You may think it’s time—that you’re ready to market your business or yourself, or both. But if you’re not a marketing expert, you may wonder where to start.
It’s true that knowing how, when and where to do your marketing (a growing conundrum in the last decade) can be confusing. That’s because the marketing umbrella now encompasses not just traditional media advertising channels, public relations or branding, but also your website and blog along with search engine optimization and social media in all its variations.
To muddle things even further, one of the big buzzwords in marketing is “content.” What marketers mean when they talk about content is storytelling. Ann Handley, who wrote Everybody Writes: Your Go-To Guide to Creating Ridiculously Good Content, said, “Our online words are our emissaries,” making it important to “write with honest empathy for our customers . . . and tell a true story really, really well.”
Content marketing can take many forms. Writing a blog. Writing articles for online magazines and newspapers. Writing articles for LinkedIn. Writing good content for your website. One form of content that you may not have considered is writing a book. Or maybe you have thought of it, long and maybe even hard.
As a business professional, you already have a story to tell, and if you’re seasoned enough, you have a lot of expertise you could pass along to the world. You may want to brand yourself as an expert in your field. Or you may have valuable knowledge that you would like to pass along as a legacy. A book is one option for accomplishing those things.
With a book, part of your brand now becomes being able to describe yourself as an author, which can give you additional credibility. If you market yourself through speaking engagements, for example, a book gives you a way to meet and network with your audience by holding a book signing after your event.
Whatever your motivation, if you’re not a writer by profession, you may find the prospect of writing your story somewhat daunting. Even if you can already write well, then there’s the problem of getting published.
If you’ve already written your book, you may consider hiring an editor. If you don’t see yourself as a writer, you could hire a ghostwriter. Once the book is written, you could opt to try to find an agent who’s willing to take you on and market your book to publishing companies. There is, however, an alternative to going with established publishers (which can be a longshot to actually seeing your book in print): self-publishing.
There are many companies out there that will help you with services that will enable you to publish hardback or softcover and e-book versions of your book. These services include editing, interior page design, cover design and e-book formatting. Some companies will also help you market your book once it’s done.
My company offers many of those services, including editing, ghostwriting, interior layout and cover design. If you’re interested in learning more, check us out at accentonwords.com.