Welcome to the Kickstart Your Book Sales podcast with USA Today bestselling authors Russell Nohelty and Monica Leonelle, where you’ll learn how to supercharge your book sales, go aggressively wide, and take your author career to the next level.
I (Russell) had a great time at NINC talking about Author Ecosystems and sharing all our findings about how to use them to take your career to the next level. Everyone in the room seemed super excited about it, but that doesn't do much good to people who weren't there, like most of you.
We went into way more detail on this call than we could at the in-person talk, and we answered a ton of your questions about Author Ecosystems. We keep learning more about this system every time we talk about it! So even if you saw the talk, this is worth a listen.
We hope you enjoy! Excuse the lack of polish—we just wanted to get this one out into the world for you.
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Author ecosystems talk
Tue. Oct 10, 2023
0:17 - Russell Nohelty all right, Hello everyone, and welcome to a replay of the Nc talk that I think was very successful. At Nc, we had people talking to us all after this, after and before the talk, but like we really were very, very overwhelmed with the response that we got. Inc And we hope that we can. This presentation codifies some things for you. It should bring you up to date with most of the main findings that we've made since May. Since we launched this ecosystem, I literally was writing new stuff for it until about an hour before the presentation, and I spent about another hour this morning getting up to date even more on it.
1:03 - Russell Nohelty I'm going to just start um so if you're here you know who I amm but I'm a usaa best selling author uh monica leonel is my business partner i've raised almost five hundred thousand on starter. I've raised over a million dollars in my businesss. I've helped authors raise over a million dollars for their businesss in the past couple of years through our, through our through our training academy, and I've helped hundreds, probably thousands, of authors throughout my career. If you know who we are, you probably know us through Kickstarter and specifically through this book.
1:40 - Russell Nohelty Get your book selling on Kickstarter and it's one of our, it's our best selling book in the Book Sales Supercharged series. I should just ask before, just to make sure y'all can see this presentation, right? Because this is what happened before y'all can. I was like 20 min into the presentation, someone was like, I can't actually see that. So if you can hear me and see me, awesome, Ya, amazing, all right. So if you have questions, talk, put it in the chat. We, Monica will and I will stop every once in a while to, to ask and see if there are any relevant questions.
2:15 - Russell Nohelty But yes, our book sales super Charge series is almost 20 books now and then this is the best selling book, I think still the best selling book in that series. And we, I'm best known for Kickstarter. And kick starter did uh really changed my career and it's changed a lot of people's careers we've helped a hundred and twenty five campaigns rais over one point two million dollars and I always tell people this is what I can track um there's it's a lot more but after we got to about a hundred and twenty five it just became harder to to judge like I would miss campaigns people would not post their campaigns in the group like we would get tagged on campaigns and it just became kind of unwieldy after that much but I figured one point two million dollars is a good number I'm sure we've probably doubled or tripled that since then when you take into account the book and everyone that that's helped but I know I can track that much money that we've helped raise for campaigns since we started the accelerator in twenty twenty two It's this campaign that we saw a problem.
3:28 - Russell Nohelty So we have three main courses Direct Sales Accelerator Wide, Go Wide, Grow Wide, and Kickstarter Accelerator and After about a year of doing this, we started to see some, not hint, just like some weird. Weird trends in the data for instance twenty percentage of people blew past expectations they could have a hundred people on their email list and they would do with almost ten thousand dollars kicks star and we were like well that's weird and then we started seeing six seven figure authors who were killing it in ku make like less than a thousand dollars and we were like that's weirder both of these things are equally weird and then we of course had the problem of fifty percentage people I didn't hit launch.
4:18 - Russell Nohelty These are actually really good numbers if you are in the course space. They were not really good enough for us, and we wanted to know why so many of our people either weren't hitting launch or were underperforming. The data showed us Most of the people who overperformed shared pretty similar traits. Most of the people who underperformed shared similar traits. Most people who didn't hit lunch at all had similar confusions or similar fears, and mostly it was about how the platform can work for them.
5:01 - Russell Nohelty We overall found that there were five marketing and sales tendencies that people fell into that gave them success on different platforms, different types of marketing, different, just they were very Different. They worked led to different success paths, whether they were at the early stage of their career, their middle stage, or the high stage, and which led to us developing the motto You're not doing marketing wrong, you're doing the wrong marketing. Before I get into this I want to talk a little bit about the history of book marketing really the history of books in all because prior to about nineteen twenty I say after world war two, but people always point out really it was after World War one when a lot of this started happening, but before World War One there really was no legitimate way to become a author.
6:04 - Russell Nohelty Unless you were an aristocrat, unless you didn't need the money, you really couldn't be an author. And after 19, after World War One, but really after World War Two, it became Easier and easier to become an author as long as you lived in a power Hub. New York, La. Paris, London, a couple more places around the world. If you lived in one of those places, you could do really well, and that lasted until the formation of Kindle basically, and especially Ku, But once Kindle started coming along, you were able to make a living from anywhere if you were an author.
6:46 - Russell Nohelty But with the formation of K U, it was again if you The Ku way, if you can. If you can write a book a month in a certain genre, in certain ways, following certain tropes, you could be really successful. There are all sorts of promo stacks and like basically orthodoxy of how to become a successful author and what happened really starting in I mean I think in twenty eighteen definitely with the pandemic is people started to see that k you started to break down and they started be all of these other options for people.
7:21 - Russell Nohelty And that has led to explosion of ways to succeed in your businesss and do book marketing and a thousand a thousand ways to be successful and also a thousand ways to fail and what was really interesting is Monica and I talk to authors all the time we've been talking to successful authors for twenty five years between the two of us and It was interesting because even though the orthodoxy was that there was this way to succeed, most people did break in in a specific way, but successful authors ended up all building their own stack.
8:02 - Russell Nohelty They ended up embracing their own natural tendencies or bringing other people in that had other natural tendencies to help their businesss grow. This is where the author ecosystem can really, really, really help. Because I'm to S. You the five tendencies, and then you can build upon them to grow using your own natural tendencies. So before we get into that, this is kind of the intro. I like stopping and making sure that there are no questions in general. Monica Do we have any kind of general questions?
8:39 - Russell Nohelty Maybe I didn't go over something I need to hit again before I get into.
8:43 - Monica Leonelle No, there are no major questions, we just people are asking um, like how long the presentation will be. I said probably an hour to an hour and a half. There is, oh, one just came in. Would you apply ecosystem thinking to new authors or wait till they have more of a businesss model? So this is a question we get a lot. This person's releasing a 2nd book.
9:04 - Russell Nohelty Yes. yes, and I definitely think that, well, what's gonna in the next year we're gonna start talking a lot more about how to bake these ecosystem stuff into your books. From at the base level, but I do think that you're going to find one that resonates with you. You might not know if it resonates, but I would say you probably should at least pick one to try. The great thing about the ecosystem is that you're encouraged and your goal is to have pieces of all five work for you. So like I may base tundra, but I have a lot of forest in me and I have a lot of grassland that I've been working on, especially in my non fiction, you know, I'm trying to add all of these things and you're, the ecosystem is meant to be additive, but we're going to go through later and I'm I'm going to show you the five stages of what these ecosystems look like, and so it's going to probably be apparent which ecosystem resonates with you at the beginning and where you should start.
10:13 - Russell Nohelty But it might be that you start all of those things and you don't Build any traction and maybe you're like, well, maybe I'll try a grassland strategy because that resonates with the, maybe that will resonate more with me. I But I don't. Monica, do you do you disagree agree with any of that? Is there anything you'd add?
10:34 - Monica Leonelle I mean to me I think that the best way to tell if you, especially if you're a new author, is probably, so I do agree with what you're saying. I also think a lot of it is like how you think about write to, writing to market. I think that is kind of going to help you pinpoint what your, author ecosystem is, just because And like it's tough because we haven't really put out any material around that, so we can't. And I, I don't think now is like kind of the right time to explain it, but talk about right to market.
11:07 - Monica Leonelle And we basically believe that there are really like five different ways to write to market, which is there's like one main one that's taught. So I think that's where We kin, we can kind of hook in the author ecosystems to the craft conversation that is more prominent for authors who have just a couple books
11:30 - Russell Nohelty absolutely, basically, I think that like if you're, if you're really good at writing to market in the way that traditionally, like the Mark Dawsons and Michael Andrey says, you're probably a desert, and if not, like you're probably one of the other ecosystems. So that's a really stark dividing line. If the things that We'll talk about desert, so we should probably just get into it, work for you, you probably are a desert, if not, you're one of the other 60 % of people and like, so yes, you can do this at the beginning of your career, but you might not know exactly what works for a little bit of time and we'll go into that.
12:07 - Russell Nohelty I do have a little bit on what the five tendencies are when it comes to trends, anything else, Monica?
12:21 - Monica Leonelle Sorry,
12:21 - Russell Nohelty Okay.
12:21 - Monica Leonelle I was just shaking my head.
12:23 - Russell Nohelty now. Okay, cool, all right. So let's start with deserts. So what is a desert? Superpower Well, their superpower is optimization. They are the people who can see behind the code of the matrix and know the pulse of the industry. So I think of a desert as someone who can say exactly what the trend is. That is emerging, and then they can write it to success. This is, this is the orthodoxy that most people teach. Because so much of the industry is Ku This is the so people like Michael Andrey, Mark Dawson, most of the thought leaders in the industry, in the way that you would consider thought leadership.
13:17 - Russell Nohelty Teach this Ku strategy and have had success in Ku. Their basic success metric is they Almost ghosts in groups because they need to get all of that really good, data before even a place like Kal Lits gets it. Because their job is to find the gap between supply and demand and really, really ride that gap. A hard until the gap closes and then they move to the next trend. So if you're thinking about deserts, think about like a salamander. A salamander finds shade and then when, when the shade goes away, they find the next bit of shade and they're always hopping to where the next oasis is or the next or the next a bit of shade is.
14:10 - Russell Nohelty And that is the success path for a desert. And they can do that because They are able to know what readers want and the general market. So this is one of the wildest things that we found out about deserts, and we talk to a bunch of deserts at Nc just to confirm it. Most people think about fandom where there's casual readers and then you're trying to bring people into your ecosystem and make them super fans. And that's where, like you, a fan of is the super fans. Deserts. Don't think like that.
14:49 - Russell Nohelty Deserts. Look at the whole amount of, let's say there's a million thriller readers and they say if if I serve if I can find a book that's read by fifty thousand of them then I have done fan service that's how I think about fans the people that read my work are fans of the genre and if I write for them then I am doing my fan service so they don't generally have email lists or even fan pages. Really, they're pretty. They're pretty much ghosts aside from their books, and they're able to create these experiences because they are looking at the entire genre as a whole and trying to hit the middle of the genre where most people, where they can get the most readers and service the most fans, which is very, very different than any other ecosystem and that also makes them really good co writers, ghost writers and journalists.
15:53 - Russell Nohelty So if you think of a desert, you can kind of think of them like a beat reporter. So they're the ones who are always trying to get the scoop, get the front page headline, and get the most people to read their books, their articles. So they have natural aptitudes for Ku, web stores and advertising. If you ever look someone and they're like, look, you just have to like look at what is hot and then you can just gain the algorithm to show your work the most, like all of those virality things that like big, big data, data insights, they're probably a desert because they take pride.
16:40 - Russell Nohelty Servicing the most people and they take pride in the work itself, they are able to lose themselves. So most other authors want some bit of themselves to appear in the work. But a desert hass the ability to say, these are the six trends, this is how you hit that trend. And my joy is in making the puzzle connect between all of these things. Often when another ecosystem tries to follow this, they consider it homework. Like it doesn't, it's not fun for them to make that game work and optimize that game so their work doesn't come across as as vibrant as a Deserts because it feels like they just did homework.
17:31 - Russell Nohelty So when you think of, we'll talk about trend, all how they think about trends. Deserts want to stay a hundred percent on trend and they are able to ride these trends because they are creating these very siloed experiences that resonate with a certain group of fans. So when we talk about whether you should make one pen name or eight pen names, this is a huge argument. In indie publishing. And the truth is, like anything else, there's no real right answer. But for a desert, they are creating a different brand experience with every pen name, with every genre.
18:16 - Russell Nohelty They write really. Also With every series so they are in sent, they should absolutely make all of these different pen names and they should absolutely silo themselves off. If you're not a desert, we'll talk about that part as well later, but if you are a desert, you absolutely should be siloing pen names. And because you're going to deliver a different brand experience every time, you write in every different genre, as opposed to someone like a forest, who has a different success path.
18:49 - Russell Nohelty Monica, do you have anything to add or do we have any questions about that part? Oh wait, I did. I forgot the difficulties. Okay, So difficulties, difficulty of a desert is turning casual readers into super fans. And honestly, it's often because they don't want to. They don't want phantoms, they don't want like an email list. They just want to write and then write the next book and put the next book out. A lot of the reason why a desert can write so fast to hit the Ku algorithm is because they, they don't have fan groups, they don't have any of this stuff.
19:24 - Russell Nohelty All of their time is just write a book, release a book, write a book, release a book, write a book, release a book. They struggle with platforms that retire along that require a long time commitment, a place like Kickstarter or Patreon anything that's fan based they're going to struggle with because they They don't have a natural aptitude for doing the work to generate that community and that long term brand loyalty. That is a big struggle for deserts, too, because if you think of pulp authors of the 50 s, s, 70 s, Few of them remained relevant because their books were very ephemeral.
20:10 - Russell Nohelty They were a product of their time. And so deserts often see that they've written 50 books and after 50 books they're like, Why? None of these books have any value right now on the open market because like I wrote them as a product of their time, I need to and their struggle is what, how do I Move from this world where I write a lot of books and I hit the middle of the market and I'm making money, to something where my back list is working for me a lot more. And then one of the fun things about, about a desert is almost always they have a forest pen name which we'll talk about, which is as an outlet that they can't monetize.
