How to Write a Nonfiction Book to Grow a Business: 64 Strategies
Is writing a nonfiction book worth it?
If you have a business or are thinking of starting one, you may have thought about writing a nonfiction book. Or perhaps you have some valuable expertise to share and want to build credibility. Today, more than ever before, people read nonfiction books and look up to their authors as trusted leaders and authorities.
However, what can you do with your nonfiction book once it's written? Not knowing how to implement your book in a strategy is one of the reasons people don't follow through on writing their nonfiction books.
It's not enough to know how to write a nonfiction book and get it published. Though, nonfiction books have immense potential to change your business and life, you need to know what to do before, during, and after you write the book and get it published. Know the options and strategies available to you. This post is the ultimate guide on how to write a book and get it published in a way that will change your life and business forever.
In this post, we will cover 64 strategies you can use during, before, and after writing your nonfiction book.
A word of warning before we begin: This guide is designed to show the endless possibilities when it comes to growing a business with a book. The number of ideas presented in this guide may feel overwhelming, but remember that you do not need to use them all—at least not all at once. The best strategy is the one that feels authentic to you and the one you can execute the easiest.
One well-executed strategy is always better than 35 poorly executed ones.
How to Write a Nonfiction Book That Grows Your Business: Before the Book is Written
1. Use the Book to Get a Tax Write-off
Before you make any decision about writing a book, you should know that writing a book is an investment, not an expense. Whether you're incorporated or self-employed, you can write off all your book expenditures.
Your book expenditures can be categorized as marketing expenses since a book is a marketing tool. As a result, an excellent option is to use pre-tax dollars to invest in the production of a book that will grow your business. What's more, unlike most marketing expenses, the book will last you decades.
2. Use the Book to Gather Market Intelligence
As a savvy entrepreneur or business owner, you know the importance of market intelligence. Staying ahead of the curve is critical. That said, it can be hard to keep up with all the changes and take the time to do the required research to stay current with our industry.
Use your book as an opportunity to gather market intelligence. As you write the book, you'll need to research key areas in your industry. You'll also need to talk to people. If your book is well-positioned in the market, you'll inevitably be led toward useful market intelligence.
3. Use the Book to Get Interviews and Establish Lucrative Relationships
Relationships are everything in business. We need true, deep connections with others to realize our full potential as entrepreneurs and business owners. What better way to create relationships than to interview people to gather data, facts, stories, and insights? People love to help and to be heard.
You can interview people who would be good prospects for your products and services. You can also interview key players in your industry. Don't hesitate to invite high-profile individuals; they are often happy to carve out 30 minutes of their time.
If you want to maximize the potential benefits of your interviews, consider uploading them online as podcast episodes.
4. Use the Book to Stay Ahead of the Curve
Do you foresee changes in your industry? Become a thought leader by writing about these foreseeable changes and shaping your field. Sure, you could be wrong about these changes, but writing is leadership, and leaders are greatly rewarded for their efforts and boldness.
In addition to positioning you as a leader, writing a book to stay ahead of the curve helps further your understanding of the field. While you may have good ideas already, writing a book will force you to challenge and verify your assumptions.
5. Use the Nonfiction Book to Change Fields
Perhaps you're tired of your industry and you want to jump boats. Though committed to a change, you don't know where to start or you're afraid you don't have credibility. The good news is that a book can help you with this conundrum. With a book, you can easily jump from one industry to another.
The trick to using a book to change fields is to connect your current experience and knowledge with your desired field. The best content always comes from connections between different fields, so use this to your advantage and make it your time to shine. Bring your expertise to a new industry, and you'll gain the credibility you need.
6. Use the Book to Fulfill a Need
Any book should fulfill a need of some sort, but there are needs that require more immediate attention and are more profitable. For example, I wrote The Architecture of Grammar at the request of a Filipino college that needed better writing resources for its communication courses.
By analyzing which community (target audience) needs your expertise the most, you can fulfill a need by writing a book while making a lot of money at the same time. You should also consider who has the money and incentives to purchase your book. Sometimes, they're not the same people.
Consider all the problems you can solve and test them out by asking organizations and institutions if they would buy a large order of such a book. By doing so, you may realize the problem you can solve isn't the one you thought, which will then put you on the fast track to success by opening up new opportunities.
7. Use the Book to Create Trademarks You can License
According to Mark Getty, intellectual property is the twenty-first century's oil. The richest men alive have amassed their fortunes thanks to intellectual property. While a book is a form of intellectual property (it's copyrighted), the book can birth other forms of intellectual property.
If you craft your book the right way, you'll have a solid concept (the title and branding). You can trademark the concept and use it for different assets, such as workshops, courses, and methodologies. Intellectual property assets such as trademarks are excellent business tools.
