An Interview with Michael DeLon
Book publisher and brand strategist, Michael DeLon, creator of Paperback Expert and host of Experts Speak podcast shared his perspective about what every business owner needs for a real shot at success: credibility, connection, and a true story.
As America’s foremost authority on credibility marketing, Michael DeLon helps you write, publish, and promote a book that positions you as the expert in your field.
Paperback Expert collaborates with you to find clarity on brand strategy, become a bestselling author, and create a profitable podcast. Paperback Expert and Audivita Studios have worked as partners for over two years to create multiple original, branded podcasts.
In our interview, Michael DeLon shared his credibility marketing tips and strategies to gain more clients, increase referrals, and grow your revenue.
Tip 1: Write a Book. Gain Credibility.
When Michael DeLon started helping small businesses with marketing, he encountered one major obstacle — credibility. Initially, he booked meetings with plenty of solid leads and seemingly enthusiastic future clients. However, he had trouble convincing business owners that he was the best man for the job.
After a year of dead ends, an epiphany struck. DeLon decided to leverage his expertise and publish his first book: On Marketing: The Definitive Guide for Small Business Owners. Because of this, when he landed calls with prospective clients, the first thing he did was mail them a copy of his book. A week later, he walked into those meetings, and there was his book, on their desk, dog eared, highlighted, and underlined. Clients asked direct questions, referenced the strategies in his book, and applied them to their specific needs. As a result, he gained more clients and expanded his business.
What changed was how people perceived me. When they received my book, they instantly saw me as an expert in marketing. That changed my business and my life.
That was the seed that has grown to become a Paperback Expert. Today, DeLon helps business owners create their book and get it published as a bestseller, establishing their credibility in the eyes of their audience.
Tip 2: NEVER “write” a book… Speak to write it.
At Audivita Studios, we dedicate ourselves to helping writers and industry professionals connect their voices to the world. As audiobook and podcast producers, we transform the written word into the spoken word. Paperback Expert does the reverse.
They use a unique Speak-to-Write process for publishing books. You just speak, and your writer crafts your words onto the pages of your book. Namely, because it’s faster and makes it easier for your ideas to flow seamlessly.
Naturally, the traditional writing process can be a real challenge even for the most renowned authors. Paperback Expert’s method simplifies the process. First, they develop content through a series of in-depth brand strategy questions; then, they employ a team of expert writers and editors to help polish your words to get them into a bestselling form.
Tip 3: Tell your story. Discover your brand.
Paperback Expert helps you get to the heart of your experiences and connect them to your overarching message. Certainly, everyone has personal experiences that connect to their career. It’s about acknowledging those experiences, even the tough ones, and using them to your advantage.
To be credible, discover your unique story that no one can replicate, and make that your brand. Then, find a way to connect that story with your audience.
For instance, one of DeLon’s clients is a personal injury attorney. During the brand strategy interview phase, DeLon learned the man was a star pitcher in college, on a track to the professional leagues. During his college athletic career, the man threw out his arm, resulting in a severe injury. He underwent major surgeries with years of rehabilitation. As a consequence, life took him on a different path.
His client never told anyone that story in his marketing. Yet, DeLon understood his client’s credibility as a personal injury lawyer was rooted in that experience. Thus, they titled his book, “When Life Throws You a Curveball.” His personal story became his brand.
The key is understanding your message, your distinctness, what’s new and unique about you, and what is it that separates you from everybody else.
As a result, his client developed a compelling message that distinguishes him from others in a highly competitive market. He immediately became someone others could trust—someone who knows, intimately, the trials his clients face.
Tip 4: Make a podcast to build connections.
What many people don’t know is you can leverage your position as a podcaster to build a platform that aligns with your overall marketing strategy. That is to say, you can build a relationship with your audience and other podcasters that builds lasting, revenue-generating networking connections.
Thus, following his own brand strategy, Michael DeLon chose to develop his own podcast, Experts Speak, where he talks with business professionals in various industries about what makes them the true expert in their field.
Similarly, after Paperback Expert publishes a book, DeLon interviews the author/entrepreneur on the Experts Speak podcast. In addition, the book publisher partners with Audivita Studios to create branded podcasts for their authors where each episode aligns with a chapter of the author’s book. For example, “How Justice is Served,” with Jed Kurzban, and “Don’t Play Retirement Roulette” by Dan Sullivan, “The Music Teacher Podcast,” with Eric Nehring, are just a few of many book podcasts in production.
In our interview, DeLon shared innovative insights on the steps authors/entrepreneurs can take to create profitable book podcasts.
STEP 1: Be strategic with your guest lists.
A podcast gives you an opportunity to invite anybody you want to meet to be a guest and to start building a relationship. You can even invite ideal clients. For instance, if you’re a business owner, your guests can be past clients giving rave reviews. For literary podcasters, you might invite the editor-in-chief of a major publication or a bestselling author.
Remember to be bold and think big! Most people love any opportunity to share what they know.
STEP 2: Be a guest on other podcasts.
Start building your network with other people’s podcasts who talk to your target audience. It is easiest to be booked as a guest on others’ podcasts when you have your own.
STEP 3: Think Dollars Over Downloads
Over the years, DeLon learned an innovative perspective about making his podcast profitable. Focus on the connection you make and the community you are able to build.
Our marketing does not come from social media platforms. Instead, our marketing comes through partnerships with key influencers who have an audience of people following them.
Not focused solely on streaming or download numbers, his goal was to establish a “tribe of leaders” through the people he met in the podcasting world. His social capital naturally transferred to money in the bank—through referrals and networking he generated close to six figures every year directly from podcasting.
STEP 4: Share your podcast with your network
Share your podcast using an email newsletter and social media. Use it as a cross-promotional tool to bolster your name and the work of your guests.
Having your own podcast just gives you an added level of credibility. They are an effective medium to communicate your message on a regular basis that allows people to connect with you on a different level.
Tip 5: To be the best, be yourself.
Although most people typically understand the world of business as an objective, calculated exchange. DeLon sees things differently.
He acknowledges we all make decisions emotionally, not logically. In reality, once you’ve decided what you want to do in your heart, you find the reasons to support your choices. The same thing happens with your product, service, and clients. When you reach people’s emotions, then your business will change.
For a business, it’s all about connecting to peoples’ hearts. People will buy you more for who you are than what you do. Be yourself. Share your personal story. And realize that your story is more compelling than you probably think it is.
Your look, your sound, your message—All of this communicates to their heart that you’re the right person for them. When your audience can carry you around with them, whether listening to your podcast, your audiobook, or reading your printed book, they experience you personally. There, your audience gets to know you as a genuine person.
The dynamite is the personal nature of it. That’s the spark that explodes. That’s the power of podcasts.
To learn more about Michael DeLon and Paperback Expert, visit https://paperbackexpert.com/
Check out Michael DeLon’s podcast, “Experts Speak.” New episodes are available Tuesdays on every podcast listening platform.