Should You Write a Book to Brand Yourself?

When it comes to building clout for yourself in your industry, little packs the punch that writing a book does. Whether you end up on the bestseller list or not, people respect the fact that you’ve got deep industry knowledge, and that you took the time to apply it to a book.

Beautiful college girl

What Should You Write About?

Think about what you know well. What answers do you give your clients over and over? What advice do they ask for? This likely would be the subject of your book. For example, I’ve written books helping entrepreneurs market their businesses because that is my core strength.

The topic should relate to your business in some way (if you’ve got a novel begging to come out of your head, that’s a different conversation). The purpose of writing a book is to brand yourself as an expert in your field.

What if You Can’t Write Well?

The secret few business owners realize is: they don’t have to write the book themselves. Many well-known business professionals (and those that are lesser-known too) hire ghostwriters to pen their books. They are, however, involved at some level to provide direction so that the book is authentic.

If you’ve got a concept for a book but don’t have the time or skills to write it well, consider working with a ghostwriter who’s got experience in your field.

Self-Publish or Publisher?

These days, we’re seeing a spike in the number of self-published books of all genres, so it’s definitely an option to consider. The benefits to self-publishing include:

  • You’re not dependent on a publisher accepting your manuscript before it gets published
  • You retain all revenues from the book (minus the cost to physically publish or Amazon’s cut for ebooks)
  • You can publish it digitally very easily

The drawbacks are that you have to work twice as hard to sell your book. And if you don’t have time to market your book in addition to running your business, it might fall flat.

Working with a publishing house does offer some prestige, though it is harder to get in. And realize, even if you work with a publisher, you’ll still need to do much of the marketing legwork.

Digital ebooks are a fabulous option right now, as so many people carry ereaders or read books on their tablets. You can reach a wider audience than you would trying to get your book stocked in major and minor book stores.

How to Market Your Book

This should be a post in and of itself, but suffice it to say, you need a marketing plan to sell more of your books. Here’s just a sampling of ideas for how to do that:

  • When speaking at events, sell the book in the back of the room
  • Post the link on social sites
  • Blog about it
  • Get others to blog about it
  • Participate in virtual book tours
  • Coordinate book signing events in your city
  • Set up a site for your book
  • Enter it in book awards

The list is inexhaustive beyond this. Consider hiring a marketing firm with experience marketing books to help.

Becoming a book author gives you credibility and helps build trust. So start writing today!

Photo: PhotoSpin

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