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Publisher Takes On Just One Book Per Year—Find Out Why

Bard Press only takes on one new book project per year, but when they do, they blow it out of the water with bestsellers like The ONE Thing by Gary Keller and Jay Papasan or Jeffrey Gitomer’s Little Red Book of Selling. Bard Press is managed by Todd Sattersten and in this episode, he’ll talk about how his publishing company chooses who to work with and what any author can learn about writing a better book from their process.

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EPISODE TRANSCRIPT

Josh Steimle: Today my guest is Todd Sattersten. Todd is the publisher and owner of Bard Press--a hybrid publisher, but we'll get into how he's a different type of hybrid publisher than maybe some of the others we've talked about or talk to. 

His press has published bestsellers like the One Thing by Gary Keller, one of my favorite books, and Jeffrey Gitomer's Little Red Book Of Selling, which you may have heard of, especially if you're in the sales field. Even if you're outside the sales field because it was this massive bestseller. 

Todd is also the co-author of the 100 best business books of all time. And the author of Every Book Is A Startup, which I love that title because I'm always telling people, writing a book is like starting a business.  

Todd, welcome to the show. 

Todd Sattersten: Thanks for having me.  

Josh Steimle: So, Todd, give us a little bit of background on you and leading up to Bard Press. 

You've had 20 years of experience in the publishing industry. Give us some of that background in your story and how you became involved in books and printing and publishing, and then ended up starting your own press.  

Todd Sattersten: My background is sort of engineering and operations. That's where my degrees are in. 

And in about 2004, I had the opportunity to kind of leave. Area of business. And I found my way. And what I really found was that I was writing a lot about business books online. This is when blogs first started showing up, like, this is like 2002, 2003. I was blogging about business books and that led to a number of connections where I was living in Wisconsin at the time. 

And one of the most important players in that space was a company called 800 CEO Read. They're based in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. They're now known as Porchlight Books. 

I ended up meeting the owner and that was sort of my entrance into the industry. So, I entered working as a retailer, as someone who was helping sell books. 

We worked with a lot of authors. I worked on hundreds of launches on books at that point in time, spent seven years there. And then over the sort of between. the next course of time, you know, I, I spent some time as an agent. I spent some time as an editor. and then I worked full time for an author here in Portland, Oregon, where I'm based now. 

And we built a business where we helped him launch. Well, just speaking business, launching events, business, that was another arc of time. We could talk about that a bit. Cause I, that kind of, I think might match well to the sort of people that might be listening here. And then three years ago, I joined Bard Press. 

It was a. Started we're in our 26th year, it was started by Ray Bard and raised a longtime friend. I met him almost, you know, my first year working in business book publishing and spent three years here. Ray decided to step back from the business, and this is kind of what I do. Full-time.  

Josh Steimle: Got it. So, tell us a little bit more about why you joined Bard Press and what attracted you to it. 

And what's different about it from some of the other hybrid publishers out there. And just to set the stage here, we've interviewed some other people we've talked about hybrid publishing in the past, and the idea that from a high level, you've got. Your traditional publishers, the penguins, the random house, the McGraw Hills, you've got, self-publishing your Amazon KDP and Barnes and noble press and things like that. 

And then in the middle, you've got these hybrid publishers where they don't buy your book, but they provide services to help you publish for a fee. And so it's kind of this middle ground, but how are you different than the other hybrid publishers that are out there?  

Todd Sattersten: It's a great question. I think that well, the first thing I would say is that's what we do is at Bard presses, we publish at the intersection of what I call work in life. 

So, it's kind of in the more traditional sense, it's the intersection of business books with self-help or personal development. And what we do is we're looking for big books. We're looking for books that solve very large problems for very large audiences. And so, one of the things that make us different is the fact that we only publish one book a year. 

And so, our philosophy kind of our hypothesis going back to my engineering day is, is that we believe by putting the singular focus on a single title over, you know, what is usually a 24-to-36-month period. If you think about the development of the book, the launch of the book, and then the work that we put in after the book comes out, that you're going to get better outcomes than a publisher. 

