The How & Why To Writing & Publishing A Book For Your Agency

by | Dec 13, 2021 | podcast

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The How & Why of Writing & Publishing A Book For Your Agency


We brought back Wayne Mullins from Ugly Mug Marketing and this time we share similar stories as we both took on the daunting task of writing and publishing a book for our marketing agencies. Wayne’s book, Full Circle Marketing is already out in the wild, while mine, The Anti-Agency: A Realistic Path To A $1,000,000 Business hits the shelves in January 2022. Both of us share our journeys to writing and publishing our books…the hardships, the successes, and most important the why, and how doing so can really help grow your agency business.

Check out Wayne at www.uglymugmarketing.com or check out his book at www.yourfullcirclemarketing.com

As always you can find Socialistic at www.socialistics.com, and keep your eyes peeled for The Anti-Agency book in January 2022!







Jason Yormark: Hello, and welcome to another episode of the Socialistics podcast. My name is Jason Yormark owner and founder of Socialistics. I’m excited to bring back a previous guest from a previous us episode. The timing was great. We’re going to talk about publishing a book. Self-Publishing, traditional publisher. We both kind of worked on a book this year. His is out, mine’s soon to be out, and I couldn’t think of a better time for us to jump on another episode and kind of talk through what that looks like. And if you’re an agency owner or business owner the benefits of having a book and what that looks like. So welcome back Wayne Mullins from ugly mug marketing.


Wayne Mullins: Hey Jason, thank you so much. I’m excited for this conversation. It’s a bit of a divergence from what I normally get to talk about. So I’m excited for this.


Jason Yormark: No, for sure. I haven’t done an episode around this. I just thought, why not? I mean, we kind of in the same boat and I’ve had a lot of other agency owners that have asked a lot of questions about, you know, what’s involved with putting a book together and why do that and how and all that good stuff. So I’m like, Hey, let’s jump on a convo and talk that through. So your book is called full circle marketing. Just got a copy of it, but why don’t we start by telling me, like, where did it start? Like, why did you decide that you wanted to do a book? What was the reasoning behind it? And we’ll go from there.


Wayne Mullins: Yeah, absolutely. So the idea for this particular book centered around the bulk of our work is in the marketing field. So we’re doing a lot of work and, you know, one of the things that we deal with on a constant basis is the education process. In other words, educating prospects, even new clients on the way we go about marketing. And I just thought it would be great to go ahead and put exactly what we believe exactly how we do it down on paper. So for us, number one, I think it’s a great educational piece for prospects and clients, but number two, it’s a great way of putting our name out there and associating it with the particular things that we stand for, the particular things that we believe in. So in many aspects, it’s twofold, number one, it’s a marketing tool. To get our name and what we stand for out there. But number two, it’s an educational piece for those already kind of in our funnel, if you will, or maybe even already our clients.


Jason Yormark: So where did, when did you start thinking about this and did you have an idea of what the book would be and what would be in it? Just kind of take me through the journey of how it started and did you have any kind of back and forth around what it would be and what ultimate book would end up being?


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. So the actual idea for the book, I think came out of frustration. Over having the same conversation over and over and over again. I honestly think it was somebody on my team who finally said one day, like, why don’t you just put this down on paper? Like, why don’t you just write this so that you don’t have to always come in and re-explain it over and over again. And that was, you know, it was said jokingly kind of, you know, just in passing, but the more I had to repeat the conversation the more this idea became appealing to me, writing as you know, for, I guess, I don’t know if it’s true for everyone, but for me, writing is not necessarily a fun project. Yeah. So the thought of doing it had to get to the point where the other thing, you know, in other words, having to repeat the story and the believe over and over again about how we do what we do the pain from that had to get greater than a pain from writing. And it finally did. And so I sat down and put it together. 

Jason Yormark: So what was the timeline, when did you start? When did you start the book and how long did it take you to basically kind of get it written?


Wayne Mullins: Yeah, I mean, first of all, the book is a short book. It’s just over a hundred pages. So not a big book. The total time for me to actually write the book was probably about three months. So it wasn’t a long process. It wasn’t drawn out, but it was because I was already teaching these things. I was already talking about these things. It was really just a matter of taking that. The hardest part for me Jason was actually figuring out how to take what I constantly talked about and break it into more of an outline, more of like what sections would be in the book, what chapters would be in the book. To me, that was the hardest part. Once I had that filling in back, filling in all the content actually fairly easy.