20:48 - Russell Nohelty And the main reason they can't monetize it is it's off trend and they don't know how to do the work of what a forest is known for. And what is good at is building community and being able to write books that are very much them and having a fandom who really resonates with them. And it's almost the exact opposite of a desert's success path. Okay, now I'm ready to move to a grassland. Monica Do we have anything about deserts or anything you want to add or clarify?
21:17 - Monica Leonelle somebody did ask, they, well they couldn't made a comment and it was just like, hey, every time that I listened to, you know, the presentation, I think I might be this type or this type of this type. So uh, what are some ways, what are some? Types or ways that like, how can you tell that you are a desert? And how can you tell that you are not a deer?
21:38 - Russell Nohelty Sure, okay. Okay, so this is about sales and marketing success. So the thing that I'm going to say is like a tough love thing. If you can follow the trend and you and you put out a book and you are right. And you enjoy that challenge. You are probably a desert. So we talked to someone at Nink who was really good at, at following the trends and she was, she was really good at like, at like doing the six book optimization. Ah 'cause like six book is the optimum, is the optimum, ah, book length.
22:17 - Russell Nohelty Before you fall. Readers fall off so like you have a three, you have a six books, you have a three, you have book one to three, book four to six, and book one to six. Box set. Like it's real pretty and like she was really good at doing that, but she hated it. So this is the, this is the, ah, the marriage of A thing you do really well and a thing you like doing right. Like I think that's the so with a desert, we'll talk about this after the but like they are always right.
22:49 - Monica Leonelle You're right. Yeah, yeah, I think that's the thing that I see the most is like there are types that are attracted to idea of the desert or the idea of being a desert. But it's like, are you able to actually do the work and get the sales and marketing and like business results from doing that work? Because deserts are really focused on that optimization. And so it's like,
23:13 - Russell Nohelty Yes.
23:14 - Monica Leonelle yeah, of course I like theoretically want to be like very optimized and do everything right and check off all the boxes. And I think that in particular appeals a lot to Forrest. It can also appeal to tundras and grasslands. I think it doesn't really appeal to aquatic for the most part, but it's like those types, they want to be the desert because it's like kind of makes them like the little, the good girl and the good boy, especially because desert, desert strategy just happens to be what is taught the most in the publishing space,
23:51 - Russell Nohelty He talk Oh,
23:51 - Monica Leonelle especially in the end of Oh yeah, go ahead.
23:54 - Russell Nohelty can you talk about the, you said the, the person who wrote the book and it was like baby, marriage, baby and then the thing because I think this is a really good. Encapsulation of like the difference between desert and a not desert.
24:08 - Monica Leonelle marriage, baby, and then the thing,
24:10 - Russell Nohelty The postpartum depression.
24:12 - Monica Leonelle oh yeah, okay, so um, yeah. And somebody as about this, anyway, they were. They said that they're a forests And they can't really make Ku work for them or or didn't. Not that it didn't work for them, just that they saw some success but not a ton of success. So we actually, there was a forest that we talked to that actually had a lot of success in Ku and one of the reasons that they had success was because they It wasn't because they were really writing to trend in the way that they were supposed to, is because they found this like kind of niche market that didn't have a lot of books in it yet.
24:53 - Monica Leonelle And so like that's a thing that everybody kind of told you to do anyway, like find this area. So I think it was reverse ham and like Kirby girls. And so, so they were I, I don't know if they were one of the 1st authors in that space or what. But they started to write in that space and also did like ads and stuff. Like kind of, kind of again we're checking off all the boxes of the things you are supposed to do to be successful at this. So then they wrote, they, they were talking about the romances that they were writing cause you would think like, okay, this person is a desert.
25:29 - Monica Leonelle But they weren't. They talked about the romances that they were writing and then they said, you know, the person gets married, the person has, has a baby and then the person has postpartum depression and was like, this is not how it's supposed to be. Like, you know, it's supposed to be kind of happily ever after. But that actually resonated a lot with their audience because that is something that women experience quite a bit as postpartum depression. And so the audience was pretty like okay with it.
26:06 - Monica Leonelle A lot of that is because there were, there were like a number of other things as this person was talking that I was like, okay, they're absolutely a forest because they had built this community around really like twisting the tropes I think. And I think that's how a lot of forests are successful in Ku. So if you are a forest and you're like, I really like what the deserts are doing, but like, I can't quite do it. I think a couple of things are like be, you know, choose you, you have to choose, like you have to find an attention arbitrage.
26:38 - Monica Leonelle So you need to pick a niche empty right now. Like I, I just don't like unless you are a desert, I don't recommend jumping into a niche that does not have lots of space for books. So You that. Pick need to get that attention. Arbitrage Uh, you need to write at least 80 % to the right to market. You're probably not gonna get to a hundred percent, but you need to get to like at least 80 %. And then you also need to, you also need to like basically gather your community quickly. So, like this person, the reason that they had succeeded is cause they hit ads really hard with just like two books, three books, five books and they just They kind of like blanketed the space and so people like everybody tried it that wanted to read like a reverse hair, hair and curvy girls like E, everybody in the whole genre tried it.
27:33 - Monica Leonelle And then they got enough of those people to be part of their community. And so now they're safe because they have this community. So now they can keep building their author career from there because they have like kind of this committed community and you know, unless like that, that's actually the only way that I've seen Really any forest do well in K U. And it is kind of sad because I've also seen forests who like, have done that in one place and that they try to do it again, but they're using, they're using just desert tactics.
28:04 - Monica Leonelle So anyway, I'll turn it back to Russell so that he can,
28:06 - Russell Nohelty Well, that's what I was gonna say.
28:07 - Monica Leonelle yeah.
28:07 - Russell Nohelty especially is like, it's like a lot of people will have success for a short amount of time and then they've tried to do it again in a different thing and they can't replicate it. So like it's not only did You hit it once and it worked like can you continually ride the trend, can you move the goal posts like over and over and over again and like, can you really, can you hit? Trend the trend regardless of like what the genre is as long as you have interest in it you know there's always people that Monica and I text and we're like like what is the hot thing now and they'll be like within three seconds like they'll be like this this this this and I was like oh yeah okay thank you now I don't have to do all of that research so like it's a lot of research it's a lot of all of that stuff and it's really about can you hit the trend can you stay a hundred percent or like ninety percent ninety eight percent on trend because that's how you're gonna succeed as a desert Now let's talk about succeeding as a grassland.
29:10 - Russell Nohelty A desert is very data heavy. A grassland is very data heavy. But instead of predicting trends that are happening Right now. A grasslands. Success comes from depth and predicting trends. One to two years out. Usually they have a really long series with incredible depth that no one can match. And often they're trying to move the trend so that it becomes the trend. So like, what by, when, by the time that trend gets hot, boom, they've got 20 books in it. So if you've ever met, if you've ever watched Hamilton, they, are the ones who will write their way out when Hamilton goes.
29:53 - Russell Nohelty I'll just write my way out of this. Problem like that is a grassland strategy. In non fiction, they usually pick one topic or two topics. Monica is a great example. She started Herr Career talking about productivity, novel productivity, then wide and now direct sales. But she's kind of weaved all of that stuff together, which I'm sure she can talk about. Once I get done with the brief Overview So their natural aptitudes are places like medium subs, stack fiction, apps, wide retailers, anything that rewards length of time and rewards you for continuing to put out work over time.
30:35 - Russell Nohelty Monica calls this putting pennies in the bank. They're experts at content marketing and getting everything to kind of point back to them, so that by the time The author community is, or the reader community is ready to really get excited about a topic. Like they already have 20 books on and everyone's like, Wait, how did, how did Elaina Johnson get like 30 books on, like cowboy romances? I don't even know about cowboy romances existed until like two days ago. And so they're really, they have a long time, time horizon and what they're doing, they're not a hundred percent on trend, they're like 90 percentage on trend.
31:15 - Russell Nohelty They do something called the trend weaving. Their topic is or their niche is, and whatever is hot at the moment, they're weaving that trend into their next book. So if it's curvy girls like the, it'll be a cowboy and a curvy girl that like are. Relationship or like whatever that trend is, they're moving their long series and bringing that stuff together, which is why they can't stay a hundred percentage on trend. So they're giving up some of their, that right to market in order to get people into their long series.
32:02 - Russell Nohelty And that's how they're winning. They're winning by having these long series. They're able to, let's say, we talked about how there's a gap between book, let's call it seven and ten, so they're able to find ways to summit that gap so that they can Makes Have Success on a 20 Book Series Where Most People Will Fall Off. You know there's all sorts of ways that, that they do it. I heard a great one which was like to seed people to seed characters in book one who end up paying off in book seven. So there's not a drop at that time, but grass ends have all of these ways to kind of summit that gap so that they can have these long series and make all of that and and have that success.
32:49 - Russell Nohelty Have the difficulty launching because they always want to do research. They're George R. Martins, of authors. Like they always have another rabbit hole to go down, but more importantly, their success is kind of being under the radar and then popping up once they are on the market is ready and once they own the topic. So if they like, it almost makes sense why they have a struggle. Launch Because launching is saying, Hi, I'm ready to make this a topic now and like, so that there's always that, that fear that they're going to launch too soon.
33:33 - Russell Nohelty They have this. They have a problem saying, look at me, I want money. Not that every author doesn't have that, like, well, not tundras and not deserts, but like tons of authors have a problem with saying like, hi, like it's me, I'm the author, it's me and I want you to buy this thing. Have real shiny object syndrome. It's a big problem for for, for grasslands. I mean, if you just look at like George R. Martin, he's always going down some new rabbit hole or like he's like the books not quite done yet.
34:07 - Russell Nohelty I need to like explore this dishwasher in like Five Kingdoms Over. And they are very much of the opinion, if they just think about it enough, the solution will present itself they are a desert often will evolve into a grassland. Because it's very data heavy and it is a lot of trend watching. It's just instead of the long spending most of their time trying to extract value from the shortt term trend, they're more long term focused and then they're leaving that those current trends into what they're doing.
34:44 - Russell Nohelty Monica Since you are a grassland, anything that I missed.
34:48 - Monica Leonelle I mean, it's always like kind of a It, it's like, oh man, it's so true, like everything you just said is so true. So I don't know, I don't think there is anything you miss. I mean, yeah, that's me in a nutshell. I could, I could go on and about like how it's me, but I don't know.
35:07 - Russell Nohelty Any questions about this part?
35:11 - Monica Leonelle there, no, I don't. Well, so somebody did say I'm definitely a grassland and they, you know, kind of like, hey, stop tagging me in this, in this presentation type of thing. So people are just like, yeah, always doing research, not, you know, not wanting to, not wanting to launch, like, so people are just commenting in terms of that. Yeah, so yes,
35:35 - Russell Nohelty Here's the here's the thing about grasslands and deserts.
35:36 - Monica Leonelle you hit nail the head.
35:40 - Russell Nohelty They are almost always right, so it is freak. Prescient how well Monica can determine what, the what, what will be a thing in the author community in a year or two years. I'm getting better at it, but like Monica, like two year, like a year and a half before we did the Kickstarter thing. Like she was like, where this is gonna be, this is gonna be a thing. When we start talking about direct sales, like they like, this is gonna be the thing. Like she is almost always right. Not like I was like ten years ago, we're gonna have to do direct sales, but I had no idea when it was going to happen.
36:17 - Russell Nohelty Whereas Like Monica is like freaky, good at telling you what the trend is going to be and then it coming true. So I'm not saying all of you who think your grasslands are not grasslands, I'm sure you all are because grasslands want data more than anything and like this is more data for them. So like this of the ecosystem is like cat nipped for grasslands. It's really important when you're thinking about grasslands. Are you right? Because like, for instance, forests also like to go deep on random niche topics and they'll be like, they'll be talking about like spoons for a year and being like, wait, wait, it's, it's knives.
36:57 - Russell Nohelty I thought we were talking about spoons. So like if you are, if you can predict a trend and then it also comes true, then you probably are a grassland. There are ways to do this as a forest as well. It is the other three ecosystems. Have a lot more give as far as their rightness because. Ust Sorry, a desert and a uh and a grassland have success tacking mostly to the middle of a trend. A lot less room to uh, be wrong. And they're, they're using it for so long, So just keep that in mind. I'm sure all of you love the grasslands are actually grasslands and you're totally right.
37:50 - Russell Nohelty Do think about that. Let's move on to Tundras. Hey, now I'm going to start tagging me. So what is a Tundras superpower? Their superpower is excitement. So they love to snap, pull the band back and then when it's at full, the biggest, the biggest point, letting it go forward and and with the most potential to kinetic energy. So what they do stack tropes on top of each other so talk a lot about Melanie Harlow and Sky Warren, and we don't know if they're tundras, but like they exhibit tundra stra tundra tendencies.
38:35 - Russell Nohelty If you've ever taken the Ja Huss Perfect year where she talks about four Four uh, releases a year, spaced a part, kind of like a fashion designer like that is like the Tundra Playbook. If you look at how, how, how Sky Warren releases, she can get to the top of a category because she stacks all of these tropes onto each other, on top of each other, and she'll hit number one and then she'll like, live off the long tail for a long time and she even talks about, the long tail a lot. Someone like, someone like Melanie Harlowe.
39:19 - Russell Nohelty Both Tdr and Monica mentioned this at Nc, which they saw Melanie at different months of the year have different blurbs that highlight different tropes that are in her book, and she only wrote one book, but she stacked it with so many tropes that like she could basically promote that book throughout the year to different audiences depending on what was hot. So I always say like as a, as a tundra, if you're writing fantasy, you should write fairy tales or dragons or probably both. And like they will be popular forever.
39:54 - Russell Nohelty And so you're really looking more for evergreen tropes. And here is the big thing about tundras, there are not very many of them. Need a lot of, rest and recovery between them. So if you were not a tundra and you are like, why can't I hit number one? It's because they give a hundred percent energy for a very short amount of time and then they hibernate and they spend a lot of time recovering. If you look at sky, like she just goes dark for eight months, sometimes at a time, and then she'll come back and like hit number one again because she, she's recovering, she's rebuilding her list.
