Use Your Experience and Knowledge to Create a Book for Your Business or YourselfIn this article we will be using the lessons you have learned in your career and business and now want to pass on to your employees or customers. A great way to do this is to create a book which makes for a great leave behind, introduction to what you do or lead magnet for your business. Treat it as if it is your business card. This book is simple for you to make and easy to produce. To do this we will use a techniques I have developed called the Top Ten Tips Technique. This series takes you through all the steps from creation to publishing to marketing.
1. Using the Top Ten Tips Technique to create your book
2. Writing, design, editing and formatting your book
3. File prep, Kindle, CreateSpace/paperback, or quick print, Re-editing
4. Uploading to Amazon or quick printing for publishing
5. Marketing with your book
Series: Yes You Can Write a Book. If you would like to dig deeper I have developed an online video course that you follow to help make your book.
Overview: The Top Ten Tips Technique to Write and Publish a Book Quick Steps
Welcome back to my series on Yes You Can Write a Book. In chapters below I take you through an overview of the steps needed to create your book.
1. Write down the 10 best tips or lessons on or about your business, or your expertise. Keep these to one or two sentences each. #1 is your best then follow with 9 more.
2. Write out one paragraph for each tip or lesson, just one paragraph.
3. For each lesson expand that 1 paragraph to 3-4 paragraphs, flush out the concepts.
4. Add an author bio along with a photo and contact info at the back of the book. Add a resource list at the back of the book, an intro for the front, a table of contents and any additional info that might apply to your book. If you offer programs or consulting, drop that in also, give readers a call to action. We are talking 28-36 pages when done. This isn't a manifesto.
5. Have your book edited and proofed. After your book is formatted and laid out have it printed out and re-edit again.
6. Format your book in MS Word or some similar word processing application such as Google Doc, Pages, or Scrivner. If you are going to print your book, create an original document that is the page size of your book. 5 ½” x 8 ½” is a great size and is easy to get printed at a quickie print shop for those first copies. If you have access to Adobe InDesign that also works very well. A local designer can help with this stage.
7. Create a separate file for the cover. For an ebook/Kindle, front cover only and save it as a jpg. For a printed book on CreateSpace, set up a full cover spread, back, spine and front. Both Kindle and CreateSpace/Amazon have online tools you can use to make a cover. If you are using a local quick print shop like Staples you can leave out the spine.
8. If sending your book to Kindle then save it as an html file for the web. If you are going to print, export or save as a pdf file. Also export your cover file.
9. Upload your book files to Kindle, or CreateSpace.com, CreateSpace is the print-on-demand, self-publishing side of Amazon.com, or take the two pdf files to a local quick print shop. If hosting on-line at Amazon, add descriptions, author bio, categories and keywords.
10. Market your book though the popular social media channels; FaceBook, Linkedin, Twitter, Pinterest, your website, and YouTube. These lessons make great videos and blog posts. Give it out to potential and current customers. Make the book available on your website as a pdf download.
I will be also covering these topics in my Yes You Can Write a Book Membership Site where you also get access to all of my courses for a low monthly fee. Great way to get started
1. Write Down the 10 Best Tips or Lessons on or About Your Business or Expertise
Write down the 10 best tips or lessons on or about your business, or your expertise. Keep these to one or two sentences each. #1 is your best then follow with 9 more.
A. Write down your #1 best business or experience tip or lesson. If you are working on an autobiography type of book, it might be the top defining moments in your life.
B. Now write down nine additional lessons. Keep these to a sentence or two. No paragraphs just the lessons.
C. Use the Google Top Ten tips in search technique, Amazon Book Table of Contents or the Book Review technique to find and flush out your ideas.
These are the main tips or lessons about your experience or expertise that you want to pass on to the next person or might be useful to a customer. This is the core of your book. This first pass is a quick exercise. You most likely know all of these right off the top of your head. I usually start this process by asking, “what is your number 1 tip?” Don’t do a lot of thinking on this, just write down your number 1 tip. Ok now write 9 more and you are done. You can always change these later, but these tips are usually the things you tell people all the time.