Jason Yormark: So you had mentioned obviously, and much like my reason or at least one of the major reasons of creating a book is like to kind of use it as a tool to educate a tool to potentially drive leads for the business. So it sounds like this, you know, in terms of your expectations from this book, I mean, is it really something that you just want to use in that fashion, like to distribute to, you know, whether you’re at a speaking engagement or, you know, just any opportunity where you feel somebody might benefit from the book and have that ultimately potentially lead to new business for you? Is that really the driving force behind it and how you see using the book moving forward?


Wayne Mullins: Yeah, I would say that is definitely the majority of the driving force. You know, I don’t know what percentage that would be. There is the other portion, which is, you know, a smaller portion of what is in the book. I truly believe would be beneficial. For anyone who’s struggling with marketing to pick this up, go through the frameworks that are there and really actually apply them and see results, see difference. See a difference in their marketing. But you know, I actually wrote a book probably I’m terrible at timeframes, probably this was probably six or seven years ago around websites. So it was another small book, probably 120, 150 pages in that range. Yeah. And it was called, so you have a website now, what? And the intention, again, with that book was very similar. It was a positioning tool. At the time that I wrote that book and again, you know, this rewind, this is, you know, six or seven years ago, I would say that our average website at the time was probably in the $2,000 range. So we build custom websites probably in the $2,000 range. And I would say now that we are, you know, we’re up closer to five figure range and, you know, often above the five figure range. And what I would say is that when we, like, I’m going to speak just about the website for a second, when we’re competing against a competitor for a website, when we have our initial needs conversation with that person, we then send them a packet. Assuming we think they’re a good fit, we send them a packet, a physical packet, which is going to include a copy of that book. So yeah, we immediately stand out from the competition because there’s an actual book written by someone on the staff at the company. So even if they never read the book, even if they never even opened the cover of the book You know, flip it open. Just the fact that we have the book puts us in a different light. It causes them to view us in that different lens. 


Jason Yormark: I love that. That is exactly why I wrote the book that I did. Now, I took a little bit of a different approach. Like I thought about doing something similar to what you did around, you know, social media, like how to, or, you know, and that certainly that’s a book that I could have pieced together, but ultimately my team pushed me to write more about how I built the agency. They felt that that was a bigger story and might resonate in a more significant way. So I wrote it’s called anti agency, how I built a million dollar business differently or still working on the subtitles. So it’s my story, which is very uncomfortable for me because I don’t like talking about myself. I never really think that highly of myself to a fault. That’s the point. The thing I struggled with was, well, how is this going to drive business for our agency? Right. It’s the way this book is written. It’s really designed for people that are maybe thinking about starting a marketing agency or a business, or think that they can’t, and it’s too overwhelming and it’s to inspire and motivate them. And it’s exactly to the point that you said it serves that purpose for sure. But that secondary thing is you wrote a book, it adds a layer of credibility just from a perception standpoint. And to your point, they see it on the website. I love that idea. I’m going to steal that from you, like sending them a physical copy of the book when you’re in the sales process with them. You’re right. They don’t have to even read it. They just see it. And in their minds psychologically, it just adds a layer of credibility that separates you from the pack. So that is exactly why I put the time and effort into it, because that’s my hope is that’s what will happen with those prospects.


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. And again, I can’t speak for, you know, what’s going to happen with my new book, you know, which is around marketing. But I can tell you without a doubt, that first book around websites, it has made a tremendous impact on that side of our business. You know, I’ll often say that, you know, your brand is not what we believe or what believe about yourself, your brand is what others believe about you. And when you have something like a book, it shifts their perception of your brand. So it puts, again, it puts you in a different light than your competitors. So for me, I’m very hopeful that this will do the same around our marketing services.

Jason Yormark: Yep. No, I think it absolutely will. So, let’s go back to one of the, the biggest challenges I found, so having written a fiction book a few years ago, and then tackling this one, the level of commitment it takes. I’m kind of curious, like, how did you, you had mentioned it took you three months to kind of finish this as a smaller book. But you know, how did you, what was your process? Did you kind of carve out time every day? Did you, how did you keep yourself on task and how did you ensure that you would see this through to the end?