40:35 - Russell Nohelty Tundras have to do a lot more audience building because they burn through their list way faster than any other ecosystem because they're constantly launching. It's constantly that build up and that come down. So if you are not a tundra and, and you have tra envy for being number one. That is why, because they are putting all of their energy in one small amount of time, whereas a grassland is putting minimal energy. Not minimal energy, but like they're in power saver mode at 20 to 50 percentage at all times and that's how they're able to do the content marketing.
41:12 - Russell Nohelty If you are a tundra and you are like, why can Monica make post all of the It's because she doesn't have the, she doesn't have the manic, yes, that a tundra does. She's not, there's not a number one. So we all have the same amount of energy. Well, that's not true. People have different kinds of energy, but like they use it in different ways, so Again, a desert hass energy to write all of those books because they're not doing anything else, they're just writing a book, and then they're writing a book and they're writing a book, they're writing a Grassland has this low key energy at all times because they, so that they can keep writing these posts and doing these things and putting these energy pennies in the bank.
42:02 - Russell Nohelty A tundra takes all of that time and condenses it to like one two week period. And then they, they survive by living off the fat that they made by, by having these huge launches. And it's really important that you understand that you can Ton You can hit number one, but you have to basically almost change your businesss model often. Their natural aptitude obviously is on Kickstarter and in Ku, because Ku is so like getting the most amount of money in a small amount of time. They do really, really, really well when like they are front loading their launches.
42:46 - Russell Nohelty They do well at conventions with landing pages. Anything where scarcity is really important. And it's really important that you understand this part for the scarcity, because scarcity is my best friend. It is Monica's worst enemy because she needs to have people be able to find our work and her work throughout the entire year whenever it's convenient for them. What we found last year was a lot of people that would have probably bought our books or our stuff if it was, if it was open.
43:18 - Russell Nohelty All year long wouldn't do it because they would find the page and they'd be like, Oh, I have to wait three months. Like, it's almost like her. She needs to capture the excitement the moment that it happens, as opposed to to me who can build that excitement over time. So I find that I have a lot more success in these short burst launches because I like to then hibernate and go away forever. Although if you know me at all, you know, I have stopped doing that really, but I used to always go away.
43:51 - Russell Nohelty Things that ton just need to work out for, look out for, okay, So an unhealthy tundra will listen to this and be like cool. I have a thousand subscribers. I'm just gonna run 50 launches and they'll never rebuild. You have to rebuild your mailing list. There is a time for launching and a time for recovery and a time for rebuilding. You must rebuild your audience every single time, every single launch. Without that recovery time, you will absolutely burn out. The only reason you do not burn out is because you are able to take that energy and then recover from it for several weeks.
44:31 - Russell Nohelty I recommend there's a Mark Jacobs master class that you can watch, but the idea is thinking like a fashion designer. They have these four fashion weeks throughout the year and the rest of their, their year is about recovering from building up to that and then getting their work kind of spidering into all of these other places. So it spiders into their showrooms and all of that other stuff. But like a Tundras success path is about launching hard and then recovering for a long period of time.
45:03 - Russell Nohelty We, Monica and I both tried to do both of these last year, and shockingly, it didn't work very well. If you are part of my subscribe subs stack. I wrote about it a couple months ago and this things that went to burn it all down, but but it was really important to understand that. I can go hard or I can't go at all. I don't have the ability to, like I have no chill, even though I really want to learn more chill. Monica Anything to add before I move on to forests.
45:34 - Monica Leonelle no, somebody did comment, so there are no questions, but somebody did comment, just just Nic, Nic, Nic was commenting that he, he's a grassland, but he has learned how to build some excitement for his stuff by just watching you. And I, I agree with that. As a grassland too, I feel like there was, there was like no way I could have ever figured out Kickstarter without seeing your system for it and how you build that energy. And I think that's where I just think that's where, if you are a tundra, it makes a lot of sense to like follow Russell's kick starter stuff and like read our kick starter book and if you can take our kick starter course as wellll.
46:20 - Monica Leonelle It just, I don't know, you know, like I also like, like we were saying, we also see this in the, the contemporary romance space and so something. So I think the reason That there are so many contemporary romance authors who they basically do have kind of that, that four book launch strategy. That doesn't. You don't see that as much in other genres, I think, But I think the reason why is because if you want to hit number one on Amazon, the easiest way to do so is in contemporary romance, like period.
46:57 - Russell Nohelty Yes,
46:58 - Monica Leonelle So it's, it's just a matter of like they chose contemporary romance literally because more easily hit number one.
47:08 - Russell Nohelty Absolutely. Yeah, you were. You are going to see a lot more tundras in contemporary romance, probably thriller too, just like the biggest categories, because they need the most excitement possible to literally have their businesss survive. So the reason why Kickstarter works really well for a tundra who might be a fantasy author is because You can use that excitement to build, to make more money from fewer people and so you can build up that same kind of excitement and still have a really successful launch.
47:41 - Russell Nohelty Or is, it's a really hard to do it in. For instance, horror, horror just does not have very many readers and it's very hard to hit a high number like and I mean like top hundred in the store without like some big publisher behind you because like there's just a finite amount of those readers, whereas in contemporary romance that number is nearly infinite, especially if you're in Ku at the moment. All right, we're going to talk about forests, and so I want to say this before I do forest. A tundra is is a sales funnel without a flywheel and we'll talk about that a, a grassland and forest and even aquatic are really flywheels without a, without a sales funnel.
48:31 - Russell Nohelty And a desert probably is more sales funneling than they are flywheel. But if you are the easiest path for a Grassland, aquatic or forest is to build, is to evolve into a tundra, and then a tundra to evolve into probably a grassland or forest for reasons that I'll get, that I'll get into, but mostly it's because being an aquatic is ridiculously expensive. Okay, so what is a forest? Superpower Interconnectivity Now here is the key free forest. When we 1st started doing this, we talked a lot about community and having Facebook groups and like being really good at like, Building a community Then people who were forests were like, I actually don't like having a community.
49:24 - Russell Nohelty And so we kind of had to go back and realize that what forests are really good at is interconnecting all of their books and adding Easter eggs that make everyone have a shared language in their universe. So we have a friend, Sarah Cannon, who puts Hello Kitty in all of her books, or at least all of Herr series, and a desert probably would never do that, because they're trying to hit the trend right now. But a forest is going to want to have that Easter egg all over the all over their books.
50:04 - Russell Nohelty While a desert is very good at delivering a an experience for that each that fits a hundred percentage on trend, Ust is good at their secret power is delivering the same brand experience across all of their books. So while a desert Probably should have different pen names for all of their different series. A forest can have one pen name for everything because their brand experience is the same across all of the books that they write. In fact, a very popular thing for a fan of a forest writer to say is, I didn't think I'd like genre, but I really liked when you wrote it, and it's because they're delivering the same universal fantasy.
50:59 - Russell Nohelty Universal. If you have not read Theodora Taylor's Seven figure fiction, if you do not follow her subs stack, and you are a forest. This is your this is your monarch. You should be follow. You should follow everything that she says, because uni fantasy is like, like a universal fantasy for a desert changes. It's dependent on what the reader expectation is. They will change their universal fantasy based on what the reader is and what's hot at the time. So like a desert also needs to know what the universal fantasy is.
51:36 - Russell Nohelty A Grassland has to know what a universal fantasy is because they are keeping it across their topic or their series. As a tundra, I needed to know my universal fantasy, but because you are writing so many different things across so many different genres, usually usually forest have a billion pen names, it is critical for you to understand what your universal fantasy is. And be able to deliver it consistently. Once you can do that, you will be able to bring in readers across genres So their natural aptitudes, wildly, are almost the exact opposite of a desert Patreon rem wa.
52:19 - Russell Nohelty Guide Live events. Places where you you have a lot longer time to reach people and people can connect together and you can form like a brand identity and a cohesive narrative around your work that everyone can enjoy and talk about. Forest have so I think most people are, are wrong about how they talk about community because they always talk about having people talk about seafood or like whatever, like the new macaroni and cheese dish or like Stu, they always talk about the community, about building around the work, but most other ecosystems that are not forests build community through their work.
53:04 - Russell Nohelty Monica and I have a ton of readers. We never talk about like any of the wild things that we see forests talk about, and it's because forests have put all of these Easter eggs that are part of them that reson. With the reader that they want to talk about and so they're able to connect together around it in a way that other ecosystems just are not so It is about community for forests, but it's not about actually having a Facebook group or whatever. It's about you developing a shared language that people can talk about and brand themselves.
53:48 - Russell Nohelty While a desert is staying a hundred percentage on trend because people always ask me, Great, I'm a forest now, how do I grow? A forest succeeds when they twist a troop. So they will take the same genre, and they will say, And a forest and a desert will say, Do you want the perfect representation of this genre? Then read my book. It's the Every feeling that you want is That's how much I love this genre. I'm gonna do it perfectly. A forst will say I also love this genre because that's a big thing that forests for some reason say a lot is like don't you hate it don't you hate this genre and you're like no I love this genre so you're what you're looking for is the switch on the trope I'll give you an example from my own career Katrina hates the dead is a post apocalyptic book but a girl who uh a woman who gets sick of living during the apocalypse and sets out to kill the devil so my at the time this was twenty eleven there were just a lot of books about like the beginning of the apocalypse and I was like this is like I love these books but like I want to read a book that happens years later when everyone is just bored like so my my twist was I love this genre but isn't it weird how all of the books happen at the apocalypse level like don't you want to read something that that's a little bit later in the experience.
55:21 - Russell Nohelty What would happen if something, if like we If like we just moved the needle a few years and now that has happened over time, but like it's the same, a desert will be like this is the perfect post apocalyptic book, you'll get everything. And this is like, this is, this is a post apocalyptic book and it's going to give you almost everything. But like, what would happen if this twist, if you're a comics book fan and you've ever read, what if? What If is a Marvel series where they're like, What if Wolverine was?
55:59 - Russell Nohelty Scott Summer's father. And they just like twisted the thing that you knew, but they twisted it in their own universe. I loved that series as a kid. So when you talk about like, how does he forest to grow? What's the exact thing that Monica was saying about the postpartum depression? 1st There was love, then there was marriage, then there was a baby. Carriage and then there was postpartum impression. Whereas everything else would be like, So how you would say that for a desert is like, I'm gonna write you the perfect trilogy of books.
56:29 - Russell Nohelty I'm gonna write the, the, the, the love, and then I'm gonna write the marriage, then I'm gonna write the baby. And a for us would be like, I'm gonna write you a series that's like love, marriage, baby. And then what happens after? Like if, if like you, you have you got like over touch, touched out or or or any of those like something like that and like it's still the same love this is the most important thing for a forest. Like your messaging is. Your messaging is really wrong if you ever say anything, but I love this series, but isn't this weird or something like that?
57:09 - Russell Nohelty Where like you're showing that you also love the series and understand the troops, because that is how someone's going to feel. The permission to buy, to read your your book because suddenly, because you know all of the tropes that a deer main tropes that the desert knows. You just are using them in a, in a way to switch something up. Here is the biggest problem for a forest is forests love talking as if everyone is their biggest fan. They always talk in inside jokes. They, they are very welcoming to people in the community, but they feel opposing to people who are not in the community.
57:55 - Russell Nohelty They're like, Wow, I have to have to know a lot to even do this series. There's 50 books. This is a lot. And this is why This is why Forest usually don't do very well on Kickstarter, or as well as they could do, because they are always talking to their biggest fan instead of giving people permission to join their universe. So there are new people there are. Readers There are fans and there are super fans, and a great Kickstarter campaign or a landing page has something for the super fans.
58:27 - Russell Nohelty To show their love, but also as a way to turn fans into super fans, casual readers into fans and nobody, and people who don't read into casual fans or into fans. And most, almost every time I read one of these, one of these Kickstarter campaigns, the 1st thing I asked is who did you write this for? Because I don't understand what you just wrote any of this, none of this makes sense. And so if it's clear and you have to make these things clear and concise for outsiders and just remember that like you need to talk as if people outside of your group can be welcomed inside of it.
59:06 - Russell Nohelty Not that you aren't welcoming, but if you think of a forest, a forest looms when you are outside of it and it's probably pretty cozy inside of it. They are also the hardest to get going because they move. Between genres, which is why you need to really focus on your theme over your genre. You need to be delivering a consistent brand experience across all of your work, and you really need to do kind of like what R. Blaine did. R. Blaine had all of these series And then she had Herr Magical Romantic Comedy with a body count series, and that took off and suddenly everyone interconnected all of the books, because everyone loves Rj's books, everyone loves like everything that Rj does, because she has the same brand experience, it's her every book, as opposed to a desert, who is different, who can be different.
1:00:00 - Russell Nohelty Every book, they're very much a chameleon. And they have different brand identities. A forest has a single brand identity, which is whyy they're so good at interconnectivity. Okay, so as I mentioned, a forest and a grassland are flywheels without a, which is. Basically, you're able to keep people inside of your community for a long time, but you struggle to bring people in and make sales. A tundra is a is a funnel which is really good at getting sales with no flywheel, so ideally Depending on which of these you are, or if you're an aquatic, usually a tundra will need to pick a flywheel, and an aquatic and a flywheel will need to pick a funnel.
1:00:53 - Russell Nohelty Monica Anything to add before I go onto aquatics or any questions.
1:00:57 - Monica Leonelle Yeah, there are a couple of things. So one thing, so anyway there is a ton of comments about the forest in particular. I'm just gonna read some of them because I, I feel like the forest are the most excited about this. They said that, what you were saying about Universal fantasy resonated and shared language resonated so much more with them than community specifically. They said that they're obsessed with Easter eggs. The shared language, they don't really, like the Facebook group, style of doing things or they don't have a Facebook group, And then, a couple of them said, I always read the same type of book, I'm trying to embrace my story more than anything.
1:01:43 - Monica Leonelle They love the trope, twisting stuff, one line that somebody uses, it's ex trope, but with a twist, and so that seems to work well for them and adds uh, two pen names the same universe. Fantasy Just now, hearing this for the 1st time, mind blown, they love, what if? Somebody said They're such a forest who's been trying to work like a desert gack, and yes,
1:02:10 - Russell Nohelty Yes,
1:02:10 - Monica Leonelle we hear we hear that one a lot without them. They love Neil Gamon comp.
