Bestselling Author & Speaker, Nick Boothman
On this week’s episode we’re speaking with New York Times bestselling author, Nick Boothman. He’s taught his revolutionary techniques of rapport by design to thousands of corporations, colleges and universities all over the world, including Harvard and the London Business School. His first two books, How to Make People Like you in 90 Seconds or Less and How to Connect in Business in 90 Seconds or Less, have been translated into 30 languages.
Where it All Began
Nick Boothman was a fashion photographer for 25 years. Occasionally, he would be invited to and talk to camera clubs. On one such occasion, he figured his audience had probably read everything about photography and decided to flip the script.
His speech was five minutes of photography and 55 minutes on how to connect with people really fast. Later on, three people: a doctor, a teacher and airline personnel tutor came up to Nick and asked him to do the speech for their people. Specifically, they were interested in the 55-minute bit.
Nick then decided to become a speaker and do away with photography. The following day, after brainstorming with his wife, he rented half the ballroom in the local Holiday Inn and invited all his photography clients to his $28 speech. Just over 80 people showed up and Nick was thrilled.
To develop his new career, Nick realized he needed a book, and preferably a best seller with a killer title. He vowed not go out or get dressed that day until he’d written 1,500 words no matter what they were. He eventually wrote a self-published book.
Before even creating a finished and polished copy, one speaking client asked Nick to carry his book for the speech because he kept saying he was writing a book. A local publisher with a basic Xerox machine printed off 200 copies of the book, which was all Nick could afford.
Noting the high demand for his book after the speech, Nick set aside 10 copies of the book and sent them to New York Founder, a top literary agent that wrote the book, The Complete Idiots Guide to Getting Published. The agent found Nick a conventional publishing house and in no time, Nick had a contract and a six-figure advance.
Desperation is the Key to Success
Nick Boothman discovered that it’s not enough to want to be a speaker or an author. When you put ourselves in a position of desperation and your goal becomes a necessity, you start to find several resources within yourself.
Nick was desperate when he arrived in Canada. He succeeded because he had no choice. He literally sold his camera to ensure he invested all his energy into becoming a speaker because it was the ultimate goal. He did this despite getting offers for $3,000 photography gigs at a time when he was broke.
Importance of Eye-catching Titles
For his first book, Nick came up with the killer title “How to Make People like you in 90 seconds or Less.” When he presented it to Jane Somerville, she introduced him to their acquisitions editor and bought the world rights. Nick left her office with $10k advance and a contract.
Nick reveals some secrets about his titles:
The title must have a benefit in it, either implied or definite. If you buy a book called The Barbecue Bible, it’s obvious what that’s about and what the benefit is.
•Easy to understand
The should be something around the title that help bookstores or book reviewers, know what section of the bookstore it should go in. If you write a book called Fast, for example, and bookstores don’t know where to put it, the book will get lost in the pile.
•Addresses your audience
If it’s a book about cooking, who is your primary audience? It’s not food lovers and cooks. It’s book reviewers, book bloggers, and television and radio segment producers. These people can put your book in front of lots of other people. No one’s going to buy your book if they don’t even know it exists.
Secrets to Rising to the Top and Staying there
Nick is a Workman author. Workman is one of the top non-fiction publishers in the world. However, what made Nick’s books sell is not something that’s exclusive to traditionally published authors. In fact, as a self-published author or an aspiring one, you can become a bestseller too.
Nick’s book tour was packed with activity. In a 20-day tour, Nick did 6 early morning TV’s, 6 drivetime radios and 6 newspapers because they won’t do printing until the next day. He also did half hour interviews for special programs and then the day would end with a book signing.
It goes to show that publicity cannot be underestimated. Nick acknowledges that there are so many agents and so many publicists and it’s much harder to get the attention of influencers.
•Get a following
Having a following makes publicity so much easier. You can make yourself a regular on podcast shows, for example. Get onto radio shows. Ultimately, it boils down to desperation. It makes you willing to do what other people wouldn’t be willing to do.
•Don’t get into a Comfort Zone
Although he is no longer desperate, Nick has not stopped pushing his limits. In January this year. he spoke and traveled more than he had ever done in his entire career. He spoke in Toronto, L.A, San Diego, Orlando, again in Toronto and twice in Tehran. It was a six-figure month.
Ken Dunn has witnessed firsthand, the last 18 years of Nick’s journey. He is baffled by Nick’s resilience and tenacity. Probably the biggest takeaway from Nick’s story for anybody that is trying to become successful with a book is the tenacity that’s involved.
Writing A Sellable Book
Nick’s book has helped hundreds of authors to actually write their books. Several people say they want to write a book and either they never start, or they start, write Chapter One then spend the next four years polishing paragraph three on page two. They never get to the end of it.
Nick’s idea was to help people to write a sellable book: you have to first write the book. His technique has been demonstrated at workshops where people would arrive at 5:00 on Friday and leave at 3:00 on Sunday with a complete finished first manuscript by using this system. It’s a pretty basic and unedited manuscript but it now exists.
From there, you can move on to the next steps to create a bestselling book. Nick calls it “writing madly”. Basically, it’s automatic writing, where you write without stopping once you know what you’re going to be writing about.
Hundreds of authors have followed Nick’s advice in the book and managed to write their books. You can visit WASBfreebook.com to get a free copy of the book. You only pay for the shipping.
To get in touch with Nick, visit Nicholasboothman.com
Stay tuned for the next episode of Bestseller Confessions