Take a look at this picture. These are some of the very few books that get exposure at airport book stores. Yes, it might look better at Barnes & Nobles as these stores are bigger, but that does not change the fact that it is very, very difficult for authors to get their books – and thus their ideas and messages – in front of an audience. The competition for shelf-space in stores and attention among potential readers/buyers is ridiculous.
My advice to aspiring authors of printed books is that you should find other ways of connecting with your audience. Besides my blog and social media presence, I am experimenting with a mix of e-books in different sizes (ranging from 50 to 150 pages) at low prices and PDF-files that I give away for free. The latter includes shorter excerpts as well as full books. Check this link: Free Book – Making Open Innovation Work
I plan to do the same with my next book, Social Media for Corporate Innovators and Entrepreneurs: Add Power to Your Innovation Efforts, which is due mid-August. Some of you might think that I am crazy giving away my books for free at the same time that I am trying to sell them. Well, the truth is that I hardly make any money on the books anyway so why not just try to get as much exposure as possible and then build a good business as a speaker and consultant.
It works for me even in these tough times and it could work for you as well. Just remember that it takes lots of effort and time to build a personal brand and an audience for your ideas and messages!