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BOOK MARKETING: “Are There Secret Formulas or Short Cuts for Making the Best-Seller List on Amazon?” by Lorilyn Roberts

Last updated on June 17, 2022

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Are There Secret Formulas or Short Cuts for Making the Best-Seller List on Amazon?
John 3:16 Marketing Network
Part One of Six

If I knew of a secret formula, I would be a millionaire—and so would you, because secrets promising success don’t remain secrets for long.

There is one sure road to the best-seller list, provided you have a good book, and that is hard work and networking. I don’t know of any other way to do it. What I have discovered, however, is many authors spend a lot of time and money in less productive ways, thus coming away feeling discouraged and defeated.

Examples of comments I have heard include: “I can’t get anyone to review my book,” “my sales are non-existent,” “I don’t know where to begin,” “I spent money doing ‘this thing’ and got no results.”

You also have heard this if you have been marketing for a while. I could tell some fabulous tales of “drain holes” I thought would work and didn’t.

One of the reasons I made becoming a member of the John 3:16 Marketing Network free is so people would not feel like they paid for something and got less than their money’s worth, and most authors don’t have a lot of extra money (like me). 

I also didn’t start the John 3:16 Marketing Network to become a marketing guru. God gave me the vision, but He gave me the passion to write. But without a way to promote my writing, I knew nobody would read my books because nobody would know they existed.



I will share a short story about my first book, The Donkey and the King, which I published using a Print on Demand publishing company. When my book arrived, I was ecstatic. I could at last say I was an “author.”

But, sadly, I didn’t know any other authors to share my excitement with and I did nothing to market it. I made no announcement and told nobody about my new book, except my closest friends and family. I did nothing to promote it, not even with people in my church. ZILCH! NADA!

I am sure you are wondering how many copies I sold—maybe ten copies. Yep, I probably made the Guinness Book of World Records for the “worst-selling” book that year. Why didn’t I do something to promote it?  First, I didn’t know how; and second, I was too shy to talk about my own book.

A couple of years later, I went on Amazon to see if The Donkey and the King was listed since I had never checked. Sure enough, it was there. I had one review by someone I didn’t know with a rating of five stars. That was the first time it occurred to me that somebody out there might like to read my book beside my closest friends and family.


I have gone from that day to this—because God put it in my heart to start the John 3:16 Marketing Network.



The John 3:16 Marketing Network is based on John 3:16 from the New Testament in the Bible: “For God so love the world that He gave His only begotten Son, so that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

To become a member of the John 3:16 Marketing Network requires only two things:

  1. You believe in John 3:16.
  2. You have an active blog/website.
     
Over the next six days, several of our John 3:16 Marketing Network authors are hosting a guest blog of different authors as part of our twice a year membership launch. Each day I will share a marketing article, and the guest author for that day will share something about herself and her writing career.

Before we are authors, we are people uniquely gifted and loved by God. Once we look beyond what someone does and see him as we see ourselves—a human being with needs, wants, struggles, hopes, and dreams, we can relate to him better and discover things we have in common.


That brings me back to the question and the title of this piece, Are There Secret Formulas or Short Cuts for Making the Best-Seller List on Amazon?

The short answer is no, there are no secret formulas, but yes, there are shortcuts to make marketing easier. Please check out my book How to Launch a Best-Selling Christian Book on Amazon.

Author Note: The John 3:16 Marketing Network is no longer active, but the ideas presented in the book still apply in 2022.
Published inBook Marketing

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16 Comments

  1. I love this testimony about putting John 3:16 together. The need for authors to get the word out about their books is greater than ever. For those of us who feel God is leading us to write, how much more important to have the insights and skills to promote these works. Thank you, Lorilyn!

  2. I love this testimony about putting John 3:16 together. The need for authors to get the word out about their books is greater than ever. For those of us who feel God is leading us to write, how much more important to have the insights and skills to promote these works. Thank you, Lorilyn!

  3. Great post Lorilyn! Like you, I had a calling from God to write my book. I'm afraid I didn't know much about book production, distribution, promotion or social media when I put my book into print. I have learned much over the past two and a half years, and evaluating what "works" and what "doesn't work" is crucial to success.

    Your God vision for the Christian book market is a prime example of encouraging and helping your fellow authors, pouring yourself into their lives and their book projects is commendable and pleasing to the Lord.

    Your author/book features for the launch are
    interesting and informative. Good job Lorilyn!
    God bless you for your selfless acts of service to your fellow believers through your ministry of John 3:16 Book Marketing Network.

    It's all about HIM,

    Deborah McCarragher
    Author of "Mission Possible"
    http://www.Godmissionpossible.com

  4. Great post Lorilyn! Like you, I had a calling from God to write my book. I'm afraid I didn't know much about book production, distribution, promotion or social media when I put my book into print. I have learned much over the past two and a half years, and evaluating what "works" and what "doesn't work" is crucial to success.

    Your God vision for the Christian book market is a prime example of encouraging and helping your fellow authors, pouring yourself into their lives and their book projects is commendable and pleasing to the Lord.

    Your author/book features for the launch are
    interesting and informative. Good job Lorilyn!
    God bless you for your selfless acts of service to your fellow believers through your ministry of John 3:16 Book Marketing Network.

    It's all about HIM,

    Deborah McCarragher
    Author of "Mission Possible"
    http://www.Godmissionpossible.com

  5. Serving God is the most important thing John 3:16 is about. Each member here does so in their own way, as God has instructed them. These tasks are then joined together to complete the final mold for which He desires. As our team leader, you have made us complete. Thank you very much for allowing me to serve our Lord with John 3:16.
    This article is pleasing to God and worthy of all we represent.

  6. Serving God is the most important thing John 3:16 is about. Each member here does so in their own way, as God has instructed them. These tasks are then joined together to complete the final mold for which He desires. As our team leader, you have made us complete. Thank you very much for allowing me to serve our Lord with John 3:16.
    This article is pleasing to God and worthy of all we represent.

  7. Lorilyn, I enjoyed learning more about you and Sherrill and Jay. Rose

  8. Lorilyn, I enjoyed learning more about you and Sherrill and Jay. Rose

  9. I am looking forward to this event. Especially anxious to learn about resizing those jpegs as I seem to have trouble with that from time to time.
    See you at the party!
    Naomi

  10. I am looking forward to this event. Especially anxious to learn about resizing those jpegs as I seem to have trouble with that from time to time.
    See you at the party!
    Naomi

  11. Lorilyn,

    Thanks for posting this! I especially loved Sherril Cannon's story of how the entire story of Santa's Birthday Gift came to her in a dream after her granddaughter asked her the question! Very moving story 🙂

    Scott M. Shafer
    http://WhatEveryDreamMeans.com

  12. Lorilyn,

    Thanks for posting this! I especially loved Sherril Cannon's story of how the entire story of Santa's Birthday Gift came to her in a dream after her granddaughter asked her the question! Very moving story 🙂

    Scott M. Shafer
    http://WhatEveryDreamMeans.com

  13. Thank you for your comments. The John 3:16 Marketing Network wouldn't be possible if it weren't for folks like you:)

  14. Thank you for your comments. The John 3:16 Marketing Network wouldn't be possible if it weren't for folks like you:)

  15. Great article, Lorilyn!

  16. Great article, Lorilyn!

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