John Cote: How To Take Your Book To #1 on Amazon

John CoteJohn Cote is the Award Winning Author of the #1 Bestseller Mobilize Your Customers. His company, John Cote & Associates, helps their clients create platforms by publishing bestselling books, podcasts and online webinars.

A voracious reader, John invests a great deal of time researching the cutting edge trends in technology, social media and marketing.  His message: the bestselling authors are usually the best marketing ones.

In this interview, John will teach you how to create and market a book even if you’re not a writer yourself. You’ll learn how to outsource things like transcription, editing, and artwork; how to find virtual assistants to help you get more done, and most importantly, how to use social media and internet marketing to drive your book to the top of the Amazon charts.

Scroll down for a complete transcript of the interview or click the Play button below to listen to the interview now.

And don’t forget to leave a comment to let us know what you thought of this interview!

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John Cote Interview

Tim Knox: Hey friends, Tim Knox here with another episode of Interviewing Authors. Good show for you today. John Cote is on the program. John is an entrepreneur, he’s an author but he is also a social media marketing expert. He has a number one Amazon bestselling book. It’s won awards. It’s called Mobilize Your Customers. John works with all kinds of businesses getting them online, getting their marketing done, that sort of thing but he also works with a lot of authors. As an author himself he is very good at getting his book to the top of the Amazon bestseller list. We’re going to talk about that today. We’re going to talk about John’s process, a few of the other things he’s doing. Don’t forget, when you’re an author, one of the most important things you have to learn to do is market your work. That’s what we’re going to talk about today with John Cote, bestselling author of Mobilize Your Customers, on today’s Interviewing Authors.

Tim Knox: John Cote, welcome to Interviewing Authors.

John Cote: Well thank you very much. I appreciate the interview, Tim.

Tim Knox: Appreciate having you here. We talk to a lot of authors, we talk to a lot of writers and print folks and things like that but you are our first expert at doing this online social media podcasting thing. I appreciate you coming on today and answering some questions for us.

John Cote: Yeah, no problem.

Tim Knox: Let’s just get started. Typically the audience for this show is writers, whether it’s fiction, non-fiction; we’ve had some self-help authors on. I think one question they all have is is it better for me to self-publish or try to get a traditional publishing deal? Those of us that have been doing this awhile, we know how difficult that can be. So self-publishing really is the coming thing. Before we get started give us your credentials. Tell us a little about what you’re doing and then we’ll go into the meat.

John Cote: Sure, absolutely. Again, thanks for having me on the show. I appreciate the invite and, you know, let me say upfront by training I was not an author by training. It just kind of happened. I was originally an officer in the Marine Corps. I used to be a pilot and then eventually became into being an entrepreneur. I started my own company and basically we started doing social media marketing about five years ago to help local companies out to increase their revenue and things, and that has grown and grown to the point where now we’re doing consulting and things like that. As a part of doing that I wanted to get out and start speaking. I got involved with a group of people who were doing that sort of thing and learned how to write a book very quickly, get it onto Amazon, get it to number one bestseller status and promote it, and use that as a platform to help get me speaking engagements, which then of course leads to more consulting deals.

For me, there was an interest in doing it and as you’ll hear – you know me pretty well – I’m a talker; I love to talk. For me, I just started recording my thoughts one day on the overall concept of what the book was going to be. About eight or nine hours of talking later, not all at once; it was in a couple of sittings. You know, we turned that into a book, promoted it out onto Amazon. I got it published through Kindle and CreateSpace and it became a number one bestseller. We actually just got our Audible version, an audio book, done as well. So it’s really easy and simple comparatively speaking now to go out… I mean, compared to what you did with your first book. I think that was your first book, right, Everything I Know about Business I Learned…?

Tim Knox: It was, yeah. I lucked out. I mean, I met an agent at a conference and had a book deal really quickly. I don’t think most people understand how difficult it is. I mean it’s damn near impossible to do that, to get an agent and publish. I think the way you did it, first of all, was just an incredible story but it’s also the way that most people are going to end up going if they figure all that out. So let’s dissect that a little bit. First of all, what was the book?

