Arts / Career development / Startups

Alex Hillman’s new pocket guide to navigating your business is climbing the Amazon charts

Hannah Litvin illustrated the Indy Hall cofounder's "The Tiny MBA," which touches on topics like sales, success psychology and branding.

"The Tiny MBA" by Alex Hillman. (Courtesy Photo)

A few days after its preorder launch, ‘The Tiny MBA: 100 Very Short Lessons About the Long Game of Business,” a self-published book by Indy Hall cofounder Alex Hillman, has reached the best-seller list for Amazon’s small business and startups categories.

The book touches on topics like sales, money, success psychology, branding, investments and professional decision making. He brought freelance illustrator Hannah Litvin on in February, after the pair worked together on “Career Control: Professional Work in Progress,” a zine that was distributed at the Philly Freelance Fest.

“I loved her work on that and thought she’d be great at coming up with a way to package and present the contents of this book,” Hillman said.

On Friday, three days after “The Tiny MBA” launched, about 600 copies had been sold, Hillman said. He looked into a handful of publishing options, but Lulu Press came out ahead for its balance of print quality, cost of books and ability to distribute to storefronts (including, possibly, REC Philly’s retail shop in the Fashion District), Hillman said. He ultimately wanted to avoid leaning too much on Amazon; the book is also sold from The Tiny MBA site.

“I’ve been describing the book as less of a traditional business book, and more like a mix of Brian Eno’s ‘Oblique Strategies‘ and ‘how to start and run a business without being a terrible person,'” he said.

Litvin said that Hillman he wanted the book to look sort of like a traditional business book, “and also sort of be nothing like that,” she said.

“After a handful of experiments to get the mood and tone of the visuals honed in, we kept finding that the best look was consistently the most simple,” Litvin said.

For those who preorder the book now on Amazon for Kindle, they’ll receive it to their device on Aug. 26. Physical shipments will go out independently, Hillman said.

Litvin is now looking forward to future projects and being able to display some of the new skills she learned, like accessibility formatting for the digital and ePub versions of the book.

“Not only is it my first credit on Amazon, but for the first credit to be on something that is overwhelmingly well-received is a total rush,” she said.

Companies: Amazon

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