Business in Boardshorts Podcast
EP5 – Tyler Wagner
Release Date: December 23, 2020
Location: Miami, FL
Guest Name: Tyler Wagner
Business Name: Authors Unite
Business Website: AuthorsUnite.com
Guest Intro Snippet: In Miami I’ve noticed in the past. I’ve been here for about five years now. I think it’s really growing as an entrepreneurial community. It’s forced this, a cool, vibrant city that was just about partying. And now it’s becoming, this little entrepreneurial hub, that a lot of digital nomads are moving to.
Host Intro: Welcome back and welcome to the business in boardshorts podcast. Today’s guest is Tyler Wagner from Miami, Florida. Tyler, how are you doing?
Guest: I’m doing well man grateful to be on.
Host: So, tell our listeners your business.
Guest: Yeah, for sure. Started it about nine years ago. It’s called authors unite website is authorsunite.com and our, I guess, tagline I guess you could say we help people become successful authors. And we do that in various ways, all the way from helping them write the book, publish the book, and then even more. We focus on the marketing of the book. So yeah, that’s what we do.
Host: How did that get started?
Guest: Yeah, good question. The backstory is I was 20. I’m 29 now. I was 20 years old in college two years in and we actually just spoke about this before we hit record, I read the Four-Hour Workweek by Tim Ferriss, and then it, I don’t, I can’t remember exactly how it happened. But my mindset was just completely shifted. And I was like, “Dude, this degree is not going to do anything for me.” I know it’s not the path for me either way, it gave me courage. And I feel it equipped me with the knowledge I needed or the confidence I needed more, so I dropped out. And then I decided I want to be a public speaker because I’m a pretty personable guy. I love talking to people. I’m going to, I’m going to be a Tony Robbins or something. And I then I quickly realize all these successful public speakers, they’re all authors, and in fact, most of them are best-selling authors. then it occurs to me, “Okay, well, I’m 20 years old, I’m 80 grand in debt just dropped out of school, like I really have no expertise at, you know, in a business sense. Why would anybody pay me to speak to their crowd, and they should pay me to leave.” Basically, what happened is I decided to write a book, I wrote it, it became an Amazon bestseller, and completely just changed my life. And what happened is, I did get booked, booked on some gigs. But my speaking career again, I was 20. I was, nervous on stage and stuff. And what took off quicker was people started reaching out to me like crazy. And you know, nine years ago, I’m sure you remember, Facebook and stuff, the organic reach was way more you didn’t really need ad money you posted something it would my posts would get 300 likes, sometimes four or 500 comments they would go pretty far organically. When I wrote a book that’s what happened. I literally had hundreds of people being like, “Dude, I’ve been wanting to write a book, how did you do it? How did you make it best seller?” And then next thing, you know, I help a few friends for free. Just test it to see, will they get similar results and they did. Then I packaged it up nine years later, we’ve had almost 1500 clients. That’s our just fell into.
Host: That is amazing! Growing up, you know, going through college, when you were kind of struggling and you’re like, “That’s it, I’m transitioning, I’m out of here.” Did writing come naturally to you? Was that something that you always enjoyed?
Guest: That’s what’s funny is, “I run a publishing” I don’t find writing to be that enjoyable. I find it very difficult. But talking to people I find very enjoyable and easy. The book was more of a means to an end. Where I just was like, “I know, I can just do this. It’ll get me closer to where I want to be. But I didn’t do it out of like, I want to write you know, it was a struggle.
Host: What would you say when you started Authors Unite? What was the “aha!” moment when you said your song like I have something here like this is really, this is going to go somewhere.
Guest: Yeah, it really hit me when people started reaching out, I started to realize how many people had an interest in becoming an author. And there’s actually, I can’t remember how long ago, but there’s a quote in a New York Times article or something that says, 80% of people believe they have a book inside them. I think it’s true. I almost think it’s even higher than that. I think most people, whether they believe they can or they can’t. Most people by the time they’re maybe 30 years old, let’s say just picking a random number. They have at least thought once I want to write a book, you know, so it’s I just started to realize I was like, wow, this is a huge market. I’ve figured out A lot of the aspects by just failing myself by going through the process. I was like, “I can really, like shorten this up for a lot of people and charge a fee for it. And that’s when the “aha!” moment came.