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. Great question. So I actually scheduled time three days a week on my calendar. I would write from 9:00 AM till 10 30. And that was usually Wednesday, Thursday, Friday. There were some weeks when Friday wasn’t possible just due to other scheduling things, but I literally put on my calendar for that entire period, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday from nine to 10 30, every single morning, I was going to be writing. The other thing that I would say, Jason, is this, I have a great team here. And one of the ways that we kind of operate internally is we, every single week we sit down in our team meeting and each of us has to put our goals up on the big TV that’s right over next to me here. And we then have to challenge each other around those goals. So we each put up our goal and we say, okay, here’s my three commitments this week that are going to help me reach that. And so during that quarter that I was actually writing this, it was one of my goals. So I was being not only held accountable, you know, by the time on my calendar, in other words, by the time block on my calendar. But I was also being held accountable each week in our team meeting, knowing that they’re going to hold me accountable because a goal for the week would be okay, this week I’m going to write a thousand words or whatever the goal was. So what I would say for anyone who’s, you know, considering writing a book, the more points of accountability that you can put around the project, the easier the project’s going to be. If I’d only blocked out the time and not that outside team accountability, you know, every single week me putting it up on the screen before them, did I do it? Or did I not? I don’t know that I would’ve hit the goal.


Jason Yormark: Yeah, no, I love that. So if you’re listening and you are thinking about jumping into a book project, that is the number one thing is you’ve got to set aside time in your calendar for just writing and literally put, do not disturb everything else has to kind of go away. You kind of have to get those distractions out of the way and make that commitment. The other part of it that I would add is and something that I’ve learned along the way is it’s never going to be perfect when you first put it on paper, you can’t get, just write, just put it out there, just get your drafts out there. You’re going to have to go back and edit and change things. So, you know, don’t expect it to be perfect. Just get your thoughts out on paper with the expectation that you’re going to go back and re-edit those things. You probably, I don’t know if you experienced this, but we spent and as much time editing as we did, I think writing, because, you know, you have to go back and really kind of tweak things. 


Jason Yormark: So I love that accountability piece. I think for me that came in the form of, you know, hiring an editor, you know, right from the beginning and just investing some money into something and having that external source kind of act as a system of checks and balances in terms of how things are progressing, knowing that, Hey, I’ve got not only time, but money invested in this. So I love that. That’s awesome. So the book has been just re recently launched if I’m not mistaken, is that correct?


Wayne Mullins: Yep. It actually came out a couple days ago.


Jason Yormark: So you self-published, which I do have some familiarity with for the audience’s purpose. I did a kind of a hybrid publisher, which I’ll talk about in a little bit, but I’m curious, did you consider any other path and if not how is your self-publishing journey? What are the benefits to that? And why might you have chosen that over alternative paths?


Wayne Mullins: Sure. So for me with this particular book, I knew that, you know, my target audience or my goal wasn’t to make this in New York times best seller. I didn’t think the content here was that type of content. Doesn’t mean, I don’t believe in the content. I don’t, you know, I do believe it’s great content, but it’s just not the type a book that is going to be a quote unquote bestseller on a big list like that. So for me, that removed kind of the need for a traditional publisher. For those who may not be familiar, if you’re going to go with a traditional publisher you know, you’re talking typically at least a year process, probably two would be realistic. And I wanted to get this out quickly. So that wasn’t even an option for me. With regards to self-publishing the, the one thing that I would say other than having some form of accountability to hold you to certain deadlines is the importance of the editor, the importance of someone critiquing someone saying the flow’s not right here, someone saying, you know, I think you’re repeating this again, or all those things that in the process of writing you can’t, I don’t believe you can write and self-edit. If you attempt that, like you were just saying, you will never get anywhere because you’ll always just be editing the same few pages over and over again. So I would say that would be the number one thing, like the rest of it is easy to figure out. For me, the most important, critical part was finding a good editor who could actually hold me accountable and improve what was there.


Jason Yormark: Gotcha. How’d you source the design of like the cover and the interior design. Like, did you guys do that internally? Did you bring somebody in to help with that? 


