(photo credit: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pinkmoose/)
"Selling" self-help seems impossible when people don't want it.
But that's the secret itself...
I've been working around this area for years. The people who are already interested in self-improvement books aren't really the ones you have to worry about. And trying to get their attention is very difficult, because there is so much competition in that field.
So you have to work on niches, not shot-gun it. I've been selling by author recently, and that seems to work pretty well, once you've figured out which authors are actually selling - or what specific books are selling. Of course, this limits you to mostly public-domain books and anything you can work them into, like audio books or courses.
Again, though, there are only about 9 authors who still sell regularly - and of those, none have incredible demand.
But since I've been studying marketing, I may have made a breakthrough in this area.
You don't "sell" anything. You offer solutions to stress.
When you target the stress in peoples' lives, you can open up the entire world to awakening.
Because just about everything out there is self improvement, if you really look at it. Learning how to garden better is self-improvement, isn't it? Finding what the best car on the market is a form of self improvement, isn't it?
The people you want to convert to self-improvement aren't those who are actually looking for it, they are those who are looking for solutions to some sort of stress in their lives. That's the keyword - stress.
All stress is covered in any decent book on self-improvement. Sure, they may settle on meditation as an answer, or diet, or health, or financial worries - but they are all dealing with stress.
Stress is actually and only either not knowing what your purpose is and/or not following it. Just trying to "get by" or "make a living" is inherently filled with stress. Because anything that makes you feel bad is off your purpose-line in some way. And tells you that you should be changing something.
But the avenue to reach these people is through whatever stress subject they are fixated on. If they want to lose weight (because they are eating too much because of their purpose-related stress), then you talk about diets - but also then bring in the mental/spiritual reasons they are having weight problems. Same for health. Same for finances. Same for work problems.
All of these have the same set of solutions (although they have to be tailor-made for that individual).
So this then gives a route where we can tell anyone about how to get on the self-improvement bandwagon - simply start solving the problem most real to that person at it's root.
And that way, we start reaching the whole planet...