Host: I think there’s a lot of truth there. Because I think you’re totally right there. We all have these ideas. And maybe this could be a book, that could be a book, but then you get bogged down with, well I don’t know how to do this part, of that part, this part, zero until you do nothing. There’s a lot to that.
Guest: It’s typically a secondary thing, right? You know, because people have jobs, they have families. It’s kind of this thing that they really want to do. But it’s all it always gets pushed to the backburner. It’s there’s a lot of reasons why people invest in doing it because you know, money is an energetic thing, too. If you invest in a publisher, you invest in a book marketer, chances are, you’re going to finish that book. Because if not, you just let your money on fire. It’s a good way to make yourself accountable to actually get the job done.
Host: What would you say is one of the most underrated aspects, when people are thinking about a book, they’re seeing it on Audible or printed copy? You know, that’s a finished product. But what do you see as one or two really underrated things that are important to get it right?
Guest: Great question. First thing is the story. In nonfiction, I see this all the time. I feel it’s in our nature, something from a business sense, you want to just give people an outline, you know, because you figured it out, right? You just want to be “Look, man, step one is this, step two is this, and if you follow these 10 steps, you’re going to get this outcome.” The problem with that is it’s a very boring book, people, although it might get them the result, people when they read that they’re not going to, tell their friends about it, they’re not going to, they’re not going to enjoy it. And they might not even implement it because of how boring it was reading it. What I found the most successful books, they’re literally, 95% story. The story is valuable in its own right. But if you were trying to teach somebody something, and you want your book to have the best chance for long term viral success, story is number 1, 95% story, and then sprinkle in the value points and the steps within the story, not the end, I see the other way around most often. And that’s why books, you know, they’ll perk up right at the launch, and then they just phase out. I’d say that’s the first thing. And the second thing is the marketing, actually planning for it. Because a lot of times I see it where you know, the person finishes their book, they’re just about to publish. And then they’ll start doing research of, “Oh, how am I supposed to market this thing?” When it’s “Well really, you should have started six months ago.”, And all I would say is that there’s a lot of things you could have been doing. I would say try to have that mindset of the marketing plan. And execution starts, it starts when you start writing the book, not when you finish the book.
Ad Break: Hey there it’s CT, I’m interrupting my show because I’m now open to new clients, or I have a waitlist for website design and marketing strategy sessions. If you’re tired of throwing your marketing dollars down the drain and want a website that actually drives new business, let’s hop on a call. You can book a free hour with me at ctkaupp.com/bib that’s C-T-K-A-U-P-P.com/B-B-B.
Host: I’ve seen a lot, I’ve learned over time with my own business and seeing people publish books, write books, all that the pre-sale or those first couple months of the actual launch. How important is that? Just from the outside? It seems that’s a really important ingredient.
Guest: Oh, yeah, it can be. There are multiple ways to launch a book. One way is pre-sales. And it’s part of a bigger campaign. But ultimately, you can upload your book on Amazon, set it for pre-order. And then people can pre-order the book, and then all those sales collectively will be accounted for when it releases. That’s definitely a very good way of if you plan on doing a lot of advertising, you have a big audience and you want to start marketing it early, to hit a major bestseller list pre-order can be a very good idea. And the other way is actually literally to get those sales in a week time period. And that way also works because you can kind of create scarcity, you can be, “Look, the books releasing this day. It’s only discounted from this day to this day, a one-week time frame.” And then you have all your marketing assets already, all your partners that are going to mail out about the book. You know, marketing is limitless, you get a million different things. But essentially you want it all to hit within one week so that you get it if you get 10,000 sales in a week and they’re diversified. on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and a couple of other bookstores, your chances of hitting Wall Street Journal bestseller are pretty dramatically high. So that’s how you’d want to go about that.
Host: Very cool. What would you say? is one thing that you’ve learned through this process of starting your own business here?
Guest: I mean, on the business growth side, I would say for me, partnerships have been everything. When I realized we offer editing, publishing, and all and all those services for an author, that’s just starting out, what I realized early on was that most publishers, in fact, I really can’t even name a publisher that, does marketing for their authors. There’s a few, but there’s really not many. I realized that early on, I was like, “Okay, if I become a master at marketing for authors, not only will there not be that much competition.” I don’t even have to go direct to consumers. What I can do is just build relationships with all the publishers. And they’ll just refer me to their pool of authors to handle all the marketing, and that’s been tested and try it and it works. I think any business if you can find the right complementary partners that you’re not competing directly against, but that you can refer to each other. It’s very scalable. We use LinkedIn, we have thousands of people that refer to us, we refer to them. I don’t know hopefully, that’s just it’s, it’s helpful for people because I think when you get into this online marketing game, you know, all you hear is Facebook ads, Google ads, SEO, and it can be pretty overwhelming. And it’s really hit or miss. It takes a while to get those things to work. But you know, good old relationship building man, it always works. And if you have a good product, and you build the right relationships, you know that’s all you need.
