Why write a book?
A book is an amazing marketing tool to help you grow your business. Here are some of the many advantages and opportunities that you can gain from having a published book:
- Gain the prestige of being a published author. When people learn that you have published a book, they will view you with more esteem and listen more attentively to what you have to say.
- Build credibility and become known as an expert in your field. The media will come to you for interviews, comments and quotes because you have demonstrated with your book that you are a credible expert.
- Educate your targeted audience. When your prospects gain useful information from your book, they will come to you for their needs.
- Give copies of your book to prospective customers. Instead of handing someone your business card, give them a copy of your book. If your book addresses their need, you’ll have them sold on using you before you say a word.
- Give copies of your book to current and former customers. The launch of your book is a great opportunity to reconnect with current and former customers, reminding them of your services and products and your expertise.
- Build a list of hot leads. Give your book to people who opt-in on your website or include opt-in opportunities right in your book. You can offer a free newsletter, white paper or discount if the reader goes to a webpage and provides their contact information. Your book can be a great source for generating a higher quantity and quality of leads.
- Build an array of derivative information products, such as workbooks, videos, training courses and group coaching that readers of your book can purchase. Your book can be the foundation of an automated information product business, generating significant income with no extra effort on your part.
- Increase your global visibility. Your book will be accessible globally to people searching for a solution to the precise problem you address in your book. Prospects will come to you for your expertise.
- Attract new opportunities and people into your life and your business. You’ll become known by potential joint venture partners and by organizations seeking speakers. As a result, you’ll gain more speaking engagements, further increasing your visibility. You can also increase your speaking fee and the fee for your services as a result of your enhanced credentials.
- Re-purpose the content of your book into tweets, blog posts and articles. This will further increase your visibility and improve search engine optimization (and traffic) for your website.
- Gain a prestigious credential that you can use in bid proposals, marketing materials and your resume, improving your status over your competition that does not have a published book, or elevating you to the level of your competition that does have one.
- Create ongoing life-long revenue. Your eBook doesn’t have a shelf life. It will keep selling as long as you have it online.
How do you find the time to write a book?
Writing a book takes time, which is hard to carve out of one’s busy schedule. That actually turns out to be an advantage – if it were easy to get a book done, everyone would have one, and then it wouldn’t be as beneficial. The fact that it does take time makes it more valuable.
SkillBites has designed its process to make book writing as easy and fast as possible. For one, we’ve created a niche in short books, under 50 pages – long enough to provide good content and a sense of your expertise, but short enough to be able to write (and read) quickly. Second, we’ll handle all of the formatting for your book. You just need to write it in Word, and we’ll make it look like a professional book!
Third, we wrote a book called Write a Book Easily that contains lots of great tips for expediting the writing. You can download that for free by clicking here. For instance, to get a book done, you need a game plan. One element of that plan is to identify when you’ll write each week – perhaps ½ hour every day from 8:00 – 8:30 am, or 2 hours every Tuesday and Thursday from 8 – 10 am. We provide substantially more information on the elements for writing a book easily in our Book It! course.
Fourth, we have all the services you might need for writing your book under one roof – we’ll create an outline for you, or ghostwrite your book for you; we’ll edit it; we’ll create a cover page; we’ll get it on Amazon and in print. You can do as much or as little as you want.
What should you write about?
Determining the best topic for your book depends in large part on why you are writing the book. If, for example, you are seeking to use the book to grow your business, then your topic should relate to the area of your business you want to grow. Who needs that service or, to put it another way, who is your ideal customer for the particular aspect of your business that you want to grow? Consider your customers’ viewpoint; what problems do they have that you can solve, and what information do they need to solve their problems.
Now, you might think that by giving them the solution to do it themselves they won’t need you; but it doesn’t work that way. Most people don’t want to do something that is outside their expertise (and the ones that do it themselves aren’t the ones you want coming to you anyway). They would rather pay someone who has the expertise, and make sure the work is done quickly and properly, than spend their valuable time and risk doing something wrong. You have demonstrated that you have that expertise with your book.
Will there really be people interested in reading my book?
If your book addresses a problem that many people have, and you provide a system for overcoming that problem, then anyone with that problem should be interested in reading your book. If there aren’t many people encountering the problem you are addressing, then it probably isn’t a good topic.
There’s a cool, free tool you can use called Google Keyword Tool, to determine how many people are searching the ‘net, using specific keywords. You can plug in the words you think someone would use to search for a solution, and get a sense of how many people are searching globally every month and locally every month using those terms. It may seem counter-intuitive, but you don’t want to solve a problem that millions of people are searching for. You are better off narrowing your topic to one that between 10,000 to 100,000 people are searching for monthly. You’ll get better leads with a narrower focus.
How do I write a book?
