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Launching a Business Book: Behind the Scenes of My Book Launch Party

book branding Jul 17, 2023

Last week, I was delighted to host a small event to celebrate my recent book launch for Scientist to CEO. It was a gathering of friends and family and colleagues as a thank-you to everyone who has supported me during the book writing and publication process.

This post is a behind-the-scenes look at the party and key points shared from the Q&A.

Side note – I didn’t anticipate having two casts for the event (my wrist and foot are broken from a minor fall…and no, there’s no cool story behind it!). Hence those less-than-fashionable accessories you see in the photos.

Event Details

I wanted the night to be special but not too formal, so I selected a beautiful private room at a local venue, Spring Mill Distillery, in Guelph, Ontario, where I live.

First, a few details for anyone who likes to nerd out over events:

  • Food - charcuterie and cocktail selection with gourmet pizzas and salads from Earth to Table: Bread Bar
  • Format - we mingled and chatted, I signed a few books, and just had a good time with everyone
  • Décor – we sourced the most delightful chemistry beakers and Erlenmeyer flasks (!) to serve as vases for white and green flowers (#sciencerules)
  • Signage - video screen instead of printed signage for book cover
  • Speaking - we did a short Q&A session on a small stage on how the book came to be and its purpose

Q&A Recap

I was delighted to invite my former mentee and now colleague and friend, Julianna Van Adrichem, to be my emcee for the evening. Here’s an overview of a few things I spoke about.

Q: Can you share the story of how your book came to be?

A: In 2020, mid-lockdown, it hit me like a bolt of lightning that I want to write a book. This book. I had launched my business and gotten some clients during maternity leave with my daughter, and was using my signature marketing process with every client. I figured, what if I can wrap all of this up into a book, including all the common challenges that real scientific CEOs face? I love writing so it seemed like the next step.

I knew I couldn’t take on something so intense without help (especially at that point in the pandemic), so I hired a book coach and editing team, One Lit Place. There was a schedule to finish your business book in 4 months, but it ended up taking me 3 years due to family life obligations.

Q: What was your journey with self-publishing?

A: I knew that I wouldn’t have the “numbers” to get a publisher, and quite frankly I didn’t think any major publishers would quite get it. A marketing book for scientists? Isn’t that way too niche?

I ended approaching only one publisher from fear of possible failure and yeah, never heard back!

Turns out, self-publishing is an amazing option for authors. I had my manuscript professionally edited and formatted, created the proper Amazon and e-book accounts, and uploaded the final version in June of 2023. It was fast. My brother received his copy a day later, even before I did!

I’d recommend self-publishing to anyone. Since most of the book marketing falls on the author anyway, it didn’t make a difference to me whether I was under the banner of an imprint or not.

Q: Why do you focus on STEM companies?

A: This goes back to my career journey. I was a scientific professional myself, with a background in biology and nutrition. Once I made the leap to marketing, I got to hone this craft while working for a scientific consulting company.

Later, when I launched my business, FreshLeaf Marketing, I knew that the life sciences and health were my area of specialty because I know it so well. I can speak the language and use my creativity to help companies stand out in complicated fields.

Marketing is filled with generalists, so my clients really appreciate my science background and ability to communicate effectively.

Q: What advice would you give about mindset and entrepreneurship?

A: So much of my journey has involved mindset work, and I knew I couldn’t approach the topic of marketing without touching on it.

Mindset is something you hear a lot about in entrepreneurship circles, especially for women. Science leaders can have mindset concerns too, including ego, tendency to focus on detail, communicating in a too complicated vernacular.

My advice would be to learn as much as possible about what might be holding you back, and work to fill those gaps. It can all be learned and practiced and goes a long way toward effectively marketing your company.

Q: What can readers expect from Scientist to CEO?

A: It’s the marketing handbook for businesses built by scientists. Inside I share real stories from CEOs who overcame really difficult challenges – maybe you’ll see your own journey reflected back at you!

I also share my 5-step marketing process, which works for any service or product company in STEM. This includes:

✔️ The Accidental CEO: Tales from Real Technical Leaders

✔️ Why is Marketing Science So Hard, Anyway?

✔️ The Art and Science of Compelling Marketing

✔️ Common Mindset Blocks Holding Technical Leaders Back

✔️ The 5-Step Marketing Process

✔️ Troubleshooting Marketing: Where to Go From Here?

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Note: this post contains affiliate links. This comes at no cost to you, but I may earn a small commission.

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