If you're a business owner, chances are that you have a body of experience and knowledge that could be compiled into a book and read by other business owners, prospective clients and customers. For entrepreneurs in certain industries, a book is a great way to establish your authority and gain greater exposure for your company.
If you feel that you "have a book in you", here are some tips that will help make the process a bit less surprising or frustrating.
1. Consider hiring a ghostwriter.
Chances are, writing is not your forte. And running a business takes time, so often best intentions to write a book are overshadowed by other demands. A ghostwriter will help you organize your thoughts, interview you and get to work.
If you want a more "hands-on" approach, an alternative would be to hire a book writing coach. A cursory search on LinkedIn will immediately return several people who can coach you through the book-writing process and keep you accountable.
2. Hire an editor.
Even if you use a ghostwriter, it's important to have another set of eyes take time going through your book, sentence by sentence. Readers notice when your book isn’t edited and many will leave negative reviews about spelling and grammar. Even a wonderfully insightful and informative book can be overlooked if it's poorly written, disorganized or contains spelling errors. Bad online reviews affect book sales because reviews are the first thing a book buyer looks at.
3. Use a printer that has experience in book printing, and make them your best friend.
You'll be better off during the whole book writing and publishing process if you talk to a printer who has experience with book publishing at the beginning of your journey. The staff will be able to walk you through all of the steps and help you understand what to expect. From formatting your book manuscript to designing a cover to getting an ISBN number, a knowledgeable printer can fill you in on the details.
4. Don't expect to SELL a lot of books.
This is harsh, but it's very likely that you will sell under 250 copies. So why write a book at all? Because a hard copy is an awesome business card and an excellent giveaway at networking events and conferences. A digital copy can be given away on your company's website in exchange for a prospect's email address (which can be very valuable, depending on your type of product or service). A book establishes your credibility as a business owner and opens doors to speaking engagements, if that's your thing.
5. Marketing takes time.
If you DO want to sell your book to anyone other than your friends and family, your job is not done after you get your book published. Once again, consider hiring someone to help you get organized in spreading the word about your publication. Get a website with a blog as well as a Facebook page, a Twitter account, a Google+ account and a Goodreads account. Make a plan to regularly share wisdom from your book and your own experiences with the world. Connect with other authors. Ask for reviews.
If you need more tips on how to publish a book and use it to enhance your business, talk to us!