Your Book Is Your Business Card
Traditional business cards are 3.5 x 2 inches, fit neatly in your wallet, and provide prospective clients with your basic info/another piece of hazily-remembered cardboard to discard during their bi-annual wallet cleanse.
Here’s a crazy idea: how about upping your game with something that measures 6 x 9 inches, slips easily into a purse or backpack, and gives a whole heckuva lot more detail—not to mention value—about you and your business?
We’re talking about a book, obvi.
Outside of the personal fulfilment and goal-crushing sense of accomplishment that comes with publishing a book, most people think the main benefit of publishing is the income generated from book sales. While that might be true, we’re here to tell you there are plenty of other ways that a book can help you build your income—as well as your business and of course your brand.
Whether you’re an entrepreneur, business owner, academic, artist, medical professional, or pretty much anyone with a unique skill set, message, or product, this post—and this venture—is probably for you.
Yes, book sales are one way to bring in money. But have you considered how publishing a *good* book also gives you instant credibility in your field? When it comes to establishing yourself as an expert, nothing does this better than actually illustrating and disseminating that expertise. (And it doesn’t hurt to have your face on the cover of a book, either.)
Legitimacy is Key
Being published (for having written a good book) instantly marks you as an expert in your field—as someone who can be trusted and, best of all, is a desirable hire. In fact, anyone who has read your book and gets in touch with you after the fact is doing so because they want to work specifically with you.
Your ROI (Return on Investment)
Promoting your book via interviews, guest contributions, feature stories, and editorials can flood your pipeline with prospective clients and raise the profile of your business astronomically. This in turn can lead to speaking and coaching opportunities, consultant work, big-time sales, further book deals . . . in other words, the world becomes your oyster.
So how exactly does one use a book in place of a business card? The answer might seem counterintuitive, but just like you would with a business card, one of the best ways to spread your gospel is to work the room and not shy away from giving out editions for free. Hand them out at networking events; send free copies to media outlets; hold a launch with free copies for everyone who attends; bring copies to every interview and media appearance to hand out. This is strategic marketing at its most direct and generous. And while it might seem like a financial drain, especially if you’ve fronted the cost to publish, consider it as yet another business expense (which it is). If giving away 100 copies brings in even ten new clients then you’re in the clear and your business is on the right track.
The possibilities for revenue from publishing your book extend far, far beyond just selling a few copies. Imagine the possibilities when your book becomes your calling card, Published Author becomes part of your job title, and your leads have converted to clientele before you even meet with them—because they already know what you’re about and what you can do for them.