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. So we took care of that, the cover itself internally. For the layout, interior design layout to be honest with you there was a certain publisher I was going to use Ingram spark Is the name of the publisher. I literally just did a Google search for, you know, Ingram spark interior design. And I reached out to, I think, three or four, three of the four top results that came up and asked them for some samples of nonfiction work, so again, in the same genre and then anything they had that was in the business world that they could send me just as samples. And that’s how I selected the person that I worked with for the interior. 


Jason Yormark: Very cool. You know, it’s really, and what’s awesome about, so I have those of you that listening, you can’t see it, but I have a copy of your book in my hand, and I think the thing that I loved immediately, which is going to sound silly, but it’ll make sense here shortly was there was a smaller book. And so what I struggled with my book is when I finished it, I hit about 50,000 words. And I did all of the research, like what does 50,000 words equate to in terms of size of book. And then I got all stressed out because I’m like, oh geez, cause I started looking at other marketing books. There’s similar types of books and the size of those books. And I’m like, oh God, will anybody take this seriously? Because according to my math, this is going to be a thinner book. Is it going to feel like it’s got any substance? Are people going to take it seriously? And I was like, so caught up with that. And my editor that was working with was like, don’t worry about it. Don’t worry about it. It’s fine. It’s quality over quantity and I’d go back and I’d be like, okay, well how could I flesh this out more? What could I add to this to make it a thicker book? So people take it seriously and I would go back and I’d just like, I’ve got nothing else. Like I have told my story, like this book is in front of me. There’s nothing, like if I try to add any more to this, it’ll be unauthentic. It’ll feel forced. And it’s like, it is what it is and then I think what I started to realize is there was a couple things. Number one, the world is changing in terms of attention span. I actually think people probably will find a smaller book, more appealing. It’s more approachable. They won’t maybe feel as intimidated by it. Oh, this is a book I could probably power through in a week. So I started think about the benefits to a smaller book and how that might actually be an advantage. And then that was only reinforced when I got yours. I’m like, yep, I think I don’t have anything to worry about. So I really think that’s cool, so if you’re listening and if that’s a problem, like it isn’t, you know, it’s like, it just depends on what your goal subjects are. To your point and very similar to mine. I don’t have any aspirations of being in New York times, it’s not going to happen. But if I can generate leads, if I can change people’s lives, if people read it and get something from it, that’s all that matters. So I love the fact that I got this and it was the size that it was cause it just reinforced that.


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. I think, you know, Jason, one of the things that I hear a lot of people talking about, if you, you know, kind of watch people who review books or talk about books online. One of the things that people often talk about is, or on Amazon reviews, another place you see this, you know, this is really an article that they fluffed up into 200 pages. And you know, for me like the, just like your story, yes, I could have gone back and added, you know, more filler and made the book, you know, easily, probably another 50 pages to, you know, thicken up the book a bit, but there was like you were saying, what is in the book is all that needs to be in this book. There’s nothing more that’s needed here. And I do agree. I think people today enjoy being able to consume and not have to deal with the fluff. It’s like, give me the nuggets of meat here. Don’t make me dig around for them and try to figure out what I actually need to learn and go apply. 


Jason Yormark: I love it. So let’s flash forward a year from now and you’ll look back and you think to yourself, and this is an interview question, I’m repurposing it because I love this question. A year from now you look back and say, man, writing that book, one of the best decisions I’ve ever made, like what would need to happen over the next year for you to feel that way?


Wayne Mullins: Yeah, this is going to sound like a crazy answer maybe, but nothing else, Jason, nothing else would have to happen. The fact that I actually got it done, you know, in the midst of still running the business in the midst of growing the company in the midst of, you know, all the chaos that ensued with COVID and all that stuff. I got the book done. There’s physical copies in this world. And I am happy with that. Yes, I mean, I do have aspirations for it. I would love for it to be this piece that, you know, fuels leads into the company and all these other things. I don’t want to make it sound like I don’t care about that. I do. But just going through this process, number one, I think it’s going to me better pitch our business and what we do in terms of, it helped me crystallize or clarify what we believe in. Right. It forced me to be succinct with it. It forced me to clarify those messages. So all of those benefits are not the things that you would typically hear. People say like, oh, you know, going to generate lots of revenue and you know, we’re going to reach millions of people. It’s none of that for me. Yeah, All of that would be great. I wouldn’t complain. But that is it. Putting it out in the world was the goal. It’s been accomplished.