John Cote: It’s called Mobilize Your Customers. It was published about 18 months, 20 months ago or so. We had a group of people who were also authors and business people who were doing similar type of things so we helped each other. We bought each other’s books, promoted each other’s books and tweeted and Facebook posted and all this other stuff. We went through a whole launch process. We did more really kind of an internet marketing type of a launch on it than I think most traditional authors are used to. I’ve worked with some traditional authors as well who, you know, this is kind of alien to them. They don’t understand the marketing aspect of it. They’re like, “I wrote this book. It’s awesome. You should just buy it because it’s cool,” and you’re right – people should, but the bottom line is they’ve got to know about it first. They’ve got to hear about it.

So, for us, it was about picking the right category, promoting it correctly, getting enough people to get in there. Then all of a sudden a couple weeks later it’s like, holy cow, look at that. It’s number one on Amazon in the business and marketing category. So, bang, right there we’re all excited about that. Then we’ve helped other peers of ours who have done similar things do the same kind of thing. You know, one of the questions I get too is if you just spoke this book… I mean, I created this book in a total of about 30 hours of work. Not all of that was me personally working on the book. I had an outline in my head. I basically spoke it into my iPhone while I was driving to and from the airport; it’s a couple hour drive. So, you know, a couple roundtrips back and forth and then I sent it out and had it transcribed and then edited, and then I edited it, my wife edited it, friends of mine. We went through the whole editing process and that took awhile. Then we hired somebody online to do all the formatting. Please, if you’re an author, do not try and format your book yourself. I have friends who are really hardcore authors and they love to do that. I love them but man it takes forever to format your book. I was like, man, I could pay somebody to do this and have it done in a couple of days. I don’t mean a lot. It doesn’t cost that much to get it done. I’m talking $10 or $20. It’s totally worth it to get somebody else to do that.

In any case, it worked out really well and then we did another one I co-wrote with a realtor last year called Real Estate Marketing on Facebook. Also got that one up and very popular, a lot of sales on that one. He actually sells that one when he’s out speaking. He has actual copies that he gets from CreateSpace, which is cool. For a couple of bucks, as you know, you can order a copy of your book on CreateSpace. It doesn’t count towards your sales as far as a bestseller list or anything like that because they don’t want you gaming the system, which is good. But if you’re out at a conference or a convention… I was at a huge medical tourism conference last year I got asked to speak at and I gave away 200 copies of the book. People were like, what, you did what?

Tim Knox: You gave away your book? What were you thinking?

John Cote: Yeah, what were you thinking? We’re kind of getting off the track of what you initially asked but in a nutshell really, for me, what it was is about, look, I want to get this book in front of as many people as I can. I don’t care if I give it to them for free. How much would you pay for a TV commercial or AdWords advertising or Facebook advertising or whatever to get in front of these people? I had the opportunity to speak in front of hundreds of people and I have their undivided attention and, oh, I’m giving them this free book and ask them to read it. It has access to ways to contact me. I was like this is the way to go so I gave away copies of my book and we got business out of that and it worked out great.

Tim Knox: Well you know the one thing that I think is special about you, and this is the one thing that most other authors never figure out, is you understand the importance of marketing in this whole process. You and I both talk to authors that, you know, if I can just get an agent and I get a publisher all I have to do is write the book and they do everything else. Well I’m here to tell you as someone who had a book published by the largest business book publisher on the planet; they’re not going to do a hell of a lot for you. You’re going to have to do the marketing yourself. I think that’s what I hear in your message is you really started out with the marketing in mind. You wrote a book directed at an audience that you came up with first, right? As we say in business you went and found that pond of hungry fish and then you figured out what bait to use to catch them. Was that the process?

John Cote: Yeah, exactly. That’s exactly what it was. What it was for me, Tim was I would speak locally here in the Huntsville area. We’ve seen each other at some of these different events and I would have business people come up to me afterward thanking me for speaking, and they were all very, very hungry and curious. Tell me more about this social media thing. What’s going on? It seems like radio, print, TV is just not really working, Yellow Pages. It just doesn’t really work the way it used to. What can we do? I kept getting the same questions over and over and over again and one day I was at a conference out in San Diego that I was speaking at and it occurred to me, holy cow, this guy that was speaking mentioned that he had written a book and he did it exactly the way I explained. So it wasn’t my original idea. Somebody else mentioned it and I was like, hey, I can do that. That’s what I did. So that’s where the book came out.

