A Rich Author Lesson From The “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” Author

This is the video clip that I referred to in the post 5 Elements of Money-Making Nonfiction Books. The post discussed the details of why nonfiction writers who want to earn a good living for themselves and their families don’t need to have their books on the bestsellers lists. Being on a bestseller list is a very good thing, but it’s not necessary to make significant amounts of money with a nonfiction book. As I mentioned during the post:

3. They serve as brochures for other, often more expensive products from the author.Entrepreneurial nonfiction authors know the real money does not come from book sales. Instead, the real money comes from “back-end” sales of other products (audio programs, newsletters, videos, special reports, teleseminars, boot camps, speaking engagements, personal coaching) mentioned in the books. It’s easier to sell additional products to existing customers than to get new customers.

Let’s use the Rich Dad, Poor Dad books as an example of this. The Rich Dad, Poor Dad franchise started when Robert Kiyosaki self-published the first Rich Dad book in 1997. The Rich Dad, Poor Dadbooks sprinkle references to other products in the product line throughout the books. I’ve seen a video clip where Mr. Kiyosaki mentions that he wasn’t focused on selling the first book as his ultimate goal. He was focused on getting some of the readers who bought the first Rich Dad book to also buy his more expensive CashFlow educational board game. The original Rich Dad, Poor Dad book costs $16. The CashFlow 101 board game costs $195. He eventually sold enough books to get the attention of a major publisher (Warner Books).

Mr. Kiyosaki also offers audio programs (ranging from $10 to $79); two seminar DVDs ($299 and $1,199); and live, three-day seminars (from $2,750 to $5,000). He also offers Rich Dad personal coaching. I guess it’s one of those “if you have to ask, you can’t afford it” things. The Rich Dad website doesn’t disclose the price tag for this service. You have to call or email the company to find out that information.

During his remarks, Mr. Kiyosaki makes several important points. Specifically about how he views his writing. He said that he’s not an author. He’s “an entrepreneur who builds businesses behind books.” He’s “an entrepreneur who builds businesses behind games.”

I believe that’s a perspective that all aspiring entrepreneurial artists should keep in mind. Are you building a business behind your art?

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5 Responses to “A Rich Author Lesson From The “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” Author”

  1. Karen R says:

    This is pure information marketing genius that you are freely sharing that the gurus charge $$$$ for. Thank you not because it’s free ;-)) but because you are providing women a way to get on the path of self-determination and financial freedom. When I did direct sales for a cosmetics co. she reminded us that a JOB is nothing more than a Journey of the Broke. We as women need to develop the mentality of entrepreneurs and not employees.

  2. Karen R.,

    You’re welcome! I’m finding a lot of helpful information while building my side business. It’s amazing what you find once you’re open to receiving it!

    There’s good money to be made in information marketing. What I find so disturbing is that I’ve only run across ONE AA writer’s site that discusses this sort of information in any detail. The rest of the AA writer’s blogs I’ve seen are not discussing the entrpreneurial angles of the writing biz. This is why in the 22nd CENTURY, AA writers will still be singing the blues about how “fill in the blank non-Black group”—right now it’s Whites, but soon it’ll be Latinos and Asians—won’t give them a break in the publishing industry.

    You said, “When I did direct sales for a cosmetics co. she reminded us that a JOB is nothing more than a Journey of the Broke.”

    True that. {chuckling}

    You said, “We as women need to develop the mentality of entrepreneurs and not employees.”

    ITA! This is the only long-term way we maintain our freedom of movement. Even when a woman is married to a QUALITY husband who is providing for her, she still needs to have a way to support herself and her children if he gets hit by a drunk driver.

    Peace, blessings and solidarity.

    • Karen R says:

      Just curious, do you study Dan Kennedy or Bill Glazer at all? I have been a part of their group and have learned A LOT!!! They are marketing geniuses. They teach how to create your offer, how to make your offer irresistable (sp?), etc. One book that is right on for those of us who want to ‘information market” is “Marketing to the Affluent” by Dan Kennedy. Another book chock full of info is:

      “Uncensored Sales Strategies: A Radical New Approach to Selling Your Customers What They Really Want – No Matter What Business You’re In (Paperback)”

      by the former Mayflower Madam, Sydney Biddle Barrows. VERY interesting read on how she set her business apart and how we can apply some of her strategies to our businesses. It is all about business but we all know her business was sex. She totally marketed to the affluent which is a great niche to market to. The book is used at Harvard Business School where she regularly lectures. Please let me know what you think.

  3. Karen R.,

    Funny you should mention those two men. Yes, they ARE marketing geniuses. Among other things, I’m reading Outrageous Advertising by Bill Glazer and No BS Direct Marketing by Dan Kennedy. For me, reading all these things can be slow-going because I take breaks in the reading to start applying at least one thing that I’m learning.

    I’m keeping all these things I’m learning in mind as I continue writing the information products (and business-topic book) that I’m working on. Most of all, I’m learning that it’s best to have some marketing strategies in mind FIRST before (and while) creating the information product. Doing so helps a lot.

    Let me give an example for the reading audience (Karen R., I’m sure you already know this stuff *smile*, but others don’t): Unfortunately, many nonfiction book authors don’t know the technique of placing some sort of “call to action” and/or “invitation” in their books.

    The book ends, and the book has NO invitation to the reader to (1) do something helpful like write an Amazon review; and/or (2) keep in touch with the author through their blog, website, Facebook, whatever (so the author can make them aware of other information products they’re offering); and/or (3) consider some of the other products that the author is offering.

    Of course, there’s never any guarantee that any particular reader will respond to the above invitations. But it IS certain that a reader won’t respond if the “call to action” invitations are not part of the book. I bought the original Rich Dad book years before I ever got the idea to enter the writing biz, and I remember noticing that there were references to his CashFlow board game (invitation to buy another product).

    I hadn’t heard of the Uncensored Sales Strategies book—THANKS for mentioning it!

    Peace, blessings and solidarity.

  4. Amanda says:

    Big reason I can’t stand those who complain about Robert K and how he makes money. Hell he states it in his books. I love that story about the author who saw it as an insult when he recommended her to a sales course to help her market her novels. She was saying how her novels weren’t selling and he gave her a way and she walked out, because he had the gall to tell and Arteest to seel instead of being an Arteest.