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Sinusitus relief

30,000,000 people suffer from sinusitis, making it the most popular (!) disease in the US. I've had it off and on for years.

After much research, I'd like to share three tips:

This book is the single best one on the topic. It's smart and practical.

You might buy a nasal irrigator and use it twice a day. It's super weird, and it costs $100, and it works. Really.

And you could (I know, it's horrible) drink two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar every day.

This post is totally off topic, but if I can help a few of you make it through a long winter, it was worth it.

(Actually, to bring it back on topic, the question is: why didn't you know about this stuff already? The answer is that people don't like to talk about it. They don't like recommending a book about health because what if you don't like it or it backfires? And they certainly don't like talking about nasal irrigation. Who would? At a dinner party? At a golf game? When, exactly, does it come up in conversation? It turns out that word of mouth is a complex beast. Certain ideas spread merely because they're fun to talk about. Others, even if they're good ideas, languish. Not a lot you can do about this, unless you can hook your product or service to an idea that's naturally viral, as opposed to insisting that the market do the right thing.)

Building books that sell in the digital age

Jeff sent over this video, which I didn’t know was online. It’s almost two years old, and more informal (and a lot more self-focused) than my usual talks.

In my presentations, I don’t often go into detail about the tactics I’ve used on books I’ve marketed, so if that’s something you’re interested in, here you go. I hope the lessons from the book business work for you, whatever you sell.

[It’s possible that you won’t see the visuals at the link above. If that one doesn’t work change the format source on the right just below the box that holds the video.]

Sell like you buy

Here are the two most common pleas I hear from marketers,

"Our product is as remarkable as we can make it, and we're trying really hard and it's very important to us that people buy it, but despite our hard work, it's not selling!" (Hint: calling it a purple cow doesn't make it one).


"Our business is built around the status quo, and it's not fair that the market wants something else now."

In both cases, the marketing pitch is focused around the seller, not the buyer. You wouldn't (and don't) buy from someone who says you ought to choose them even though there's a cooler, more remarkable, cheaper, better product. You don't seek out or talk about status quo brands merely because the marketer is trying really hard.

If it's not good enough for you as a consumer, why should it be good enough for you as a marketer?

“Hop in, I’ll drive.”

Just because someone offers you a lift, doesn't mean you have to take it.

In a joint venture or possible business arrangement, it's reassuring when the other person offers to drive. "Leave it to me," they might say, or, "I'm socializing this through the organization… be patient, I've done this before and we need to do it this way."

Often, this is true. It's the honest appraisal of a generous insider, someone who wants both of you to succeed.

But, just as you should never get in a car with a drunk driver, understand that the minute you let the other person drive, you've bought into their process. Spending three months or three years following someone off a cliff is nuts.

I'd rather disappoint you today and refuse your offer of a lift than end up with both of us having wasted hours and hours of time somewhere further down the road. No, you can't pitch this to your husband, that's my job. No, I won't stand by and watch you mangle this before the board. No, we're not going to interact with customers your way merely because it's the only way you know.

Thanks, but I'll drive this time.