Blogger: Janet Kobobel Grant
Location: Books & Such main office, Santa Rosa, Calif.
In my last post, I wrote about a time one of my clients assumed the role of “bad client.” Today I want to commend one of my clients, who handled a similar situation in a way that created a win-win situation. She took the role of “good client.”
She had been trying to arrange with the marketing director at her publishing house a book signing tour, but the marketer wasn’t responding. Time was running out to arrange the tour; bookstores were contacting my client begging for details. There were no details to be given.
What did my client do? Talked to me about the problem. We developed a strategy:
The client would phone the marketer on the marketer’s cell phone and leave a message.
If that didn’t bring a response, we would put together a step-by-step process on how to arrange the tour and then inform the marketer what the plan was.
My client’s assistant would follow the plan, taking on the responsibility of overseeing the book tour by making sure bookmarks, books and treats would be at each location and communicating with each venue that the author would appear at–and the publisher would pay for the assistant’s time. (I was confident the publisher would own up to her lack of involvement by paying someone else to do it, but my client also was ready to step in and pay her assistant to do the work as a default position.)
How did the strategy work out?
The marketer finally emailed a response and said, “Great.”
What a difference from my client who forged ahead without me, communicating inappropriately with an editor?
In this case, my client came to me with the problem, we mutually agreed on a plan and carried it out, with copies of all emails going to both of us.
Voila! A seeming conundrum dealt with after weeks of frustration. The ending is a good one because we, in essence, did the marketer’s job for her, everyone was brought into the loop, and the book gets promoted.
Truly a happy ending.
What can you learn from this scenario?
Principle #1: Involve your agent when a problem persists.
Principle #2: Copy everyone on your communications.
Principle #3: Help others to do their jobs, when necessary. Really it’s okay if it means everyone looks successful and the book gets taken care of.
Why do you think we hesitate to ask for help from people who can make a difference for us–whether that’s an agent, an editor, a marketer, or a friend?
What causes us to keep communications between just two people rather than bringing in a third party who can add leverage for our cause?
Does it surprise you that we took the job off the marketer’s hands as the solution to the problem?