8. Use the Book to Create Affiliate Marketing Campaigns
You can only go so far on your own. As marketing expert Russel Brunson suggests in his book, Expert Secrets, you should have an affiliate army that has your back. Affiliate campaigns are marketing campaigns that use other people's audiences to reach a wider pool of potential buyers/clients, and your book is the perfect product to sell through an affiliate campaign.
To create affiliate campaigns, you need to either pay your way or exchange value. For example, you can pay another entrepreneur or business to get featured on their email list. If you have a large email list yourself, you can offer your affiliate to run a campaign for them as well.
Remember that your affiliates should be entrepreneurs or businesses that share your audience and whose values align with yours. Again, in his book, Expert Secrets, Russel Brunson suggests creating a Dream 100 Strategy, which consists of listing all the different places where your audience might hang out.
9. Use the Book to Publish One Piece of Timeless, Fundamental Knowledge
Do you want to contribute to the world? Write a book. Books offer the depth and the breadth we expect of true leaders. Since books force you to create unity among your ideas, they give you the opportunity to publish a piece of knowledge that will last for generations and cement your authority.
Think of people like James Clear and his book, Atomic Habits. Or Chris Voss, the former FBI negotiator who wrote Never Split the Difference. Or Frederick Dodson, with his masterpiece, Levels of Energy. These enjoyed some credibility prior to writing their book, but it wasn't before publishing that they became global leaders.
10. Use the Book to Do a Launch and Generate
You may already have a business and be caught up in the daily grind that goes with running it. By writing and publishing a nonfiction book, you have the opportunity to launch something new and elicit a lot of attention to your business in a short period of time. That's what one of our clients, Gareth Benson, did with his book, IDEAOLOGY.
If you don't have a business already, the book launch is a perfect time to launch a new offer. Your book is a low-ticket item that attracts an audience that can benefit from products or services you may create (coaching, consulting, a course, etc.). To learn more about how to create an offer, I recommend Alex Hormozi's book, $100M Offers.
11. Use the Book to Create Events Every Year
If you write your nonfiction book properly, you'll have a solid concept, framework, and intellectual property to use in your business. These can be of great help in creating in-person or online events, which you can use to offer a different experience to your audience and add more value to their lives.
Think of these events as transformational experiences. What are you not able to convey to your audience in a book? This is what you should base your events on. Maybe it's having conversations. Maybe it's working collaboratively on projects. Whatever the gap may be, your events can provide your audience with a higher level of service.
12. Use the Book to Create Relationships with Experts
When you write a nonfiction book, you often research different disciplines in which you're not an expert. The world is interconnected, and so is knowledge. If you're writing about psychology, you may need to learn more about philosophy and biology. Don't be afraid to reach out to other experts and build strong relationships in the process.
Relationships are the cornerstone of any successful book and business. Not only will most experts be happy to contribute to your book, but they're also likely to spread the word about you, your book, and your business. Establish trust with important people who will contribute to your success in the long run.
13. Use the Book to Create a Network of People
Don’t limit your contact to experts as you write your book, but also reach out to people, groups, organizations, or institutions who care about what you are writing. For example, if you are writing a book on nutrition, you may want to reach out to wellness associations, since they can contribute to your book and, in return, you can provide value.
You should always see your nonfiction book as a conversation. As you write, other people can contribute to the conversation with data, information, knowledge, and wisdom. Meanwhile, you offer your insights and analyses to those affected by your topic even if your book isn't finished yet. In the end, a book is information processed for a specific goal and audience, and a good book (like a good conversation) involves others.
14. Sell or Offer the Book to Schools and Universities
The traditional education system needs help. If you write a nonfiction book that stands at the edge of knowledge, you should try distributing to schools and universities. Although it's ideal to get these institutions to pay for these books, it may not be possible because of budget constraints or because of the curriculum requirements.
If you can't get paid for your books by schools and universities, this strategy may still be worth using. You can offer them a number of your books for free, which will give you a good amount of visibility (especially if your audience is young people). You can also get yourself booked as a speaker and sell the books at the event. Or you can also get yourself booked for a seminar.
As a strategy that requires time and contact, it's best to start thinking about it before writing. What's more, you can get commissioned by an institution to write a book or at least make sure the work you’re currently writing fulfills their requirements (increasing the odds they’ll use your book). When I wrote The Architecture of Grammar, I had been contracted by a private college who made an initial order of 1,500 copies.
15. Use the Book to Create a Signature Talk
A signature talk is a speech only you can give. It's your message, your story. In many ways, your signature speech is similar to your book because it can't be replicated by someone else (since it relies so much on your identity). A signature talk is an important component of your personal brand. Just like your book, it's a great asset to build notoriety.
If you write your nonfiction book with a very personal touch, your signature talk is a shorter, spoken version of your nonfiction book. If your book isn't personal, think of your signature talk as the personal version of your nonfiction book. Ideally, you want to focus on three or fewer elements in your signature talk. It's preferable to think through your signature before you write the book or during the process.
