Book Myths vs Realities
When speaking with business owners about their books, I often hear the same excuses for why they haven't done it yet. I get it, though. A book certainly feels like a big undertaking to a lot of people, particularly to those who don't realise they can get coached through the writing process or just pay to have the whole thing done for them professionally. The reality is that it can be incredibly straight forward.
Many people believe that their book must be this epic work of literary genius, hundreds of pages long, years in the making. A book for marketing your business can be a short and sweet value-add. A package containing your insights, knowledge and experience. A chance for your prospects to connect with you as a person at their leisure, without the fear of being pitched.
Knowing the success a book can bring to small business, (think along the lines of what is just one client worth to you? How about 10 new clients?), I wanted to share the most common excuses business owners make for not moving forwards with writing their book or having it written for them, and the realities or mind-shifts you can make to move you to take action. If you already have a book out, please share your experience of how you did it and the difference it's made to your business, below.
Myth: “I’ve always dreamed of becoming an author, but I don’t have the time”
Reality: A business book as a marketing tool is all about simplicity and accessibility. It doesn't need to take months or even weeks. If you work with someone who knows what they are doing, you'll only need to give a few hours of your time to it and let someone else do the writing and formatting. You are still the author because it is your knowledge, your voice and your stories.
“I want to do something splendid. Something heroic or wonderful that won’t be forgotten after I’m dead. I think I shall write books.” ― Louisa May Alcott
Myth: “I want to become an author to increase my credibility, but I’m not expert enough”
Reality: You don’t need to be an expert to write a book on the topic! There are tonnes of examples of this in world-famous books you’ve probably read already. Napoleon Hill interviewed rich people to write. 'Think And Grow Rich' because he wasn't one himself at that point. You just need to find the information you want to write about.
The flip side to this scenario is that you are an expert, but you don't realise it. People have a habit of putting themselves down in a way that they'd never dream of doing to someone else and while self-deprecation can be charming at times, it can also damage our self-image. If you own a business that is proving successful, you will undoubtedly have enough wisdom to fill several books, let alone one! The key is to work with some who asks good questions and can draw the knowledge out of you.
“Life is a gift, and it offers us the privilege, opportunity, and responsibility to give something back by becoming more.” -Tony Robbins
Myth: “I’m not sure anyone will buy it”
Reality: Having your own book is your ultimate marketing tool; it’s versatile, valuable and unique. It’s also timeless. Unless you’re an author for a living, selling copies of your book isn’t what’s important. In fact, focussing solely on how many people will buy your book is one of the least effective ways of using this full-strength marketing tool. It's how you market your book that determines how much money you make from it, in the form of new clients. If one new client is worth £20k, for example, and giving a complimentary copy of your book to client referrals or posting it to someone you've wanted to get a meeting with produces even just nine or ten new clients, it's well worth investing in working with someone to make it happen.
“If a story is in you, it has got to come out.” –William Faulkner
Myth: “A book’s a personal thing. How can I trust a writer to do it right?”
Reality: It certainly is, and a good writing partner will strive to make the whole experience as light as possible for you. They'll also have a solid process and be passionate about it. At Write Business Results for example, we want clients to enjoy working with us as well as have a book they're incredibly proud of, and as a results we take huge pride in the writing process and go to great lengths to get it exactly how you want it. For many, becoming a published author is a bucket-list activity that most people never manage to make happen. If you're committed to producing a book, you are not most people, and you haven’t got to where you are today without some serious hard work. It’s important you writer provides you with something you’re excited about, and want to show off to people. They should be passionate about your book, respect your time and value your partnership. A successful book can be as dependent upon the writing partnership as it can the content, so take a few minutes to get to know some things about your writer when you first speak. But most of all, just relax, let them get on with it and enjoy the fact that your name's going to soon be in print for the world to see!
“Don't wait. The time will never be just right.” -Napoleon Hill
Myth: “Sounds great, but I don’t want to pay a fortune”
Reality: Focus on the return. Unless you're a natural writer, you'll find the writing process stressful and frankly, your time and energy are probably better spent on other aspects of your business. Working with a writer for a great end result is so worth it, because the book's success is tied to how you use it, not how you write it. A lot of people get so consumed with writing the book that they forget to come up with a plan for what to do with it once it's published. As an entrepreneur, you probably value simplification and know how much more you could get done if certain complexities were to be eliminated. This is why we recommend you outsource the writing bit and while it's being done you can then come up with some strategies as to how you'll market the book to its maximum advantage. Or go one step further and outsource the marketing strategy, too. Just do whatever's going to get you the result you want, and let someone else worry about the detail. A book is an almighty marketing tool, and can generate hundreds of thousands in revenue when used cleverly; the initial outlay facilitates that opportunity.
“When you can actually see a book’s effects right before your eyes...well, there’s no form of marketing that’s more powerful than that.” -Tim Ferriss
To discuss your book and/or your marketing strategy with a professional, email Georgia at Write Business Results today: firstname.lastname@example.org
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If you've successfully marketed a book already, help other entrepreneurs by sharing some of your top tips below.