Many people struggle with finding the right words to express the expertise in their heads. It can be daunting to stare at a blank piece of paper or computer screen. At SkillBites, we recommend that you create an outline of your book first. We explain all this in our eBook, Write a Book Easily, which is available for free download by clicking here, and go into more depth on how to create an outline in our Book It! course. Basically, you begin with a data dump, writing down all of the concepts and tips about your topic that you might want to include in your book. Then categorize them into main concepts and sub-topics. If you’ve got a blog or newsletter, or write articles or training courses or give presentations, look through all that material to see if any of it can be repurposed and used in your book. No sense in recreating the wheel.
Once you have an outline done, it is much easier to write your book. You have a structure for it, a context that liberates your creativity. Now you just have to take each topic or sub-topic and write a bit about it. Make sure you include stories – not only do they help illustrate your points, but they make your book much more interesting.
SkillBites can help you put together an outline, and can write your book for you. We’ll have several calls with you to understand what you want to say and put it in your voice. After we draft your book, you have the opportunity to review it and provide feedback. When it’s all done, your name will be on the book, and you will own the copyright.
How do I publish my book?
SkillBites can publish your book for you. We’ll format the book for publication as a paperback and eBook and get it on Amazon and other channels you may desire. For guidance on how to self-publish your book, see our Publish It! course. Your book will be available as print on demand, so you can order as many copies of your book as you would like – no need to order thousands of copies. We can place the order and have the books shipped directly to you or to whatever address you desire.
Alternatively, you can self-publish or find a different publisher. There are many publishing options available to you, if you want to spend your time researching and comparing them all. Or we can save you that trouble.
How do I leverage my book to grow my business?
No matter how great your book is, it won’t help you grow your business unless you promote and leverage it properly. It’s a shame to have gone to all the trouble of writing a book and then not use it to your best advantage.
There are many ways to use your book and your credential of being a published author. For instance, you can add Author of [book title] to your email signature; you can refer to your book in conversation, such as, “as I explain in my book …” (just don’t do that too frequently); you can include a copy of your book with any bids that you submit, if your book is relevant to the project you are bidding on; you can add the book to your website as an opt-in, to build a list; and you can send copies to prospects and customers. When prospects get a taste of your expertise and receive valuable information from you, they are more likely to purchase your products and services.
How is this different from self-publishing?
SkillBites is a cross between traditional publishing and self-publishing. You end up getting the best of both worlds. The biggest difference between SkillBites and self-publishing is the level of support. We do all the heavy lifting for you, whereas if you were to self-publish a book, you would have to figure out the 20+ steps to getting a book launched. The other difference is you have the SkillBites name and brand behind you. With self-publishing, there is no company listed as the publisher. Books with publishers are perceived as higher quality.
How is this different from traditional publishing?
The biggest difference from traditional publishing is time. If you went with a traditional book publisher, it can take months to get a traditional publisher to accept your book. If you are fortunate enough to get a traditional publisher, you are typically looking at a 12-18 month window from that point before your book becomes available. With SkillBites, we can have your book ready to go in less than 6 months. No writing a detailed proposal, no rejection letters, no waiting for acceptance.
Another difference is price. Unless you are well known or have written a blockbuster book, you will most likely have to pay much more to have a traditional publisher publish your book. Traditional publishers do have one distinct advantage – they have well-defined distribution channels into bookstores and other brick and mortar stores. Our services are limited to getting your book available online. While we can refer you to others who can get you in bookstores, we caution that it can be expensive, and if your book doesn’t sell well, your book will be pulled from the shelf of the bookstore in as little as 30 days.
Another difference is your involvement. We like to get you involved in the process and the decision making. With traditional publishing, they have the final say on everything from the content to your cover, whereas with SkillBites, you have the final say. Finally, with SkillBites you own the rights to your content. With many traditional publishing contracts, they claim ownership to your content.
How long does the process take?
This is largely up to you and the services you desire. If you want your book ghostwritten, for example, the timeframe will depend on your availability for the ghostwriter to interview you as well as the length of book you are seeking to have written. On average, for books under 50 pages for which SkillBites is providing editing, layout design, cover design and publication, where the author is able to provide prompt feedback on drafts, we can have a book live in 90 days.
What are the best ways to promote a book?
There are many ways to promote a book. The easiest way is to let your network know you have published a book. By network, we mean your email list, your social media contacts and everyone in your CRM. Before your book comes out, start to build buzz about your book. Plan a book launch, issue a press release, do a blog tour.
SkillBites has written a guide called How to Market Your Book, which contains many more promotion tactics. A copy of this guide is included in each Author Package. We also offer various marketing services to help people implement these tactics.
What is a bestseller campaign?
One of our favorite tactics to promote a book is a bestseller campaign. SkillBites can handle the entire process for you or coach you through it. The key objective with a bestseller campaign is to sell as many books during a short time frame as possible to drive the book to #1 on Amazon. With this achievement you are able to display that on the book, and mention it for perpetuity.