16. Create a Book Series
If you have enough content for multiple books, which I'm sure you do, then why not create a series of books? Books offer information processed for a specific goal and a specific audience, making it easy to create a book series. All you need to do is change the goal or the audience. You can also change the angle.
Hal Herold has written a very successful nonfiction book called The Miracle Morning, which he's turned into a successful book series; one of the books in the series is written for entrepreneurs, while another is written for real estate agents. Yet another is more aspirational and discusses what the wealthy do in the morning. Note that you can use a co-author to fill in the gaps in your knowledge about particular audiences or perspectives. (Hal Herold uses co-authors).
Although you can decide to turn a book into a book series at any time, it's better to think through the series before you write the first book so that you create a replicable concept. For example, I planned out The Architecture of Grammar to be the first of a book series titled The Architecture of Writing. The books are bound by the concept of "architecture" and, together, they create the full trivium (grammar, logic, and rhetoric).
17. Use the Book to Create Community Projects
If you’re passionate about a cause, you can use your book to launch a community project. The community project can be a workshop, a fundraiser, or any other sort of social initiative. For example, if you write a book on personal finance, you could start a community project that teaches budgeting to youth in your community.
Have a strong concept or framework and this should be easy. The quality of a strong concept is that it strikes the mind of the target audience. It's critical that your book concept appeals to the intended community members.
18. Use the Book to Start a Media Company
A nonfiction book is a versatile intellectual property asset. If done right, it can be the foundation for a lot of other assets, especially in the realm of digital and print media. If you'd like to extend your business activities, start publishing more materials, digitally and in print, based on your book.
Today, most of the biggest and most lucrative businesses are media companies. Even when it's not their main business, businesses have large stakes in the media industry. Think of Hubspot, for example. Although it's known as one of the world's most powerful customer relation managers (CRM), Hubspot is, in fact, a media company with all the content it publishes.
19. Use the Book to Show Thought Leadership
As an entrepreneur or expert, there are so many opportunities you can pursue to gain authority, visibility, and exposure. You can join boards, talk at panels, and get involved with organizations. But before you can do all that, you need a track record and some credibility in your field. Writing a nonfiction book solves that problem easily.
If your goal is to break through your field, then you need to think about the specific issues and situations people in your field are talking about. You need to pay careful attention to the current conversation. Once you've understood the conversation, do your research, take your stance, and position yourself in the conversation. You can learn how to do this in Write a Book That Matters.
Your thought leadership may be based on expertise, education, or experiences. What matters is that you give other people in your field a reason to listen and follow you. Most people in a conversation are either unengaged, uninformed, or are insecure about their thoughts. But when someone joins the conversation engaged, informed, and secure, that person rises as a thought leader and becomes authoritative and influential.
20. Use the Book as a Resource for Your Programs
If you offer programs or courses (whether online or in-person), your nonfiction book can become a supplemental resource. Of course, it needs to be designed accordingly, with practical elements. If your nonfiction book can serve both your clients and your prospects, then it is a tour de force.
For example, I wrote Write a Book That Matters as a lead generation tool. My goal was to give a brief overview of my book-writing process to help prospects see that writing a nonfiction book is within reach. But I put so much value in this book that it’s also highly beneficial for my clients. It's a different expression of the frameworks I already teach.
Since writing it, anyone who starts working with me on their book must start by reading Write a Book That Matters. The great thing is that if a prospect reads the book and then decides to work with me, they’re already ahead, and we can make meaningful progress faster. The beauty of books is that they’re versatile and can be used to get two birds with one stone.
21. Use the Book to Create a New Field or Discipline and Innovate
The world is a competitive place. There are over seven billion individuals on the planet. There are a lot of other people doing what you do, and it can be hard to differentiate yourself. Of course, branding is a big differentiator in business, but if you want to thrive long-term, then there’s no better way than innovating in your field.
And writing a nonfiction book is a great way to do that.
Writing is formalized thinking, meaning you become a better thinker as you write. By putting your thoughts in order, you are likelier to see hidden patterns and come up with innovation in your field. You should read a lot and across different disciplines and write about what you read. Innovation comes from the intersection between disciplines, which, coincidentally, also makes for great books.
Although typing is perfectly fine, I suggest spending some time handwriting and drawing conceptual frameworks because the labor and visual elements allow you to better connect your thoughts.
22. Use the Book to Accompany Your Service
Your book doesn't have to be geared toward future clients or complete strangers. You can write a book specifically for your clients, and even make your book “client-exclusive.” Your book can accompany your service by offering additional insights, exercises, or activities. Think about it as a companion guide.
The best way to make your service a pleasant experience for your clients is to make it multimedia (e.g., audio files, printed books, and online activities). Digital technologies allow us to use a variety of media to convey information, and we should take advantage of it. The small details often make a bigger difference than the large, sweeping changes.
