A Message from Our Founder
Wendy Keller, Founder of Keller Media
Welcome to my agency and thanks for taking time to read my philosophy.
When I began this agency in 1989, I already was an award-winning print journalist. I’d worked for newspapers, magazines, and for PRNewswire. I learned about communicating, writing and editing from the perspective of “What does the reader want?” and “What will they pay for?” If the copy in a newspaper wasn’t good, subscriptions would go down and advertisers would evaporate.
While the whole world of communication has changed a lot since then, I believe the same principle applies to you: Will someone pay $20 hard earned bucks to buy your book? Why? Can you prove it?
Any New York editor will ask me about your platform if I even begin to pitch your book. This is because their jobs depend on finding books that will make money. You showing up with a platform means your book won’t flop. A “platform” means there are people out there who already like what you’re writing (in social media); saying (on YouTube or TV or in paid speeches); and thinking. The advantages of going with a major New York house are far beyond what you may think – it’s not simply “should I self-publish or go with a “real” publisher?” – if you even have that option. (Most would-be authors do not – they must self-publish because of their lack of platform, need for speed or lack of quality content.) But to get those editors to pay attention to you, you must first show up with enough going on that there is a real reason to believe you know what you’re talking about and you are saying it in a way that makes the world listen. THEN the power of the publishing house can help you exponentially expand your reach and your platform.
If you don’t have a platform and refuse to build one, there’s little anyone can do for you now. You could be the world’s greatest writer, but if you’re trying to sell nonfiction in this brave new publishing world, you won’t get a deal without a platform. The solution? Build a platform! Even a small one is better than nothing.
The majority of agents my age and with my experience rest on their laurels. By now, we all make most of our money on residuals from all the books we’ve sold in our careers, and books our biggest clients will write next year. But I believe in new talent. I believe in new writers. I believe the next greatest thing really IS around the next corner.
So I do two things:
First, I actively attract high quality new talent. I prefer working for exceptional people with huge platforms (lots of paid speeches, media – maybe even their own TV show, huge social media followings, etc.) I understand and admire what it took for you to get where you are today. I love to support, enhance, and expand the brand identity of brilliant, accomplished Big Thinkers of the World like you, people who are ready to be sold with maybe just a little tweaking here and there. Your books are precious to the world and the industry. I welcome you with open arms.
Second, I nurture promising new talent. The biggest distance between you and a big contract is your platform. Your platform on the outside is your social media, your speaking, your media appearances, your reputation, yeah. But even more, platform is built by what’s on the inside. The people who come with a platform in place already Think Big. Huge platforms are achieved by setting goals, taking massive action, seeing if it is working, making modifications, learning, learning, learning the craft, getting help, changing, growing. The biggest, most talented people I represent are such active, eager learners! They are striving daily to make their books, their businesses and the world a better place!
If you’ve got an open mind and you’re eager to learn how to grow bigger, there are all kinds of products and services for you on this website. You’re best advised to start off with a conversation with me to create a customized success strategy for you to follow. In the world of publishing, you will get as much success as you earn – and 90% of that starts and ends with building and growing your platform. Begin today.
If you’re already on top of your game, please let us know about your book! Read the submission guidelines and if your project matches, please fill out the query form and you’ll be expertly handled by my efficient, competent, caring team.
Here’s wishing you all the best.