For me, I wrote the book with the attitude of, okay, these people are asking me these questions and I could sit here and talk with them for hours afterwards or I could spend a few of those hours, write a book and just hand them the book and go, here you go. Here’s how you do it.

Tim Knox: So it was a marketing piece, right?

John Cote: Yeah, absolutely. I mean, I put a lot of work… it didn’t take as much time as a lot of people. I think authors think oh I’ve got to suffer and have pain and be alone at my desk at 2 o’clock in the morning and write for two years. No, you don’t have to do that.

Tim Knox: At least not anymore.

John Cote: Not for non-fiction I should say. Obviously for fiction it’s a whole different thing and I totally get that. What I did had nothing to do with any kind of creativity per se. It was just me talking about something I was already an expert at.

Tim Knox: Let’s talk about that though because the process is pretty much the same I think. There is a big difference between fiction and non-fiction. One you’re kind of making up the story as you go but, you know, when you’re writing non-fiction the process is somewhat the same. You have to be really prepared to write that story, even though that story may just be you telling them how to do Facebook marketing. It’s still a story to some degree.

John Cote: You know, you’re absolutely right and not only that but the story aspect, even in a non-fiction book is really, really important. In the marketing world there’s very, very… there’s not as many people who do this as I would hope that would but story is extremely important. If you can go out there and tell the success stories, and make heroes out of your clients or the clients of your clients as it were. For example, we work with medical tourism companies. We do cosmetic dentistry and plastic surgery and stem cell therapies and stuff, so we interview the patients and have the patients talk about, well yeah, I had this pain. I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t get it fixed at A, B, C and D. I tried that and that didn’t work and then I ended up going here and now my life is better. You’re not selling anything. All you’re doing is telling your success story and that is extremely compelling to people. Human beings are very story oriented. They love getting involved with these stories. So instead of trying to sell to people let’s just tell the story and let people get to know I can trust you through the stories of making the heroes out of your clientele. Let them naturally come to you and say, well tell me more about this. I want to know more. Maybe this is something that would be a good fit for me.

Tim Knox: Right. I was interviewing Larry Winget earlier today actually and he said the same exact thing. When he writes his books… Larry is very in your face, the Pitbull of Personal Development, but what he does is he crafts his books around stories. He’ll think of a point he wants to make and then he’ll think of a story that will evoke an emotional connection with the reader and draw them in and get them interested. Otherwise, you may as well be writing a textbook – very academic, very dry. One thing I want to do is kind of go back again and look at how you did this. You said that you didn’t actually sit down at a computer and open up a Word file and write this book. You actually dictated the book and then you had someone else transcribe it. Talk a little about that.

John Cote: Sure. For me, I got the idea out in San Diego. I flew home, got in the car and I had a two hour drive. So I just put the phone up on the dashboard and turned the voice recorder on. I had in my head on the flight over for a little while I’d thought about, okay, chapter one will be about YouTube. Chapter two will be about Facebook. Chapter three will be about whatever. So I kind of went through my chapters and what I was going to talk about. I just started talking about it. So I would start and just basically say, okay, this is chapter one, boom, and I would start talking. I’d run out of stuff to say and I’d hit pause, get my thoughts back together again and move forward. Sometimes I would say this is actually going to be part of chapter five on Twitter or on platitudes, on what not to say in an article or an ad and things like that. It kind of jumped around a little bit but I put markers in there so that whoever was going to be transcribing it would be able to put it all in the proper place.

Then I sent that out to someone to get transcribed and that only cost me a couple hundred dollars. It’s very inexpensive online and I’m sure there’s people locally that can do it as well. It was extremely professional. They took out all my “ums” and “uhs” and pauses and coughs and all that stuff. They even fixed some of it grammatically. Then I gave it to editors and let them take it from there. That was kind of my process and it took about, like I said, we contracted the hours. It was right around 30 or 31 hours of actual working time. That included the time of the person that I hired to do the transcriptions. That was about it and after that we went and sent it to Amazon and got it published.