Jason Yormark: No, I love it. I think I have a similar answer when I think about it. I think to your point, I agree. I think I’ll take it one step further for me just based on, you know, the real purpose of why I wrote the book. I think if one person emailed me or reached out to me and said, I read your book and it inspired me to start my business or my agency and I’m often running and it’s on its way. Like if one person said that to me, you know, I think I’d be like, then it was worth it. If I could have inspired one person to take on the risk and change their life and develop an opportunity for themselves to kind of live a life of freedom that I’ve done my job, you know? So to your point, there is a definitely an incredible sense of accomplishment of putting something like that out in the world. And part of it’s to, I mean, you leave something behind, you know, once you leave the world, you’ve got this thing, that’ll always be out there that people have access to.


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. I would almost kind of piggyback on what you’re saying. I would almost, and again, this is me speaking for me, but I would go as far as saying that if your motive for the book is the million dollars or the New York times best seller, that you may need to kind of step back and reevaluate why you’re doing what you’re doing. And I think that it will show up in your writing. In other words, if you’re writing for that goal, if you’re writing to check that thing off the box or try to, you know, become the bestseller or all those things, I think what happens is we lose sight of the people we’re writing for. Yep. And just like you’re saying, like you were writing for that specific person, you were writing to help, you know, shorten their trials and their struggles and yeah. All the things they’re going to go through and accelerate their path. And if you had instead been focused on how do I get this to New York times best seller, like you compromise your voice or at least that’s what I would think for me, it would be compromising my voice, my authentic voice to that market. 

Jason Yormark: No, I completely agree. You definitely have to, the why has to be right. You know, it has to be authentic. It has to be real. And you have to feel like you have something to offer. If your singular motive is to be a bestselling author, it’s a little bit of a pipe dream. I mean, it’s not to say that it’s not possible, but I think the people that get there are the ones that have the right why behind them. And then, then that just happens organically. So I love that. Well, before we wrap things up, what are the top two or three things that you can think of? Look, imagine I’m an agency owner out there I’ve been doing this for a while, I feel like I have a good idea for a book. You know, what are the, you know, in terms of trials and errors or things that you’ve went through, what are the top things that kind of come to mind that you would advise a potential book writer to be thinking about when they kind of jump into that? That might be helpful.


Wayne Mullins: Yeah. I would say number one, get clear about the goal for the book. Again, I mean, if your goal is New York times bestseller, I’m not going to discourage you from that. Sure. But that’s going to lead you down a different path, right? You’re going to need a traditional publisher. I mean, you go look at the New York times list. 9900% of them are traditional published, so you’re going to need traditional publisher. But again, get clear and, you know, we were chatting about this briefly before we started recording. There’s really, I think three paths. And again, I’m not an expert in this field, but there’s traditional, there’s kind of the hybrid that you went through and then there’s kind of this completely independent self-publish route. So depending on your goal, that’s going to influence which of those three paths you’re going to venture down. And one of the things that I know to be true is depending on the path, you’re going to go down, it’s going to alter the way you actually go about writing your book. So if you’re going with the traditional publisher you don’t actually write your book first. You write the proposal for the book first. And that’s a mistake that I’ve heard a lot of people making. They sit down and they spend a year writing out a book and then they go try to find an agent to pitch it. And agent’s like, well, I don’t need the book right now. That’s not what we pitch to the publisher. We just need the proposal. And I know a couple people personally, who’ve done that and it completely just, you know, knocks the wind out of their cells because they thought they were doing the right thing. They thought they were taking the right step. So number one, pick your path, understand, you know, the end goal and then decide on that path. I’m going to speak, I’m going to speak from the path I chose just cause I know that path, I just walked down that path. Number one is like, like you said earlier, make sure that you calendar the time that you’ve scheduled the time. It’s not going to happen on its own. It’s going to have to happen with time. So make sure you’re scheduling that time. And the more consistent you can be with that in other words, every Wednesday at this time or every Thursday, whatever the time is, be consistent with it. The other is just write, just write. That was the hardest thing for me. I would sit down and I would try to think, okay, you know, what should I be saying right here? What should you know, how do I make this flow Well, no, just write. You have to get past that inner voice that’s trying to critique and you just have to type, you just have to write. And then the last thing would be, find the editor, find someone who can number one, make it better than what you’re writing. But number two, hold you accountable to the writing process. Hold you accountable to turning in the words when you’re supposed to turn in those words.


