Recently I read a story about a young realtor who wrote a book about “What every ‘for sale by owner’ homeowner needs to know to sell their house”. He self-published that book. He gave instructions on step by step instructions of everything that an owner needs to know to complete the sales process on their own. He then would go around town looking for “for sale by owner” properties and knock at the door, introduce himself and give them one of the books. Although he eventually sold a number of books, his goal wasn’t to sell books but to promote his expertise as someone who knew how to sell a house. Many of the homeowners, who he gave his books to, did actually use the book to sell their own homes. When their friends wanted to sell their own homes, but didn’t want to sell it themselves, the homeowners who had the book knew that of a realtor who knew his stuff and recommended the one who came to their door and gave them the book.
Others, however, after reading the book many homeowners realized that they couldn’t go through the red tape needed to sell their house so they knew that the realtor who gave them the book with no strings attached was their realtor of choice. This realtor ended up with more business than he could handle himself. If you own a business that you would like to grow, having a book out that is related to that business may be the marketing tool that can also put you over the top.
The Pros and Cons of Self-Publishing for Business Owners
At first, a business owner might think that their best bet might be to go with a traditional publisher, but there are advantages in self-publishing. Self-publishing has its benefits: more control, more agility and speed than traditional publishing. You can focus on writing and publishing, instead of waiting around to hear if somebody wants to publish you.
But it also has its risks: you need to have a well-designed book, a nice looking website, and you need to set up a marketing funnel, but if you’re already in business online, you’ve already got a start. You also have some idea who your readers are and how to reach them. Luckily, it’s never been easier, so if you’re willing to learn and spend some money, you can give your book every chance at success. That said, the average author spends $2000 to $5000 to publish their books, and few authors earn any money. (Books get cheaper to publish the more you learn. Publishing doesn’t cost me anything, because I format, edit and design myself… but I am also in the author business). Less than 10% of independent authors sell more than 1000 copies in the lifetime of the book.
You can spend much less if you want to, but it’s hard to get quality work done on the cheap. However, it’s also possible to have a smash hit with a mediocre cover. A lot of that depends on how you intend to use that book to market your business.
What Book is in You?
Now that you know that self-publishing is an option for your book, it’s time to start thinking about what book topic would best serve you and your business. What do you wish your customers understood about what you do? Pay attention to the questions that your customers ask you. Those questions could be the keys to the subject of your book. More about this later. For now, just think about what your book’s subject.