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Reading and writing

Three steps to take before writing your first book

It’s not news that every entrepreneur today should consider publishing a book.

That said, getting a contract as a non-famous author can be tricky, and the process is often at a never-ending pace. If your book is acquired by a publisher, you may have to wait years for it to be published.

But without a traditional publisher, how are you supposed to think about and execute a book that will help you grow your business?

ASK YOURSELF THESE QUESTIONS

The idea is probably right in front of you. Just ask yourself: what am I better at than anyone else in the world? Connect this answer to why people hire you or use your product or service. And then think of your book as a tool that can help readers who can’t afford to hire you while attracting those who can.

Write with your ideal reader in mind. When I wrote a book that landed me on hello america, I thought of a person, an acquaintance to whom I had spoken about the publication of his book. On each page, I wondered if what I was writing would speak to him. As far as I know, he never read my book. He certainly never hired my company. But dozens of other people like him have read the book, so the book that brought me a few thousand dollars in sales brought me hundreds of thousands of dollars in new business.

That’s the thing with an avatar. Where there is one, there are many; and the more your writing is tailored to your ideal client, the more likely it is to earn more.

HAVE A PLAN TO PROMOTE

The biggest mistake I see entrepreneurs make when launching a book is assuming that on launch day the media and event bookers are going to come calling. Alas no. Over a million books are launched on Amazon each year, so the odds of that are almost non-existent.

And that’s why you need to have a specific launch plan in place. Create a launch team by giving a copy of the book to as many people as possible before release, and guide them through purchasing and reviewing it on launch day. This will kick Amazon’s algorithm into gear so the site will start recommending it.

So, as you write, ask yourself: Who can help me promote this book when I launch it? Make a list of friends who have large newsletter lists or active social followings. Get them involved in this project from the start and instead of asking for their approval, ask them to promote your book when it comes out. Think of it like this: have you ever bought a book because of who approved it? I suppose not. But have you ever bought a book because someone you trust recommended it to you? I suppose so. (Of course, if your incredibly well-connected and esteemed friend will recommend and Approve it, so much the better.)

Also ask yourself: what podcasts do I want to be on to promote the book? What publications do I want to feature when the book comes out? And who do I know that can help me get on these shows and posts?

HAVE A PLAN FOR USING YOUR BOOK

Perhaps the most important question to ask yourself when writing is which potential customers you can send the book to when finished. If none come to mind, ask yourself if you know people who know your potential customers.

Always remember that it is not the number of books you sell, but the to the right the people who read it. Write for them and it will pay off again and again.


Anna David is a NEW YORK TIMES bestselling author of eight books, founder of Publishing the Legacy Launch Pad, TEDx speaker, TV book reviewer

Margarita W. Wilson

The author Margarita W. Wilson