By now you probably know how important a book is as part of your content marketing and brand-building strategy. It's an essential part of your growing platform (and a nutritious part of your healthy breakfast).
But what if you don't have a platform?
Maybe you're dabbling. Maybe you're currently working for "the man," and thinking of hanging your own shingle, reaching out to your contacts, and moving into a career powered by your own steam. You haven't yet committed, you don't yet have a consultancy or speaking platform. You don't even know where to start.
Writing a book helps you get clear on what it is you're trying to say, and how it is you do the things you do. Some people never fully understand their own process until they write it down for the first time. For the expert industry, knowing your process in and out is essential for becoming a go-to guru in the field. A book helps with that.
The great thing about a book is that it is, in its purest form, an organized collection of ideas. Writing a book means getting it all straight in you head—all the years of experience, all the expertise, all the research you've done—and organizing and refining it so that it will make sense to your audience.
Basically, writing a book is a primer for building your platform.
All you have to do is follow the three basic rules of writing—
Define Your Audience
Really, this section should be called "find a problem." Because to find an audience, that's exactly what you have to do. Identify a problem in the world—one shared by a large enough group that the demand is high—and figure out how you, as an expert, solve that problem. Once you know who needs you, you have an audience to reach. Solve their problem, and you have a foundation for your platform.
Meet Their Needs
Now that you've identified a problem to solve, solve it! Jot down all the ways you can think of to bring a solution to your audience. Meet their needs, and you have a much better chance of gaining their loyalty. That translates to clients and book sales. Oddly, that's the very thing you're after ... right?
Share What You Know (Create Value)
You're looking to get into this business because you know something about it—you're an expert, after all. Now is the time to share what you know. Create value for your audience by writing about all those solutions you came up with above. Organize that into a story you can share with your audience, and two things happen—you suddenly find you have a book, and (equally important!) you suddenly find you have a platform. You now have the basis for your consultancy or coaching or pubic speaking business, all neatly packaged in a product that you can even sell to your audience.
In addition to creating clarity of message and definition of process, a book also gives you greater expert credibility—and it's well deserved. You may have been a crack expert before, but now you're a crack expert with the book to prove it, and you're more centered on your own message than ever before.
If your goal is to create an expertise business, try putting words on the screen (or page) as a first step. And if you're having trouble creating the workflow you need to write your first book, or you need some extra assistance, give us a shout. We're happy to help ("happy" is right in the name).