I'm a more traditional publisher. That's going to put out 20, 30, 50, a hundred books a year. And so, for us that focus and that effort that we put into each one of our individual titles, I think differentiates us.  

Josh Steimle: So, you're not high volume. I mean, you're the exact opposite. 

Todd Sattersten: Right? Where, you know, where a traditional publisher takes more of a portfolio strategy or a, our mutual fund strategy, right? 

I'm going to buy lots of different stocks. A few are really going to work. Some are going to break. Even a lot of them are going to lose money. We're more of a stock picker. You know, our, our philosophy is can I find a single title and through a lot of hard work and. Both in the development of the book and the launch of the book, can I create a better outcome? 

And over time we found that that model works.  

Josh Steimle: It does seem to have worked for you. So how do you work? How do you make money then? Because if it's just the author's paying you, which is the case for a lot of hybrid situations, they would have to pay you a lot to get a year of your time of the, everything that your business is doing. 

So, are they paying that much or are you partnering with them? Do you get a share of the revenue or profits from the book?  

Todd Sattersten: How does that work? Yeah, sure. So, there are really three phases when we think about it. The first phase is how do we come up with the right way to Put together the money needed to develop the book. 

And that's sort of the first piece. And what we do is we ask authors to put up that money. the second phase of it is how do we print the book? Like where do we come up with the money to print the book? And again, that's the second phase and authors in our model. By the inventory and they yeah, they buy it, and they own it, which gives them lots of other options for how they can use that inventory. 

We can go back to that one second. And then the third is promotion. So, what are they going to do to sort of promote and put the book out into the market? What we do is we say. So, there's some money that an author's going to spend upfront. It's really in those first two phases, the third phase, that promotion phase, they're going to spend that money, whether they're working with somebody like me, or they're going to commercially publish the book or even self-published the book. 

What we then do from a, from a business model standpoint is we say, So the author will give you the publisher share of the revenue. So, in a traditional model, they're probably making anywhere between two and three times as much money on every book that's published. And what we do as bar press is we take the author share; we'll take that smaller share. 

So, the reason that the first part of what we look for in the books that we want to do is a big problem for big audiences is that we as a publisher still take on risks like a traditional publisher in that sure. The money that sure. We need some money to be able to develop the book, but. 

Usually, it's, it's a, you know, a small amount of money versus our ability to what the, what the book's going to make over a long period of time. And so, what we want is we want books to be successful over a long period of time. and frankly, to sell a lot of copies because really that's where we ended up making here money as a publisher. 

Josh Steimle: So, can you walk us through, I'm just a big fan of the one thing I've read it a couple of times, I think it's sold 2 million copies at this point or something that was a huge success. 

A lot of people know that book. Can you walk us through that experience and what it was like working on that book? Or were you with Bard Press at the point that that book was published?  

Todd Sattersten: Yeah, so I was working with Ray, sort of consulting with him on the book, but I wasn't a Bard Press yet. I could certainly talk to what we did. I mean the most important part of that book and what made us so interested in it is, you know, two or three different things. One is, what a great concept, how easy is it to talk about that concept with someone else? I mean, some people even argue that it's sort of too simple, like, you know, the one thing do the one thing and it solves all your problems, but what's great about that book is they, they go much further into it. 

Isn't it just sort of focus and priority. It's about habit-building it's about goal setting. I think the first thing that made that book work, it was literally, the concept I think the cover they came up with is iconic. A lot of people have seen it. I think the second thing that really worked about that book was that the book aligned with the business. 

Gary Keller and Jay Papasan are both executives at Keller Williams, the largest real estate company in the world. At the time they were, I think they were just bumping up against that being the largest, but now they are. And so, what they had was a built-in audience for this book, and the built-in audience being that you had real estates all over the country and Frank. 

They were building worldwide audiences who have this problem that they need to find clients every day. They've got to get on the phone every day and do the work of, you know, they talk about it off. A lot of color wins, 20 contacts, a day, 20 contacts a day is going to turn it into one scheduled appointment. 

You know, our three schedule appointments are going to turn into one listing. So, the, the message of the book and putting that book out into this, you know, a vast set of people, vast network matched up really well. And so, you have this book that matches up well with a particular message that there shouldn't send it to their audience. 

