When Tara Alemany realized that her own extensive experience in book publishing could help other authors, she decided to start a publishing company, Emerald Lake Books, specializing in books that entrepreneurs write and incorporate into their business action plans.
Many people have a good idea for a book but don’t know how to bring it to life. Alemany’s authors not only publish, but they use their books to demonstrate expertise in a subject that allows them to grow their business as well.
“Some of my clients use their books to generate money through speaking engagements and others increase their consulting revenue,” Alemany says. “Some are simply getting their better-educated prospects to say ‘yes’ more quickly.”
Alemany uses the knowledge gained from writing, publishing and marketing five books of her own to help authors recognize and address the challenges of the industry. She is considered a book shepherd, a term Alemany likes because it connotes someone who provides guidance along every step in the process.
“I help you with all the details that most people don’t know how to do – or don’t want to do,” Alemany says. “With my model, you know what you need to invest and what you need to accomplish to succeed. Something as simple as using complementary fonts correctly can make a huge difference in the reader’s perception of a book. When the project is finished, there is no difference in how a book from Emerald Lake Books looks compared to a book by a traditional publisher. We emphasize quality work.”
Alemany has operated her own marketing company, Aleweb Social Marketing, for several years. Many clients have hired her to create websites and develop strategies to market their self-published books. In addition to her own books, she has also helped a couple of friends through the publishing process. When her friends’ clients started asking for help, too, she realized she could support writers through the entire enterprise from publishing to marketing and selling their books.
As she points out, even writers lucky enough to land a contract with a big-name publisher are expected to handle the publicity and selling of their books.
“Unless you have a marketing plan in place, most writers find books to be a losing proposition,” Alemany says. “And the majority of marketing falls to the author no matter how the book was published. Time after time, when I speak to author groups, they didn’t understand the hard work would begin after the book was written. The authors I work with see their book as an investment opportunity for their business. It’s a way to build authority with their brand, and I help them leverage that to grow their business.”
Alemany’s perspective is shaped by her own experience, having written and published a book that she incorporates into her business. “The Plan that Launched a Thousand Books” offers guidance on how to market and promote your published product.
“It’s a step-by-step guide to creating your own book marketing plan. I recommend specific tools and services,” Alemany says. “Yes, you need a website, and this is how to go about it. You may even want a video, and this is how you will use it.”
Jeffrey Hayzlett, a primetime Bloomberg Television host, is among those who have endorsed “The Plan that Launched a Thousand Books.”
“I have two best-sellers under my belt and I wish I had read this book before I had written them,” Hayzlett wrote.
Alemany’s marketing services include creating websites and a social media presence, marketing materials, search engine optimization, audio and video editing and production, and training in how to develop your online presence -- called “building your platform” in the writing world.
In addition, Alemany is a professional speaker, and works with clients on how to use their books to attract more speaking engagements or generate higher fees. She emphasizes the importance of authenticity and building relationships, whether for business or personal life.
“Tara is the master at bringing a book to life,” says Chris Vanderzyden, author of “7 Steps to Entrepreneurial Victory!” “What sets Tara apart is that she cares as much about the project as you do. As an expert in formatting a book she ensures that your book will capture a reader’s attention -- which translates into higher sales. She is creative, has an eagle eye for errors and a no-nonsense approach. She wants you to be successful and she will present her marketing ‘know how’ to be sure that you are.”
Even while launching her new publishing firm, Alemany is marketing the latest of the books she has written. “The Best is Yet to Come” won an Honorable Mention in the 2014 Readers’ Favorite awards. It shares the lessons learned while overcoming the unexpected death of her fiancé in October 2011.
She has received comments from readers as far away as Pakistan, Lithuania and England, who told her how the book affected their lives.
“Publishing a book is in itself exciting and satisfying,” Alemany says. “But most authors sell fewer than 170 copies of their book. The sales rarely cover the cost of publication. My approach through Emerald Lake Books and Aleweb Social Marketing helps you become an author, but also brings you to the next level in your business, which is where the real money comes from for most authors.”
Alemany lives in Sherman, Conn., with her two children. In addition to her businesses, she is a martial artist and makes her own wine. Her thoughts and insights have been included in articles on Carol Roth’s Business Unplugged, Marketing Sherpa, Business2Community, AllTop and Bank of America’s Small Business brief, and her content has been reprinted in SOLDLab magazine.