Tim Knox: Yeah, I hate you. I think I worked eight months on my book. So you found these folks, the transcribers and the other people online. Is there a website that you use? Do you use oDesk or Elance? Where do you find these folks?

John Cote: For me, I found mine on I don’t have any interest in them or anything like that other than the fact that I use them for design stuff all the time and I happened to find somebody who was really, really good at what she did. She was a professional. She had been trained in the U.S., had been to college in the U.S. and lives in the Philippines, very well spoken. I’ve spoken to her on Skype. She sounds just like an American girl. She was very reasonable and for her the amount of money that she’s making off these… I mean, she’s one of the biggest deals in Fiverr now. She’s probably done over 1,500 or 2,000 clients or something like that. It’s not just her. She’s got a group of people that she’s working with and they’re all very, very good at what they do.

So I’ve used them for a bunch of stuff, not just my book. You can, say, take a piece of video, get it transcribed and uploaded as part of your SEO basically for your video. If you have a YouTube video and you get it transcribed, you can upload the transcription of that into your YouTube video, which helps your Google search results – little known trick. So what that will do is… it’s kind of the new SEO. People used to write articles and all this other kind of stuff and they’d try and game the system. Well Google’s not stupid. They know what’s going on so they do the Panda update or the Penguin update. I never got into that game; I was never interested. All I know is YouTube is owned by Google and if Google search is going to be where I’m going to be finding clients or my clients are looking for people to find them then I need to make them happy. To make them happy they want video, they want content, they want podcasts and not necessarily podcasts and YouTube but they want content so let’s give them content. It’s just another way to do it.

Tim Knox: Gotcha. I think it’s an important point there. There’s kind of a total marketing package now, if you will, when you write a book online. You want a website, you want to put it on Amazon, Kindle, CreateSpace, et cetera but the importance of YouTube – a lot of people don’t even think about that. I’ve written a book. Why do I need to be on YouTube? Why do I need to record videos? Why do I even need a podcast? You and I, we’re old podcasters. Talk for just a minute about the value of maybe starting a podcast to help you build a platform to promote and sell your books.

John Cote: Oh sure, absolutely. Just on the technology side of it very quickly. Apple just announced a few weeks ago that they’re going to be putting out CarPlay. It’s basically part of the new operating system. That’s going to be in 10 million new cars here in 2014. Stitcher Radio is going to be installed as new equipment in brand new cars and I think it was 4 million cars. We’re talking Ford, Chrysler, GM, BMW, Audi, everybody, all the major manufacturers. So what’s that done is in 2012 I think there were like 75 million podcast listeners. In 2013, according to comScore, that went up to 130 million. Now you’ve got all these people with all this drive time. The average drive time in America is about 30 minutes. So people are looking for something and they’re tired of listening to radio and shock jocks and ads and all this other stuff but they want to listen to something. They can’t watch video so in this particular case doing a video wouldn’t work, but if you can capture them and give them great information via audio that they can listen to easily. So basically if you’ve got your phone in your pocket, you get in the car, the car turns on, your little screen pops up and you can just tell it, “Play John Cote’s podcast,” or, “Play Tim Knox’s podcast,” and it will play it for you.

So they’re making it easy enough that grandma could do it. If grandma can do it, it’s just like Facebook. Even grandma can get on Facebook and do it now. So it’s becoming mass adoption. So that’s one of the reasons why you should be there because there’s a ton of people that are moving into listening to that and something like half of all Americans are not even aware of what podcasts are and that’s going to change. That’s going to grow. I couldn’t believe that when I saw that number at a conference a little while ago.

So getting back to the book aspect of it, let me tie in my strategy. This is what we’re doing right now. I mentioned last fall I spoke at this large medical tourism conference and for those who aren’t aware, that’s basically where people either can’t afford it or can’t get the treatment here in the U.S. or some other country and they travel to another country or to another part of their own country to get the treatment that they need. It’s either less expensive or more available or whatever. So I spoke on marketing at this place and they loved it. They asked me to be part of their, “Hey, can you help us with our education piece for certification?” Great, that would be awesome. We’ve got some clients out of it and everything else. I started getting people, “We want more content. What else can you give us? What else can you give us?”