So, I think it was those two combinations of things. So the ability, so, I mean, frankly, that book, we sold a hundred, 120,000 copies of that book in the first six weeks the book was on sale. So, the lesson there isn't. That you need 120,000 people to buy your book in the first six weeks that it's out, the stronger lesson for me is how do you align the book that you're going to write with the audience that you're mostly talking to? 

They could run any number of other books and not have that kind of demand for the book because the solution that they were delivering did not match a problem with their audience. So, I think what really worked about that was the alignment of the problem with the solution that the folks that they were working with Dina most. 

Josh Steimle: Now, if you're only working with one client per year, there must be a lot of people that you're turning away. How do you decide, I mean, you already gave us some insight into, you know, big problems big solutions, big audiences but you must be turning away a lot of books that you say would be great, but we have to pick one? 

Right. And so, what are some of the projects that you've had to turn away that your kind of maybe wish you could have taken on?  

Todd Sattersten: When I think about the things that we're looking for at Bard press, what I'm looking for is, you've mentioned a couple of them. I want a concept that I can either see or clearly develop into A clear value proposition for anybody who sees it on the shelf. 

I think that's incredibly important. And usually, you could see that pretty early on in our project, and you may not know what the title or subtitle for the book is right off the bat, but you can sort of developing your way to it. I'm really looking for that alignment between the author and the book in their business. 

And so, I think. I'm amazed how often authors sort of getting this idea that they want to write a book. And they're really excited about an idea, but it doesn't align with the business that they're. That they're in. And so, or the business that they're going to be in three to five years from now. And I think that's an important part of this. 

It might be a book that works well for them, but it doesn't translate to where they're going. And I think that I think that component's really important because it's going to take a year or two or three for that book to reach. Full sort of saturation as far out as that book is going to get into the market. 

I think if you don't have that alignment, you can have a really difficult time because your behaviors as that author, aren't going to be fully aligned with. Am I always connecting my book to the work that I'm doing? So that's a really important component for me. I would say the other one that's really important to me when I'm considering projects is I want an author who is has to experience either as someone who's sold something, someone who has marketed something, or someone who's been an entrepreneur, I think. 

You get a lot of nos when you start publishing books, like you get a lot of people, either directly or indirectly interacting with this product that you've created. And before that book is out on the market, it's it didn't exist. Right. There was no place that this thing was before. And so. Launching something from nothing to, you know, something where there's an audience and people are buying it, it takes a lot of work, and it takes a certain kind of attitude towards that. 

Being able to sort of accept the work that's going to be necessary. And I think those sort of art types that salesperson or marketing person or entrepreneur has the right mindset going in. I think people who don't often have to learn that, and that could be a really hard thing for the, for that first book that they do. 

Josh Steimle: Are there any projects that you passed up on that then went on to be great commercial successes, and you look at and say, ah, man, I wish we could have taken that one on,  

Todd Sattersten: I don't know if I have a story quite like that. I do have stories of projects that I've looked at that I wish would have been better than I wish, you know, gosh, I wish they would've made that decision with that book. 

But I think the trick with that question is that. There are so many people that can interact with a book. Someone describing it to you or are you seeing in our proposal to the book is finished, you're going to have an author, an agent, a set of editors, salespeople, a publisher. So a lot of times I think that the projects that sometimes I see very early on don't end up looking anything like they do once they hit the marketplace. 

Cause so many other people ended up interacting with them. So I think it's difficult. Say, oh gosh, should I have done that book? I think more often, what I'm interested in is who was involved in that project and how did that thing evolve into the book that it became? I always find that a very fascinating part of the process. 

Josh Steimle: What are some of the projects you're working on? What is the project you're working on right now? 

Todd Sattersten: Yeah. So the project I'm working on right now is a leadership title. The client is the Kansas leadership center. They're based in Wichita, Kansas, and they have been doing leadership development in Kansas in particular. 

But, now that they've moved out, Doing leadership, route both nationally and internationally. And the working title for the book is called when everyone leads. And the premise of the book is that when we say leadership, we almost immediately think of it as a position, or we think about it as an authority and what KPC believes is that leadership is actually an activity. 