23. Create a Workshop on the Book for more Revenue
The weakness of books is they don't allow readers to ask questions; and, although they can contain practical elements and exercises, they're not interactive. Moreover, you can only make so much money with a book. That's where a workshop comes in, a solution to all three problems. It's very easy to create an interactive workshop based on your book's contents.
To create a workshop, simply ask yourself about the interactions you would want to have with your readers. For example, one of our clients, Gareth Benson, created an intellectual property workshop based on his book IDEAOLOGY wanting to learn about people’s ideas and where they are on their entrepreneurship journey. During the workshop, Gareth asks his audience about their ideas and uses them as examples and offers feedback.
At the time of writing, Gareth is touring Australia to promote his book and deliver his workshop.
24. Create a Movement Based on the Book
Do you know what people love even more than a great book? A cause to believe in. A movement to follow. Before you write your book, think about the movement you would like to create. Gather people under your vision and give them a future to believe in. That's how great brands and businesses are created.
For example, the movement I have created is called The Word Leader. This movement aims to equip deep thinkers with the ability to use words to lead themselves, other people, and the world at large. It promotes the idea that words are everything and that writing is a powerful leadership tool.
25. Create a Website Dedicated to Your Book with Resources
Although you can use your personal or business website to promote your book, there is value in creating a separate website. It gives your book credence. Moreover, you can host a variety of resources related to your book. For example, you can include training videos, worksheets, templates, and more.
Create a long-lasting relationship with your readers by thinking about every way you can serve them. The book is just the beginning; once they have read about your work, you should offer them the next steps to gleam more value. There's no better way to do so than by creating a dedicated website. For affordable website hosting and building tools, I recommend Wordpress.
26. Use the Book to Create a Methodology You Can then License
If done well, your book contains a wealth of intellectual property (IP). IP is where you can make the most money as an entrepreneur or business owner. It's a set of intangible assets you can commercialize in different ways without having to work more. A book is a form of intellectual property as it is copyrighted.
You can use your book's contents to create a methodology that can then be licensed. A methodology is simply a repeatable process you and other people can use to generate the desired outcome. Licensing is one of many commercialization strategies you can use as an entrepreneur. It allows you to collect money from other people using your intellectual property rights.
For a good introduction to intellectual property and entrepreneurship, read IDEAOLOGY, one of our client's books.
27. Use the Book to Shift the Public Debate on a Topic
What's a topic you believe we should be having a different conversation about than we currently are? The reality is that, as a society, we're wrong about a lot of things. It's until someone stands up and pushes us to change the conversation that we can truly make progress. Books are effective tools to shift a public debate because they're substantial and give the author credibility.
For example, William McAskill’s book Doing Good Better shifted our conversation around altruism. He coined the term “effective altruism,” a “philosophy and social movement focused on answering one question: How can we best help others?” McAskill also created a movement, the "effective altruism" movement.
28. Use the Book to Raise Awareness About Your Mission
You may have a mission that goes beyond your business. And perhaps your business isn't the ideal outlet to raise awareness about this mission. Writing a book is a great way to raise awareness about what you feel deeply invested in. You'll gain as much authority and credibility—if not more—by writing a book that's unrelated to your business.
In the end, the book you should write is the one you know you wouldn’t want to die without having written. Think about what you'd like to be remembered for, your legacy. In my case, my mission beyond helping produce books that change the world is to improve the quality of writing instruction. I write books around this topic and help institutions with their writing instruction.
29. Use the Book to Raise Funds for a Cause You Love
A book doesn't have to raise awareness only. It can also serve as a way to raise funds. You can raise funds for your cause, or someone else's, by creating book-related events, charging a premium price for the book, and then donating the profits. All strategies outlined in this article can be used to raise funds since they direct the profits elsewhere.
Raising funds for a cause you love is not only good for your soul and self-image, but it also earns you social capital in your community. When you help your community, you get recognized. It also makes it easier to create connections with members of the community (which may be your target audience) if you are generous.
How to Write a Nonfiction Book that Grows Your Business: While the Book is Being Written
The following strategies fall under what we call a pre-launch strategy. You can start selling books, as well as other related services, before you finish writing the book. In fact, it's good practice to begin promoting and selling your book before the writing is finished because you’ll get immediate feedback from your market. Moreover, the pre-launch is when you should be thinking through your extra services.
30. Use the Book to Create a Brand or Improve the One You Already Have
Branding, like intellectual property, is a critical part of your business. Once you've got a proven offer and some capital, branding becomes extremely important as it sets you apart from the competition and allows you to join the more prestigious league. If you don't have a brand already, writing a nonfiction book will help you with that since it requires you to design and market the book.
If you already have a brand, make sure your book matches—or make adjustments so they match. Congruency is one of the most critical aspects of branding. Your audience needs to see your personality and values visually, and your brand assets must be consistent across media.