Jason Yormark: No, that’s all great stuff. I don’t even have that much to add. Those are all probably the top things to be thinking about. Another thing too, it also depends on where you’re coming from too. You know, some people, you know, the resources they pour into it are, it is going to be just strictly time. Like I’m not looking to spend a ton of money on this. It’s going to be my time. That’s probably, you know, that self-publishing is probably going to be the route for you. If you’ve got a few bucks that you’re willing to put behind it, you know, hybrid could work. That’s what we did. So hybrid publishing for those of you that don’t know, it’s kind of like the middle ground where, you know, if you work with a traditional publisher, typically assuming that you can even arrange that, which is not a difficult thing to do, especially if you’ve never written a book before, but they’re going to give you an advance, but they’re, you know, they’re going to own a lot more of the process. It’s going to take a lot longer. They’re going to take obviously a percentage, a cut of anything that you sell with the book. So you lose a lot of control. Whereas with the hybrid, you kind of get some of the benefits of a traditional publisher, like in terms of support around editing and book design and distribution, and a lot of the heavy lifting, but you know, you’re going to have to pay them up front for all of that, but you have full ownership of the book all the proceeds from the book, you earn a hundred percent from aside from, you know, Amazon’s cut and things of that nature. So that’s the path that I decided, cause I knew that I needed that level of support and help to kind of push it over the finish line. So it really just depends on, you know, what resources you have to kind of pour into it. But to Wayne’s point like, you know, it’s the writing, it’s the time, it’s the commitment, it’s the accountability and it’s having the right reasons for doing it. And I think if you’ve got those things in place, then you’re definitely, going to be on a path to success. So God, I literally love this episode. I really wanted to get all of this out. There’s so much more that I’m sure that we could just kind of ramble on and on about, but we’ll wrap it up there cause I think there’s some good stuff here. But before we finish tell the audience where they can find you, your agency, the book, all that good stuff.


Wayne Mullins: Yeah, absolutely. Just one quick thing that I would say regarding kind of wrapping up the conversation. It’s that, you know, don’t view this process as you know, something that you’re trying to get done or it’s a goal that you’re trying to accomplish. View that process as an investment. So view that time as an investment. Because you know, again, depending on what your goal is for your book, but for me all that time, all that energy, all that effort and the little bit of money we put into it, that’s an investment that I’m confident. It won’t take many clients to begin compounding the investment of time and money that I put in at this Book. 

Jason Yormark: Especially if you do it right. You’ll get back what you put into it by 3, 4, 5, 10X, for sure, if you do it right.


Wayne Mullins: Yep. Absolutely. For people looking to find me www.uglymugmarketing.com, that’s our agency site, all my info’s there, all of our social channels are there. If you want just information on the book, you can go to www.yourfullcirclemarketing.com and get some more info on the book itself. 


Jason Yormark: Awesome. I loved having you back on here. I love hearing about what you guys are doing certainly about this book. I’ll make sure in the show notes that we include links to all of that, as well as some additional resources. But if you’re listening and you’re thinking about a book, I would imagine Wayne much like myself, we just love, you know, helping and advising people. So feel free to reach out through social media or directly if you’ve got questions about that, we’re happy to answer those questions for you and provide some resources for that. But Wayne, thank you so much for jumping back in with us and, and spending some time to talk about your book journey. Definitely will be reading it myself here over the next couple weeks and really enjoyed having you back. 

Wayne Mullins: Thanks so much, Jason. I enjoyed it as well. 

Jason Yormark: Awesome. Well that will do it for this week’s episode of Socialistics social media agency stories. Make sure that you like, subscribe, share all that good stuff. Thanks for listen. And we will catch you next time.



Jason Yormark
Jason Yormark

Jason is a 20+ year marketing veteran including time spent at Microsoft overseeing social media for Microsoft Advertising & Office for Mac. Once named to Forbes Power Social Media Influencers List, Jason is the owner and founder of Socialistics.