1:02:18 - Russell Nohelty so I would say of all of that. A forest A, A grassland can see a lot of themselves in a desert because they are very data heavy. A tundra can see a lot of themselves in a desert because they're, they're trying to build excitement and optimization. So some of the things that That like deserts teach about, like resonates, even if it doesn't work quite as well. To me, the forest is the most on the other side of that, that trend. Would you say that's accurate, Monica?
1:02:53 - Monica Leonelle Yeah, I would, I don't have anything to add, but yes, I, I do. I think that that one thing I mentioned in the comments is that sometimes it feels like deserts and forest. Like a lot of what's happening in the Indi community and the conversations is like desert versus forest, almost like desert way of thinking versus forest way of thinking.
1:03:12 - Russell Nohelty Oh, yeah.
1:03:16 - Monica Leonelle And I think it's just, it's very specific to this community. So like, cause I, I feel like I feel like that needs to be said that like in the fashion community for example like the tundra model is very dominant in film it's probably more of an aquatic model in television it's probably the grassland model so in publishing it just happens to be the desert model and specifically in indi publishing I think forests are much more in aquatics or much more welcome or sought out on the on the tread pub side but yeah I I do I do think it's important to say that a lot of What is taught in the community right now?
1:03:58 - Monica Leonelle The dominant messaging about how to do sales and marketing is, very desert oriented right now.
1:04:05 - Russell Nohelty Yes, and so. It is, and if you teach other authors, this is really also important. Probably are talking If you are talking to people who are not having success in Ku or like through the orthodox method, you probably are talking to a lot of forests. And the thing that I have learned in the past month is how to talk to deserts. What I think Monica Like we, I spent the most amount of time learning how to talk to deserts because they're the, they are, they are the ones who are most likely to already be having success, but they're also coming up on different roadblocks and I feel like the 1st year of our business, we were talking about community and all of these things and deserts were like, that's that how we Like you have no idea what, what like fandom is like, like this is not phantom at all.
1:05:09 - Russell Nohelty Like we didn't have the language to talk to 40 % or more of the author community.
1:05:16 - Monica Leonelle Yes, I agree with that. Yeah, we've learned, we've learned like quite a bit about deserts and, and about like desert problems that they're hitting. Because you know, I think the biggest one which you've already talked about is really that, they kind of leave like this trail of books that like they leave this trail of back list that like no longer works for them almost or that they struggle to get working for them because it becomes, it's almost like it has like their back list has such a shelf life.
1:05:46 - Monica Leonelle And so it's like, how, how do they like start a new? In many ways. We talk to a lot of deserts that are like kind of starting a new of like, wow, I've been riding for so long, but like I kind of have nothing long term to show for it. And so we talk about, we, we talked well, so anyway, there are actually a lot of forest questions, forest related questions. So one of them is from the beginning, if I'm a forest, but I'm also planning on publishing other authors, should I focus on attracting fellow forests?
1:06:20 - Russell Nohelty we're in towards the end, we're going to talk about this a little bit more. But one of the best methodologies, and I think this was Nic who was talking about this, but one of the reasons why this works so well for publishers is because it will help you design your publishing slate. So, for instance, Let's just take a shared world, for instance. You probably want three or four deserts or one desert writing three or four books over the course of a year, but you don't want to be, you don't want them, their books to come out like two years later.
1:06:59 - Russell Nohelty In fact, this is one of the great innovations that like a company like Harlequin, like they don't put out books two years later and like they're very desert focused with what they are doing. And so if you were hiring deserts, like to hit your trends, you need that to hit consistent income. You probably want at least one of those a quarter. Then you probably But like, you have to know that those books are probably ephemeral, so you probably want a tundra. Twice a year to make an evergreen book that's going to be that's going to be able to be sold for the next ten years.
1:07:36 - Russell Nohelty And then you probably want three or four forests because you want to be able to get a really nice Arc team or a really great or like a really great beta readers or like you just want to pull the forest and like expose them to more people and like get them to. But you have to know that those are gonna be books that are going to be like very narrow banded to a specific group. And then you want an aquatic because aquatics going to be able to talk about all of the different formats. And then you want a grassland who's kind of almost running it but like knows where the trend is going so they can turn people.
1:08:12 - Russell Nohelty And then you want them to come out last, probably if it's a year or two years universe because they're going to be the ones taking all of these trends. And like and making them work, and so that's not necessarily perfect. Like Monica, I never sat down and said what the ideal publishing slate is. It might be all deserts. Like if you were a poll publisher, like you published all deserts and the reason you probably failed was because you look back 30 years later and like, oh, I've got nothing to show for and none of these books are selling.
1:08:42 - Russell Nohelty So you, like you probably don't want all forests because then it's all trope twisting. So you probably want to, like, let's say you do a lit Rpg publisher. You probably want mostly to desert books, but you also want some trend twisting books. You want some like trend stacking books, you want some trend making books. You want maybe a big universe that you can build out. Like that's one of the other things that Aquatic is great for. So You should pick some forests, but you really need to kind of think about you need, you need immediate cash flow, which is something that deserts are great with.
1:09:18 - Russell Nohelty You need long tail cash flow, which is something Tundras after their book is launched are good at because you can keep launching them and also deserts. You want to build out like a bigger base beyond just books, and that's something aquatics are really great at. And then I missed one. Oh forest, like you want to build, you want to have like a great community who loves all of your books. So like you want forests there also, but you want them in different ratios depending on what you're publishing.
1:09:50 - Russell Nohelty Yeah.
1:09:52 - Monica Leonelle I think it's gonna depend so much on your business model. But yeah, I would say you kind of want A little bit of everybody, I mean the diversity is going to be really helpful. I do think there are forests who have massive, massive audiences. That are like you know like like I see them on patreon for example it's like you have like like somebody will get on the patreon and like they have a thousand subscribers right away or like some or or rem as well um and they they have like a thousand subscribers just like right at the gate and you know that person I mean honestly like they probably are a forest like maybe they're a tundra.
1:10:26 - Russell Nohelty Yes. But you might also see that like you might misjudge how big the overall community of that author is because you're like a thousand paid subscribers, but like they might not have the ability to grow. Super far beyond the community that they have because they're writing in a really small niche. Sorry, I just wanted to add that part in there because sometimes you will get like, oh, this person is a huge author and you're like, oh, but their audience, they, they've captured the whole audience that they could.
1:11:08 - Monica Leonelle okay, so a couple, so we'll going through these, these forest ones, so um, somebody asked, could you repeat the elements that the forest needs to do to be successful in Ku or on retailers? And those I, I did put them in the chat, but those are basically find in the attention arbitrage, write at least 80 % to the tropes and then do the last 20 %. You're allowed to do a Trobe twist and then hit the market really, really hard. So you needed to gather like, like you need to be in front of the entire market for that tro, for that genre or sub niche or whatever you wanna call it, as quickly as possible before that attention arbitrage runs out.
1:11:50 - Monica Leonelle And then you needed to collect as many of those people as you can into your flywheel, which we'll talk about flywheel, but like community or shared language or whatever you want to talk about it. Like it's, it's fly wheel is like kind of the best container.
1:12:03 - Russell Nohelty Whatever your home base is.
1:12:04 - Monica Leonelle Yeah, your home base, like you need them on your email list or just somewhere like you got to be able to contact them and like continue interacting with them and building them,
1:12:13 - Russell Nohelty Yep.
1:12:13 - Monica Leonelle make making them super fans basically. And if you can do that, then you'll be pretty successful and you can parley that into other things as long as you stick to your universal fantasy. But it is, it is, it's challenging.
1:12:29 - Russell Nohelty Well,
1:12:29 - Monica Leonelle So I think,
1:12:29 - Russell Nohelty this is one reason the community part of this is why forests almost always misjudge trends because they have a very unique set of things that their audience loves,
1:12:30 - Monica Leonelle yeah, go ahead. Yes.
1:12:41 - Russell Nohelty and those things are almost never what the overall audience wants. So you also have to be able to. So I'll give you, probably everyone in here who's been doing this for any length of time remembers the prison reform trend where like every author was pure, was sure that like, magical prison escape was going to be the next thing. It was right around at some point of, of one of the seasons of Orange is the New Black. And then like, no readers wanted it. And whenever I see that, I'm like, Oh, that was a trend that was like put up by Forest.
1:13:15 - Russell Nohelty They really wanted that trend to be a case. Their audience was saying it would be great, but the overall audience does not want to do it. So the only thing I would add to what Monica said is you have to. If you want to have success in Ku, you need to. Get your head out of your audience and find a way to mesh. What your audience wants is what the overall audience wants.
1:13:39 - Monica Leonelle Yes, I agree with that. Okay, So then somebody asked, flywheel versus funnel, can you explain the imagery?
1:13:48 - Russell Nohelty sure a fly wheel so. Okay, so how a pump works, is that so? A flywheel is a way to get water to a well, for, from a well, from the ground, I mean, I'm sure it does other things, but it's mainly for getting water from the ground. And a pump works by you exert the same pressure constantly and like it gives you the same water constantly. This is one of the reasons whyy everyone burns out because they, they find something that has a relatively low barrier to entry. And then they just pump it. And every time they pump it for years and like the same water comes out, they're like, I'm done, why is it's not getting any easier?
1:14:32 - Russell Nohelty Well, enter the flywheel. The flywheel is a marketing concept designed by Hubspot, but it is not a It's not not only hubspot, like it's a thing that again like happens to get water out of, out of the ground, but how it works is, it is really it's a wheel, like it's a wheel and there's a spout, but like it's really, really hard. It often takes two or three people to get the flywheels started. Hard and, but then with every rotation it gets easier and easier and easier and easier. So this is why things like I always, people say they hate marketing.
1:15:12 - Russell Nohelty I'm always like, well, you hate marketing now 'cause you're not doing enough of it to make it easier over time. But like building an email list or building whatever the thing is, building a Patreon, like it just gets easier. A subscription is a perfect. Like if you are in subscriptions for authors you're listening to Michael Evans or Amelia Rose, like they're always talking about like how hard it is to get started and like, I agree it's, but like then it gets easier and easier and easier and easier over time.
1:15:41 - Russell Nohelty So once when you're, when you're a grassland, getting that 1st ten books is gonna be probably pretty brutal for you. But then every time you put a new book out, it's just gonna grow. Well as your reputation in that genre comes out, you're just going to get easier and easier and every book is going to have more and more and more. So it's hard and then it gets easy. Whereas a desert The pumping the same pump constantly. It doesn't get easier for a desert because they always have to have that same arbitrage.
1:16:16 - Russell Nohelty They have to find that arbitrage. Whereas when you have that flywheel going, it really works, people come into your system and they don't ever want to leave. So that's the biggest thing about A flywheel is. It centers the customer, and then there's marketing and sales and growth and all of these other things in the circle. That all work to make the experience better for the customer but when you have ten thousand people in your community it's a lot easier to service them than like having one you have to do the same effort but after when you have a hundred people a thousand people whatever it just gets easier and easier and easier the easiest way I can say this for my in my own experience is subs stack I have like one hundred seventy five paid subscribers to subs stack and it's way easier to do anything because like I have so I have I'm getting like six hundred or one thousand dollars every month just to like do the work of subs stack the same thing with like kickstarter I put so much effort into kickstarter which is how I can launch my newest one I launched with no it just like surprise I launched it and like it's raised over two thousand dollars and I did no marketing for it except send two emails so far and hit launch so those are the things that usually things that actually work are very, very hard at the beginning and then get easier over time.
1:17:45 - Russell Nohelty The problem is that no one gets, very few people get over that part to actually get to the easy part. The stuff that most marketing people teach, like no offense to marketing people, is like the pump. Just like, hey, you can make a post and get five likes, like you got to make the tick tok, you got to make ten tick talks a day, but like you get the likes from it, but you still have to exert the same effort to get the same likes. And that's a pump. A sales funnel is. You put a bunch of people in the top of the sales funnel and it's like a funnel like you would have for like oil or something.
1:18:21 - Russell Nohelty And then some of those people that know that know you will like you, like you will buy from you or sorry, like you will trust you and trust you will buy from you and then. But the problem with a funnel is once you put people at the top, some of them come out the bottom, but what happens to all the people that fall off, they're just gone. What happens when people buy from you, They're just gone. So that's why you need a basin at the bottom to be like, if you're not buying, there's still this flywheel.
1:18:49 - Russell Nohelty There's still a reason for you to come to exist. And that's one of the reasons why sending all of these emails, like, and doing all of these hyper salesy things doesn't really work for a forest or a grassland because they're interested in the long term viability of their flywheel. But and where's a tundra has to learn how to not sell everything immediately and build that good, good, good base of people for their community. I don't know someone tell me if that makes any sense. Monica Did I totally pooch that or Is that good?
1:19:23 - Monica Leonelle no, I think it makes a lot of sense. So we still have more questions. So, I think that this, yeah, so people are saying in the comments, it makes a lot of sense. Okay, so there are two questions, I don't know if we really have time to go over this. One is like, I'm a forest, I also want to build a funnel, are we going to cover that? And I feel like that's where it's like we've identified the problem. Like building a funnel is like a lot of that's like a, a whole separate conversation in my opinion, I can say like Look at what tundras are doing, coz they obviously are a funnel.
1:20:03 - Monica Leonelle Like we've talked about a funnel with no fly wheels. So like follow some tundras, see how they do it.
