Articles by Josh

Win an HP Mini Laptop from Lulu

Ahh Summertime…The days are longer and the sun shines brighter, which means more time for family get togethers, pool parties and road trips.  We all capture these great moments with our digital cameras and smart phones, then we post our pics online to the envy of everyone.

But wouldn’t it be great to have a lasting reminder of how the Summer of 2011 began?  Now is the perfect time to get those photos out of your laptop and into a beautiful photo book or calendar.

From now until after the 4th of July holiday, not only will you be able to save 25% on any Lulu photo book or calendar order, but you’ll also be automatically entered to win 1 of 2 HP 5103 Mini Laptops!

Here’s how it works…

  1. Simply create and publish a photo book or calendar project between June 1 and June 30, 2011
  2. Purchase a copy of your beautiful photo book or calendar
  3. Save 25% off with code HPWIN305*
  4. You’ll be automatically entered to win 1 of 2 HP Mini Laptops
We’ll pick the winners on July 5, 2011 and notify each lucky person via email.  Oh yeah, the shipping of the laptop is on us too – all you need to do is sit back and enjoy your new toy.  Don’t feel like purchasing a photo book? You can also enter to win just by publishing a work through Lulu – absolutely free.

What’s an HP 5103 Mini Laptop? Funny you should ask – check them out here.

It’s really that simple.  Create, publish, buy and win.  Also be sure to find out how to win an HP laptop with the purchase of a Lulu service here.

So what are you waiting for?  There’s never been a better time to create a photo book or calendar with Lulu!

*No purchase necessary. Enter coupon code HPWIN305 at checkout and receive 25% off any photo book or calendar order or publish a work through Lulu.com. The maximum savings for this offer is $100. Sorry, but this offer cannot be applied to previous orders. You can only use this code once per account, and unfortunately you can’t use this coupon in combination with other coupon codes. This great offer expires on July 8, 2011 at 11:59 PM, so don’t miss out! While very unlikely, we do reserve the right to change or revoke this offer at anytime, and of course we cannot offer this coupon where it is against the law to do so. Shipping destinations must be within the United States.

Great Gifts for Your Frenemy

You might be asking yourself “what the heck is a frenemy?” Basically, it’s one of your closest friends, who also happens to be one of your fiercest rivals. You know, someone you may have an unspoken competition with – like your exercise partner, or maybe even a relative that attended a rival school.

Frenemies are great. They keep you honest, keep you on your toes, and above all make you want to be better. Isn’t competition great?

So, what exactly do you get the frenemies on your gift list? Books of course! Here are few quick suggestions, all under 20 bucks…

Let’s start off with the exercise partner example. In this case, let’s talk about your golf buddy. Sure at the end of the round you compare scores, but there are so many side games played throughout the day. Next time your frenemy golf buddy declares the next tee a longest drive challenge, make them think about images in this book.

Of course there’s “your know-it-all” frenemy. You know, the one that seems to have an answer to everything from the future of the US space program, to the origins of the plastic things on the end of shoelaces. They have the world around them completely figured out. Or do they?

Here’s kind of a mean one – but remember the spirit of this is meant to be fun. Maybe you have a single frenemy. Someone who makes fun of your white picket fence life, complete with 2.5 kids and a practical, but awesome mini van. They brag about late nights out, and all the freedom a person could ask for. They’re single and loving it. But can they cook for one?

Not sure if some of your friends are really frenemies? We’ve got a book about that too. Buy a copy for yourself and start off 2011 with the upper hand!

Great Gift Ideas for “That Guy ”

At one time or another, we’ve all come across “that guy.”  You know, the guy who tries to check out in the 15 items or less lane with at least 30 things in his cart.  Or the guy who tries to beat the read light, only to clog up the intersection – leaving you stuck at a green light.

Of course if you’re anything like me, you may have been “that guy” more times than you care to admit.  You may also be in the position of having “that guy” on your holiday shopping list this year.

You really like “that guy.”  After all, he’s most likely family or a very close friend.  You want to see him shed his misguided ways in time for the New Year.  So this begs the question:  what do you get “that guy” for the holidays?

Here are a few gift ideas I came up with, right here on lulu.com:

48 Hours Only – Free Ground Shipping on Orders $50 or More

Still feeling a bit lazy after preparing that turkey?  Dreading the crowds of people at the stores and traffic on the roads? How does free delivery of your next book order sound?

From now through Friday, November 26th:
  • Add $50 worth of books, photo books or calendars to your cart
  • Select ground shipping
  • Enter code GROUNDFREE at checkout
  • We’ll pick up the shipping charge – up to $100!
Sorry, offer only valid for US shipping destinations

Remember, this is a two day only offer – so don’t miss out!

How to Market Your Book:Blog #3

Become an Authority in Your Field

Whether your book is an extensive study on quantum physics, or helpful tips on how to raise twins, there’s an online community just waiting to learn from your expertise.  What better way to flex your knowledge muscles, and promote your book, then providing commentary on your favorite forums, blogs and discussion boards?

By providing regular insight and support, you’ll quickly establish credibility and become known as an authority in your field.  This will also provide you with a golden opportunity to promote your book.  Be sure to mention that more information can be found in your book, and provide links for your new readers to purchase.

Once you’ve established yourself, your audience will be more than happy to help promote your book.  Reach out to bloggers and ask if they’ll mention your book in an upcoming post.

Before you know it, people will be buzzing over your book and your hard work!

How to Market Your Book:Blog #2

Get Your Book Into Influential Hands

We recently asked 1,000 of our bestselling authors to share their secrets to success. While the responses covered everything from taking out radio spots, to promoting at family reunions, there was one universal theme to marketing a book: Build relationships with influential people in your market.

A great way to get your new relationship off on the right foot is to send out complimentary copies of your book.  Target anyone you could think of that might be able to help create a buzz around your book.

  • School administrators
  • Local newspapers & radio stations
  • Community & church leaders
  • Scouting organizations
  • Bloggers

Be sure to include something personal, like a hand written thank you note, or a short memo describing how and why you wrote your book – anything you think will help you connect more strongly with your new audience.

Before you know it, more recommendations for your work will come from good old word of mouth. Happy publishing.

How to Market Your Book:Blog #1

You’ve done it – you’re a published author! Now it’s time to start reaping the benefits of all your long hours of work.

Who couldn’t use a few ideas on how to sell more books and expand readership? In the coming weeks, we’ll be sharing tips, resources and ideas designed to help you sell more books…without having to quit your day job!

Check out these two tips – try to do one of them by the end of the weekend.

Tip 1: Ratings and Reviews

Believe it or not, user ratings and reviews are powerful marketing tools. These 3rd party views of your book will influence other potential readers whether or not your book is right for them. Think of it as word-of-mouth endorsements for your book. How many times have been told by someone “you’ve got to read this book!” Adding ratings and reviews to your book page will send potential readers the same message.

Tip 2: Email Signature

How many emails do you write on a typical day? How many in a week? A month? Your email signature is a great way to promote your book to as wide of an audience as possible…without really trying. All it takes is a few minutes to set up your email signature, include a link to your book, and you’re all set. Try something subtle like “Check out my new book” with a link to your book. For a stronger approach, consider taking a 10-word excerpt from one of your reviews, then link to your book.