It's a thing that you have an opportunity to do in every moment. And so what does it mean to. Act as a leader or lead more as a verb versus a noun. So yeah, we're a year away from it. It's still in development, you know. So you're like, Hey, what's the book you work at? I, well, that's as much as I can tell you about it right now, Josh, because we're writing the manuscript, we're hoping that concept to try to figure out what it is, but you know when everyone leads is the name. 

Josh Steimle: Now, it sounds like you get more involved than just publishing the book. Are you involved with the writing of the book, the strategy of the book, at what point do you get involved with authors, and what's the full scope of the services that you're providing?  

Todd Sattersten: I like to get involved as early as I possibly can. 

So, I'm, I'm probably in an if you compare it to a traditional model, I'll almost look more like an agent in that. I look at lots of ideas. I might hone that idea with the author and then. Like a traditional publisher in that. We take that idea then and develop it even further. I guess what I would say is that for me I think one of the benefits of working with somebody like Bard is that We want to build a set of connection points, literally from the cover to the jacket, copy to the table of contents, to the first words that somebody reads within the book and connecting all of those ideas together, I think is some, is an opportunity that's missed often. 

And a lot of books, like we kind of, get something with the title, the subtitle, somewhat promises, what the book's going to be about. We want to borrow, to design a product, almost a, has like a user interface to it that like you move through these different touchpoints to get yourself acclimated to the idea. 

And then. Be able to fully immerse yourself in the book once you actually get to the beginning of that writing. So all of it, Josh, all of it is probably the best description of, of what I describe it. And so that's the development side and that then leads into the other side. When we're developing a book, we're thinking about how we're going to also market that book. 

So what am I, the key message is going to be, when I launched the book who are the kinds of people that I want to endorse the book? What are the key audiences that are going to be both? Connected with that given author, but also maybe be a little bit further disconnected that we could reach out to and connect them to a particular book. 

So that whole stretch, literally from idea all the way through a year or two years after the book launches is when you say, when are we involved? It's, it's all of it. 

Josh Steimle: You're launching a book per year. Right. But does that mean you're working on a few books at the same time because you have books in different stages? 

Todd Sattersten: Yeah, I would say on a regular basis, we're probably signing one book a year. Because of that process of how long does it take to write the book? What's the right time of year for a book to get out into the marketplace, the match, the best time of year for the book. You know what the best calendar time might be for a given author, the launch, some can look differently. 

It's not unusual for us to maybe we might launch two books each year, or there may be a year. We don't launch a book because. We have a book that's doing so well that we want to stay with that book longer. And we know that that effort that we put next to that book is going to be rewarded even more highly. 

So, I would say. Every year. I want to try to find an author to work with, and I want to work with them on a book. A lot of times a number of our authors apart press we've published multiple books with them. And so there's also kind of that process of what's the right timing for them. Should I be publishing a book with them every year? 

Should it be every other year? It shouldn't be every three years. So. Usually, there's a number of things that we're trying to balance around the actual publishing side of the strategy.  

Josh Steimle: So now when Gary Keller, for example, comes in with the one thing, he buys a bunch of books. Now that book, if I'm not mistaken, that did become a New York Times bestseller, is that right? 

Todd Sattersten: Yeah, I think it was, I think it made it to number two. but it wasn't a number one best-seller  

Josh Steimle: Number two is not too bad though. That became a New York Times bestseller. Now some people will say, oh, if you want to have a New York Times bestseller, you must work with one of the big publishers. One of the New York publishers, you must have a New York PR firm and all this stuff. 

What's your response to that because obviously, you're not in New York, and yet one of these books became a New York Times bestseller?  

Todd Sattersten: Sure. Yeah. I think that's I'm going to answer your question and then I'm going to pose, I think another question. So, I think the first question that was sort of unasked there is, does making a bestseller list matter. 

I think that's the first question you must ask for a given author in each book. And then the second question is how do I do that? Well, what do I need to do? Who do I need to work with to do that? I want to make sure I answer the first question because I'm not sure every book needs to be a bestseller to be successful as a matter of. 