It all of a sudden occurred to me when I saw friends of mine and other people in the industry starting to do podcasts. I said you know what? I should just start a podcast. When I was speaking to I mentioned to everyone that information that I just gave you about how many people are going to be getting into podcast listening. So I challenged everyone. I said, look I went to iTunes and I looked it up and I typed in the keyword ‘medical tourism’ and nothing came up, nobody. Someone raised their hand and said, “Well I’ve got a podcast that’s about medical tourism.” I said, “That’s great. Nobody here knows it exists because it doesn’t show up in search because you didn’t tag it right.” They went, “Oh.” I said, “Look, I’m not trying to be harsh. I’m just trying to say if you have it but nobody knows about it, who cares? You’ve got to be able to get it out there so people can find it.”

So the whole point of this was that it all of a sudden occurred to me, look, you should go out and do podcasts. I waited three months and I looked again and nobody had done it. I said the heck with it. I’m going to do it. So everyone says, “Well, what do you know about medical tourism?” Well I know a lot now. My wife was a two time cancer survivor and she’s traveled for cancer treatment and so I have stem cells in my knee from my knee surgery I recently had. We have adopted children and one of my sons has Cochlear implants. He had to travel from Poland, where we initially adopted him, came to the states and then we got him these Cochlear implants. So we actually had a lot of experience in medical tourism. The point is, I don’t need to be the expert. I’m interviewing the experts as part of my podcast, just like you’re doing here with me and I happen to be an expert on this particular subject.

So what I started doing was we decided to launch this podcast and in the process of doing that we’re doing a daily show so it’s a lot of production work and everything else. We’re really excited about it and it’s launching in a couple of weeks here. More importantly that’s going to provide a ton of content. One of the things we’re doing is we actually have a release in… anyone who comes on the show agrees that, hey, this content is ours. We can use it for whatever we want including books, website, whatever. So we’re going to take the best slices of content, the best stories and the best information out of this. It’s getting transcribed anyway by my team as part of the show notes that are going to get uploaded in case somebody wants to read the PDF instead of listen to it. So we’re going to take all that and turn it into the book. We’re going to turn the podcast into the book. The book will be named the same as the podcast so you’ll be able to get that. You’ll be able to get an audio version of the book, obviously Kindle or the physical copy of the book. We’re going to launch that this summer. Now we’ve got a podcast that we’re promoting the book with and a book that we’re promoting the podcast with.

That has led to more speaking engagements for me and all of a sudden I’m starting to be in demand as a speaker in this industry, even though I’m not a medical doctor or anything else. All I’m talking about is something I do know about, which is the patient perspective and the marketing aspect of it.

Tim Knox: Again, I think that’s something that a lot of people who want to write just don’t understand. You have to build a platform now. It’s not enough just to have a book that you can throw out there. You’ve got to create a market. You’ve got to create a following. That’s what it’s all about. I think it’s great now. The tools to do all that are much easier to get and more user friendly than they were… you know, 10 years ago when I was doing podcasting everybody thought I was a farmer. Pod? Is that like a peapod? – which is probably why it didn’t go well initially. I think the marketing aspect is so important to every writer, especially the Facebook side. You’ve got to have a website. You’ve got to have Facebook. You’ve got to do it all together. Writing becomes really just a part of the overall formula. I think it was Robert Kiyosaki who said, “I’m not the bestselling author in the world; I’m the bestselling marketer in the world.”

John Cote: That’s exactly right.

Tim Knox: I think authors just need to learn to do that and I think you’re setting a great example. Are there any plans on your part to do a ‘how to podcast’ or ‘how to self-publish on Amazon’? Got any products coming out?

John Cote: I’m not planning on doing that personally. There are tons of people out there who are doing that sort of thing and doing it well. I’ve learned from some of those people myself. I bought some of those courses and I believe in educating yourself. Why go out there and feel the pain and suffering of trying to figure it out for yourself when you can pay for someone else’s pain and suffering and cut to the chase? So that’s exactly what I’ve done and that’s why we’ve been able to iterate and move so quickly on these things and get them up and running. This whole concept for this whole podcast that I was just talking about – I only really made the decision about six or seven weeks ago and now here we are. We’re two weeks away. Within eight weeks of going, okay, I can do this, a daily podcast. No, I’ve never been in radio. No, I don’t know anything about audio production. I’ve done a lot of video over the years with our social media marketing and stuff but still, it was just a question of this isn’t rocket science so let’s figure it out and we’ll do it.

