- Posted by Donna Amos
- On March 28, 2016
- published, writing
One way to promote your business is to add a blog to your website. You can use blog posts to introduce new products or services, explain how to operate products or explain the benefits of your services to readers. Publishing a blog is only one way to promote your business through the written word. Becoming a published author does more than help your business find new customers.
Why You Should Write?
There are several reasons you should consider publishing books in order to benefit your business. While promoting your business and its products or services is one of the benefits of becoming published, it will also:
- Help you be seen as an expert in your field
- Help people better understand your business
- Be cost-effective for your business
Makes You an Expert
By writing and having your work published, people will see you as an expert within your industry. Although most businesses have blogs on their websites, very few business owners, especially small business owners, take the time to write and get their work published. This shows your dedication to your company, which further adds to your credibility.
In order to write about your business, you have to know what you are talking about, so people will view your published work more highly and you will be seen as an influencer within your industry. This can help you generate more business leads. 56% of published authors reported that having published work has a “strong” to “very strong” influence on generating leads for their companies.
Helps Others Understand Your Business
Not everyone will understand what you do for a living, especially if you are a sole proprietor and have an unusual business. While people within your industry will understand what you do, your family, friends and others may not quite get it. Having it laid out in black and white will help make it clear for them. It will also help your current clients, as well as potential ones, better understand your work, which can help develop their loyalty to you.
It Is Cost-Effective
The return on your investment of the time it takes to write your books and get them published can be a cost-effective way to market your business. While you may have to start off self-publishing at first, there are many ways to do so that do not require a large financial commitment. In addition, whether you publish an e-book or an established publisher buys your book, you may be able to make some money from the endeavor, but unless you wish to become a full time author, don’t count on making a living from your publishing efforts. Count on your publishing efforts pushing you to the top in your industry, two very different goals.
How to Get Started
What to Write About
If you have a blog on your website, you may already have ideas for a book, but you can also develop ideas from your blog posts. Another resource to use is the frequently asked questions generated by your customers. As you brainstorm ideas for your book, you can review those questions to see if you can develop them enough to get a book out of them and become a published author.
A good place to look is Quora and search for your topic area, what questions are being asked there? Use those questions to help you determine chapters for your book and dig deep into the subject for each chapter.
You can also use Googles Keyword tool to determine what keywords are searched for around your topic. Those keywords can help you determine what areas to cover in your book.
One more way to get started is to begin gathering all of the questions you get asked from clients. So a list of frequently asked questions and then a list of should ask questions, what questions should your prospective clients be asking about your business. You should be able to come up with at least 10 questions for each and that is a great way to get started on your outline.
Once you’ve come up with some ideas, sort through them and put similar ones together. Try to tie each group of ideas together cohesively and come up with ways to transition from one thought to the next. It may help to use mapping software, note cards or a whiteboard to keep track of the topics and how they connect to each other. I like to use Scrivener a software that helps to get organized and think through your book logically. Ignore the statement that says it is for fiction, it works just as well for non-fiction.
Create an Outline
Once you find a topic for your book, create an outline of the ideas you used to help discover your topic. Break down your topics and ideas into points and fill in the points to make them more workable. Once the outline is generated, you should remove ideas that are too general or too complicated before you start writing.
Write Your Book
The outline you’ve created will help make it much easier to write your book. All you will have to do is start off with your topic or points and fill in the information for each one of them. It is helpful to have a goal for your writing. Very much like Stephen King did when he began, he would get up early each day and commit to writing one page. Set a goal for yourself 300-500 words is a great place to start. We both know if you don’t have a system for getting your writing done it will never happen. Then, after you’ve written everything according to your outline, go back and edit your work until it is as close to perfect as you can make it. I have mentioned before that I use the Hemingway app to help with editing. But you don’t want to stop there, you want your book to be a great representation of you and your business, so hire an editor.
How to Publish a Book
In the digital age, there are numerous ways to become a published author. Since you are most likely not a well-known name within your industry, you may find it difficult to have your book accepted by a publishing house. However, you can choose to publish your own book or publish an e-book instead.
By the time you have someone design a cover for your book, have it professionally edited, and, finally, printed, a self-published book can cost thousands of dollars. However, the return on your investment can make the effort worth it both financially and in terms of your business reputation. If you don’t have thousands of dollars to spend on self-publication, consider publishing with a small publishing firm that specializes in helping self publishers get it done with spending thousands, such as Inspired Press Publisher (shameless plug).
More people than ever are reading e-books, because they don’t take up space on a bookshelf and they can be read on a number of mobile devices. While there are e-book publishers you can sell your book to in order to get it online, you can publish an e-book yourself as well. It is much less costly to publish an e-book yourself than it is to print a book. However, you can use print on demand using CreateSpace which will still allow you to have a print version and electronic version with Kindle.
Once you have a published product, you should heavily promote your book to draw attention to it. Post information about your book on your business website and post about it on all of your social media accounts. To help generate interest, consider offering discounts on your book, or give some away as a way to market it and your business. You can download a promotional checklist here to get started on your promotion, some of it you need to begin before you are published.
If your book generates enough interest, i.e. sales, it may become easier to have additional books of yours printed with an established publisher. But remember from finish to the shelves with a traditional publisher takes quite a long time, compared to a few weeks when you self publish. Writing a book is a great way to market your business and make you an expert in your field. Being a published author can help your business find the customers it needs to be more profitable.
If you are ready to begin your book and you would like some support join my free Facebook group.