Our research has shown that we're more interested in how many copies of books sells over a year versus how many copies of books sells in the first two or three months? Success tends to dry out over a much longer period. It's more predictive of how well the book is going to do. To your second question of, who do you need to work with? 

I mean, I, I think the reality of the bestseller list, is this. You need to be able to sell a certain number of copies. That's going to come from a variety of sources. There's going to be. The direct sales, kind of like what you referred to with, with Gary and with Keller Williams. So, you may have an author who knows that they have a set of speaking events. 

They have a set of clients that will buy the book when the book comes out. Maybe they have an email list that they can, you know, activate to be able to buy the book. When the book comes out normally with the bestseller list, you're activating that. All that activity had a short window. 

Like you're trying to make all that stuff happen within a week or within two weeks. On the other side, you've got organic what we call organic sales. So that's where a PR firm can be helpful, where they're going to generate additional publicity. They're going to generate podcast interviews again, coordinating all the activities to connect around a launch. 

Do you need to have, do you need to work with a new? Publisher to make the best of all this know those important things you need to generate enough sales. There are authors now that are making the bestseller list. Using lightning source, which if you've talked about them in the past, they are simply making their book available through Ingram's lightning source service, and they're selling enough copies to be able to make the wall street journal list in each week. 

There are many ways to make the best list I would argue. And I think we're finding it happen across that entire spectrum of commercial publishing, literally all the way to self-publishing.  

Josh Steimle: That's great information. And a Lightning Source for those who don't know, it's a division of Ingram Spark. Ingram Spark being the largest self-publishing platform outside of perhaps Amazon KDP, and then Lightning Sources is this division for publishers is essentially to use Ingram Spark Services and get a little bit higher quality maybe. 

Todd Sattersten: Well, I think the most important part of. Of what I would highlight about Lightning Source or Spark. I can't remember which their external brand is now are they distributed to everybody. 

Whereas if, if you publish on KDP, you're only going to be able to be essentially selling your books on Amazon. And you know, one of my big pieces of advice that I tell folks who are leaning towards the self-publishing side is to say, you know, you're leaving sales on the table. If your book is only available through Amazon. 

And so, I think an option more like the lightning source is a better place to be because, um, they'll distribute it to all retailers. So, it's amazing to see. Single individuals now using that service to distribute essentially to all these retailers to generate sales and that they're able to generate enough sales, to be able to make to sell the thousands of copies that you need in a single week to make the bestseller list. 

Josh Steimle: It's amazing how developed the self-publishing market has become because a lot of people think, oh, self-publishing, Amazon KDP. I go there, I do it all, but I just went through this with one of my books and. You do the Kindle version and then you do the print version on Amazon. And then they just, I just showed up in my KDP account for a hardcover version on Amazon KDP. 

And it's not the jacket. It's where they're actually printing on the actual cover. What do you call that that's case bound or case? Yep. So they, so Amazon's doing all that, but then if you want to get into Barnes and noble, you go and you set up with Barnes and noble press and you do the eBook there for Knuck, and you do the print and Barnes and noble does hardcover now. 

So you can do that. And then you go to the lightning source or Ingram spark, and you do it there so that you can get into all the other bookstores you really end up making. And then there's audible. Right. And there's all that. So, it's like, and then you've got Kobo and all these different places you end up publishing like 15 versions of your book to cover all these markets that are out there. 

Of course, you can just go on Amazon KDP and just do a Kindle book. You could just do that one version of your book and some people that's what they do, and they focus on it. But if you want to be everywhere, you really are going out there and making. 12 to 15 versions of your  

Todd Sattersten: book. Yeah. And I think that I think the question that you're asking yourself when you decide to do those additional things, is, is that additional work worth the additional sales, right? 

That I think I could potentially get. I think that one of the things that you're, you're playing off against, you know, if you think about the extremes of commercial publishing versus self-publishing is commercial publishing is one of the advantages is. They have privileged relationships with everyone that sells books. 

