December 18, 2023
Planning for the New Year
with Your Books
7 Things to Consider When Creating Your Plan
Episode 51: Planning for the New Year with Your Books
The new year is a blank page waiting for your story. Now is the time to envision your future and strategize for a successful 2024. In this episode of The Author Switch Podcast, Carma Spence shares secrets to setting ambitious yet realistic goals and crafting a year of triumph with your books. Watch now and kickstart the New Year with inspiration, insight, and the foundational elements of a rockin’ New Year plan!
Recap & Takeaways
- 01:49 Goal Setting for the Year
- 02:49 Content Planning and Marketing Strategy
- 05:34 Financial Planning and Budgeting
- 06:53 Time Management and Productivity
- 07:46 Reflecting on the Past Year
- 08:36 Course Correction
Transcript for Episode 51: Planning for the New Year with Your Books
Happy New Year! Okay, it’s not quite the new year as I’m recording this, but how many of you are getting an image of a giant snowman in your head?
It is coming down to the end of the year and it is time to start planning for a successful new year and a successful, in this case, 2024. And in this episode, I’m going to be sharing some areas that you might consider putting into your new year plan.
Hi and welcome to episode 51 of The Author Switch Podcast. I’m your host, Carma Spence, and I help entrepreneurs write, publish, and launch their lead-generating book in 90 days or less.
Now, I know it’s getting a little bit late to really be doing this planning. You probably should have started in October or November, but I’ve got your back because you may have been putting it off because you didn’t know what to include.
So I’m going to give you some ideas of what you can include in your New Year plan so that you can have a successful New Year. Now, the reason why this stuff is all top of mind. In the new year, I’m going to be launching one book a month. So I really needed to dial in on my plan.
So the first thing that you do is figure out what are your goals for the new year? You want to figure out what your sales targets are. Are there any new markets you want to get into? Do you want to expand your reader base? What business goals and book goals do you want to achieve in the new year? And you want to do that for each quarter as well as the whole year.
I recommend starting with the whole year and then backing up each quarter so that each quarter builds upon the next. culminating in a fantastic December in 2024. So once you’ve got your goals down, or at least an idea of what they are, start dialing them in and make them more specific. And if you can assign them to each quarter or even each month, that will help you develop the rest of your plan, because you will know what goals or milestones you are trying to achieve each individual month.
Now the second thing you want to consider is your content planning and strategy. And that’s multifold. So if you’re going to be writing a new book in the new year, or like me, 12 new books in the new year, you’re going to want to decide what content needs to go in each of those books. I’ve actually already come up with working titles for all 12 of the books I’m going to write, and I even have outlines for some of them.
And what content do you need to be producing in your social media, on your blog, in your YouTube, wherever you produce content? What kind of content do you need to produce and when do you need to post it in order to promote that book or those books that you’re going to be writing in the new year.
And if you’re not doing a new book, maybe you just want to increase sales of a book you’ve already published. Again, what content will lead people to say, “Hey, I want her book, his book.” Also drop it into your calendar.
A good way to come up with content for the year, if you, if you aren’t doing this around specific books, you can also use the idea of themes. Magazines do this all the time. Every month is assigned a theme and all the content for that particular issue of the magazine revolves around that particular theme.
You also want to align. your book and your content goals with your business milestones. So if you have sales targets for individual months, how much of that sales target do you want your books to contribute to? And how do your books contribute to those sales targets? Is it royalties you’re talking about?
Because remember the, you’ll be receiving royalties, if this is an Amazon, other platforms might have a different thing, different cadence. But in Amazon, your sales in January, you don’t receive until three months later in like March or April. So you need to take that into account.
And finally, what platforms do you want to emphasize promoting your book?
Do you want to start with your blog and then promote the blog and the blog promotes the book? Do you want to promote your book directly on social media? Do you want to do some new videos around it?
And so like what you’re going to do in Instagram is probably going to be different than what you’re going to do on LinkedIn, which is going to be different than what you do on YouTube.
Because these are all different platforms. The algorithms favor different types of content. So you want to, if you can, if you’ve got the bandwidth for it, you want to tailor your content to the specific platform.
Now, another thing you need to consider Is your financial planning and budgeting. So you’ve kind of got your greater idea of what you’re gonna be doing and when you’re gonna be doing it. What kind of money do you need to put behind that? Are you gonna run Facebook ads to move to your book? Are you gonna put Facebook ads to move to your blog?
Are you gonna come up with a new opt-in and put Facebook ads to that? And not just Facebook ads, there’s Twitter ads, YouTube ads. Google ads. What kind of money are you going to need to put behind this? And maybe you want to learn a new skill to help you market your book and your business. So how much money will a course or a mentor cost you?
So you want to start figuring out, it doesn’t have to, none of this has to be exact. These are all sort of like guidelines, ballpark figures just to help guide you. It’s like a roadmap and like I said when I was talking about outlines you can always take a side trip, you know You’re heading down the road and you see the big sign. There’s a big ball of yarn. “Oh, I want to pull over and see the big ball of yarn!” You can do that. But it helps you get back on track if you’ve got these goals and milestones mapped out for the year.
Now that you’ve kind of figured out what you’re gonna do, when you’re gonna do it, and how much it’s gonna cost you to do it, now you need to start thinking about time and productivity.
How are you going to accomplish the goals that you set out for yourself? How much time do you need to dedicate to each task? And I highly, highly recommend adding extra time. If you think something takes you 15 minutes, budget half an hour. If you think something’s gonna take you an hour, Budget three hours because things always turn out to take a little bit longer than you thought.
And if you double or triple the amount of time that you think it’ll take, you’ll probably get it in on time. And if you have extra time, yay, read a book, hug your kid, pet the cat. Do something relaxing. Take a bubble bath.
And finally, and this is something I recommend doing every like November, December, is reflect on the year that has passed and put that into your plan for next year. Set aside a weekend, a week, where you just sit back and you reflect on what went right that year, what could use improvement if you decide to do it again next year, what worked so you do it some more, what didn’t work so you either tweak it or let it go, and if you really want bonus points on this one, do it more than once a year.
Do at the end of every quarter. How did that quarter go? Because if you do it every quarter, you’re able to make the course corrections you need to make in order to better reach that end of year goal that you had set for yourself.
And that’s, that’s the last thing, is add in time and jot down some strategies for how you might course correct if things go south.
Or east or west or north and not the direction you thought they were going to go. All those things go into a relatively comprehensive New Year plan, but one that can pivot when you need it to. Because life happens and the best-laid plans, whether you’re a mice or a man, don’t always go according to plan.
So I recommend that you take this weekend, if you’ve got it, to do these things. Just think about your goals. For the new year, think about the content you’re going to need to create in order to reach those goals. Think about how much money you’re going to need to invest to reach those goals. What kind of marketing and promotions do you need to do?
Figure out how you’re going to do this, how you’re going to fit it into the life you have. And what you might find out is, as you’re doing all this, you’ll realize, Holy cow! I was being way too ambitious. I need to dial it back. It’s better for you to figure that out now while it’s on paper than when you’re in the throes of it and have to basically say, I’m sorry, I didn’t really mean what I said I was going to do after you’ve announced something and found out that you can’t do it because it’s just too overwhelming.
And then always remember to reflect. And when you reflect, yes, you will notice things that went wrong, but do your best to pay attention to the things that went right. Because things did go right. They always do. Hold on to those moments and have a wonderful, successful new year.
This is Carma Spence of The Author Switch Podcast, saying. Ciao for now!