1:20:08 - Russell Nohelty I recommend you go. If you are not already subscribe to my sub stack, subscribe to it and then become a member because I have my book How to Build Your Creative Career in there, which talks all about a how to build a sales force. And I also have a post coming out in a couple weeks where I talk about the top of the funnel the middle of the funnel and the bottom of the funnel but basically the biggest problem so there's two things I'll try and do this very quickly one is almost nobody puts enough people at the top of the funnel to get to the bottom to have any chance of success like let's say there's a there's a two percent close ratio of like people who will actually buy well like if you put a hundred people in that's two people if you put a hundred thousand people in that's two thousand people I think yes two thousand so like you're not putting enough people at the top they're just waiting for stuff so like this is a classic forest and grassland they're just like I'm gonna keep writing and then somehow they'll find it eventually and like this is why you're like no you need to like do actions to like bring people into your universe and Then tell them that they can buy things so.
1:21:26 - Russell Nohelty So like part one is you need to have a really clear brand promise of what you're trying to do and so that you can bring people and forest also. Lose a lot of people in their funnel because they're looking for people that don't just love the trope but love the twist.
1:21:42 - Monica Leonelle Yes. Love Yeah, yeah, I think that's the biggest thing for forest is you actually have to do way more marketing than the desert does in terms of a funnel. And I think that's where forests get really stuck is, they don't realize like that's why I said you know to succeed in ku you've gotta be able to hit the whole entire market as hard as you possibly can cause only like I don't know thirty percent of them like whereas the desert would get like like if they hit a hundred thousand people probably a hundred thousand or like eighty thousand of those people are gonna love this book versus a forest you hit a hundred thousand people maybe only like thirty thousand of them love the book because it's not it's not the center of the market um so and and I think like all the types besides of desert have this issue like for the grassland you are gonna have more leaks than the desert would but like for the forest especially it's like you know you're only gonna find like out of a hundred people only like twenty or thirty thirty of them are gonna be like your people who love the trope who also love you know the universal fantasy the specific universal fantasy that's like your thing and so you've got to actually hit the market even And harder than anybody else does.
1:22:59 - Russell Nohelty Yes. Yes, and, and it needs to.
1:23:03 - Monica Leonelle yeah.
1:23:03 - Russell Nohelty You needed to make it clear in your marketing, in your automation sequence. And we have a course in the membership called Builder Super Fandom that I talk about all of this, but it's about answering the objection and getting them to. So you need to be able to say you love. Fantasy. I love fantasy. You love portal fantasy. I love portal fantasy. You love strong female characters. I love strong female characters. You love noble, bright fantasy. I love noble, bright fantasy. You like action adventure.
1:23:35 - Russell Nohelty I like action adventure. You love Lord of the Rings. I love Lord of the Rings. But here's the thing about Lord of the Rings. Like, and then that's your twist. And so you have to prove not only where, say, desert has to be, like, do you love Lord of the Rings? This is the perfect lord that it's to give you. Every single feel that Lord of the Rings gives you so many, it's gonna give you so many feels like you're just gonna feel like Lord of the Rings. Like you, you're gonna live, want to live in Lord of the Rings.
1:24:00 - Russell Nohelty You have to make that extra switch and be like, if you love Lord of the Rings, you will love Lord of the Rings. But also like What's the deal with, what's the deal with Orcs always being the bad guys, huh? Like what if an Orc was the hero? And so like whatever that twist is, like you have to put that into your marketing and you have to put, like Monica said, a lot. More people through I, I tend to have more forest tendencies than grassland tendencies. So I can say Monica often e messages me about things that I write for my sub stack and goes, why would you write that?
1:24:35 - Russell Nohelty Like, you know, no one's gonna care in the brighter community. And I'm like, because they need to hear it. And like, like Monica is just like, but if you didn't write that, more people would read your publication. And it's like, that's the, I think that that's like the difference between how she thinks and how I think. Like my goal is to bring people in with a wide trope and then be like, but really it's about capitalism though, like by like, yes, you can grow subs stack, here's how the way to grow subs stack.
1:25:05 - Russell Nohelty But all of that is just to be like, but what I really care about is like showing artists how to survive in a hyper capitalist hellscape. So like, all of the stuff that I do here in a wide audience is just to like, bring people into this like twist of like, What if it wasn't you though? What if it was the system and like, so I have to talk to way more people than a desert or because like, A Des would be like, Hey, you want to grow your subs stack, this is going to be the sub stack, you subs stack thing you'll ever subs stack.
1:25:38 - Russell Nohelty Like you get everything about subs stack in here and I'll subs stack your subs stack too. And a forest will be like, we'll have that twist, which is why the top needs to be a lot of people, a lot of the right people,
1:25:49 - Monica Leonelle Yes.
1:25:50 - Russell Nohelty of the right people, not just anyone, but like a lot of like fantasy fans. Because like, fantasy fans don't really know, like whether they want the trope or they want the subversion of the trope, I don't know. So, and then you have to have a middle of the funnel that optimizes to be like, here's me, I love me, don't you love me? And like, don't you love this, don't you love this, here's why you should love me, here's this trope, here's this other thing, and like, by the way, here's this free book, oh, do you want to try this?
1:26:16 - Russell Nohelty I always send like the 1st chapter out to people when I'm doing like a kickstarter or something because I'm like, well, I have this Kickstarter now for White Rabbit, which is like, what if it was Alice in Wonderland? But like, It was all the drug trip and the drugs were removed. And like now there's a, now it's a crime thriller. And it's like, you need to read this chapter before you actually sit, like you need to read this before you actually buy it. But also, I love Alice. I have a post in the, in the page.
1:26:45 - Russell Nohelty It's like, Why would you do this, you monster? And it's like, I love Alice. She's literally my favorite character of all time. I've read those books hundreds times. I have. I've had so many copies of these books over my over the years. My favorite book that I have on my bookshelf is Alice in Wonderland. That's like really beautiful that I got in Paris. That is the difference between like a forest and a desert that the funnel needs to be for a desert you are. If you want this experience, I am going to deliver this exact experience.
1:27:17 - Russell Nohelty If you but a forest hass to be do love this experience well, what if? You've subverted that experience and then the bottom has, and then it's about converting and making the each place as optimized as possible or not. Like I don't even think about optimizations really at all. I just am like if a bunch of people go in the top, a bunch of people come at the bottom. I make some money and like cool. And if there's any deserts on this call, they're probably like mouthed gate like horrified.
1:27:44 - Russell Nohelty But would just say that right now. But like, it's true. I mostly care about getting the people doing the actions and then knowing that if I do x amount of actions, why good things happen. But I've built a robust, sales model. I that helps. I don't know if that's.
1:28:01 - Monica Leonelle it, yes, it's very helpful. Everybody is saying it's helpful. However, we do needed to make the,
1:28:06 - Russell Nohelty Yes.
1:28:07 - Monica Leonelle this a much shorter answer to this next question. So forest, another forest asking, you know, obviously. Being a forest takes like a long time they have survived, which I think that's right. To find success, how do you make a living early in your career? Any tips for that?
1:28:28 - Russell Nohelty Yeah, you should do what grasslands do this, make a long series, like make a long, make a series real long and like make it your shade tree and then do everything else from that. Like, but the quicker you can actually stand up a shade tree, like, the better. But you're not gonna do that. You're gonna be like, well, I don't want to do that. I want to follow my whims. Like this is about following my national tendencies. Jerk. Like that's why you brought me in here. So I will say I have 40 books and zero of them are on retailers because I launched them all on kickstarter into my membership communities and like I don't worry I'm trying to find somebody who loves all of my work and they support me you know I made like a hundred like sixty seventy thousand dollars this year on kickstarter alone and i've never put my stuff on on retailers so I think you're going to have to be much more diversified than a desert will have to do Because you're fin, probably like I made my living at conventions and Kickstarter and now and now I have a sub stack.
1:29:33 - Russell Nohelty One of those like, I just, I think you're going to have to lean in. That's why we talked about the natural aptitudes. And then when you find that shade tree that like that R. Blain series, that's when you double down on it.
1:29:48 - Monica Leonelle Yeah, I think that's the biggest thing is like, I would say like kind of yes, be a grassland, but like, I think forest also have the trouble of like doubling down on something that. Isn't really working. Just because they like it so much. So I think like almost be a desert at 1st and like again like find, like do what a desert would do and find that. Attention Arbitrage Ca I think that's I, I honestly think that's the forest. Best bet is to find that.
1:30:16 - Russell Nohelty or also or create a new category. Like I keep going back Rj because I've known her for so long and I was there like I Remember when it all clicked into place, it was like, what if I did romantic comedies, but they were paranormal and then also they were, they were cozy mysteries and like, what if I took these things and like I made it my own thing and she took three popular things and then twist mixed it with like that special Rj magic and like it worked. And so she didn't just make like horror, fantasy, like books about potatoes, like she picked three big genres and mashed them up in her way.
1:30:55 - Monica Leonelle Yes, I agree with that. As well, that's definitely. Yeah, a possibility. And I think like in some sense she really did find, like it's kind of saying same thing cause she really did find an attention arbitrage before. It was because she was taking three big things and putting them all together so it I and, and I think that's what the person who did the R H curry, you know, the curvy girl R h di, like those two things are popular and like both under served in many ways and like so R J did, she was doing like almost like a wrong com or like a, like she was doing comedy before it was popular, right?
1:31:34 - Monica Leonelle Like before it was popular enough and now it's hotter and it would be harder to break into that. The, Yeah, so that's why I would say I, I mean, I feel like we already gave the playbook of like, how do you do this? It was in the previous question. So I think the biggest thing that a forest has to do is like, coz you don't like if you're a forest, you do not want to hear what we already kind of in many ways like like you want, like the thing that is hardest when talking to a forst is they want in many ways to say like, oh, just keep doing what you're doing and it'll all work out eventually.
1:32:12 - Monica Leonelle And like, you can do that, but you know, again this is a sales and marketing thing. So it's like you do have to meet the audience, like the audience has to be as important to you as the work is in order to make a commercial success.
1:32:27 - Russell Nohelty Yes.
1:32:27 - Monica Leonelle That's just, that's just the rules or the laws of sales and marketing. So That's what I don't know. Do you wanna add anything else to that,
1:32:36 - Russell Nohelty I think, I think we've talked a lot about aquatics,
1:32:37 - Monica Leonelle or.
1:32:38 - Russell Nohelty which I'm not surprised about because there's probably the most aquatics of and it's also the most nuanced.
1:32:40 - Monica Leonelle About forest? Yeah, no forest, forest.
1:32:43 - Russell Nohelty Sorry, forest, let's talk about aquatics and let's see if there are other questions about forest at the end because we've got a lot more stuff. Evolution and such as well that I want to get to. So Aquatics, Aquatics are brand managers, they have vision, the, they are format agnostics. So I have a friend who sat down with me at 20 books a couple of years ago and was like, I hate writing the books. And I was like, you know, you don't have to write the books, you can hire somebody to write the books, like go do other stuff.
1:33:13 - Russell Nohelty And the next year she saw me again and sat down with me and she says, I'm buying you lunch because like the thing you did, the thing you said like meant everything. Because I I realized I could. What I care about is the overall brand that I have this Big 30. And she's like, I want to have Merch and I want to have Rpgs and I want to have all of these things. And and like I feel so stifled. Because what she wanted to do was go to new formats and new places and infiltrate them, meet the fans where they are, bring them to her and get them to love Herr Universe and so That is the big, that is the big sales and marketing thing.
1:33:52 - Russell Nohelty It's instead of saying I'm going to find people who love books, they're like, what if, what if I go and find everyone who likes Rpgs and bring them into my universe and then I'll show them books, But I'm using these other formats as a way to grow. Overall universe, my overall fan base by doing these things. Non fiction authors, like so many of them, we didn't talk about this, but like so many of them are accord, like they got a podcast, they got a podcast and got a course and they got a book and they got a this and like they are in tons of formats, but Lit R P Gs are kind of that.
1:34:28 - Russell Nohelty They create like they are just intrinsically a a quic thing. They're like games plus book and like they're already multimodal in that way. So like, but the big thing about an aquatic is they're saying I have a message or I have a universe. I have a thing that is cool and I need to go find fans where they are to get them to love this thing. And I'm agnostic to. I'm going as long as the fans are there. So they're great at Kickstarter, Patreon, Live events, Reem wide, everywhere that they can gather more people, even if it's a small amount of people.
1:35:06 - Russell Nohelty They are loyal to their world. They almost always have one world. Think about like George Lucas, he's a classic aquatic. He put out a book and then was like, cool, that's great, I'm gonna merch though now. And that's how he made all of his money. And then he's like, cool, this is good, I'm gonna, I divert visual effects, I'm gonna now make a visual effects company now, so I can just get other people to do this thing. And like they were expanding their business by opening new formats.
1:35:31 - Russell Nohelty They are literally making a trend from scratch. This is why aquatics take so long, because they are basically building Star Wars from the ground up. And the hardest thing about aquatics is it's real expensive. Like books are very cheap to make. As someone who's made almost all the other formats that we talked about, books are very reasonably priced to make as compared to every other format. Especially when you start getting into movies and video games and such. So the thing that stops an aquatic most is that they need to focus on opening one line of businesss, put all of their focus onto it, and then hire somebody to do that stuff and keep it going so they can move on to the next thing and the next thing and the next thing.
1:36:18 - Russell Nohelty And so if you like, these are perfect. Like biz dev people. If you guys do it and like know anything about like entrepreneurship, but like they're spinning up new lines. Every one of these new things is basically a new line of business that's meant to funnel people into the universe and get them to like all of their things. For that reason, aquatics have the highest super fan to subscriber ratio of Universe of any of these ecosystems because they're spending the amount of time it takes to get that person in and make them a fan is so they're spending so much time they're offering them so many different accesss points that by the time they're a fan like they are all in on the universe is this is how someone with like two hundred or three hundred people in their email us could make ten thousand dollars on a kickstarter because those two hundred people are not just fans not just casual readers they are like all in on everything like they're gonna come two year to two to to do a book event with you they're gonna go ride horses with you like they're going to do literally anything because they love of the universe and you and what you're building so much that That, yeah, that.
1:37:27 - Russell Nohelty So if you're, if you're ever wondering like how somebody could make this, it seems to be that that is the aquatic methodology is, they are, they are, they have. So everyone who comes their universe and stays is a super fan, not a casual fan. All right, Sure, we have less questions about about aquatics than for us, but anything to add about aquatics.
