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12 Things To Do Before Self-Publishing Your Business Book

Written by: Mags Thomson, Executive Contributor

Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.

 

I have spoken before about the amazing effect publishing a book can have on your business. It creates credibility and helps you reach new audiences. Or in the words of Melanie Herschorn:

“When you write a book, you automatically set yourself apart from your competition. You are now part of an elite club of experts. Why? Because you wrote the book on it!”

Before you get started on YOUR book, there are a few things to consider in order to make this the best opportunity it can be!

1 – Get Clear on Your Goals


Before you even get started on writing your book, get clear on why you want to write it. Not just what you hope it will bring for you or your business, but also why you want to share THIS story and why now?


Your ultimate goal will not just keep you on the straight and narrow when it comes to some of the considerations we’ll be looking at today, it will also keep you motivated on days when the writing isn’t coming quite so easily. When writer’s block hits, it can help to look at a post-it on your desk or an affirmation on your vision board that reminds you why you set out on this journey.


2 – Start With the End In Mind


In order to plan your book, start with the things that may sound like the last items on your list: your description and index.


Your description will help you really nail down what you want your readers to gain from reading your book. Your description should include exactly who your audience is, the pain point your readers want to solve and what they will knowledge or solutions you are offering to help them.


Once you have that all clear, try and distil it further and further until you have 1 or 2 sentences that address all those questions.

Who is this for?

What is their issue?

What is your solution?

Now that you have a clear aim of what your book will achieve, it is time to start outlining. This is where your index comes in. Work out around 10 chapter titles that will create a logical journey for your reader from their pain point to your solution.


Your outline will guide you as you work through the writing process.


3 – Ask Your (Future) Audience


What questions are your clients always asking you? What are the words they are using? What other resources are already available in that field? What are the comments and reviews of those resources saying?


Researching the kind of questions, challenges and language your audience uses is helpful at all stages of your business, but most certainly also when you are writing your book. This will help you write a book that resonates with your ideal clients and creates a connection with you. It makes you the Mr Darcy to their Elizabeth.


Pro Tip: Set out some poles on your social media profiles to ask your audience for input around specific topics or chapters as you are going through creating your first draft.


4 – Use What You Already Have


How many blog posts, guest articles and podcasts have you already created? You can include those ideas and passages in your book. There is no reason to have to continuously reinvent the wheel. Start copy-pasting passages into the chapter structure you have created, so you know where they fit into the structure of your book.


Remember that writing a book or writing a blog post are two very different things. In online text, you have to create shorter paragraphs and include enough subtitles so your article is easy to skim. In your book, you can dive a little deeper and explore topics to a greater extend. So, you will need to do some rewriting of your original content, but it will give you a great starting point.


5 – Start Small


Your first book doesn’t have to be a 1000 page epic. Start with something around 10 chapters and 50.000 words. It will make the writing project more manageable as you practice your skills, but will also make editing more cost-effective (more on that later).


Pack your book with value, rather than meeting some arbitrary expectation you the world may have about the length of a book. You can always write a second volume, right?


6 – Make it As You As You Can Be


You may not be the only person teaching exactly what you teach, BUT there are millions of people in the world trying to learn what you have to offer. They are all at different levels and have different preferences for what kind of teacher they’d like on their journey. So, there are always people who are searching exactly for what YOU have to offer.


To find those people, you have to be as YOU as it is possible to be. Add personal anecdotes, talk the way you would with your clients and use language as you do normally. Make your daft jokes, add the puns you love and reference your favourite TV programmes or movies. Your book is the way to start a conversation and create a connection with your clients before ever meeting them in person.


7 – Consider How It Works With Your Marketing


If you want the book to make a real difference in your business, take some time to consider how the book will fit in with your overall marketing efforts. Your book can supply you with great content, be an amazing discussion starter or function as a tripwire sale.


However, you decide to integrate your book into your strategy, make sure to give it some thought. This can also impact how you offer your book to your audience and how you organise your book launch.


8 – Start Talking About Your Book, Build Credibility


Start talking about your book from the word GO! Share about your experiences writing and how you are progressing. Give a few golden nuggets and tell your audience all about your whys and whats and hows.

  • Why are you writing this book?

  • Why did you pick the title?

  • Why are you so passionate about this topic?

  • How do you hope to impact the world with your book?

I can go on and on, but you get the idea. Talking about your book right from the get-go will help you create buzz, and will start building credibility for you as an expert and the book as a valuable resource.


9 – Hire an Editor


It is important that the book you put out meets the standards you want people to associate with your business; how else will it compel your readers to buy from you?


Working with an editor is an important step to make your book the best it can be. An editor does much more than just proofread your manuscript. They will help you with the structure of your text too. It’s almost impossible to edit your own work because you already KNOW the point you are trying to make, so any gaps in your argument will fill themselves in. Your editor, however, is trained to pick up these holes and help your plug them.


Trust me, editing is a specific profession and you want to put some money toward this.


10 – Create a Funnel from Your Book to Your List


Think about a good call to action in your book that exceeds: “check out my website for more information.” Our websites are often so full of information that your reader may feel super overwhelmed. Besides, you lose the opportunity to start a conversation with your audience.

You can include a link to a video training, guided meditation, workbook, the possibilities are endless. This is an amazing opportunity to build your email list and start having actual conversations with prospective customers and show them a little more of what it would be like to work with you.


11 – Plan Your Launch


In the weeks leading up to your book launch, you want to start building a launch team. Your launch team will exist if people in your audience and your personal network, who want to help you get your book off to a good start. They can help spread the word on their social media, can help with reviews and may have podcasters and journalists in their network they can get you in contact with.


It is important to create a group with people who are willing to be actively involved, as such, it's better to have 10 people who are really on it, than have 100 who are not really that bothered. People may be quick to comment they will help, but make sure to engage with them and see if they are really happy to help and if so what they would like to help you with.

Make sure you create a plan for yourself and your launch team, so you and your launch team don’t feel lost or overwhelmed. Make sure to follow up with your people AND don’t forget to thank them after the launch. Perhaps there is something you can give them or raffle off among the people who helped.


12 – Optimise Your Listing


Once you publish your book, you want people to be able to find it! So, you want to make sure that your description, keywords and shop categories are set up so that customers can find your book.


I wrote an article about how to go about this for Amazon recently, so I won’t go into too much detail. I just want to highlight that Amazon Optimisation helps your book gain traction right from the launch date and makes for a happy algorithm that will happily recommend your book to new readers.


Ready? Set? Change the World!


The world of online entrepreneurship holds unlimited potential for you to share your message, connect with the people who need your support and guidance and create the change you’d like to see in the world.


With your brand new business book in hand and all the strategies in place, you will be creating impact with your vision before you know it. And if you need a hand? Then, just get in touch!


Follow Mags on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn and visit her website for more information!


 

Mags Thomson, Executive Contributor, Brainz Magazine Mags is a story coach, impact co-creator, and the founder of House of Hives. She helps female entrepreneurs and change-makers use their personal stories in their business, bridging the gap between emotive storytelling and strategic marketing. Together with developmental editor Karina Asti and event strategist Ana Gallo, she helps women co-create books and collaborative online summits to empower themselves and their brands.

 

Resources

Write Your Book in a Flash by Dan Janal (https://www.amazon.com/dp/1631610481/)

14 More Tips for Publishing Your First Business Book (https://smallbiztrends.com/2018/04/tips-for-publishing-your-first-book.html)

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