Considered one of the world’s foremost sales trainers and an expert in spoken communication, Phil M. Jones was looking to compile his decade-long collection of workshop material into a focused how-to guide. But after exploring both self-publishing and the traditional model, he decided to partner with Page Two, a hybrid publisher that offered him the best of both worlds.
“Page Two provided me with the type of expert editorial, design, sales, and distribution support you would find at a traditional publisher, with me in the driver’s seat at every stage of the process,” Jones wrote in a recent blog post. “I covered the costs of production and retain full royalty and licensing rights. Essentially, I wanted to direct the show, rather than star in someone else’s movie.” That turned out to be a successful decision for all involved. Jones’s book, Exactly What to Say, has sold more than one million copies, and has been translated into more than a dozen foreign-language editions.
The team at Page Two takes its tagline, “Expert publishers who publish experts,” quite seriously. “We built the company specifically to support people who are world-class thought leaders and deep subject-matter experts,” says Page Two principal Jesse Finkelstein. “Our cofounders and senior staff spent years working with experts at traditional publishers but found that those companies’ goals and processes are often out of alignment with those of authors who know their subject area well and have an excellent grasp of their audience and market position. Page Two’s model is designed to put the author’s goals at the center of the process.”
In addition to Jones, Page Two has published AJ Harper, a publishing consultant and leading ghost writer who has worked with New York Times–bestselling authors with millions of books sold, who took her methodology for editing and ghostwriting and turned it into a recent release called Write a Must-Read: Craft a Book That Changes Lives—Including Your Own. The book received impressive reviews in several trade publications, including Publishers Weekly's BookLife, which named the title an editor’s pick and called the book "invaluable." Also on their list is leadership expert Michael Bungay Stanier, whose book The Coaching Habit remains the top coaching book on Amazon, with more than one million copies sold and more than 4,500 five-star reviews.
“We’ve created a personalized, high-touch experience in which authors feel like true partners,” says Page Two principal Trena White. Page Two supports its creators by handling all of the editing, design, production, sales, marketing, and distribution, both in the U.S. and abroad, through global leaders like Macmillan and Raincoast Books. “And we have an excellent translation rights program,” White adds. They publish a small, focused list of books in the business and leadership, self-help, health and wellness, and parenting categories.
Page Two likewise has e-book and audiobook distribution covered. Audiobooks, in particular, are key for practical nonfiction, Finkelstein says, “where people are keen to learn and gain information quickly and on the fly.” For its audiobooks, Page Two works with a production studio that secures professional narrators or directs author recording sessions.
Page Two also offers innovative marketing support. “One of the joys of working in the nonfiction space is the level of engagement that our authors have with their readers,” White says. Page Two coaches its authors on unique opportunities such as promotions and contests, as well as how to leverage the boom in video content with live segments on LinkedIn and sneak peek videos of audiobook recordings.
“Our authors take advantage of this to bring their book off the shelf and into people’s hands, aka phones,” says Meghan O’Neill, marketing director at Page Two. “Readers get an unprecedented level of access to authors and their content. And they love it.”
As for the type of writer Page Two is looking to team with, the company has a serious commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion. “We’re actively acquiring books by authors who are from underrepresented or marginalized backgrounds,” Finkelstein says. “We love working with authors who are making important change in their respective areas of expertise and who are seeking an innovative, engaged, and entrepreneurial publishing experience.”