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NOTE: This is a brief update from the PASSION. PURPOSE. PUBLISH! case study – a 12 month journey in documenting, detailing and divulging exactly how I will build a brand new publishing platform in the personal development and spiritual growth author niche…..which you can see here. If you have questions about this – or want to participate – feel free to email me ianrhollander@gmail.com – rather than signing up through Teachable. (which you can do – but I need to speak to interested folks first…as considering i have a wide assortment of different types of readers on this blog which I love and am grateful for – it’s not a good fit for everyone who may think it is)

Who is winning? Right now, in your niche, market, industry or vertical – where are the winners? How are they doing it? What can you borrow, emulate or appropriate to help you grow your own thing?

One of the fine lines we all have to negotiate when launching something new, is balancing a desire to disrupt and innovate, vs the practical approach of emulating (and improving) what already exists.

Whenever I work on a new project, the impetus is always doing a fair amount of competitive market research, to see who is doing well, how they are doing it, where they are strong, where they are weak, what gaps we can fill, and how much of the pie remains for me. (especially if we plan to eat a lot to survive 🙂

In the self publishing space, or the “how to write a book” space, I’ve known a few key things all along:

1 – I love the niche. I love to write and be creative, and marketing and entrepreneurialism are natural instincts for me. (something that many writers and creatives don’t share, which immediately opens up a wide window of opportunity as an agency, or entrepreneur, on top of the “writing books” angle) If I could make ONE huge contribution to any ONE space in my lifetime, I’d love it to be helping passionate people extract the experiences that they’d love to share – and “wake up the world” with their words. (this applies specifically, in my case, to our ideal audience, which are, as we’ve covered a bunch “enlightened” entrepreneurs, or folks who consider community, contribution and “spiritual service” to be as important as cash flow)

2 – There IS an existing 7 figure business model in the self publishing space – or helping very specific types of authors get published, get promoted, and get their words out into the world.

There are, in 2017, a few leaders in this space….and all are basic startups, with various levels of market saturation and expertise. (and all feel to me, to be fairly easy to compete, and transcend as well)

http://bookinabox.com is an example of one – a high dollar (25K +) offer that really could be done with similar success, at a fraction of the cost, with simple apps – and templates, that yield a very similar result.

Or, a low cost front end proposition, bundled with back end offers (JV and affiliate opportunities, authority site platform promotion, etc – that could turn a 3-5k front end transaction, (our similar publishing offer) into a profitable partnership that far exceeds that ROI for all.

2 – From the standpoint of a single author, using books, and leveraging the Amazon platform to launch, build, bolt and scale a new business, there is much to emulate, and many live case studies to serve as examples.

I have a friend and old online agency co-partner, (he and I ran an experimental online business together for number of years that never really took off) recently launched a brand new business in “emotional eating” space, where he himself has struggled over the years.

His Amazon book (NEVER BINGE AGAIN) is 100% free – (a strategy I remember talking about together years ago) – is consistently one of the top free books on the ENTIRE Amazon platform, and from what I understand from mutual friends (we don’t really speak so much anymore…..simply due to some un-related family fractures) has been the catalyst to building an entire community of coaching clients, and a burgeoning new business, in this niche.
See his book here.

And his community here. This is yet another strand of evidence that you CAN leverage Amazon in some cool and creative ways, using price as a lever (free) to drive an avalanche of eyeballs to your site, service, product or program…..simply by being willing to do the work.

I’m proud of him – and will gladly scale this strategy in my own business to boot 😉

So knowing this, again….it’s just one more VALIDATION of the idea, that one can leverage the Amazon platform strategically, to build a passionate, purpose driven community of folks who share an interest in a niche, market, tribe or topic, and are looking for expert advice to help them make, and take, the next step on their journey.

In my case, we are going to leverage Amazon to build BOTH our Teachable course community (which I’m hoping will become a 7 figure directory of content and courses in the mindfulness, marketing and spiritual growth space – featuring our OWN courses, as well as courses created by our authors and extended audience) as well as our MIGHTYNETWORKS community, which I’m building to launch the MOVEMENT and momentum piece – and the underlying ASSET (and platform) that helps gives us the authority, perception of expertise and high profile name in the niche as well.

Of course, there are lots of examples of people killing it with Mightynetworks, including HAIRBRAINED (the largest community of hair professionals online) the brand new BETTER network launched by celebrity author Gretchen Rubin (the happiness project and other books) as well as OWNIT, a huge community of real world entrepreneurs looking to connect with professional peers around the world.

Does this mean that OUR network will do equally as well? Of course not. But it means the lamp has been lit and the path has been paved. And having passion and purpose and a sense of supreme self confidence when it comes to our core skills, I like our odds!

And….and this is super important, always have a minimum viable thing that you control, that WILL get done, that is NOT dependent on success metrics outside of your control. I know I will have 12 books published on our platform, within 12 months. I’ll have courses for sale, predicated on those books, on our mindfulness + marketing course community. So even if everything else goes askew….at a minimum, if I follow through, I’m set up to succeed, simply by doing what I love.

Who is winning in YOUR niche, and how? Wherever you are focused, whatever market you want to own, who is at the top, what are they doing, and what can you do BETTER, or different, or what piece of their audience could you earn with a little more specificity or with a slightly different angle or approach.

Need help with this? Email me…..or let’s set up a call to discuss! 🙂

View all posts by ian

I am an author, artist and entrepreneur. My 2 passions are writing about, and teaching Marketing and Meditation. I like to think I’m a lot like Eckhart Tolle, if only he was taller, and a much better tennis player. (it turns out in person, he’s super short, has a terrible backhand and wears this weird scottish hat thingy that makes it really difficult to concentrate while serving) Plus he refuses to keep score and says ” it’s always NOW” when you ask who is up. Enough about me. We barely know each other. Stop staring. You’re making me nervous.