You know, the typical commercial publisher is going to have access to 10-12,000 retail accounts. That's independence, that's Barnes and noble accounts that, Anthropology, it's urban Outfitters it's gift shops. It's specialty sorters that sell books. As you know, in my space, there's a couple of companies that do nothing but sell books in bulk to corporations through either marketing programs or gifting programs. 

So, I think the question you're getting at is what's the right way to scale that book. I think that's the core question of, do I just do it on Amazon? Is that going to be good enough for me? Or where are my customers? Where do I need to be, to have the most success? Because a lot of times adding those additional books does additional places. 

It depends on the author. It depends on the book. And if it's going to, if it's worth that additional effort. 

Josh Steimle: Right, because if you've got an author, who's saying, hey, I'm writing this book because I do 30 speaking engagements a year, and I'd love to do 40 instead of 30. Well, gee, you can just go print the book yourself and send out a couple of copies to your audience. 

You don't need to get it anywhere. You don't need to be in Barnes & Noble. You don't even need to be on Amazon. You could just get a handful of copies printed and mail them out yourself to your ideal audience. And you could probably get those speaking gigs.  

Right. But. Hey, I'm trying to build a nationwide business here and I need high profile visibility of my name and this book as a vehicle to get that done because I'm growing this business that has offices in all 50 states. 

Your goals are going to be extremely different than the first.  

Todd Sattersten: I think you're delineating a really important decision there where I think there's a certain kind of publishing where you're publishing to speak to the audience that you already know. And to the audience that doesn't know, your kind of saying if they find me. 

If they don't, that's fine too. And I think that's a very particular kind of publishing that you're doing there or when you're making that decision. And I am 100% fine with that decision. And that's going to try, that's going to move you in a particular direction around who you're going to work with, who you're gonna distribute through, who's going to, who you're going to let sell your book the minute that you make that decision. 

I don't want to do 30 events a year. I want to do a hundred events a year, or I want to do 30 events a year. And I want to go from a $7,000 keynote to a $20,000 keynote. We're getting ourselves into a very different decision matrix. We're in a very different spot. The most important part, in that case, maybe that I need lots of people to know who I am that don't know who I am right now. 

And that's where you can in those decisions. I think that that commercial publishing to self-publishing, as in someone else's going to do all of it too, I'm going to do all of it. That entire spectrum. Hybrid somewhere along in there, but am I going to hire a publicist potentially for that self-published book? 

Could that help me self-publishing does not? I think there was a time when a self-published book had a difficult time getting the interest of media. I don't think we're in that era anymore. We've moved past that. So sometimes it's just figuring out what are the right pieces to plug into. What you want your book to be and what a successful launch. 

I think the most important part is understanding your goal. But the most important thing I just want to say is what, what I'm starting to see more and more. And, and I'm cautiously advising authors to think hard about this is that. Because it's so much easier to publish your book now that they are not even considering the opportunities to scale their book beyond what they've done or beyond what they could potentially do. 

Whereas in the past, your only option was to go big sale. It was your only option was to be big enough or to convince a publisher to work with you. So, I think the only. One of the things I think is worth talking about is exploring. When you're thinking about your book is have you done enough to consider the amount of scale you can bring to it and what that could potentially do for your business? 

Josh Steimle: It's easy to play small because there are so many opportunities you can keep busy. It's easy to keep busy. If there's something in front of you and you say, I can do this, I can run Amazon ads. Well, then you can bury yourself just an Amazon and get so focused on Amazon ads that you lose track. 

Why am I doing this? And what else could I be doing with this time and money that I'm spending on these ads? It's just easy to play author or play publisher rather than taking a step back and thinking strategically about why am I doing this? And what's the real goal? What could I really be doing here? 

Todd Sattersten: Yeah. And I, I, you know, another piece of research that we did a couple of years ago we started a couple of years ago. We published it earlier this year. A lot of times people ask me, how many copies should I try to sell? Like what should be my goal? And I think that's a worthy question, but I've never had a really good answer for it. 

There is no average for the average number of copies of books cells there. You know, it's actually, what's called a power-law distribution where there's a few, a few books that sell a lot of copies. There was one thing and atomic habits and good to crates in the business space. And there are a lot of titles that only sell a few copies. 