Tips to come up with your list
Collect customer comments over a period of time. This is a great way to pull together a list of a Frequently Asked Questions that can be converted into a book for your business. Look for the common questions and summarize them.
Google the phrase, Top 10 Tips on XYZ, with XYZ being your subject. You will have a good list of search results that you can use to fill in your own list.
Using the Amazon See Inside feature you can easily look through similar books on your topic. Look at the Table of Contents for additional tips ideas. Add in some ideas from the Book Reviews and you can create a business lessons book pretty quickly.
Making a How-To Book, photograph the steps for completing a process, write captions and longer descriptions, add your bio and any additional info and you have a book.
2. Write Out One Paragraph for Each Tip or Lesson, Just One Paragraph
A. Write one paragraph for each tip, not two, just one.
B. We are not concerned with editing here, just writing out the paragraph.
C. Use some of the sites that you used to find your ideas, to flush them out to full paragraphs.
This is a key part of the process of creating your Tips book. For step two just write out one paragraph based on the tip or question. In step three we will expand it but the goal here is just get down some expanded ideas. The tendency at this stage is to start writing out the entire book, don’t do this. It is pretty easy to get bogged down and never complete it. We want to keep everything moving. So just one paragraph.
This is a good step to also look at the sites you pulled up yesterday on Google from the 10 Ten Tips search. If you are a little low on ideas, see what others have written. You should be able to write at least a paragraph.
3. For Each Lesson Expand the 1 Paragraph to 3-5 paragraphs, Flush Out the Concepts
A. Expand each lesson to 3 or 5 paragraphs
B. Again no editing, just writing
C. The cooking timer method can be very effective here for getting done text.
In Step 3 we fill out each of the 10 lessons. Write 3 or 5 paragraphs for each one. Personal stories and experiences can add a great edition to your book. We go deeper. We aren’t writing a manifesto but quick lessons about our topic. We want our reader to come away with some great actionable lessons based on our experience.
Use the cooking timer method. Set the timer for 10 minutes and just write with no editing. You cannot stop until the time goes off. No correcting, no editing, no stopping. If you don’t have anything to write, start writing gibberish until something pops in. Write today, edit tomorrow.
Again searching on top 10 tips on our topic is a great way to flush out our lessons. YouTube videos, related blogs and books. Look at the book’s reviews, remember we are looking for experience lessons here. Amazon book reviews are an excellent way to see what other books on our topic might have missed or subject that need to be included.
I cover this technique in greater detail in my 7 Steps to Publishing Your Book Course
4. Flush Out the Balance of the Book, Author Bio, Resources, Services
Add an author bio along with a photo and contact info at the back of the book. Add a resource list at the back of the book, an intro for the front, a table of contents and any additional info that might apply to your book. If you offer programs or consulting, drop that in also, give readers a call to action. We are talking 28-36 pages when done. This isn't a manifesto.
A. Add your author bio including photo, contact info, resources, introduction, front matter, table of contents (the 10 points), legal info, copyright, title page.
B. Add in any products, consulting, programs, or additional info that your reader might find useful. Add in back cover copy
C. Add in your book title and subtitle, make this one of the last thing you do. Don’t fall in love with the working title.
How long should this book be? This isn’t a manifesto but here are some guidelines.
• Kindle/Amazon e-book shoot for around 8,000-12-15,000 words.
• CreateSpace/Amazon, you need to be a minimum of 24 pages, 36 works pretty nicely and 50-70 pages makes for a decent size book.
• A quick print book, local printer kind of book, your book needs to fit into a unit of 4 so 24, 28, 32 pages, etc., even 12 can work very nicely.
