Categorized | Business Authors

Birthing the Elephant The woman’s go for it! guide to overcoming the big challenges of launching a business

Karin Abarbanel

A short author’s bio:

I am an entrepreneur, author, and speaker on smart start-up strategies for small businesses. I started my own solo marketing communications firm after I lost my job with a consulting firm because I wanted a more independent work life that would allow me to pursue my writing and spend time more time with my son.

I have written five how-to guides on careers and entrepreneurship. Most recently, I

co-authored Birthing the Elephant, a start-up action guide for women. I really enjoyed writing the book and learning the stories and success strategies of women who’ve launched thriving businesses. I love the flexibility that working on my own gives me. As an expert on start-up strategy, I knows firsthand the demands involved in being a solopreneur and want to equip women emotionally for the ups and downs they’ll face.

I was selected by The Avon Corporation as spokeswoman for its “Corporation to Cottage” program. I have appeared on broadcast/cable TV and radio as a guest expert – and have been featured on ABC TV’s “Good Morning America, CNBC, WCBS, and SmartMoney TV, and the Joan Hamburg Show, among others. I speak widely on small-business strategy.

A book synopsis / Key Ideas:

Part portable success coach, part action guide to the launch cycle of a business start-up, Birthing the Elephant takes womenand men through the first 22 months of a new venture and gives them a road map to help them navigate. A lean launch guide, Birthing the Elephant features start-up stories and advice from many successful entrepreneurs, including Bobbi Brown, the cosmetic mogul and Liz Lange, the maternity wear pioneer.

It also offers expert advice on peak performance, resiliency, and avoiding burnout.

In 50 words or less, write a paragraph stating why readers should buy your book and what they will get out of it after reading it.

With so many people inspired or impelled to launch new businesses, my book helps readers hit the ground running and avoid cash-draining mistakes. It offers inspiring advice on: lean launching in a tough economy; substituting brains for bucks; do-it-yourself marketing strategies; and making the transition from employee to entrepreneur.

Why did you write this book?

I was inspired to write this book because of the huge numbers of women launching new businesses, the explosion of the Internet, and the need for a new-business guide for women that tackled the emotional aspects of starting a business, from isolation to image anxiety and fear.

As a new small-business owner, I found that making the move from being an employee to running my own business was extremely challenging and uncomfortable, both emotionally and economically. I wanted to offer aspiring entrepreneurs a road map to the launch process and success strategies that would help them avoid the mistakes I made and increase their chances of success. I think building a support system for success is key when you’re launching a new venture and I wanted to help women create one.

Do you do speaking events? What are some common ones that you do on a regular basis? What do you talk about?

I love to speak and share my findings on smart-start-up strategies with a wide range of audiences. In my presentations, I focus on business start-ups and offer insights into the DNA of entrepreneurship and reveal the winning leadership strategies of innovative entrepreneurs – from cosmetic company founder Bobbi Brown and pioneering designer Liz Lange to launchers in the worlds of retailing, filmmaking, and high-tech software. I talk about building a support system for success, understanding the four stages of the launch cycle and how they unfold; fostering resiliency and overcoming self-imposed limits to success.

Do you do your own marketing or PR? What is a good marketing / PR strategy for a budding author?

Yes, for the most part we have done our own pr for the book and scored major media coverage in US News & World Report, SmartMoneyTV, and other major media channels. Budding authors should take every advantage of the Internetespecially Internet talk showswhich are always looking for expert guests.

We found the best PR strategy for us was to go both on line and off line to promote our book. We’ve pursued print articles, funded a radio campaign, used alumni publications,and written stories for Internet sites like Work It, Mom and World Net Daily.

Another great strategy: talk to everyone you know about your book. A neighbor of mine gave me a contact at SmartMoney TV and I ended up doing a great segment for their show. Another friend gave me a contact to and I wrote a story for the site.

You never know who knows someone who might be helpful to you.

Persistence is also keyyou must consistently market every day to promote your book.

Be sure to keep a log of all your marketing activities. Borrowing a strategy from the wildly successful authors of the Chicken Soup series, during my book’s launch phase, I committed to doing at least 5 promotional activities a day (they actually did 7).

What is the best advice you never got?

Master marketing and branding: they are the keys to promoting your business successfully. Don’t outsource what you can do yourselfespecially when

you are in launch mode. Owning your own business brings out the best in you, but it also triggers fears and anxiety. You have to be bigger than your fears and push past self-imposed limitations. When you doit’s incredibly inspiring and empowering!

Karin Abarbanel

Birthing the Elephant: the woman’s go for it! guide to

overcoming the big challenges of launching a business

Web site:

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