And so, you there's this kind of very heavy parade or rule of, you know, it isn't. 80 20 it's more like 90 10 or 99. One in terms of, you know, successful books do really, really, really, well. Um, but what we were interested in trying to come up with is when someone asks what's the right number of copies to sell what's enough and there's kind of. 

I often quote a number that if you sell 10,000 copies, that's the market, you should try to get past. We started there, we said, what happens to a book that sells less than 10,000 copies in its first year? What's the, what's the long-term sort of outlook for that book. And what we found was that. Only 11%. 

So let's just call it one in 10 books ever exceed 10,000 copies. So if you can't sell 10,000 copies in the first year, the chance of you ever getting past 10,000 copies is highly unlikely. Now, again, what I'm talking about here is that author who wants something more, who's trying to build the audience beyond just the people that they think they can sell to. 

What's interesting is that if I can get past those 10,000 copies in the first year, it turns out that I have a 42% chance of getting to 25,000 copies. Like, I like those odds. I like those odds. And I think as you know as a salesperson, as a marketer, as an entrepreneur, as an author, those are odds that you can almost be willing to invest in that if you can find your way to get past that 10,000 copy, mark and scale this book. 

I think the long-term prospects for both the success of that book long-term. More importantly, the success of your business and how much it's going to grow as a result of that book. I think those numbers play out nicely. And so I think. Think bigger about your book, because I think there's, there's potential there that you might be leaving on the table. 

Josh Steimle: So, as we wrap things up here, Todd, you wrote this book, a hundred best business books of all time, and I love business books and a lot of our listeners love business books. What are some of your favorite business books of all time?  

Todd Sattersten: My response, always the backpack. The question is what's the problem you're working on. 

You know, what's the problem that you're trying to deal with because I don't think we randomly go to the bookshelf and just say, I want the best book of business book of all time. The question where we're normally asking ourselves is what's the problem that I'm trying to work with. And what's my best solution to that. 

So, if I'm in the office, So I'm going to take a pretend for a minute that I'm the person that just asked me that question is an author is trying to figure out how can I be successful in the marketplace? How can I be more successful? How should I think about my book? The book I would think of is I would go back and read purple cow by Seth Godin.  

It's a wonderful book on, how to be remarkable and not remarkable as in. Interesting, but more remarkable as in, how do you get people to talk about what it is that you're doing? I think that's, still an evergreen idea that we don't leverage enough. I think if you're working on a book and trying to figure out how to like to build the right messaging and framing around it, I would have people go read, made to stick. 

It's still my favorite, one of my favorite books by chip Heath and Dan Heath. That book has a very simple model for how to make ideas, stickier you know, make them simple, make them unexpected, provide concrete examples, make sure that they're credible, make sure there's emotion and make sure you use stories that serve that's the framework. 

I think all of those if you sort of think through what your laughing times exactly what you're trying to do with the book, the package, everything in it, Made the stick has a good framework for that. I think the last book I recommend for people is positioning by Al Reese and Jack trout. 

What this book teaches is that you need to, you need to own a space, you need to own a word. You need to create high contrast for the thing that you're working on. And I think with books, the biggest problem we have is that there are. You know, 10-15,000 new business books are published every year. 

And the biggest problem is that we need a way to be able to distinguish our work from everyone else. So recent trout do the best job of teaching us how to create that unique positioning for the work that.  

Josh Steimle: Great ones. Those are some of my favorites as well. So, if people want to learn more about Bard Press, they want to connect with you. 

They want to sign up for your newsletter, which is phenomenal by the way, Todd has a newsletter, and he talks about publishing and books and such, and there's some well thought out great content in those newsletters. Where can people connect with you and get access to more of your thoughts?  

Todd Sattersten: It's easy to find us at bardpress.com. Like Josh just said, we have a monthly newsletter that we send out talking both about what's going on in the business book market, but also, you know, how authors should think about the work that they're doing. And it's easy to sign up for that newsletter. 

There's a silent spot at the bottom of every page on the website. We'd love to have more people find out about the work that we're doing.  

Josh Steimle: Perfect. Thanks so much, Todd, for being with us here on the show. 

 

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