31. Use the Book to Create a Mastermind
Have you thought of gathering members of your audience to discuss and help each other? A mastermind is a great way to lead with value, and you can use your book as its foundation. After all, a mastermind is a forum for exchange. In other words, use your book to set the mastermind’s theme. That said, do not make the mistake of making the mastermind all about you.
Your mastermind can be either paid or free, depending on how well you are established. A pay wall will attract higher quality members and will increase attendance. But if you're just getting started with your business, a free mastermind where people get a lot of value can work just as well. All you need to do is facilitate a collaborative space where people learn.
32. Use the Book to Create a New Coaching Program
Why do people choose to hire a coach when all the information they need is available at a low cost online and in books? That's because information alone doesn't get you to your goals. Although your book may be life-changing, it won't necessarily give readers the big breakthrough they were looking for. That's where a new coaching program comes in.
With a coaching program based on your book, you can guide people, either individually or in a group, to the outcome they seek. People won't get everything they need from you just by reading your book. Fill the gaps by offering them the next level of service with a coaching program.
33. Use the Book to Create a New Consulting Offer
Similar to coaching, consulting allows you to offer another level of service to your audience. However, consulting is a bit more hands-on than coaching. Whereas coaches guide clients to find the answers they need, consultants help clients solve their problems. They often get their hands dirty.
Your book provides clients with valuable information, but by no means does it guarantee results. You can create a consulting offer that allows you to spend time with clients to solve their problems. A big part of my work as a writing consultant is to tell clients exactly what they should do based on their situation and give them a roadmap to do it.
34. Use the Book to Create a New Online Course
If you like income on autopilot, use the content of your book to create a new online course. By expanding your book's contents and offering additional resources, you can create a fabulous online course that generates passive income for you and your business. That said, be mindful of spending time creating an attractive, valuable course because nothing is worse than courses that don't sell.
A good way to make sure you don't waste your time building a course that no one will buy is to create the outline and sales page before anything else. Then you can promote your course and pre-sell it to make sure it's worth your time. Moreover, you'll have already made money, which is always nice!
35. Use the Book as the Foundation for a Blog, Which Makes You Searchable
Although social media posts are great to engage your audience and stay top of mind, they don't make you searchable online, that is, discoverable through a search engine like Google. Blogs, however, make you searchable. With the right search engine optimization (SEO) strategy, you can easily make yourself searchable by people looking for specific topics or answers online. This means more visibility and sales!
What you need to understand about SEO strategy is that it gives you a container for your ideas. If you write blogs to be found online, start by going through your book finding the keywords and phrases people are looking for. From these keywords and phrases, you can write useful content your audience will love. Start with what the market wants, not what you want to give the market.
It's useful to start blogging as you write the book because ranking on Google takes time. Moreover, you can start receiving feedback on your book indirectly by sharing your blog articles. Ideas can go a long way; make sure you make the best out of them.
36. Use the Book as a Call to Action for Your Podcast
If you have a podcast, you may want to monetize your listeners beyond sponsorship and advertisement. As long as your book is aligned with your podcast's concept, it's an easy sell; many listeners will see the book as a collectible. Moreover, the book offers a more unified version of what your podcast is about (since the two are likely related).
People love to consume content in different formats, and offering different options helps serve your audience better. With a book, you can follow your audience on a vacation or be with them before they go to bed. Most importantly, when members of your audience buy your book, they become customers, which means they are more likely to buy from you again.
37. Use the Book as a Call to Action for Your Youtube Channel
If you have a YouTube channel, you can use your book as a call to action. If you choose this strategy, multiple options are available to you. You can either send viewers directly to your book's landing page and get them to buy, or you can offer them a free chapter for free, after which you get them to buy the book.
Regardless of which strategy you pick, you should build an email list—and not just of the people who buy your book. You should get people to leave their email address before they can purchase the book. This way, you can send non-buyers an email sequence that prompts them to buy. You also get to grow your email list faster with people who've shown interest in your book.
38. Use the Book as a Call to Action for Your Website
Whether or not you have a separate website for your book, you should use your book as a call to action on your personal website. You can also use it as a call to action on your business website or even on both! As mentioned before, you should get people to opt in with their email before they can purchase the book. This way, you can stay in touch with them.
Calls to action are a great tool to engage with your audience and to build an email list. Use your book as a call to action whenever you can so that you can create a prospect and customer list from your book. To be successful with this strategy, you need to incentivize your audience to get your book (or a free chapter of your book) by showing what's in it for them.
39. Use the Book to Create an Email List to Sell Other Services
An email list is a critical business asset because it's one of the few assets you truly own. Not only can your social media audiences be taken away from you at any time, but the popularity of social media platforms decline over time. Make sure you have a way to reach your prospects and customers without relying on social media or other outlets that you don't own.
