Part 1: What’s Your Book’s Promise?

The promise of your book or info product is its subtitle. I call the verb or what your book or info product “does” for your audience. The name or noun of your book or info product is its title.

Watch this video because it demystifies the most misunderstood concept in publishing. If you’re an author or info marketer, it makes more sense to focus on your subtitle not your title … and in this video, I tell you why.

16 Responses to “Part 1: What’s Your Book’s Promise?”

  1. Kevin Gianni Says:

    Alex, great tip! I can’t tell you how many books have lured me in because of the promise. I’m glad I intuitively knew this, or else, I’d have to contact the Library of Congress and re-submit for my LOC # for my new book coming out in August :-)

    Live Awesome!

  2. Alexander Morentin Says:

    Last year at this time I was contemplating the investment in Alex Mandossian’s Virtual Book Tour Systems. Well, needless to say, I made the investment and am so very glad that I did. There are a ton of benefits that I received from the course, too many to list here, so I will keep in the context of this post.

    During the course of the VBT course I had the opportunity to speak with Alex. I wanted to know what his thoughts were on the title and subtitle of a book that I was writing.

    The title and subtitile that I had come up with:
    Holistic Nutrition:
    Cahnging The Way America Eats

    My colleagues, clients, and I were very happy with this, but Alex felt otherwise. Basically, he told me to get rid of them; they didn’t tell the reader anything about what the book is or what it does. He went on to explain that my clients and friends are familiar with what I do, but the rest of the world wasn’t. I would have to come up with something that would convey my message to the world.

    Now, this was devastating to me. I worked hard and long on the title and subtitle, but that is what I like about Alex. He doesn’t sugar coat things to make you feel better. He tells you the truth and helps you find solutions that will make you more successful than you ever imagined possible.

    Alex asked me these questions over and over: What is the book and what does it do? What is its promise?

    The new title and subtitle that I came up with:
    Better Living With Whole Foods:
    The Delicious & Nutritious Guide To Looking Great & Feeling Younger!

    Once I came up with this title/subtitle it was as if the book came to life.
    As I was writing the book I was able to keep focused on the promise and deliver.

    The book has now been written and I have just received the advanced copies.
    Now, when people look at the book there is no question what the book is about or what it will do for the reader. People buy the book without even opening it. It’s amazing!

    Thank you Alex for sharing all of your valuable insights with us. You are a wonderful mentor and an awesome role model for success. :)

  3. Pat & Lorna Shanks Says:


    It’s so subtle, but it’s true!

    So in relation to a blog post… the title of a book is like the actual posting, and the book’s promise, or sub-title, is like the comments to that post.

    In the comments, the reader is telling the writer what they got from the posting… like the sub-title telling the reader what they’ll get from the book.

    Makes one think… how can this relate to other situations? We’ll definitely be keeping this one in mind when we create our presentations!

    Thanks Alex!
    –Pat & Lorna Shanks

  4. Annemarie, Life Trekking Coach ™ Says:

    Thanks, Alex! Awesome million dollar tips :)

  5. Elizabeth Harrington Says:

    Alex, once again you’ve made the complex-simple!
    I’m launching my first VBT for a best selling author, Richard Leider on Monday.
    This gives me the perfect place to start from in crafting the design of the questions!
    Thank-you thank-you!
    I know we will be very successful with your coaching!

  6. Chris Swain Says:

    Alex, fantastic point that only you could come up with while at a playground. You think of and repurpose everything — taking your kids to play.


    Chris Swain

  7. Lou Bortone Says:

    Alex – Thanks for this! The concept is brilliant in its simplicity, yet so many writers miss it. I look forward to learning more about your program…

    Thank you,

    Lou Bortone

  8. Nickolove Lovemore Says:

    Hi Alex,

    Wow! You really opened up my eyes with this tip. The thing is it is staring us in the face but you’ve broken it down and articulated it beautifully. So the next time I read a book title or think of my own book title I will have greater awareness.

    Thank you


  9. Hamant Keval Says:

    Hello Alex,
    That was a fantastic Video. I never realised the power of the subtitle of a book.
    I guess I will be spending a lot more time on my sub titles from now on.

    Thansk for the golden gem!


    and the free pdf – will come in very valuable resource

  10. Patrick Harrison Says:

    We are in our 3rd Edition of WHO SAYS KIDS CAN’T FIGHT GLOBAL WARMING, which offers any buyers a 20% LIFETIME DISCOUNT on the most user and environmentally friendly fuel rejuvenator that reduces tailpipe pollution while increasing MPG, and we didn’t even have a sub-title. But I saw this video just in time to add one which will be: “One couple’s lifelong yearning to help kids be the future leaders of their world NOW one school at a time.”

    Would love any input your readers and viewers might want to communicate by May 30, 2008 when finall changes are due.

  11. Diane Eble Says:

    I wish I (and my publishers) had known these two things before I wrote my first 11 books! I took your course and it’s changed everything for me as an author. (For one, I now think of myself as an information marketer, not just an author.) I’m doing everything in my power to persuade my publishing friends to take Virtual Book Tour Systems. I’ve been in publishing for many years, and the industry is changing fast (or at least, it needs to!). You’re part of the positive direction I hope publishing will take.

  12. Carly Brown Says:

    Suggestion for Patrick Harrison, and his subtitle of his book.

    “Giving kids their Voice: one school at a time”. I believe that kids can be our saving grace, and we need to give them the place to offer up their voice on their lives, because they are the ones that will be living in what we call our planet. There are so many voices that haven’t even been heard, and we need all the help that we can get. I am glad that you are giving kids a chance to help us save our planet.

    I have heard of subtitles before. What I have heard about them is to make it short and sweet, one sentence. So you have to pack that sentence with all the banans that you have.

    Thank you for allowing me to be a part of this empowering moment in history.


  13. Joshua Aragon Says:

    Excellent advice! I learned that lesson when selecting a title and subtitle for my last book; ‘Instant Internet Entrepreneur’. Although the title gives away some of the promise, it doesn’t give the full story or attract the audience I was looking for. With the subtitle, everything comes full circle.

    I actually started my second book with the subtitle in mind first, this allows me to keep my focus on what the book is about and should deliver, rather than just a few words with less focus and meaning.

    Thank you Alex!

  14. Lisa Murray Says:

    Alex, you rock!

    I sent off my book chapter to the publisher last night, watched your video this morning and discovered why I had included a subtitle intuitively! At the time, it just seemed right – I was looking for a more tangible explanation of the benefits, rather than just relying on a catchy title. Now that I know the ‘why’ I’ll include a subtitle deliberately every time!

    thanks for the insight!

  15. Pa, Says:

    You are a genius! God Bless YOU!

  16. Pam Says:

    Just came back from Book Expo and wish I had met up with you! Will tell all my authors (The Chocolate Pages Network) about you!

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