Nobody else is doing it and instead of sitting there and doing a study and trying to figure out is this really… I said, no, the heck with it. Let’s just do it and we’ll launch it. It’s a big, huge market. It’s a multibillion dollar market. Let’s see what the market wants. As part of the deal we’re going to be asking people on Facebook. We’re building our Facebook group right now. We’ve got a new page and I’ve got a team of professionals who are helping us with engagement and getting more likes and getting people who are interested in this particular topic to follow us and talk with us and things like that so we can say, hey, listen to the podcast. What do you think? What do you like? There’s no engagement going on in iTunes so this is a really important point too. Very few authors get this and I really need to make this point. It’s really important.

I know email seems like it might be old and everything but you got to get those people. You got to be able to have an easy way to contact those people and the best way to do it right now is still email. Let’s say iTunes tomorrow decides they don’t like John Cote and they’re going to kick him off his podcast, whatever, and I’m not on iTunes anymore. Well that would suck but I’m still on Stitcher and hopefully Sound Cloud and a few of these others. The bottom line is I would still have a way to contact people because as part of my podcast I’m going to be having them opt in for an email update for the story of the day or a chance to win a trip or whatever it is. The point is we’re going to give them great content and collect email addresses – not spam them but give them good, actionable content, things that are going to help change their life and make their lives better.

Very few authors really do that. When you’re on Amazon… Amazon owns all of those people out there, right? Those are Amazon’s buyers but you’re on Amazon. They’re allowing you to use their platform. Same thing with Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, whatever you’re talking about here. Here’s the beauty. One of the things we do from a marketing perspective, and this isn’t just because it’s a marketing book but this is some big time people like Peter Diamindis, the founder of the X Prize, who just wrote Abundance. He used this system. Tim Ferriss, 4-Hour Body, 4-Hour Workweek. He used this system. A lot of big time authors have used this concept.

What it is is you basically put a receipt scanner technology into the book. What you do is say, hey, for some bonus content go ahead and either text your name and email to this phone number or scan this QR code and it will open up an opt-in page where you can give us your name and email. In exchange for that we’ll give you… I just did one for the book, Flow, that just came out and they were giving away with the authors of the story and some of the leading sports people in the world, a free webinar that was going to last two hours long. That was kind of the incentive for them, for you to give them your email via the list. I did obviously because I was like hey this is great. It’s good marketing stuff but it was also great content. So anyway that you can, you need to figure out how to get that list to your ownership. That list is worth a lot of money. Those listeners, those viewers, those readers, those people are worth a lot of money as long as you treat them with respect and you don’t spam them and you only give them offers for things that are going to be congruent with what you’re talking about in the first place.

Tim Knox: Yeah I think it all goes back to building the platform, building the audience. There’s a young man named Andy Weir who has a book out called The Martian. He had actually self-published this on his website. He put it up chapter by chapter and built quite a following. He had 50,000 people on the mailing list who every time he put out a new chapter he would email them and build up this list. He was giving it away and the audience actually said we want to get this on our Kindle; how do we do that? He reluctantly went over to Amazon and put it on there for $0.99 and became an Amazon bestseller and then that got him the attention of an agent and a publisher. As they say, the rest is history. I think Andy will tell you if he hadn’t taken the time to build up that initial list by giving them good content for free, he probably wouldn’t have the deal he has today because he wouldn’t have those 50,000 people buying his stuff.

John Cote: Yeah, oh you’re absolutely right. You have been in internet marketing yourself before. You know better than I do. You’re far more experience than I am in that. When you talk about giving away free content – no one wants your free report or white paper. That’s not enough anymore. They want content. They want stuff they can really sink their teeth into that they’re really interested in, whether it be a prize giveaway or whatever’s appropriate for whatever it is you’re doing. Do what you got to do but get those people onto your list so that you can stay in touch with them. If at some point someone does take that away from you, take that platform away from you, you have your own platform. You’ve already got an email list of hundreds or thousands or tens of thousands. I’ve heard told by many internet marketers that if you have a list of active participants of 10,000 people that’s a million dollar list. You can monetize that properly to a million dollar a year company, depending on what it is you’re doing. obviously I don’t know how exactly that would work for a fictional writer but I know for business based, the types of things I’m into and doing and everything else, you can absolutely turn that into that sort of thing without really all that much effort. There’s plenty of proven paths that people have taken to do that.

