The Benefits of Having an “Expert” Book
Whether you are a speaker, seminar leader, consultant, coach, entrepreneur – or anybody in any business – having an expert book can confer the following benefits:
- Credibility with competitors and clients
- Positioning within your industry
- Differentiation from your competitors who don’t have a book
- Respect (as books are still one of the most revered forms of publication)
- Media exposure
- New job opportunities
- Job promotions
- Speaking engagements
- Increased speaking fees
- More clients
Faye Levow of Launch Pad Publishing adds “longevity” to this list, arguing that if you use your expert book as a business card with prospective clients and customers, it will have a much longer shelf life – and, hence, much greater value – than a conventional business card that is usually tossed in a bag or in the trash.
Ghostwriter Michael Levin notes that while many people in business try to hone their “elevator speech” down to a few words, some businesses are just too complicated to explain in a couple of sentences. An expert book can explain a complex business or business owner more succinctly, efficiently and eloquently than almost any other marketing tool.
James Altucher, author of eight books, the last two of which are self-published, adds that, in addition to being able to “kick your competitors in the XX”, publishing a book allows you to appear “amazingly cool at cocktail parties”. Altucher is only half kidding, as one of his recent publications is a comic book, and probably does make a very effective ice-breaker at cocktail parties.
If you are the author of a book in an unusual genre, or if your book has an attention-grabbing title, it can make for interesting conversation in social situations, which can, in turn, lead to any of the benefits listed above.
As the author of two comic memoirs, the most recent of which is entitled “So, Why Have You Never Been Married?”: A Memoir of Love, Loss and Lunacy, (www.sowhyhaveyouneverbeenmarried.com) I can attest to the fact that if you can come up with a catchy title for your book, you just might get speaking engagements, media interviews or new clients without people even reading it. While it may be true that you “can’t judge a book by its cover”, the same does not always apply to its title.
It’s Not About Book Sales
If you review the list of benefits cited above, you will note that none of them has anything to do with actual book sales. Many people make the mistake of thinking that the major benefit of writing an expert book, or of having an expert book written for them, is in sales of that book.
Book sales are possible – and much more achievable by the author of an informational niche book than at any other time in history because of the new print-on-demand technology in the publishing industry, and because of the ease, speed and accessibility of online marketing tools and resources – and yet, the major benefit of having a book for anybody in any business is as a marketing tool for their business.
As Faye Levow suggests, think of a book as the ultimate business card, whose job it is to attract more clients and customers – and, hence, more revenue – into your business.
If your book accomplishes that, whatever sales you achieve with your expert book will be gravy.