If you are a consultant, a tips book can be an essential part of your marketing. In the back highlight your programs and services. Make this section very clear so readers can find it. Add in a nice photograph and be sure to have a Call to Action. You want your reader to do something, contact you, higher you, invite you to speak at an event, or just make things clearer. The goal of a book like this isn’t for big sales, though that might be nice. The goal is to support your marketing and help develop leads. Customers love getting a free book, so be very open to giving them away. Sometimes you are selling this book, sometimes it is a free giveaway for signing up to your mailing list.
5. Have your Book Edited and Proofed. After Your Book is Formatted and Laid Out Have it Printed Out and Re-edit Again.
A. Print out your book on paper and read through. You will see things on paper you never see on the computer screen
B. Locate someone who can edit your book and send a copy to them. Could be a local freelance editor, teacher or someone on-line at a site like Fiverr.com or ODesk.com
C. You can have just a copy editor for spelling and grammar or proof reader or you can go deeper with a development editor. But all books need editing.
D. Update your book.
All books need to be edited to fix spelling and grammar. Editors can also fix continuity between all the sections. Edit before you have the book layed out and then again after it is layed out and almost ready to go. It is amazing how many things we don’t see when the book is just sitting on our computer. Give the editor a printed copy to work from.
I go into lots of details on how to design and layout out your book in my course 7 Steps to Publishing Your Book, click here to learn more.
6. Formatting Your Books Insides for Kindle or Print
Format your book in MS Word or some similar word processing application such as Google Doc, Pages, or Scrivner. If you are going to print your book, create an original document that is the page size of your book. 5 ½” x 8 ½” is a great size and is easy to get printed at a quickie print shop for those first copies. If you have access to Adobe InDesign that works very well. A local designer can help with this stage.
A. Set up a page template that matches how you are going to produce your book. Print local, ebook/Kindle, Print on Demand CreateSpace/Amazon, or pdf for your web site. Review books you like for design ideas.
B. Design and layout all the book’s pages, a local freelance designer can help with this stage, though you can do it yourself in a program like MS Word.
C. Print the book out and do another round of edits.
D. You are striving for a 28-36 page book. Remember we aren’t doing a manifesto, this is a quick short book.
Layout your edited book, add in photos and or graphics. A good size if you are using print-on-demand is 6” x 9”. If you are printing your book at a local quick print shop then 5 1/2” x 8 1/2” is a good size because it is based on standard 8.5” x 11” page size. If international one half of A4 works well also. Margins should be 5/8” of an inch.
We are looking to create a book in the 28-36 page length. If you are printing your book using a local quick print shop and binding the book with staples then you want your page count to be a unit of 4. Something like 20 to 24 pages works very well.
There are many ways to publish your book, but I highly recommend putting it up on Amazon as a print book using CreateSpace.com or an ebook through their Kindle program.
If you are setting your book up for print, add in a header with the book name and in the footer add in page numbers and maybe your web address.
I have an entire course on how to layout your Kindle ebook. Step by Step, including making the cover and working with images. Easy Kindle Books, click here
7. Creating Your Book Cover for eBook or CreateSpace Print on Demand
Create a separate file for the cover. For an ebook/Kindle, front cover only and save it as a jpg. For a printed book on CreateSpace, set up a full cover spread, back, spine and front. Both Kindle and CreateSpace/Amazon have online tools you can use to make a cover. If you are using a local quick print shop like Staples you can leave out the spine.
A. Review books on Amazon and in store for covers that you like, they can be used for inspiration and to guide the cover designer. Look at the sample ideas.
B. Find a local freelance designer to design and layout out your cover.
C. Test several ideas and titles with associates. Facebook is a great place to do this.
D. If you are going to publish your book on Amazon then reduce your cover to thumbnail size and be sure it is readable. If you are going to print at a local quick print shop have a mock-up made for review.
