Have you ever dreamed of becoming an author? You're not alone -- it has long been considered the ultimate symbol of a person's expertise if they've written a book. What used to be an option only for professional writers, politicians or celebrities has become more attainable for the everyday entrepreneur.
Writing a book makes sense -- it's smart marketing. You'll be able to quickly show your knowledge, your personality, and your communication style to any potential customers. Unfortunately, it can also be time consuming and requires effort away from your business. For many, they either give up or try to find a ghostwriter to write the book for them -- which defeats the purpose of showing off your expertise.
There are plenty of tools available to help you create, write, assemble and publish your book yourself. Here's you can get that best-seller status to gain more business:
1. Write what you already know.
My first book was a simple "Getting Started" guide for Evernote. As I had helped to build the company from the ground up, I was uniquely qualified to write that information with minimal effort.
When deciding on your topic, you don't need to aim for the next War and Peace. Think of something you know that other people will find useful or informative.
2. Dedicate blocks of time to writing.
For me and other writers I know, it is nearly impossible to write if there are any distractions, so don't expect to schedule an hour on your calendar for writing and have anything meaningful come of it.
Instead, give yourself a half or full day once a week dedicated to your book-- with no other responsibilities or interruptions.
3. Try some Q&A.
While writing my third book, I was booked constantly in back to back meetings and flights -- and it was hard to find time to write. Instead, I started recording Voice Notes in Evernote, dictating answers to questions I had written down. When I had time, I simply edited the transcripts and used that as the main framework.
To break your writing down into more easily digestible chunks, collect a list of relevant questions for your topic. Then, whenever you have spare time, write -- or dictate -- the answer.
4. Technology is your friend.
Thanks to the ever-increasing advancements in machine learning, what used to take a team of editors and publishing assistants can now be done with software. While it may seem daunting at first, it's entirely possible to layout and create your own proofread final copy for publishing.
I use Scrivener to create a beautiful book layout and run the text through both Grammarly and Ginger to double-check before sending off to print.
5. It's all about the SEO.
Once your book is ready, you'll need to tell people it's out there. Traditionally, this meant doing a book marketing campaign that involved sending books to bookstores, book clubs, libraries, media outlets, and the like. This isn't necessary for the average business.
Instead, determine your actual goal. If it's to legitimize your reputation, then you really only need to load it onto the Amazon KDP platform and wait for search engines to pick it up. However, if you want to share your story or educate people, then you may want to do some marketing. In that case, other platforms like Publishizer, Indiegogo and Kickstarter are good to start with, as they help create an initial buzz about your book before it is published.
No matter how you do it, one thing is certain -- if you write something that contains valuable content for your customers, you will reap the benefits for years to come.