1:37:52 - Monica Leonelle I mean there are no comments on aquatics, I feel, o wait, there is one comment, um major, so and, and this is a question that maybe kind of fits in with aquatics, so somebody asked, in what ecosystem would you place a series such as Dentons Dragons, Battletech or Star Wars? So we've already talked about Star Wars, we believe George Lucas is a textbook, aquatic basically. I and I do think what somebody said in the comments is it was Nic again, he was saying, you know, these are, these are brands, not ecosystems, right?
1:38:29 - Monica Leonelle Like the ecosystem is the archetype,
1:38:30 - Russell Nohelty Yes, the ecosystem, Yes,
1:38:32 - Monica Leonelle yeah.
1:38:32 - Russell Nohelty the archetype is the ecosystem. So you're an aquatic ecosystem. The brand is Star Wars or I mean, I feel like, Gary Gygax was like a grassland, but like Luke Gygax is an aquatic. Because like, it didn't seem like Gary Gygax and any of the things I've read or seen of him, like really cared about expansion beyond Dn Dd, but like, there's no doubt that now. Dn Dd is an aquatic brand and like most of the time, corporations are aquatics because they want to expand into so many things.
1:39:11 - Monica Leonelle They have to be. I mean, yeah, I, I would say like, okay, So somebody asked about Wmg Publishing, which I believe is Michael Ali's publishing arm. We believe that Michael a Julie is probably a desert just because of the way if you look at his success and like his success at bringing other authors on board and building out like a huge publishing company. He's probably, you know, he's,
1:39:37 - Russell Nohelty Yes.
1:39:37 - Monica Leonelle he's basically a desert, like deserts and so is like James Patterson, and Dakota Crow is another good example. But it's like somebody who like, like a, like a desert should build a publisher. Company when they like own the genre essentially like they own their genre and then a lot of times when you talk to them the reason they are building that publishing company is because they want to then get into licensing um but getting into licensing is a little bit different than wanting to like make the comics yourself or make the movies yourself so you see like James patterson for example like he's just he still loves like writing books and like being a co author on all these books like that's his main work and he's like licensing all that out to people who are good at that.
1:39:53 - Russell Nohelty Yes. Yes.
1:40:27 - Monica Leonelle In other areas where I feel like George Lucas was very hands on, I think Stephen is another good example of somebody who, like she was so hands on with like the Twilight movies. So she's author of The Twilight Saga. She's super, super hands on with like the story line she was vetoing stuff for like the graphic novel where the graphic novelist was just I mean, she's kind of like difficult to work with, I'm sure, cause. The graphic novel person was like, like she had just like vetoed so many things cause she's like, my audience is not gonna like that, like my fans are not gonna like that, and I think it's just a different energy,
1:41:06 - Russell Nohelty Yeah, so I think that they're a good example of like a publishing company. So like Michael Anddroid,
1:41:11 - Monica Leonelle yep.
1:41:11 - Russell Nohelty like he expanded his books to more books, like an aquatic expands their books to other formats and they have success doing that. Whereas like Michael, Andrey is so successful and so successful at bringing people into his publishing company because he's like, I know what the trends are, just write this book to trend, can you write this book to trend? And he can even bring people the trend because he's writing with them. As opposed to a forest who can't quite do that but yes I think the difference between like a publishing company like James hunter is another one I think he's probably a desert even though he's in late rpg because his succe he wanted to just make more books like Gary gygax wanted to expand through more rpgs not through five hundred other formats as far as I know that was I mean the thing also is once you are successful at some point you will become an aquatic because like you have to be to expand your brand into more things like neo gamon is a classic forest but like he also writes in every other format because like A, people are paying him to do it and B, he wants to find people in all of these other modalities.
1:42:30 - Russell Nohelty So the goal, it's really important to remember that the goal of this is that you inhabit all of them. You have a base one and you are bringing in things that make your base stronger. But everyone, this isn't Clifton strengths, this isn't Ao Grams. Like this is about how you start from one thing and expand to your business into having all of the things or expand to hire people that are, that have all of those pieces.
1:43:02 - Monica Leonelle I mean I, I would like, I would say like it's I, I, I think like a grassland is going to take from an aquatic something different than the forest would. So I think like it's not that you want to evolve into being an aquatic, it's that you want to evolve and like take some things from the aquatic that will work best for your type. So I mean, I wouldn't say Neil G, I mean Neil Gamon is working in new formats, but like at the end of the day he's still mostly an author. I feel like, and, and so, and he just has like, you know, same with George Martin, Like he's, he's a grassland still, he, he is working in television and a bunch of other stuff, but he's still basically a grassland and basically an author.
1:43:50 - Monica Leonelle I, I just think like once you kind of get to a certain level, you have lots of opportunity to be in other formats, but I don't know that it changes your base, Okay, so a question about the aquatic, if you are an aquatic, you don't have a lot of money early on. Should you bar? So the person ask like I, I think the question is more like, what should you do?
1:44:14 - Russell Nohelty Okay,
1:44:14 - Monica Leonelle The person Yeah,
1:44:15 - Russell Nohelty so um.
1:44:16 - Monica Leonelle the the person asked if you should barter with other creatives, I don't think you should. I, I don't really, I don't know,
1:44:24 - Russell Nohelty Aquatics are a highly partnership based ecosystem because they need other people who are very excited about their universe in different formats to function.
1:44:24 - Monica Leonelle but
1:44:36 - Russell Nohelty So I don't know about bartering because bartering is like, I don't know. You write a book for them and they Like what I did earlier this year was like, Hey, you do good card games, do you want to do an I Kbd card game? Like I think that is a partnership that can be effective or Rpg. Someone who already exists in another world and wants Ip and you have world that is, that is working like you can partner with them that way. The biggest thing I would say is you have to get one line of business up and running and sustainable before you move on to another.
1:45:14 - Russell Nohelty Businesss I am sorry this is like me saying that I killed your cat to any aquatic who's out there, but like it is true you must have a business either be able to hire other people somehow, but really you must have a line of business that is sustainable and profitable. And then you can move on to the next unprofitable thing and build that up and spin that up and move on to the next and the next and each time leaving somebody behind who can run that other businesss like you. But like the most successful.
1:45:48 - Russell Nohelty George lucas focused mostly on merchandise and his movie for the first several years like he mostly focused on those star wars toys and then he like built a virtual effect studio and then he did books and then he did all of that stuff so like he didn't put five hundred things out and he's like the most aquatic aquatic of all time so I would say like you have to chill sure your one thing works and is sustainable before you move on to the next thing, unless you have, I don't know, a ton of additional money and then you're probably just gonna burn through it.
1:46:31 - Monica Leonelle So like a great example in the author community, somebody who has confirmed that they are an aquatic, is Amelia Rose from So, she's a co founder of Green. So it's funny cause she did start a software company in addition to being an author, but like, like she stuck with her subscription for. Years and years before she even like turned stuff into books and now she's like doing comics, she's doing audio, like see me audio. So she's definitely in a lot of formats. I I do think she stuck to her subscription and got like spun it up and then she got her books on retailers and spun that up so that she has a stable.
1:47:14 - Monica Leonelle You know, stable revenue in her businesss. And so that's how she's able to afford to do like the comics that she did that she's currently doing. And it's, it's a very slow process, her comics. So she's still on like the 1st one, I think she just launched her kick starter for it. But I mean she's really kind of like taking her time with each thing and I think that that's Very important for an Aquatic is like, do what you can, but if you actually wanna make money at this, then like double down and and I think like, I, I think like crowd funding is like the place that Aquatic should be.
1:47:50 - Monica Leonelle In publishing, like either do start doing a lot of pictures or start doing a subscription or do both. Like those are the things that an Aquatic does very, very well and like you'll get a higher response from fans and they pay more. For than they would for like a book on a retailer. And so it's just, it's a way to like kind of build your money faster and then very carefully take it and like be very disciplined and start to expand to new formats.
1:48:19 - Russell Nohelty Yeah, I mean in the same way that a forest has multiple series, that they're all growing probably slowly and Aquatic has different formats that they're growing very slowly. So like in that way there's a lot of overlap in how you should think like you need a shade tree or whatever we call it in a Qu.
1:48:27 - Monica Leonelle Yes.
1:48:35 - Russell Nohelty you need something to like splinter out to these formats and make people love it as well. Okay, Any others.
1:48:46 - Monica Leonelle we have a number of like very general questions I guesss we could do.
1:48:49 - Russell Nohelty All right let me get to the end of this and then we can all right I'm just gonna go to the the rest of these slides so how each ecosystem uses trends deserts ride the trend that's a hundred percent they are they're a hundred percent in or ninety eight percent in the trend grasslands weave trends they're about ninety percentage of trend they're keeping things pretty on trend but they're weaving it into their series or their topic tundras stack evergreen trends so they focus less on what is hot now almost Not what is hot now at all.
1:48:51 - Monica Leonelle Go, go to the end, Yeah, and they will answer.
1:49:24 - Russell Nohelty They're looking at like how can I bring vampire, shifter, wolf, dragon? Paranormal, steamy, whatever, that they're like, how can I make all of these things relevant? So they're all going to come back around. And that's how I think as well. It's like, I don't care about what's happening now, I just care about what the evergreen tropes that I can ride forever. Forests twist the trend. They see something in the market and they're like, What if though, What if this though? But and then aquatics basically make a trend from scratch.
1:49:56 - Russell Nohelty So of these it's like one hundred ninety I don't know probably like fifty and then eighty and then zero because they're making it from scratch like I mean they're doing something with trend like amelia wrote herr book to trend but like they're also basically making their own trend like they want star wars to be the trend.
1:50:17 - Monica Leonelle And she was doing, she was definitely doing subscriptions before, like really anybody was doing subscriptions,
1:50:24 - Russell Nohelty Yep. All right, cool, all right. So step one is to get healthy, Step two is go is evolve. So evolution, These are the five stages of evolution. This is of all of the things that we've talked about, the thing that people always ask me, especially when at the beginning of their career. So there are five stages. Step one is they're doing things and there's no focus at all. They're just like trying this here, they're trying this there, trying this there. Everyone who starts in this businesss does a bunch of things with no focus.
1:50:58 - Russell Nohelty Stage two They are focusing on the wrong things, so maybe they're, maybe they're forests, but they're trying to ride trends in Ku, the wrong things. Stage three they are focusing on the right things, at least one right thing they see, wow, I'm doing this thing and I'm able to hit profitability. So probably the other, the other two, like you're not profitable. Probably at three you're like close or like kissing Profit. But you're also probably doing a bunch of the wrong things as well that are taking your attention away from doing the right things stage four is you're thriving but you're running into income caps so for instance you're in ku and you just can't hit above twenty thousand like a friend of mine was like I would take I would give Facebook more money if they took it, but they just won't take my money.
1:51:49 - Russell Nohelty And so they're running into income caps. And that's when you really need to start evolving past your natural ecosystem to bring in the other ecosystems. Every businesss does this with multiple lines of business and they are or acquiring things or like selling things, whatever the thing is. Like they end up making these partnerships for other ways to do stuff. And that's how you. So you're really only evolving in the 5th stage. Everything else is getting yourself to a place where you are humming along and you have predictable income and then you're bringing other pieces into this As I said, after stabilizing your income, you start to bring in the elements of the other ecosystems.
1:52:31 - Russell Nohelty All, all successful authors going to evolve out because they are going to cap out. You cap out as your own ecosystems growth. It's just it happens to every businesss, you have to evolve behind your base ecosystem eventually to make your business work. So it does not mean, though, abandoning your base system. Evolution helps supercharge your ecosystem with the superpowers of another ecosystem, so I am a tundra, I kept out my tunder mines. I started incorporating forest things and that worked pretty well.
1:53:07 - Russell Nohelty Then I started incorporating really what worked well was grassland things by like with my subs and then having these long series and then making the brand promise. Once I had the brand promise, I just started making that brand promise and I expanded the series out. Then we worked in card games and coffee and other formats. I started licensing stuff and then I started being like, I should probably optimize this thing. So we're like it, yours is gonna look different. This is where at the beginning I said, everyone has a different way that they make this successful.
1:53:37 - Russell Nohelty But that's what I mean by like taking things and supercharging them. Maybe it's not even to grow past what you're making now, but it is to make things more stable and make your income more stable because more things work. Okay, So then people are like, great, I'm a for, how do I evolve? So most ecosystems Forest, aquatics and grasslands, because they are a flywheel, should evolve 1st into a tundra. Then they will have more big income, hits probably have more stable income, or aquatic, they don't have a stable income and they need infusion of cash to build a stable income, in the same way as tunder should probably evolve into a grassland or a forest.
1:54:23 - Russell Nohelty Depending on whether they, depending on how, whether they love a topic or a theme, a universal fantasy or a topic more. Then a desert always wants to evolve into an aquatic, but aquatics are like the most expensive ecosystem probably to maintain, and so they should probably evolve into a grassland because they understand grassland, they all, they're both data heavy, so I say this again, I know you want to evolve into an aquatic. It seems really cool. You probably do not have the funds to do that, but you could with very little effort, like effort.
1:55:08 - Russell Nohelty Still, you can use a lot of what you learned on a G on a desert to become a very successful grassland. And this is the big thing that we learned. This was our big mistake. Tundras are flywheels Funnel grasslands and forests and aquatics are are flywheels without a funnel. But that's only 60 % of the market. 40 % of the market doesn't do this. They should not evolve to any of the things we just talked about. Like they should be evolving into into grasslands and so we talked two deserts, as if they should evolve into either a, they're probably a sales funnel, like if I had to pick a sales fun or a flywheel.
1:55:49 - Monica Leonelle I think they are a sales funnel. Deserts are absolutely a sales funnel with no flywheel.
1:55:51 - Russell Nohelty They're all yes, So they're a sales funnel. They need a grassland flywheel. Probably because they're both so data heavy.
1:55:58 - Monica Leonelle They do.