We do judge books by their covers. Your reader should know at a glance what your book is about. I follow the “Don’t Make Me Think” philosophy of usability author Steve Kruge. Your book cover should have a title and if you need to give more clarity a subtitle. Subtitles are a great way to add in some important keywords to your title. Also add your name to the cover. To help with design and layout ideas look at similar books in your market. Amazon is the perfect place to do this. There are many services that can help you produce a compelling cover. You contact a local graphic designer, on-line services like 99Designs.com and Fiverr.com and most of the book publishing sites offer design and editing packages.
Check out my entire course on writing, designing and publishing your print or ebook. I go into depth on creating covers for your book, 7 Steps to Publishing Your Book, click here
8. Formatting Your Book for eBook Kindle
Formatting the Book for Kindle If sending your book to Kindle then save it as an html file for the web. If you are going to print, export or save as a pdf file. Also export your cover file.
A. Decide where and how your book is going to be published. Local, ebook/Kindle/Amazon, paperback/CreateSpace/Amazon, pdf
B. Format the book insides for the appropriate platform or platforms
C. Format the cover for the appropriate platform or platforms
Kindle Formatting Guidelines
Basic Guidelines for Kindle Books
• Keep your formatting simple
• Produce a clean, basic document
• Use Paragraph Formatting for global layout and spacing
• Work in a standard 8.5 x 11” document
• Avoid tabs and spaces for indenting paragraphs
• Use Paragraph Formatting to adjust indents
• No headers or footers
• No page numbers
• Do not use Returns between paragraphs
• Use Space Before and Space After for spaces between paragraphs
• Use Page Breaks between chapters
• Insert images “from file” do not paste
• Format Chapter Heads with MS Word style features. Use H1 Head and H2 Subheads
• 12 points for text, 14-18 points for heads
• Use Arial/Helvetica, Times Roman or Georgia for fonts
• Bold, italic or underline use format font menu, the format palette or the tool bar
• Turn charts and graphics into artwork
• Add live http web links to your book
• Every Kindle is a different size
• Use color images
• Author pays for download, be efficient with images sizes
• Avoid charts and tables, turn them into .gif graphics
• Amazon recommends a picture ratio of 9:11
• Pictures 900 x 1100 pixels, 9:11, old standard was 600 x 800 pixels, 3:4
• Kindle Fire HD 8.9 display 1920 x 1200, 16:10
• At 72 dpi 12.5” x 15.77” inches
• At 300 dpi 3” x 3.66” inches
• Kindle processes, .gif, .png, .bmp, jpeg files
• Kindle book format suports .jpeg and .gif
• 300dpi or 72dpi or 96dpi image resolution
• Up to 5mb per image, I find this way to big, keep under a megabyte
Bottom Line for Picture Sizes
• Pictures 900 x 1100 pixels, 9:11
Old standard 600 x 800 pixels, 3:4
300dpi or 72dpi, gif format
At 72dpi, 12.5” x 15.75”
At 300dpi, 3” x 3.66”
.gif or jpg format
• Longest side must be minumum of 1000 pixels, shortest side 625 pixels, or 13.8” x 8.7” at 72 dpi and rgb jpg format.
• I like building covers at 6” x 9” at 300dpi or 1800 pixels x 2700 pixels
I have an entire online course on formatting and creating your book, Easy Kindle Books, click here.
9. Publishing Your Book. Three Different Options for Creating a Book.
1. E-Book, two files need, the book insides saved in html and a cover saved as a jpg file. Upload both files to KDP.Direct/Kindle/Amazon. MS Word works great for creating the book. To create the cover use Fiverr.com or Canva.com.
2. A print book, use CreateSpace.com, they are the print-on-demand self-publishing side of Amazon.com. Two pdf files required, one for the interior and the other for the cover. Find a local freelancer to lay your book out for you. Usually created with Adobe InDesign but PowerPoint can work also.