Creating an email list is simple. Simply sign up to an email marketing service such as ActiveCampaign (the one I use). Then create a landing page with a call to action (e.g., your book, a chapter of your book, or a resource) to get people to opt into your email list. You can use integration software such as Zapier to connect your different apps. For example, you can connect ActiveCampaign to your website builder (when somebody fills a form).
40. Use the Book to Create a Social Media Following
It's hard to grow a social media following if you have little to no content. The difficulty about writing content is getting the clarity you need to create materials consistently. Moreover, you need authority and credibility to grow a decently sized following. Writing a book solves this problem by providing you authority and credibility, as well as a content framework.
After all, a book is one of the biggest, most challenging pieces of writing you can do. Once you've done it, writing any other type of content is easy. What's more, your book creates unity and coherence in your thoughts. Whether you write the book yourself or have it written by someone else, you’ll gain clarity.
41. Use the Book to Run Ads for Free
It costs money to advertise on platforms such as Facebook and Google. But if you use your book as an entry-level product to your other products or services, then you can advertise for free. How so? Because the money you make from selling the book through the ad makes up for the money you spend on the ad. Your ads likely won't be profitable, but you'll likely break even.
Think about it this way: Typically, you'll advertise something free (a lead magnet or a free consultation). These free offers, though, require that you sell more of your products and services to justify running the ads. Moreover, they bring you leads that aren't necessarily qualified for your offers. People who buy your book are customers, which means they're more likely to buy again.
How to Grow Your Business with a Nonfiction Book: After the Book is Written
42. Use Your Book as a Lead Generation Tool
Whether paired with paid advertisement or organic marketing, books are great lead generation tools because they demonstrate authority and credibility. Having a real, published book shows that you are serious about the industry or field and that you’re an expert.
You can sell or give away your book on a landing page where people must enter their contact information. This way, you can sign people to your automated email sequence and sell them other products or services.
If you're not sure which type of book to write and how long it should be, check our blog titled How Long a Book Should Be. You will find out which type of book best fits your goals.
43. Use the Book as a Down Sell for People Who aren't a Good Fit
You've probably come across people who have asked for your help but who couldn't afford your service or simply weren't a good fit. A common mistake people make in business is they have only one way of adding value (ex.: coaching program, course, etc.) You can help more people and increase your revenue by having a lower-ticket offer, such as a book.
Let's not kid ourselves: Your book won't replace your premium service. It just can't. But it can definitely help you reach more people and diversify your list of customers. Moreover, what if someone isn't a good fit to work with you but becomes a good fit after they read your book? That's a real possibility because good books shape new perspectives.
44. Use the Book as a Bonus for a Current Product/Offer
The alternative to using the book as a lead generation tool is to use it as a bonus for a current product or offer (though they're not mutually exclusive). Stacking value is a great way to increase sales conversions. The more value prospects see, the more likely they are to buy.
If you use the book as a bonus for a current product or offer, make sure the book is high-quality and provides value customers can't find elsewhere. Otherwise, the book will be a letdown and your customers will be disappointed. When executed well, this strategy is powerful. Poor execution hurts your relationship with clients.
45. Use the Book as a Gift to Your Clients and Partners
Instead of offering the book as a bonus for an existing product or offer, you can gift it to your clients and customers after they have purchased your product or service. Instead of increasing conversions, you improve the customer experience. You can also gift your book to strategic partners.
Many people focus on marketing and sales to grow their business. But client success and client retention are equally, if not more, important. It's easier to sell again to an existing client than to sell to a new one. Because of that, you should work tirelessly toward “overdelivering” for your clients—and offering your valuable book as a gift is a great way to do that.
46. Use the Book to Get Yourself in the Door
What are some opportunities you've thought about in the past but somehow seemed too crazy to pursue? Once you have a book, you gain access to opportunities you never even thought possible. Think of your book as a point of connection. If done well, you can gather people around the goal it seeks to fulfill and the audience it targets.
You have a valuable piece of work that solves a problem for a specific group of people. You are a problem-solver and you have a solution. What are the opportunities you can unlock as that person? Where should this person go to help more people and add more value?
47. Sell a Bulk Order to an Organization or Institution
Once your book has gained a certain level of notoriety, you can make it a valuable commodity for organizations or institutions. For those cases, you can offer them special pricing if they order a certain number of copies. This number could be 500, 1,000, 1,500 or even more! This all depends on how much profit you want to make and your production costs.
Depending on your printing arrangement, you may be able to get a large number of books printed for a cheap price. One thing you can do is find a printer in your city, which will save you shipping costs. If the organization or institution is in your city, you can deliver them yourself in boxes.
48. Create a Charity Based on Your Book
There may be organizations or institutions that could use your book but don't have the budget to buy it. You can create a charity that buys the book from you or your main business and donates them to organizations and institutions. Moreover, you can raise the money for these books to be donated, which limits the costs on your end.
