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How to Build Your Brand and Raise Your Credibility By Publishing a Book

EntrepreneurCountry Global Tuesday, 20 December 2011.

I conducted a survey recently among several hundred clients and I asked them what their top reasons were for wanting to write and publish a book. Over half said that they would do it for recognition, to stand out over and above their competition and be known as an expert in their field. I think this is a fantastic reason to want to get started, because books present people with an opportunity to take away your ideas and read them again in their spare time. This is a great way of achieving a form of longevity to your name, so by writing a book you allow people to stay connected to you, and more people to hear about you.

That aside, some people find themselves in a situation where they question their importance and value to others, which in itself can stem from scarcity or a lack of belief in their ideas. People are made to feel even less adequate these days, as we are constantly confronted by the celebrity-driven culture that we find ourselves living in. So what can you do to compete? I see only one alternative: to develop a strategy to become the one who attracts all the publicity, interest and business. So let me fill you in on some of the top tips for success and why there is no time to lose when it comes to getting the word out to others.  Serious business leaders can build their brand and raise their credibility today!

It is true that today people are busier than they have ever been and suffering from ‘Information Overload’. The information available on the Internet is doubling every few months. With all this information available, it seems that quality is valued above quantity, and this is even more dramatic online, where good quality writing is becoming harder and harder to find. When time is precious, I often have very little time to go through all that information so I just delete everything that is not essential. At this point something really needs to stand out before it gets my attention.

So, what this leads us to think about is how, in a market that is already competitive, do you stand out from all your competitors? To add to that the inevitable shrinking demand that the recession has created, it is likely that there will not be as much money around waiting to be spent on your product. But consider this: Less money flowing around doesn’t necessarily mean that companies won’t spend. They will if those companies stand out above all others and provide real value.  The stand-out businesses are still winning deals.

That is why business owners should be making a big impact by being bold and opinionated in order to stand out in an increasingly competitive environment. Business leaders need to be able to share experiences and knowledge and more importantly be able to share their wisdom and views on key issues within the market if they are to rise above their competition. Ask yourself right now, on a scale of 1 to 10, how important do I want to feel to those closest to me? In my family? At work? Your answers should be a 9 or 10, purely because you will need to have the confidence to make decisions and act based on fulfilling that desire to be important, but there is nothing wrong with that! Getting the message out about you and your business is after all just basic marketing…

Of all the marketing strategies that exist, writing and publishing is the best way to achieve greater reach. If you want to get known, you absolutely must be writing and publishing. Professional speakers know that they need books to extend their reach – how else could you get your message out to as many people as possible?

But the time isn’t ‘write’....

I have had so many people come to me and say that they don’t have time to write their books, or that they have written them only to have them declined by the publishers. Another excuse is that they do not have the time, but in my opinion you cannot afford not to write a book. When the return outweighs the initial investment of time and effort, it becomes obvious and well worth it.  Every book deserves to be published and I have seen many authors get over their writer’s block and have a complete manuscript in as little as 40 hours! But a good book comes from a good plan…


Plan, Plan and Plan again.

One of the first tips of the key to the success of a completed book is the planning. Why do books need extensive editing? Why do most people never start or finish writing a book? Why do they lack flow, tone, style, content and description? The answer is simple, as it almost always boils down to the lack of a good plan, a lack of publishing and marketing knowledge and self-doubt and indecision. But racing at full speed into a ‘best-seller’ without any clear plan or direction can be equally as dangerous if the book ends up being more of a ‘brain-dump’ than a well thought through expression of the author’s values, experiences and beliefs.

Don’t try the DIY approach

Seek advice from a professional book coach and/or editor, as this is a great way to reduce the number of hours spent on getting a book published. You can gain the essential knowledge and expertise to write your book faster and better than those who struggle on by themselves. 
Consider many ideas before homing in on final angle.

I would advise that anyone who is considering writing a book to consider all the possibilities rather than homing in on one topic too soon. I’ve known many authors fall into the trap of thinking ‘I don’t know what I’m going to write about but I know the title!’ and this is a classic example of narrowing the focus too early on in the process. Often this can mean the best ideas are disregarded from the onset, hampering the success of the book to really reflect the values and opinions of the thought leader.

Make a first draft.

Completing a quick first draft will help get you on the right track and enables you to plan out the structure of your book. It will also help you to see if any sub-themes work well or need altering to ensure the book flows as gracefully as possible.  Most people do not ever complete a first draft of their book because they get too concerned with the details and aim for perfection.

Book yourself a place at the top!

With all the buzz around social media and blogging, many now think that blogging online is enough. I disagree. A good quality book in print is one of the best credibility builders around.  Many successful business leaders have written books; however, the average business executive simply doesn’t realise the value that it can bring, not only to their organisation and successors, but in raising their profile and credibility with their target audience too. Why not set yourself the challenge of writing your book and really raising your profile this year?

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