3. A Quick print book, usually stapled. Create two files, the interior usually done with MS Word and a cover, Fiverr.com or Canva.com or a local freelancer. Create two pdf files and take them to a local quick print shop for printing. Instruct them to run them out and staple to make a book. For the interior of the book, set your page setup to 5.5” x 8.5”. This works really well. The cover will be 8.5” x 11” landscape if your book is under 32 pages.
If hosting on-line at Amazon, add descriptions, author bio, categories and keywords.
A. Set up your free accounts at Amazon, Kindle KDP, CreateSpace
B. Upload your book to Amazon or take the files to your local print shop
C. Fill in all of the description copy, pricing, categories and keywords.
D. Review the books using the Amazon proofing features.
E. Push the book live or get it printed. Because of print-on-demand you only need to print limited amounts. No need for a garage full of books.
Check out my entire course on writing, designing and publishing your print or ebook. I go into depth on creating covers for your book, 7 Steps to Publishing Your Book, click here
10. Launch and Marketing Your Book
Launch and market your book though the popular social media channels; FaceBook, Linkedin, Twitter, Pinterest, your website, and YouTube.
Use your book in your office, give it away to clients. These lessons make great videos and blog posts. Give it out to potential and current customers. Make the book available on your website as a pdf download.
A. Announce your book through the popular social media channels.
B. Give your book out to potential and current customers.
C. Make your book available on your website. Produce a pdf for use as a lead magnet to bring people into your email list.
Time to get your book out to the world. Use social media to highlight the book and to distribute your key tips.
Use an email management company like AWeber or MailChimp to manage your mailing list. Save your new book as a pdf file and use it as a lead magnet to give away in exchange for someone signing up to your email list.
Signup email list box
Drop in the tip list
Learn How I Launched My Book to Amazon International Best Seller
Want to launch your book to an International Best Seller like I did, check out my course on How to Market Your Book. In fact you can download my case study with examples for free and learn what I did to get my first best seller. Just scroll down to the Class Curriculum after clicking this link and download the pdf. How to Market your Book, Click Here
* * * BONUS SECTION * * *
How to Make an Amazon Best Selling BookThe theory for producing a best selling book is to drive as many people as you can to buy your book through the narrowest time frame in a book category that doesn’t have very many books in it. You also want to pick a category that doesn’t have a popular best selling author or big selling book at the top that you have to take on.
This is why building your platform is important; you need fans to do this. If you can do this it is very likely that you can create a bestselling book. Maybe even a #1 category best seller. It won’t last long so be sure to screen capture the Products Details area of the Amazon sales page for your marketing. Generally this technique works best with Kindle books because you can lower the price down to $.99. But I have also seen it work with paperback books but the per book price will by much higher.
Step 1. Research Your Categories.
• Look at your competitors books for category ideas
• Select specific book categories that have under 5-7000 books in them, better if you can find one with low thousands or even hundreds of books.
• Try to find a category that doesn’t have books in the top 2,000-5,000 overall Amazon sales rank. Also look for categories that don’t have a superstar writer or celebrity at the top. It is almost impossible to beat them, look for different categories
• When you upload your book, select the BASAC book categories as close as you can to the Amazon categories. Be sure to include in your description and keywords and even your title/subtitle the Amazon categories that you want to be in. You are helping Amazon figure out where your book should sit.
Step 2. Pre-Launch Your Book
Remember the goal here is to drive as many sales as you can through the narrowest time frame with as many people as you can.
• Prepare and send out your launch announcement or any articles that you might be releasing to your Blog and Influencers network.
• Send press releases out to PR sites free and paid.
• Try to build a street team around your book launch. These are fans that you have that support you and will buy the first copies and post though out their networks. This can be huge, even just a couple of people can make a huge difference.
• Set up a virtual book tour. A virtual book tour are articles and interviews that you have created about you and your book that are hosted on other people’s blogs and websites. Start early and build these relationships.
• E-mail your list that you are launching your book and would love to have their support. Give them the book link and instructions on when to buy.
