Saturday, July 11, 2009

Review: The X and Y of Buy

In The X and Y of Buy, Elizabeth Pace makes the claim that because men and women think differently those of us who must try to sell products and services must take into account those differences if we hope to make the sale. Throughout the book, she notes differences, such as how women tend to buy from people within their network and men tend to buy from people within the same organization.

If the assertions Elizabeth Pace makes throughout the book are accurate, the book will help your company reach out to the half of the population that you are not currently reaching. She does provide references to back up many of her claims.

Frequently, she brings up the topic of primitive man and relates the hunter/gatherers of that time to modern man. It is unclear whether she is saying that modern man is the way we are because out ancestors were the way they were or if she is saying that the same traits that make man and woman different today are the same traits that produced the hunter/gatherer work divisions of that day.

At times, Pace relies heavily upon her own experiences and the experiences of her friends as proof that men act the way they do and women act the way they do. While this doesn’t necessarily invalidate her claims, the book would have been helped had there been a male co-author to provide a view from the other side.

Overall, the book brings up some interesting points that are worth considering as you try to market your products to both men and women.

Blog Like Successful Authors

What do all the big names in Christian publishing—names like Rick Warren, Robin McGraw, Mike Huckabee and Max Lucado—have in common? No, it isn’t doctrine. Yes, they all have a huge platform, but that isn’t it. No, the thing they have in common is that they don’t blog.  Cindy commented yesterday about how it might be interesting to see whether successful authors have more followers who are readers or followers who are writers. The only way to answer that is to ask, so I decided to compose an e-mail message to send to each of the top writers. I went to Mike Hyatt’s blog, where I remembered that he had a list of the top Christian authors, thinking that would be a good place to start. I expected find their e-mail addresses on their websites and if I didn’t I would see if I could contact them through their publishers. As I moved down the list, I quickly noticed the problem. Not only did they not have e-mail addresses, they don’t have blogs. It would do me no good to ask about people who follow a blog that doesn’t exist.

But there are some exceptions. Victoria Osteen has an one-way blog. She or someone who works for her posts to this blog on a regular basis, but comments are not enabled, restricting feedback from readers. T. D. Jakes blogs infrequently. It appears he blogs about once or twice a month. Dave Ramsey is the one true exception to the rule. The other 10 of 13 have no blog, though most have a website of some kind.

The question we might ask is whether they are successful because they had sense enough to ignore blog and focus on more important things, they have no blog because success has put such a strain on them that they don’t have time to blog, or the two things are unrelated. Whatever the case, the path of the hugely successful author may not be a path that an aspiring author should take.

Author Blog Book Publisher Book Sales Rank Overall
Rick Warren None The Purpose of Christmas Howard 1,290,000 2
Jon & Kate Gosselin None Multiple Blessings Zondervan 523,000 12
Victoria Osteen One-Way Love Your Life Free Press 325,000 20
Robin McGraw None What’s Age Got to Do With It Nelson 289,000 28
Dave Ramsey Yes The Total Money Makeover Nelson 252,000 34
Don & Susie Van Ryn None Mistaken Identity Howard 235,000 44
Mike Huckabee None Do the Right Thing Sentinel 232,357 45
David Jeremiah None What in the World is Going On? Nelson 223,000 46
T. D. Jakes Infrequent Before You Do Atria 212,984 49
Joyce Meyer None The Secret to True Happiness Faithwords 190,851 55
Tim Keller None The Reason for God Dutton 155,104 67
John Eldredge None Walking with God Nelson 118,000 96
Max Lucado None Cast of Characters Nelson 110,000 100

Source: Publishers Weekly, via Michael Hyatt's Blog.