Host: It worked on 1925 and it will work on 3025 as well.
Guest: I think so man, I don’t think it’s going to go out of stock.
Host: To switch gears, you’re based in Miami, have you always grown up there?
Guest: No. I’m originally from a small town in Pennsylvania an hour north of Philadelphia.
Host: What brought you to Miami?
Guest: The weather. I call it seasonal depression. And somebody else told me that when I was younger, but basically, we’re all growing up in Pennsylvania, six months out of the year, I was the happiest just funniest guy ever. And then the other six months, I was like, “dude, I don’t even want to be around myself.” Right? It’s cold. It’s that thing where I don’t want to think about going outside. If I want to go outside and if it’s cold, I sit and I’m like, “Is it worth going to the grocery store? It’s like, “Am I that hungry to go through the pain of that cold?” Either way, in Miami, you don’t have that problem. You can go out 24 seven whenever you want. And it’s always warm.
Host: What is the vibe there? From somebody on the outside, all I know about is it’s very populated, pretty dense. What’s the vibe around in Miami?
Guest: What’s interesting is most people from an outside perspective would probably imagine it’s a party. We’re right in South Beach Miami’s it is that you know, there’s a lot of bars clubs it is party central. there’s also in Miami, I’ve noticed, I’ve been here for about five years now. I think it’s really growing to an entrepreneurial community type of thing. Because a lot of corporate jobs down here, if you want any chance and working at them, you need to speak Spanish as well as English. because there are more people that speak Spanish down here than English. Not a lot of people can speak both languages. Inevitably, if you live here, you’re either speaking Spanish and working for a corporation or you’re starting your own business, you don’t really have it, or you’re working in the restaurant industry or something like that could work too. But either way, I think it’s forced this cool, vibrant city that was just about partying. And now it’s becoming the kind of this little entrepreneurial hub that a lot of like, digital nomads are moving to, you know, so that’s why it’s cool. I really like it and as long as you can control yourself, it’s a good place to be.
Host: I love that. It’s really cool to see that evolution. The different areas and somebody in Austin how that’s grown.
Guest: Austin’s growing like crazy, right? Because everybody’s, that’s the thing, Well Florida is too because everybody’s, that’s all another conversation everybody’s leaving California, be for many reasons. You know, let’s go!
Host: I’ll get you out on this. What is the best business advice you’ve received and the best life advice?
Guest: Business advise, probably your network is your net worth. My first ever big mentor, that has taught me that, and I obviously took it to heart. The biggest life advice I’d say was I actually lived in San Diego so not to diss California completely. It’s just changed a lot. But for years, I lived there before Miami and I kind of went on a very deep spiritual personal development journey when I was there. It was right after I dropped out of school. I learned to like the present moment. There about how when you’re younger, you’re always “oh when I’m older, I want to be like this.” And when you’re older you’re “Oh, I wish I would have enjoyed those younger…” at the end of the day, all you have is this moment. This moment is literally the best moment ever could be because it’s all there. Actually, everything else is just a figment of your imagination. And somehow the people in San Diego and I just reading books and just meditating. I go in and out of it but I am able easily to tap into the present moment. I’d say that.
Host: I love that’s frickin’ beautiful right there. All right, if my listeners want to check you out, we’re working in Chicago authors unite.
Guest: Yeah, the website is authorsunite.com. If you want to hit me up directly Instagram’s probably best @TylerBWagner is the handle.
Host: Awesome. I appreciate it Tyler, have to go.
Guest: Yep. Thanks for having me.
Overview: Tyler Wagner is the founder of Authors Unite where he helps people become successful authors. The best way to achieve this is to assemble a book publishing and book marketing team with the best minds in the industry – from Ghostwriting, to Editing, Publishing, Marketing, Business Structure and Advertising/Media, they have you covered. It’s time for you to become a successful author.
Never Miss An Episode Again
Stay up to date with all things BIB Podcast. Subscribe to our newsletter today and we’ll email you when a new episode drops!