By Karen Williams, The Book Mentor – Librotas
If you’re thinking about writing a book for your business, whether this is a self-help book, how-to guide or memoir, I have no doubt that you want to use it to attract new clients, raise your profile and demonstrate your credibility. You’re likely to have a message to share, a story to tell, or advice that will change the lives of others.
Yet it’s not as easy as it sounds. Many people start by opening up a blank document on their computer and get going. But it’s not long before they feel stuck, find themselves going around in circles, and finally give up. Wondering why they ever started.
That’s where I come in. Since 2014, I have supported hundreds of clients to write authority building books. Through modelling my own process, and the way I work with clients, I have developed the 10 Smart Author Principles. Because there is more to writing a book than just the writing! Without a plan and a strong structure, you are likely to struggle, and the writing part doesn’t actually happen until Principle #5!
In this blog for Family Friendly Working, I’m focusing on three key planning tips that I advise you to consider ‒ before you get started.
- Focus on your vision for your book
There are numerous reasons why business owners write books, and numerous benefits, so why are you writing yours?
Getting clear on your vision for your book will set you up for success. When you know what you want to achieve, you are more likely to get a positive outcome. You can measure your return on investment in terms of time and financial outlay, and ultimately get the results you desire.
I carried out a survey with those on my mailing list a couple of years ago. One question I asked was around their vision for their book. There were two strands that came across in their responses.
Many had a business focused intent. They told me things like… They want their book to help them to become a go-to expert, for it to be a credibility builder, a bestseller, and a platform for future programmes and events. They want to gain a following and sell copies all around the world, become a ‘little bit famous’, generate recurring income, attract more clients, and – one said – they want it to become a blockbuster film!
Most also have a personal motivation for writing their book… Such as wanting to support and inspire others, change lives, act as comfort and guidance, so people don’t feel alone, be a ‘light in the dark’, offer hope in the face of adversity, give a voice to others, enable people to learn from their lessons, inspire change, help people to think differently, and leave a legacy.
From these lists, which ones resonate with you the most?
What will your book give you that you don’t have already?
- Showcase your expertise
Many years ago, I wrote a blog post entitled ‘Anyone, everyone, someone or no-one’. The premise being that if you’re too broad with your content, and don’t get completely clear on your message and ideal reader before you start writing it, then no-one will ‘get it’. You’ll fail to attract the right audience.
One problem I see regularly is that people wear lots of hats. They do lots of ‘stuff’. And even if they do know ‘their thing’, they’re not quite sure who they do it for. So that’s why I always drill down into this area with my clients.
Let’s face it, there’s a lot of competition out there in your industry and your book needs to be that little bit different to what’s already been written. And it’s better to be a big fish in a small pond rather than a small fish in a big pond!
Where are you an expert?
What do you want to get known for through your book?
- Do your market research
Even if you’ve nailed your area of expertise, there are probably lots of things you could write about. You probably have a story or experiences that have led you to where you are today. You have probably worked with lots of clients in many different areas, so how can you decide what to write?
That’s why I always recommend that clients do market research. Talk to your ideal readers. Get to know them and find out what they’re struggling with and what they want to get from your book.
I call this self-validation, because this enables you to validate your thoughts before you start writing it, which means that you’re delivering what you know your readers want, rather than what you think they want.
The secret of great validation is to not only get feedback from your ideal readers and clients. When you approach it well, it will raise your profile and credibility whilst you write it, potentially funding the book writing process.
Like one of my clients who did a survey for her book. She got hundreds of red-hot leads and generated a list of people who couldn’t wait to get a copy. Another carried out some interviews and she’s already got people who have asked for her support. A third got sponsorship for her book, which enabled her to self-fund the process. All of these clients achieved these results before they’d written and published their books!
What market research will you do for your book?
How will you find your hungry crowd of people who want your help now?
Are you ready to get started with your book?
I know that writing a book can be a big commitment, so it makes sense to get focused before you start. That’s why I have launched the Business Book Planner. It covers all of the tips in this blog and so much more.
This powerful planning tool has been created for entrepreneurs, coaches, consultants, speakers and experts who want to write an authority building book.
Fusing the journal process with self-reflective questions, you will be guided to connect all of your ideas together, draw out what’s important to tell the reader, and create a powerful book that your future readers will love.
Get your copy here – https://librotas.com/planner.
About Karen Williams
Karen Williams is one of the UK’s leading Book Mentors. She’s helped hundreds of business authors to write a book that positions them as an expert and becomes a business building tool.
If you have a story to tell, wisdom to share or a legacy to leave behind, Karen and the Librotas team are here to help you to turn your dream into a successfully published book.
Karen is the bestselling author of six books and two journals. She is a TEDx speaker, and knows what it takes to write and publish a book that builds your credibility, demonstrates your expertise and helps you become an authority.
Her books are Becoming An Authority, Book Marketing Made Simple, The Mouse that Roars, Your Book is the Hook, How to Stand Out in Your Business, and The Secrets of Successful Coaches. Karen’s books and journals can be found on Amazon, all good bookstores or on the Librotas website.
Connect with Karen