1:55:59 - Russell Nohelty All they have to do is start looking further into the future than they are now and build a series that weaves trends instead of rides them. And they can have a very spot like no idea, no idea that like 40 percentage of the audience or like we think 40 percentage, like we just like completely tuned them out. And they tuned us out because like we literally weren't speaking their language and so This is the big mistake, the big mistake. The entire industry. I told you at the beginning I was gonna come around and fix every problem in the industry.
1:56:33 - Russell Nohelty The big problem is that deserts and forests are yelling at each other to do the thing that the other ones should do, but they shouldn't, but they shouldn't, but the other person shouldn't be doing it. Like deserts should silo pen names because they write different brand experiences depending on the genre and the trend. Forests should have one pen name because they can put everything under because they're living, they're doing the same brand experience. And then the other 20 percentage are off trying to make sense of why none of the other two things work for them.
1:57:07 - Russell Nohelty Probably a, but like aquatics can probably do a lot of a forest stuff and it works a little bit, but not really as well as they want it to. A tundra probably is like, well, I need a community somehow and they figure out something to work on, but like either one If you were in that and they're in that 20 %, you probably have figured out a way to at least somewhat make a life work for you. But you would be much more successful if you focused on your own ecosystem and then built out that and double down on that 1st and then build out, but next time.
1:57:46 - Russell Nohelty You have an argument with someone in the community, ask them what their ecosystem is. If they do not know their ecosystem, send them in taking the quiz or just tell them, Oh, you're probably a desert or you're probably a forest. And the reason why you say that you should silo pen names is because that works for you and it doesn't work for me because I, I make the same brand experience across all of my books. This is we were at Nc, we were at the, the pre Nc, the post Nc. This single thing, this whole thing is like 90 percentage of arguments in this industry.
1:58:22 - Russell Nohelty Once you see it, you can't see, go look at the 20 Books group, the, the Wide for the Wind group. Like all of the things. When people are sniping back and forth about each other, it's almost always about something that deals with their base ecosystem. And they're telling someone else, It's so easy if you use Kickstarter because I'm a tundra. So my big mistake was I'm a tundra. I Why can't everyone should use Kickstarter? And like that didn't turn out to be true. Like some people should use Kickstarter, but if you have read my article on the author ecosystem subs stack in very different ways and maybe deserts shouldn't be using Kickstarter for a while.
1:59:02 - Russell Nohelty And so that is the big mistake. That is, how You can fix it by just knowing your ecosystem. Oh, it was so nice and like Friday and Saturday when after I did this thing and people know their ecosystem, people started saying, are you a forest or a desert? And like, oh, are you a desert? And like people started having this shared language where they can say, Oh. And this is really helpful for everyone out there, because if you know that Michael Andrea is a desert and you don't have the energy for desert energy or you don't have the time for desert energy right now, you can just be like Michael Andrey, You're amazing.
1:59:36 - Russell Nohelty But like, this is not where I'm at in my career. I need to go get some forest energy right now or I need to, and this is what I do whenever I wake up. I go, I needed to embrace my inner forest or my inner whatever that day. And it's really helpful when I try to expand out. I see things like Steve Pipers Course it looks great. It is pure desert energy. I just do not have the energy for it at this moment. Like um, so uh. You can start thinking about that and it will hopefully be very helpful for you and you can stop, you can just.
2:00:15 - Russell Nohelty And even if they don't know what the ecosystem is, if you're just like, are you a desert? It will just stop them sniping at you like right away because they'll just be very confused. Okay, so use cases I showed you a bunch of the use cases. Solo co writing or shared world or anthology Well, a lot of shared worlds are run by de, by, by forests and they don't work because like forest can't judge trends. Probably every, probably every, every shared world should be run by deserts and,
2:00:41 - Monica Leonelle Oh.
2:00:44 - Russell Nohelty and, and grasslands because like a desert can write to trend without like causing a big stink. They are not going to send in a book that like completely destroys everyone else's book. And a Grasson is going to be able to properly judge the trend and he all in box sets that made list runs Well, I'd be really interested to see the ones that failed if they were full of deserts. Because like I know after analyzing who was in my box at list on, that worked well. We had a bunch of tuners and we had a bunch of aquatics and like you had a me as a tunder telling everyone else how to launch.
2:01:22 - Russell Nohelty And shockingly we hit Pretty high on the Us A list, comparatively so. Probably you need at least a tundra and an aquatic to really take advantage of it because there are a bunch of aquatics in our one that's like, here's this like trail book trailer and here's this other thing and like here's this game, like all of these things were happening. Behind the scenes because we had different ecosystems all working together. And I was making, I was lying, I was just kidding about the shared world because you do need all the ecosystems to make them really well, work well.
2:01:59 - Monica Leonelle I mean,
2:01:59 - Russell Nohelty But like we talked about.
2:02:00 - Monica Leonelle but it is, it is true, like the forests are like the most excited about the shard world and it's, it's tough. You, you really want to get like a desert, consulting you on that or Grassland.
2:02:13 - Russell Nohelty I mean, and the name of ours was Once Upon a Rebel Fairy Tale, and it was all paranormal fairy tales. And I was like, oh, of course that worked, because like we had, like the, we had it right at the beginning because like Fairy is one of the two big troops in like a big genre. And then there were the right ecosystems inside of it. We talked a little bit about publishing Slate. Let's talk about building a team. I have done some consulting work with my friends businesses and just talk to them about how their marketing and sales team works, and all of their marketing and sales teams are all jacked up.
2:02:45 - Russell Nohelty So what should you do with a small team? Well, you probably want your social media or optimization or ad team to be run by a desert because they actually like the game of getting ad costs low. You probably want your research, your content marketing, your thought leadership teams to be grasslands because they're going to be going deep for years on the same topic. You want your launch team to be at least run by a tundra because they're going to know how to build excitement. You want your businesss development to be run by an aquatic because they're intrinsically going to know about building out and developing new lines of business and You want your community team to be probably run by a forest now, is that a hundred percent?
2:03:29 - Russell Nohelty No, but like this is how you should start thinking about your own teams, whether you're building so a lott of Va. Are forests because they are built to like often take over communities. That's what they're good at. And then people are like, Oh, you could just run my tick tock account and it's like, Oh no honey, no you shouldn't, That's not good. Like that's probably not good.
2:03:55 - Monica Leonelle entire desert. Yeah.
2:03:57 - Russell Nohelty So like you want to make sure you're hiring your slammin community team and then a different Slamm and social media manager. Optimization Ad person Um, like I run ads for clients and like I hate every minute of it. So like, I'm sure they're not perfectly optimized because the minute I can, the minute I'm like, I'm happy with that number, I just, I can't anymore. So like, but there are people who are like, let me tell you a about how to optimize this thing by doing a reverse turnaround retarget,
2:04:25 - Monica Leonelle You know,
2:04:29 - Russell Nohelty like, and you're like,
2:04:30 - Monica Leonelle I'm just like,
2:04:31 - Russell Nohelty I'm not going to set that up though. And so like Yes,
2:04:33 - Monica Leonelle I know I just tune that out.
2:04:35 - Russell Nohelty you want someone's natural tendencies to do,
2:04:35 - Monica Leonelle That's like a non desert.
2:04:38 - Russell Nohelty to be in the right position. So if you are a forest, you can hire other people to do the work for you. Okay, so the Three Takeaways sales and marketing is complicated and nothing works for everyone, everything is nuance. The author ecosystem can give you a lens for what work for you. It is only a lens for which to see your marketing and sales and your growth in general. Like it is not even really a personality test. It runs on the axis of sales and marketing. Like it works in tandem in Congress with lifting strengths and anagrams and whatever the thing is.
2:05:19 - Russell Nohelty Like you, it really is how you can see the market, the the sales and marketing and the authorship in the Indi author world especially. And say in this complicated, chaotic world, oh, I should focus on this. Or like, yes, that sounds great, that's a desert strategy. Or like, that's a forest strategy. So heck, no. And then, once your ecosystem is healthy, evolution can open up even more opportunities for you. Or building out a team, or building a publishing company. You can join we're doing this much more depth in january you can join us in the author ecosystem live you can take the quizz at author ecosystem dot com we have three sub stacks I highly recommend you um you uh you join all three of them if you're not already I have.
2:06:08 - Monica Leonelle I'm gonna say them out loud. So the, the quizes that author. Ecosystem dot com the um the live course that we're doing in january is at author ecosystem dot com slash live um so you can sign up for it there the author um the sub sacks are author ecosystems dot sub sack dot com author stack dot subsect dot com that is russells and then author analyst do subsect dot com that is mine that's just for the podcast listeners.
2:06:38 - Russell Nohelty Sure, yes, I mean if you want to learn about tundras, I've written like three books as a tundra and before I even knew it was a tundra, about tundra stuff and sales funnels and building audiences and all of that stuff just free for members on my sub stack. And we just did. Every month I do a different platform and how to have success. And it eventually I'm gonna run out like I have. I'm sure Monica will do like Barnes and Noble for each ecosystem or whatever, But like, I'm,
2:07:06 - Monica Leonelle Maybe.
2:07:06 - Russell Nohelty I'm gonna cap out eventually. So far, I've done subs stack and Kickstarter and email marketing, and those ones are free on our author ecosystem subs stack. Before we get out of here, I'm sure there are just a bunch of final general questions But at least I am done with the act. If you're like, I don't want any of these questions as one to the end, like it's over now except for questions.
2:07:32 - Monica Leonelle we do. I mean we have a number of questions and like there's so much more we can say about this. I mean, I think the biggest thing I would say is like, we, like, we obviously we can't contain this presentation or the system to less than 2 h. Just in a simple conversation that we're having, and you know, this presentation, you did a Nc, it was like an hour, but I think you skipped, you know, you were able to skip like quite a bit of it. So obviously this is a really big conversation, you know, I really, really recommend coming to the other Ecosystems Live course.
2:08:07 - Monica Leonelle We like it may be the only time we teach it even or at least like Though generally so definitely come to that it's a ecosystem com s live and if you're coming to some of our other stuff, you might already have it or somebody asked a question via email. Um they said I was on the web call earlier had to drop um can you differentiate the difference between the three hundred dollar author ecosystem coaching and the one thousand dollar package um and just said that they're trying to decide which one to join.
2:08:41 - Monica Leonelle So um, the thousand dollar one gives you, the author ecosystems, live calls that are coming up in January and it also gives you, go wide, grow wide, Kickstarter accelerator, and Direct sales accelerator. So if you have like specific questions,
2:08:57 - Russell Nohelty and also that and also that build super fandom course that I talked about.
2:08:58 - Monica Leonelle yeah, go ahead.
2:09:03 - Russell Nohelty We've got a Facebook Ads course, there's a bunch of other courses. If you are joining us in New Orleans, you also have it. So anyone who joins us in New Orleans also gets access to all of that. So yes, the Live Calls is just author ecosystem specific. So like if you want to know how to build, like what, where to focus, if you want to actually, then Get implemented like the courses will help you implement everything. Because we have courses on just about everything, every platform that you could possibly imagine.
2:09:35 - Russell Nohelty Nope, that's not true, I'm not gonna make that promise. I take it back on a lot of platforms,
2:09:41 - Monica Leonelle more platforms than anybody else that we know.
2:09:44 - Russell Nohelty yes.
2:09:44 - Monica Leonelle we don. We've studied like a lot of platforms. Yeah, I also, I mean, I think we have a great set of books too. So the book sales supercharged series, if you're like trying to figure stuff out, then that's a great set of books. If you're to figure out launching specifically, like Russells, like literally one of the best launchers I know on the planet, like that. I know personally on the planet more on the direct sales side, not as much on the retailer side, but we kind of gave you some examples.
2:10:12 - Monica Leonelle I mean, I think one of the best things you can do is follow a person who is the type and see what they do and kind of, if they have you know, and like most people don't, most, most people don't have courses, they don't have books. So like it's kind of a gift when someone does because you can actually read that and understand the way they think about things. And just kind of absorb some of their energy. So yeah, I, I mean I, I think we have a great set of books and courses and content as well. So just like kind of stick around is kind of like what I would say about that, if you have questions about sales and marketing that are specific to platforms or specific to like kind of closing a gap on your type or um, the other thing is we both offer consulting, so if you want to talk to us one on one about your ecosystem and like what you should do next, that's probably a stronger forum for that.
2:11:05 - Russell Nohelty and you can get there at rider mba dot com forward slash russell or rider mba dot com forward slash monica but I mean I'm happy to answer a couple more questions I'm pretty tired right now but
2:11:17 - Monica Leonelle So we actually we, you covered a bunch of the questions in the In the ending, so um, somebody asked, Yeah, what do you think of the new Patreon Shop feature as an early adoption strategy for someone entering direct sales? And this person said they have Kick St success as well. This is not super related to ecosystems, but just general.
2:11:39 - Russell Nohelty I mean, I think that it's fine, like like look, there's so many things I worry about Patreon because you don't own the payment data. So I'm, I'm, I know a lot of people who had success on Patreon and then now are trying to go to Subs Stack or Rem or somewhere else and they just can't close their Patreon down because they don't own the payment data, the payment gateway, they don't connect to Stripe. So but like hey man, if you're doing a Royal Road or Wpd that has like an integration into Patreon, like it's great if you have a shop feature alread, I tend to think you should probably like just suck it up and do Gum Road or like pay hip or something for your store and put it on your website.
2:12:18 - Russell Nohelty But um, yeah, I'm, I'm also not confident that like that is what people want I know that authors want to be able to offer it. There is nothing that has ever told me that fans actually want that thing, that, and they can, they just like, I can't go to your website til I get it. I need it on Patreon to happen. So like, Like with like buy me a coffee, they like have both at Co Fi Com has like both options. Like I think it's good to have both options, but I tend to think that like a platform that's great for subscriptions is probably not great for any of the other things, for instance, Kickstarter that I love.
2:13:02 - Russell Nohelty Monica I love Kickstarter, you know how much I love Kickstarter. They had a subscription platform called Drop or Drip or something.
2:13:07 - Monica Leonelle Yes, I.
