Ten years ago, in 2006, Peter Roper and Andy Lopata published the first edition of ‘…and Death Came Third! The Definitive Guide to Networking and Speaking in Public’ on Bookshaker. The book was a big success with over 2,000 copies sold in the first 48 hours alone. Panoma Press published the second edition in 2011 and negotiated a separate edition published in Malaysia and Singapore.
We have consistently been amazed by the affection held for ‘…and Death Came Third!’ by many readers, reflected by the emails and comments we have received from people from a range of backgrounds. The book focuses on the basics of networking and presentation skills, giving readers simple approaches to working the room at networking events or giving their first talk.
To celebrate this, we have got together with our network to provide a series of short ‘Basics’ blogs. Over the month of September Andy, Peter and Panoma Press owner Mindy Gibbins-Klein will share a guest blog every day exploring the basics of business, from the basics of confidence and attitude to negotiation and strategy. We have also made the Kindle edition of this excellent book just £1.99 or $2.99 throughout September, so if you haven’t read it yet, get your copy now!
In our latest blog, publisher of the second edition of ‘…and Death Came Third!’ (just five years ago!), Mindy Gibbins-Klein, explores the basics of writing your business book.
The Basics of Writing Your Business Book!
It is said that everyone has a book in them. Whether or not that statement is true, it is certainly becoming more popular than ever to write a book, and for an entrepreneur who wants to share his or her expertise or wisdom, writing a book is a project well worth considering.
Why Write a Business Book?
People are still impressed by published authors and the book can open many, many doors. I’ve seen my author clients win lots of new business, raise their fees, become attractive to the media and conference organisers, and turn their ideas, experience and wisdom into a legacy.
When potential clients read your book, they can get to know you and your ideas in a non-threatening environment, in their own space and in their own time. They can sell themselves on the idea of working with you and come to you ready to work with you.
Of course, all this assumes you start and finish writing the book, that it gets published and that it is the best book it can be. Otherwise, many of the benefits may not materialize.
Starting to Write Your Business Book
Before you even start writing, you need a robust plan, not only for the content, but exactly how you plan to use the book, where and how you want to sell it, where you want it to lead etc. I’ve met a lot of experts over the years who thought they knew their subject so well that they could just ‘wing it’ and skip the boring planning…
There are many kinds of business books, and in this article I’m talking about a book that showcases a business or business owner while educating and perhaps entertaining the reader. So, a book about someone’s business that helps someone else in life and business!
You. Need. A. Plan.
Think about all the different ways such a book could turn out. Is it going to be a How To book, or mostly a story? Is it going to reference your story and experience or that of others? Or will it be a combination, and if so, what proportions should it be? What length should it be? What style and tone? A lot of this will depend on who you are trying to influence, and what you want the book to achieve for you (see above). You may be very clear already, but if any of this seems overwhelming or you would like help and guidance to figure it out and make some decisions and plans, please get in touch. This is exactly what we do at The Book Midwife®!
Publishing for Entrepreneurs and Thought Leaders
There are many ways to get published these days, but if you are looking to impress and influence people with your book, it needs to exude quality and professionalism. I see a lot of entrepreneurs self-publishing their books because it’s easy and quick and relatively inexpensive to do so. I’m not a big fan of self-publishing because there are a lot of pitfalls if you don’t know what you are doing. There is nothing worse than a business book that looks ‘homemade’. All your hard work and potentially great content could be undermined by a product that looks unprofessional.
You. Need. A. Publisher.
I believe entrepreneurs and thought leaders should partner with a publisher to ensure the best possible result. This does not mean you need to go to a big publishing house, get a traditional book deal or even spend a lot of money. You simply need a solid team of people experienced in editing, designing, formatting, launching, promoting, selling, and distributing books! Simple. The benefit of using a publisher of any kind over self-publishing is that the team is already there and proven. Often they have worked on several books in the same category as yours, so they know how to work with yours to get the best results.
OK, this was not meant to be a sales pitch but I can’t help it. I get very, very upset when I see business professionals making mistakes that damage their credibility. We have all worked very hard to get where we are today, and we need to be putting out books that make us look great.
Mindy Gibbins-Klein is a speaker and consultant focused on business owners and subject matter experts who need to build their credibility. Mindy’s mission is to discover and expose REAL Thought Leaders and show them how to position themselves as the true authorities in their field by writing and publishing the best quality books, ebooks, articles and blogs, and by developing powerful speaking content.