Reviews from Previous “Aikido” Students

Stuart Gauffi Stuart Gauffi, Washington DC

This is a class that will challenge the way you look at what you do. It will change your attitude toward yourself as a professional and your image of what it is you provide to your clients, and why. You will not come away from this class unchanged.

Obviously, everyone's mileage varies in terms of the results they will get. In my case, the class equipped me with tools that allowed me to handle an audiobook negotiation that began outside of ACX (a friend of a friend asked if he knew anyone who could produce an audiobook) and ended up with me guiding the rights-holder through the entire ACX process and producing the project. That negotiation resulted in my most lucrative audiobook deal to date, which of course covered the cost of the class immediately. More importantly, the client came away from the experience delighted with the result.

April Sugarman (pictured with fellow audiobook panelist/VO superstar Andre Stojka) at a Publishers Association of Los Angeles event...3 weeks after April completed the Aikido course April Sugarman (pictured with fellow audiobook panelist/VO superstar Andre Stojka) at a Publishers Association of Los Angeles event...3 weeks after April completed the Aikido course, Los Angeles

I began Dan’s Aikido Self-Promotion for Audiobook Narrators excited about the potential for authors to come to me and for me to be able charge what I’m worth, but skeptical of how this would actually happen. I was so used to just auditioning for narration gigs on ACX that I hoped to be hired for. 

Week by week Dan introduced venues that made such ridiculously perfect sense that I can’t believe I hadn’t thought of them before. The most valuable thing (and one of my favorite strategies) I learned is how to talk to authors about audiobooks in such a way that they end up thinking, “Maybe she would be willing to record an audiobook version of my book.”

I also happened to really like all of the Easy & Effective Internet Tactics. When I have step by step instructions to follow, I can do anything. With Dan's strategies, now it makes sense.

Dan really offers a lot of paths to follow — and all from a place of promoting yourself as an audiobook narrator without being an icky salesperson.  I loved how detailed the videos were, with specific examples and clear-cut information. It really opened my eyes to a bigger world of audiobook narration client possibilities.

My biggest aha! moment came after watching all of the videos and letting it all sink in. I can only make it big if I position myself as an expert in the field of audiobooks. It’s way different from passing out my business card, auditioning for jobs on ACX, or being at the mercy of rights holders

Thanks, Dan. I think I'm changed forever.

Louise Cooksey Louise Cooksey, Tempe AZ

Thank you for the wonderful Aikido Self-Promotion class. I found all of the suggestions you offered completely do-able. Right off the bat I was able to start using what I learned. You encouraged me to do all the things I'd been putting off by giving me suggestions that made it much, much more useful and less intimidating.

All of the material was presented in a way that just by taking notes, I'm able to apply it with confidence. I learned the most from how you taught us to think about phrasing. I was worried that self-promotion would be about deceiving others, but what you explained to us was absolutely none of the typical, hyping sales tactics.

Thank you, again, for such a wonderful class!

Matt Haynes Matt Haynes, Portland OR

In film, they say that the best special effects are the invisible ones. The Aikido class taught me techniques that have been drawing attention to me but which are almost untraceable. What's the advantage to untraceable self promotion? It puts the focus on me as a narrator rather than as a work-hunter.

With this shift in emphasis, clients are empowered to seek me out as well as refer me to others. Since the seeking and referring is authentic and enthusiastic, clients are not only set to have a more cooperative relationship with me but also a higher pay rate for my services.

Does this mean I'm hustling? Not at all.  I'm establishing my position as a professional. People honor that position and I'm rewarded with a professional livelihood. That's a very special effect.

Steve Gannette Steve Gannette, Birmingham AL

Dan O'Day is a "big picture" guy. He is also very strategic in his thinking. He has been able to marry these two abilities to forge a path that enables a narrator to be seen as an expert in this field. The Aikido self-promotion can be accomplished by those of us who abhor self-promotion altogether! Kudos to Dan! If you're thinking of taking this class, think no longer, sign up!!

George Utley George Utley, South Hill, VA

The Aikido Self Promotion Class promised a lot, and delivered more. The techniques described were very "doable" and easy to understand. Pure (not so common) sense solutions and methods that are easy to implement. In the case of using the internet, not technically challenging at all (a relief!). This course was worth the price and then some!

PS: With the strategy Dan outlined in Week One, I struck gold — I was booked for not one but THREE events across the county.

Trenton Bennett Trenton Bennett, St. Petersburg FL

The Aikido Marketing Class is a class for audiobook narrators who already know how to produce audiobooks, how to use ACX, and are thinking, “Okay, now  how do I go forth from there and market myself to others?”

Dan O'Day's answer is different from what I expected. Two fascinating tidbits  I’ve picked up thus far from what I have accomplished:

1)  This methodology builds upon itself—the more of it you practice, the greater the results.

2)  The techniques I learned have also been successful for me in other efforts, such as promoting my podcast.

At first I was a bit skeptical, because the material isn’t something you can easily describe: it completely changes the way you think about seeking business.  It takes a little bit of time to lead you into what you need to know, and then you get that fun “Eureka!” moment where suddenly you’re writing out your own plan on how to implement Dan's Aikido Marketing method.

After you’ve completed the course, it doesn’t end because now you have access to the private forum, where you and fellow graduates can collaborate and share ideas and experiences. Dan’s been a huge help to me in following-up whenever I have a question or an idea in the forum. This course has been well worth the investment, and I know it will continue to pay off as I grow my career.