It’s just a question of you need to have something that you’re passionate about. You need to have something that you’re knowledgeable about that you can inform people about, get a bunch of people to follow you and then sell them information in whatever form that takes. That’s it. I think for some people that whole, oh selling; it’s like a dirty word for some people and they kind of cringe. I don’t want to sell anyone. I don’t want to feel salesy. No one said you had to be Billy Mays selling ShamWows at 2 o’clock in the morning or anything like that. That’s not what we’re talking about here. Again, for me, there’s no overselling of any kind at all in this podcast that I’m talking about launching here right now. Most of the stuff we do is just telling stories. What will happen is people will naturally gravitate to you so if you give them the opportunity, say hey, please give us your information and we’ll give you more cool inside information – not selling anything – and then eventually they get to the point where they feel like they have a congruency with you and they want to do business with you.

Tim Knox: It all goes back to marketing and I think that’s the one thing that hopefully the audience will get out of this interview with you. You’ve got to market this stuff. It is not as easy as just writing a book and tossing it out there. It’s the old Field of Dreams analogy – if you build it, they won’t come. They won’t buy. You have got to be able to market your work. The thing with writers, the reason you want to do that, is exactly what you’re talking about. You want to build that audience that becomes that rabid fan that is just waiting for you to come out with something new. Look at James Patterson. You think James Patterson has to do any marketing? He’s been doing it so long that anything with James Patterson on the title they’re going to go buy, but you’ve got to get to that point. When you are just starting out, trust me and John, it is not that easy. If it was this would be happening on the beaches in Maui somewhere I think.

John, this is all good stuff. Tell the folks, if they want more information about you and what you’re doing and the new podcast, where can they go?

John Cote: Sure yeah, the podcast is going to be on iTunes, Stitcher Radio and over at Sound Cloud. We’ve got the apps in for all those and it’s called Healthcare Elsewhere. You’ll also be able to go to and we’ll have show notes and daily episodes available. All that stuff will be there. It’s totally free. There’s no charge for that. We’re just going out there and informing the world about the cool medical advances that are happening and some of these great peoples’ stories. That’s pretty much it.

Tim Knox: What about your books? Are your books still available on Amazon?

John Cote: Oh yeah, sure.

Tim Knox: You forgot to plug your book. Can you believe that?

John Cote: I forgot to plug my book, I know. We’ll have another book out here soon. That’s the Healthcare Elsewhere book that will be out. If you type my name into Amazon, John Cote, and if you just type my name in there… that’s a cool marketing thing, by the way. If somebody says, “Well how do I get in touch with you?” Oh just type my name into Amazon. “Really? Oh you got books?” Yeah. That’s a cool marketing trick.

In any case you can go to and that’s where our marketing page and everything is but this is really more for the authors and stuff so I figured I would just kind of talk about the author-y stuff and what we’re doing with the podcast and everything. That’s the easiest way to get ahold of me. If you have any questions I’ll be happy to answer them for you.

Tim Knox: Yeah, the author-y stuff is good but always plug your book. That’s the moral of the story.

John Cote: Yes, very true. I know, for a marketing guy too, right?

Tim Knox: John Cote, great information. We will put all these links on our website and point folks in your direction. I wish you much success. I know you’re very excited about this new project with the healthcare thing. I think it’s really going to do some good things for you.

John Cote: Well thanks, I appreciate it.

Tim Knox: Alright, John, have a good day man.


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2 Thoughts on “John Cote: How To Take Your Book To #1 on Amazon

  1. I had a great time on this interview Tim, thanks again for the invitation!

  2. CEricBanister on June 16, 2014 at 7:34 pm said:

    Hey John, I’d love to know who you use for transcribing your audio. I’m looking for someone, but there are so many listed on fiverr that I’d love a recommendation. Thanks!

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