Not only does this strategy help you make a larger impact on those who need it the most, but it also allows you to gain social capital. Having your own charity opens new doors to opportunities and positions you as a socially conscious community leader. Talk about supercharging your visibility and credibility!
49. Create a Strategic Partnership with Stores/Institutions that have Your Audience
What would you like to get from local stores or institutions? Visibility? Resources? Time with their leader? There are so many ways you can partner with local stores or institutions based on your book. They can sell your book. They can advertise it. They can gift it to customers—whatever may benefit them and their clients.
By making deals with local stores and institutions, you are building strong relationships and adding value to the marketplace. One of the biggest business mistakes people make is failing to see the partnership possibilities. Focus more on collaboration than competition.
50. Create Relationships with Other Authors in Your Field
With a book under your belt, you are now part of the author's club. As such, you can network with other authors and open new doors. Find author associations in your local area or online environments where authors exchange ideas and experiences. By surrounding yourself with other authors, you'll learn more, create business relationships, and get clients.
Always remember, though, that there are different types of authors. Not every author is going to be your type. Make sure you are deliberate in how you go about finding other authors. The last thing you want is to waste your time with authors whose values or mindsets don't match yours.
51. Pitch Your Book to be Produced as a Movie or TV Show
Getting your book produced as a movie or a TV show is the holy grail of writing. This is one of the most lucrative opportunities in the book industry, and one of the most glamorous. To pitch your book to be produced as a movie or a TV show, you'll need to find a producer willing to hear you out.
Always remember that what made your book successful isn't necessarily what would make a movie or TV show version successful. Be open-minded. Craft a pitch based on the market, not your idea. It's healthy to acknowledge that, if selected, your book will be heavily modified to be turned into a book or a TV show. They're completely different media with completely different markets.
52. Use the Book to Create Change (Politicians, Celebrities, Artists, etc.)
You have more power and influence than you may think. The most famous people—politicians, celebrities, and artists—are often open to promoting new ideas they resonate with if they’re good for society. Think about the people who are in the spotlight and who could help you spread the message.
The key when it comes to reaching out to influential people is to make sure you create a genuine relationship and make clear what they’re going to gain from paying attention to you. The most powerful thing you can do is demonstrate that your mission is their mission. Or that your values are their values.
For example, if you write about climate change, you may find an actor who is passionate about the cause. That actor may want to use social media to promote your cause through your book. Many influential people will be happy to do so because there's something in it for them (it makes them look good and matches their values).
53. Leave Your Book on the table where You're Speaking
Are you doing public speaking events? Leave your book on the table after you're done or sell them. This is one of the best business cards possible, and it will allow you to stay “top of mind” after the event is complete. You can be remembered by your audience with a great speech, but a great speech and a great book will make you unforgettable.
If you're going to use your book for your public speaking activities, make sure you make it the best it can be. Make sure it has a striking concept and it stands out from the crowd. Many times, you'll be speaking at large events where you'll be competing for the audience's attention with many other speakers.
54. Use the Book to Land Speaking Gigs
If you're not a public speaker already, now is your time to get started. With a nonfiction book, you have increased authority and credibility so you can reach out to event organizers and organizations. There are many events, conferences, and meetings to get booked for. Keep your target audience in mind and you'll find the perfect speaking gigs.
One of the reasons writing a book is so powerful is that, all other things being equal, authors tend to be favored. Why is that? That's because authors are assumed to be industry experts (even if they're not actually). It may be unfair, but you have the opportunity to obtain this unfair advantage for yourself.
55. Use the Book to be a Guest on Radio Shows
In the same vein of public speaking, talking on the radio is one of the best opportunities to reach a lot of people. The key to getting invited as a guest on radio shows is to be regarded as a trusted expert and a fun person to talk. You can be the foremost expert in your field, but if you're not a good guest, radio shows won't be interested in you.
How do you become a good radio guest? You need to let your personality shine. You need to be fun and interesting to the audience. Remember that people listening to radio shows aren't experts in your field. Don’t use industry jargon, but instead talk to them in words they can understand. You're here to educate and inform.
56. Use the Book to be Found on Amazon (Through Amazon Ads)
What if you could rank on the second most important search engine in the world? Yes, I'm talking about Amazon. Ranking on Amazon works in two ways. First, you can get ranked based on good sales and reviews, which will increase your ranking in your category. Second, you can use Amazon Ads to pay your way to the top of the page.
Advertising is a great way to reach new customers if you have the ad budget. Your advertisements may not necessarily be profitable (or even break even), but they help you reach more people and gain more visibility. If you're using other strategies in this guide, you'll still be profitable even if you're still losing money on ads.