2:13:12 - Russell Nohelty That was the worst experience I've ever had in subscriptions. And like it was just chaos and they canceled it. Like a couple months later after I had just like dropped, like I, I had done it. So yeah, I mean I don't necessarily think that a place that is great for subscriptions is immediately going to be great for a web store or that someone's going to easily be able to search like they can just go to your website slash shop or slash b Um, if you're asking if you can have that besides your own store, shop, I would say you probably want your own website at least to just protect your name so that people when search it, have a place to go.
2:13:52 - Monica Leonelle I, I mean, I just like summarizes pretty much everything that I think about it. In the authors, the, so the thing, I'll add, so I agree with like literally everything that Russell just said. I think it's a uh, solution that patron would like to, you know, patron wants to keep people around. So they're trying to be direct sales now and expand it to direct sales. I'm not really convinced that they Um, I'll also add though that I, I just as far as like Patreon, even for subscriptions for authors, I just, I don't think that the new features are strong enough, to serve authors.
2:14:27 - Monica Leonelle I still think that Rem is like the better option if you're doing fiction and subs is the better option if you're non fiction. And I just see people like kind of like, like, at least in the author space, kind of like mass exodus from Patreon, it, it does have some cool integrations and like if you're doing Lit R P G, like they're all at Patreon so cause it connects to Royal Road,
2:14:49 - Russell Nohelty Main.
2:14:51 - Monica Leonelle so like why wouldn't you be? But like I see like in other genres and I think Lid R P G will get there. A lot of them are just moving to Rem Caus. It's just, it's built for like books, not built for like Youtube videos and music and like I like it's just not, it's not a general plat, generalized platform.
2:15:08 - Russell Nohelty great and they built it with like growth in mind. Whereas I'm not sure that Patreon can say the same thing like they,
2:15:13 - Monica Leonelle Yes.
2:15:15 - Russell Nohelty they built it to like they have a bigger vision than than the thing they had from the beginning. Whereas Patreon seems to have had the same vision from the beginning and is now trying to And that's important, not to get really technical, but an architectural standpoint, as like when you're building an interface, like if you already know you're going to build out all of these other features, you design the platform with all of the features able to be worked in instead of like back dooring, a fix over here that you didn't intend to use before.
2:15:46 - Russell Nohelty Anyway, that's wayy too technical. Anything else?
2:15:50 - Monica Leonelle that was Oh, so earlier we were talking about Michael Landres Company, but W Wmg is actually Dean Wesley Smith and Chris and Katrina uh, Rush's company which I, just made the mistake on and so uh, yeah, people were asking about Dana, Dws. So I think Kkr is a, probably a G. Land almost, almost definitely a grassland just for just in my observation, I don't know about Dws, I, I would guess like maybe a forest, I don't know.
2:16:24 - Russell Nohelty has some force, he has some energy he's definitely got like a,
2:16:25 - Monica Leonelle It's some yeah, forest energy.
2:16:31 - Russell Nohelty a personality that is unique to him.
2:16:35 - Monica Leonelle It's like if you like all his, if you like his, if you're a fan of him, like and, and I think that's like the easiest way to distinguish like if you're a fan of, of Dws, like you're a fan of Dw, you're not a fan of like I can't even think of the genre he writes cause I, I don't know, he writes like all of them, so. Like that's just kind of a clear sign of a forest to me. With K K R it's, you know, like her blog has been going on for like a millennium. It feels like like a weekly, weekly blog. Like she's just a very consistent like writer who doesn't really like doesn't necessarily have one break out really.
2:17:16 - Monica Leonelle I think she just has like the biggest catalog ever from writing for like 50 plus years. So.
2:17:22 - Russell Nohelty I do wonder if Dean Wesley Smith is a ton. Because he definitely seems like he's like, I launched it, it's done now, I'm gonna to go to the next thing and then it's done.
2:17:30 - Monica Leonelle He does, yeah.
2:17:30 - Russell Nohelty So like I don't know.
2:17:32 - Monica Leonelle I agree with that. He's done really, you know, he's done some bigger campaigns on kick starter, but they also, I mean they have like a million person plus email list, so like, You kind of should be able to do well on kick starter with that many, like you should be able to do well at anything with that many people on your list, Okay, So then another question. You know Clifton, strengths are so like, are there any? So this is about close constraints, but it could really be about any personality test or quiz or Ty Arche typing system, you know, what are commonalities with the author ecosystems?
2:18:12 - Russell Nohelty I tried, I tried, you know I was, you know, I was trying to fit square pegs and round holes all through Nk trying to be like, is it a love language thing, is it a Clifton strengths thing,
2:18:20 - Monica Leonelle Yeah.
2:18:21 - Russell Nohelty is it an aio gram thing? And they're just doesn't seemed to be overlay Um, so what Becky told us when she came into our membership was that people, all personality based things, are around one axis. It's just like the sales and marketing access that we develop doesn't seem to. I mean, I don't also don't think any grams and like Clifton Strings seem to like really pair up that nicely either. I don't. I would love someone else to tell me that it's different. But I really, especially with the love languages, I was like, maybe I like, I'm a tundra and my things, gift giving is like that a thing.
2:19:13 - Russell Nohelty And everyone else was a tundra, was like, nope, not a thing. And then I was like Monica and like Monica's like acts of service that seems like it would be a grassland thing. And again I was like, nope, not There was no consistent rhyme or reason to tended to want to do.
2:19:37 - Monica Leonelle I mean, I think, I think the biggest thing is that it's, you know, like when I think of the axis or like the spectrums that this particular system measures. One is like trends which you saw like Russell did like the trends, trend, riding, trend setting, trend weaving, uh trend, trend twisting, like, And so that's like one fans are one. So like a lot of the spectrums that we have are focused on marketing and sales concepts and I think why, you know, we've even looked at, I mean, one of the reasons and one of the people that didn't inspire us in some ways is Becky, because she has her own archetype system, authors, I think it's called Author Success Archetypes.
2:20:29 - Monica Leonelle And she talked about it. She hasn't really launched it yet. She's still collecting data on it, I think. But you know, we, she talked about, what was it, the islands, Evergreens, drafters, and Which one are you?
2:20:44 - Russell Nohelty Grow blazers.
2:20:46 - Monica Leonelle Trail blazers? Yeah, so she talked about that and we were originally trying to use some of that framework to even understand like the discrepancies in our data. And it just like we couldn't get it to fit cause like we would have happily just used like a different system if we could, but we couldn't, we just couldn't get anything to fit, the data set that we had. So like we basically it's like when you You're in statistics or whatever, you're just looking for like a curve that can fit the data and describe the data well.
2:21:20 - Monica Leonelle Like that's what statistics is at its core. And so like, we just couldn't find like a, an archetype system that fit our data and so we had to create one.
2:21:29 - Russell Nohelty We tried so hard, we tried so hard for like the,
2:21:30 - Monica Leonelle We did six months,
2:21:32 - Russell Nohelty in fact,
2:21:33 - Monica Leonelle we were looking at all sorts of stuff.
2:21:34 - Russell Nohelty yeah, like, Basically, it was in April, we were like, we can't, we can't fit this to like anything else that we have seen in a way that like makes sense for the data and like don't like I love that system, like the trail blade, like it like explains so many things, but I was even like, oh, maybe evergreens forest and it's like, nope, that's not a thing. Like a lot of evergreens are like deserts and like,
2:21:57 - Monica Leonelle They're not, yeah.
2:22:01 - Russell Nohelty so you're like, I don't. So we don't know. Like I, I don't think that it, I think that it is. What I have learned about these kind of systems is the more of them that you can layer on top of each other, the better. You can know yourself and know your own strengths and know why you do certain things and then what you measure, you manage, you can improve the things. But I think that like, I mean, I, I don't know how Myers Brigs overlaps to any of this stuff. It's just, I think that you just like have that Venn diagram intersectionality between all of the stuff and like this is just another lens where you can say, Oh, I'm an eight that like is a high strategic and I made grassland, like how do I make all of this fit together?
2:22:54 - Russell Nohelty And it is as much about the thing that Monica said that I can't remember, but I know I agreed with as it is like lighting all of these lenses up together, kind of like you're in an optometrist and be like, oh, I see the vision now and like you might be, you might have three lenses on it, it might be mostly clear and then you put another lens on or like, oh, I get it.
2:23:17 - Monica Leonelle yeah I think a lot of it is just self knowledge um just in general helps you um so yeah I would say I mean we you know there may be trends like I don't like I know like any of graham clifton people try to find some trends like like probably like if you were high in control for example you probably are also like like there's a good chance you could be in any gram eight or if you're in any gram eight you may have control um or was a control I don't know or command sorry command that's the one that is but I mean it's yeah like those are kind of there's a commonality there but like or like you have high achiever if you're in any grom three like um so anyway It's definitely something I wanna sit down and like unpack more,
2:23:44 - Russell Nohelty Yeah, I have control, that's my man. Command, yes. That's my number one. So.
2:24:05 - Monica Leonelle but we just haven't, that's pretty much all the questions. I mean somebody said like Rem versus sub stack. I don't know if we,
2:24:12 - Russell Nohelty Okay, so I do have a thing I will say,
2:24:12 - Monica Leonelle we talk about that.
2:24:14 - Russell Nohelty I will say a thing because I have a big post coming about it if seriously, if you're not on my subs stack, it's like I'm, I got a thing coming out about the two main different kinds of models. Patreon is an association model Monica and I. This is not a Monica and Russell approved thing. This is a Rustle approved thing. Monica has modifications that she has already told me that she wants to make to it, but the idea is Associations are about belonging and patron is great for belonging because they offer a bunch of tiers and it's like choose how Amaz, choose how much you want to belong and how deep your commitment is, in the same way that like, like association fees do.
2:24:58 - Russell Nohelty And they're really about like I team whatever. Amelia and Ron is the same way. Subs Stack is really much more a publication model, like the Washington Post. Like no one is saying. Oh, like I'm a Washington Post subscriber and that's part of my identity. So like what, why that's important is you is Sub Remond patriot or. Mostly about containing what you already have and like building the community stronger. Subs stack is about organic reach. So like I have got, I get hundreds of subscribers every month because I just exist on the platform in a way that like Facilitates growth So they're about a publication grows by spreading to other people.
2:25:55 - Russell Nohelty It's not, it's you, and you can have both. Monica has a Rm and she has a sub stack like you can do. I just can't, I can't. I see the subscription for authors, people like Christopher Hopper putting all this stuff into all of the work that they do for the high ends. And I'm just like, nope, cannot do not, will not ever like I unless I can hire someone to do it. So if you are looking for organic reach and you are okay with with getting like quantity because that's why they only have one tier. I guess you have two with the founding member, but you only have one tier, so you must get quantity of humans.
2:26:35 - Russell Nohelty Then you would go with subs stack. In fact, if you're looking for like growth or something, you probably want to be on subs stack. It may be the best platform of any platform to find like organic growth, like and then be able to bring them to your mailing list. Because that's the goal, especially if you're non fiction. If you're looking to get something where you can maximize the monetary value of your fan base, then Patreon is what I would choose. Because like, you can't even s dream because it's like very, not even very searchable on, on either of those platforms.
2:27:08 - Russell Nohelty So you really have to bring all the boys to the yard on those platforms and you can help on Patreon. But the, the axis is like you're giving up a million different You're giving up like a million different, tiers for the one in order to get accesss to that organic reach which works for me. But I know a lot of people who have no, you need consistency in all of those things for the organic reach to really work. And it builds. It's really a platform for grasslands, like really.
2:27:47 - Monica Leonelle all right, so thank you so much for coming. I, I know we had a bunch more comments and so I apologize. We couldn't, you know, say them all out loud and chat more about that. We kind of pull the questions, but obviously we had a lot of content to get through and I think the focus on the author systems was kind of kind of what people were here for as well. So yeah,
2:28:09 - Russell Nohelty I will.
2:28:10 - Monica Leonelle do you have anything? Go ahead.
2:28:11 - Russell Nohelty Yeah, I saw a question about my, my book How to Build Your Creative Career covers the basics of sales. Someone asked, Does you, do you have one non fiction book that cover funnels too? That's the one that I would, that I would pick. It is available on platforms, but you get it for free. If you were a member of the of my subs stack, so you have all of my non fiction for free and I talk about funnels in that book, so you would just the thing, there's a thing that says non fiction, you would just click on that, it says non fiction available on this publication and it's how to build your creative career.
2:28:44 - Russell Nohelty And I believe it's section two and three that deals with funnels.
2:28:50 - Monica Leonelle And th, those books are really I, I would say like just read, like if you're trying to build a funnel, just read all three of the books, like they're, they're short enough. Cause you have a, you have a 3rd book out. I don't know if it's on your sub stack, but it's gotta be,
2:29:04 - Russell Nohelty It is secret,
2:29:05 - Monica Leonelle it's gonna be somewhere.
2:29:05 - Russell Nohelty though it's secret on my if you go to my become a successful author.
2:29:06 - Monica Leonelle it's a secret one, okay, go deep, go deeper into.
2:29:12 - Russell Nohelty Then you can see that this is not a book. It's mostly just musings about stuff.
2:29:18 - Monica Leonelle Go deeper into Russell's sales funnel and you'll find it.
2:29:20 - Russell Nohelty There are just so many of these, so many comments. This is easily the most comments had ever seen.
2:29:25 - Monica Leonelle There are so many comments, Yeah, we, we got a lot of comments, so thank you, thank you to everybody for the comments and thank you for sticking around like two 2 h and 40 min later. That's awesome. So uh, we will put this up for uh, recording,
2:29:40 - Russell Nohelty Yes, awesome. Bye, everyone.
2:29:42 - Monica Leonelle bye.
2:29:45 - Russell Nohelty make sure that it like does the thing and closes out the I'm so worried that it's gonna not record at the end, but we're just gonna fingers crossed that I'm gonna. You should all get an email for it in about 2 h.
2:30:07 - Monica Leonelle It says that it's still recording so.
2:30:10 - Russell Nohelty Yes, all right, bye.