think you should probably. I don’t want to burst the bubble on your stuff. But if you’re gonna if your goal if you’re unknown and your goal is to write a book and you think that’s you’re gonna make a tonne of money off of it, I wish you the best of luck but I will tell you have a very, very, very steep uphill climb to get there. So if you don’t have the resources or an audience behind it, it’s a lot. It’s a lot. Okay, so I mentioned founders freestyle, you’re the founder of a company. I like to end my upsets by giving our guests a chance to freestyle in the mic. You can say whatever you want, of how people rap, sing, recite poetry, most people just make some decent comments. I actually did rap. Finally, ChatGPT helped me with that. I said, Write me a rap about sales. So yeah, I was doing an episode about sales. And yeah, I kind of wrapped up a little bit. I realized I’m not a very good rapper.
Melanie Booher 46:04
That’s pretty awesome. Okay, no, I wish I could rap or sing or whatever else was awesome.
Matt DeCoursey 46:07
That was my point, though. It was the thought it was the effort, the counter.
Melanie Booher 46:13
I love it. Well, okay, so I have a little something that I’ll maybe give us some closure. So one of the things that we’re doing is we’re helping people find their voice, right, we’ve talked about this. We’re in the Midwest. And what I love to kind of talk a little bit about is things happen on the East Coast and West Coast in the US so much quicker than it does in the Midwest, which I don’t even know where you are at.
Matt DeCoursey 46:33
Kansas City, okay, where it’s really easy to stand out. So what might not happen as quickly it’s a little easier to stand up.
Melanie Booher 46:42
Okay, and Cincinnati has some of that too. So I’d like to tell this little story about how I’ve moved all over Ohio. And if you’re not an Ohio person, this may or may not resonate with you, but I grew up in Dayton, Ohio, and moved to Marion, Ohio. And so I like to joke, and I say what, well, what’s halfway between Dayton and Marion? A cornfield. No. Well, yes, Marysville, but actually, it’s, I would say engagement. It should be engagement, Ohio, but there is no such thing to get at Dayton and Marian engagement. Okay. As we opened this story, I live in Loveland, right? For a brief time, I actually lived in a little town east of Cleveland called Painesville. My family’s from Chillicothe. So anyways, we’ve moved all over. I’m one of the few Ohioans, a true Buckeye, that can say I went from Dayton to Marion with a brief stint in Painesville and wound up in Loveland. With that’s a life story right there.
Matt DeCoursey 47:34
Okay, I think speaking of Paynesville, I did just watch the Kansas City Chiefs defeat the Bengals or that I was at the Bengals. I forgot. Yeah. Today. The mayor was talking too much about Patrick Mahomes. For me to care.
Melanie Booher 47:49
That’s so funny. We’re actually fans, so I can’t even really say that’s its own kind of punishment, Townsville.
Matt DeCoursey 47:58
Yeah, it happens. You know, we all try our best. Yeah, well, thanks for joining me. I know I did a lot of talking here with that. And you know, I never know where the conversations are gonna go. I just get really excited about this topic. Because I really do feel like it was time that I sat down to write books, I mentioned going and telling my wife, I’m like, I’m going to write two books, you know, I’m going to spend a bunch of money doing it. It’s kind of like, okay, and you know, we have looked back, and that was about five years ago. There’s about almost six at this point. And we have looked back at several points of reflection sitting back with that, you know, a glass of red wine, and we’re going, you know what, that reinvention worked, it worked. And you know, all these things kind of happen one Lego at a time, and you need to build your own Lego Castle. Sometimes that’s with an actual set that’s meant to build something. And then sometimes it’s like my kids, Legos, where it’s from, like, 27 different sets. And you’re like, Honey, a castle doesn’t usually have a wheel on it. My kid would be like, Yeah, but this one does. I’m like, You’re right. It does. So your Lego Castle can look at it as you want. You know, anytime you’re gonna put content out there like a podcast video, but you’re gonna have some people that are going to talk shit and not like it. Who cares? Who cares? Did they write a book? Do they have a podcast? Are they putting out content? Because if they aren’t, you shouldn’t give a shit. Right? Like, yeah, if you’re, it’s kind of like I get in trouble talking because I never gonna go to another panel where people that aren’t entrepreneurs want to tell me about how to be an entrepreneur like you do not have my attention. I’m sorry. So yeah, but with that, you know, I really do recommend finding a guide for your journey through authorship because there’s a lot of stuff out there, and you can, like, look, I was ready to publish a book with a shitty cover on it. And it really was, and I got around the right people that helped me make a better book. How to hold me accountable for creating it. You know, it’s like I woke up every day with someone who was like, Hey, we got to do this. We got to do this. We got to do this. And yes, I did write my own books. But I think you are a great editor, and I’m sure you know a few. That’s right. All right. And that’s it.
Melanie Booher 50:19
So, we want to help you build your Lego Castle, right?
Matt DeCoursey 50:23
It’s true. And the thing is, there are times when I recommend that entrepreneurs gain expertise and possess it and keep it. And then there are times where you just need to know how to do something wants, and that’s where, like, go to inmauthor.com, link in the show notes and find, I don’t know, find someone to help you guide you through it, because you’ll, you’ll get it done faster, it’ll come out better, and you will have less of a headache about it. That’s my input. I’m gonna go fix all the stuff about these books now and talk to you about another one that I want to write.
Melanie Booher 50:58
So I could see you writing in this entrepreneur book that might be coming out in the near future.
Matt DeCoursey 51:02
Maybe I’ll be honest, if I’ve got 1100 episodes with this show with amazing people, and they’re like, well, we’ll extend here. Second, you might be sitting upon an embarrassment of riches when it comes to the content that you want to create. Like it’s out there. It is out there. I’ve got 1100 podcasts. I have 900 blogs just at the Full Scale site. I’ve got hundreds of videos on YouTube, and it’s like, what we write about, I don’t know, I think we kind of already did it together. So I’m going to catch up with you down the road. Go check out, go check out inmauthor.com.