57. Use the Book to Appear in Global Catalogues
Amazon isn't the only book catalogue. There are many others, and these include library catalogues and databases. Depending on your publishing arrangements, you may be able to distribute your book globally to dozens of global catalogues. For example, IngramSpark offers global distribution, as does Amazon.
If you publish your book traditionally, you'll gain access to bookstores and large retailers such as Target and Walmart. That said, traditional publishing often requires a large audience to start with and it may not be as profitable for you as self-publishing would (which comes with no upfront investment).
58. Use the Book to Raise Your Prices
Raising your prices is the fastest, easiest way to make more money in your business. But if you can't justify it to yourself, it simply won't work. A nonfiction book gives you authority and credibility for other people, but it also improves your self-image. By writing a nonfiction book, you'll be able to justify raising your prices.
Remember that what you charge in your business is directly correlated to the amount and quality of the intellectual property you own. The more IP you have, and the more recognition your IPs have, the more perceived value you create and the higher your prices can be. After all, companies such as Apple charge premium prices for their product simply because of their IP.
59. Use the Book to Raise Your Prices
Although you can make serious money selling your book with the right marketing strategy, audiobooks are a more lucrative market to go after. According to a report by the Audio Publishers Association, audiobook sales rose by 16% in 2019. Meanwhile, eBooks declined 4.9% in 2019 to $1.94 billion and is down 30.8% for the five-year period 2015-2019, according to the Association of American Publishers.
The audiobook industry is a $1.2 billion industry and is growing by the year. Consumers pay more per audiobook than they pay for eBooks, which increases authors' profit margins. What's more, Amazon's popular audiobook service, Audible, gives consumers monthly credits, which they need to use or else they will lose them.
60. Use the Book to Start an E-commerce Store
If you've created a desirable book with a strong brand, you can think about creating an e-commerce store that sells products derived from your book. For example, you can sell products such as t-shirts, notebooks, and other items. Creating products strengthen your brand position and satisfy your biggest fans.
Starting an e-commerce store isn't for everybody as it requires time and capital, but it can be a great opportunity. Moreover, with drop shipping, you may not necessarily have to hold an inventory of your products. You can have your products designed with your branding and specifications and shipped to your customers by a third party.
61. Use the Book to Extend Your Reach to Other Cultures (By having Your Book Distributed Globally and Maybe Even Translated)
Do you know how Jack Canfield actually got rich? His book series was translated into 43 languages. This means he reached 43 different markets he otherwise wouldn't have without translation. The world is bigger than we often think on a daily basis. Although English is the world's dominant language, not everyone reads books in English.
Translation requires extra capital, but if your book has a proven track record and you are established in your field, it may well be worth it. What's more, by translating your book, you are making yourself visible in a new country, which can unlock speaking, coaching, and consulting opportunities.
62. Use the Book to Join Boards
Are there boards you could join that would advance your career and business? If your book is aligned with your work, you can use the book to make a compelling case for yourself when applying to be a member of a board. The book gives you authority and credibility, and it also demonstrates the scope of your expertise.
The key is to be specific about your expertise. You don't need to pretend you know it all. Just show the value your book brings to the table and position it for the boards you are applying to be a member of. Also, be very selective about the boards you pick. After all, you'll need to invest your time.
63. Use the Book to Travel (Plan Out a Book Tour)
Your book provides the opportunity to make yourself visible. Although you can make yourself visible locally or online, planning a book tour where you visit multiple cities in a short period of time is very beneficial for your visibility. You can plan events in each city to promote your book, speak, and deliver workshops.
Doing a book tour is a great way to increase visibility and generate content to publish on social media. It puts you in the spotlight for a short, but intense, period of time. It also allows you to meet new people. If done right, your book tour can bring a lot of book sales, business, and connections.
64. Use the Book to Create a Legacy
Many people wish to be remembered or to create something that outlasts them. Although a book is a great legacy asset, you may find yourself wanting to leave something bigger. You can use the book to create your legacy, namely, you can use it as the foundation for what you're going to leave behind.
A book is a conceptual framework. You can turn it into a business, a movement, an organization, or even a doctrine. Think about how you'd like your work to outlive you. Would you like to see something concrete like a library? Or would you prefer a series of books or simply a way of thinking? Once you have a book, you have the seed of a legacy!
Conclusion: The Best Way to Write Your Nonfiction Book to Grow Your Business
In this guide, we've covered 64 strategies to write your nonfiction book to grow your business. The number of strategies available may seem overwhelming, but remember that you shouldn't use all of them—at least, not all at once. The best strategies are the ones that resonate with your values and how you operate.
When crafting your book marketing plan, consider the strategies outlined in this guide and ask yourself which are the easiest ones to implement based on your current assets. Moreover, make a budget for how much you want to spend on marketing strategies (both time and money). This way, you'll know when to stop and how to decide between strategies.
If you'd like to discuss strategy, book a free consultation with us.