• Lower your Kindle price to $.99. Have a few friends buy a copy of the book and write several positive reviews. You want to make sure everything is working sales wise. It is ok to have the book live, just keep it quiet.
• If released over CreateSpace lower your price as much as you can.
Step 3. Launch/Release Your Book.
Remember to create a best selling Amazon category book you want to drive as many people as you can to buy your book through the narrowest time frame in a book category that doesn’t have very many books in it.
• Announce your book is live on your social media sites, include a cover shot and the link to Amazon.com.
• E-mail your list that your book is now live.
• Announce your book is live on your blog, websites, make a book trailer video and host on YouTube and all your sites. Any and everyplace you have exposure to the world, announce your book is live.
• Get you street team announcing your book is live through all their social media sites with live links to Amazon
• If you are giving away a free bonus gift tell everyone how to get it.
• Conduct a Virtual Launch Party on Google Hangout.
• Release your Virtual Book launch and tour.
• This is key, post your progress in your social media accounts during the launch day about what is going on, how exciting it is. Make it an event. Encourage others to join in, get your fans involved to get you over the top to a #1 position.
• Be sure to screen capture your Amazon ranking as you climb, don’t try to guess the top, just keep recording the screen during the day. This information is located in the Product Details section of your Amazon book sales page.
• Amazon updates on an hourly basis but sometimes nothing happens for hours and then it starts to roll, you will have to pay attention for 24 hours. Having a few fans in other time zones can really help out with the watching.
Step 4. Re-Release/Announce the Book Release at the End of The Day
• Re-e-mail your list and repost in Social Media about your launch, be sure to not burn out this list.
• You can push books over the top during the night by letting readers know how close you are to #1.
• Watch what is happening the next day, some countries take a day or so to catch up to the #1 ranking.
• International best sellers can be done with as few as 3-5 book sales, build relationships with fans in other countries. This turns you into an International Best Seller
• Remember to check your rankings and screen capture, #1s and Hot New Releases
Step 5. Thank Everyone for All the Support
• Thank everyone for the support and help. Especially thank your super fans and anyone that reposted through their networks for you.
• Update all your bios about your new best selling #1 status.
• Post the screen shots of the new rankings and the success. You will be surprised, people will still be buying. People like success.
• Have your book cover update with a best selling burst or banner.
Learn How I Launched My Book to Amazon International Best Seller
Want to launch your book to an International Best Seller like I did, check out my course on How to Market Your Book. In fact you can download my detailes case study with examples for free and learn what I did to get my first best seller. Just scroll down to the Class Curriculum after clicking this link and download the pdf. How to Market your Book, Click Here
Case Study, How I Launched My Book Marketing Check List to #1 International Best Seller: Overview, for more details click the link above
How I Launched My Book Marketing Checklist Book to #1 International Best Seller
Step 1: Pre-Launch: Write Out Your Launch Plan
Step 2: Pre-Launch: pick categories and keywords for your book.
Step 3: Pre-Lunch, Make sure your book is live on Amazon and can be purchased, buy a copy.
Step 4: Pre-Launch: Prepare a media kit with launch graphics; cover shots, author head shots, text and links to your Amazon book sales page.
Step 5: Pre-Launch: Research some other book launches and their descriptive text for inspiration on how to write yours. Google “recent book launches.”
Step 6: Pre-Launch: Set up a MS Word document with your description text and links to Amazon.
Step 7: 9:00am Launch: Release your new book, we begin.
Step 8: Launch: Post your book launch notices everywhere you can.
Step 9: Launch: Thank your fans for buying your book, build social proof.
Step 10: Launch: Record your progress on Amazon rankings with screenshots.
Step 11: Launch: Continue to post updates during the day, post screenshots of any progress on Amazon in your social media sites.
Step 12: Launch: In the evening do another round of launch notices. Encourage people to push you over the top.
Step 13: Launch: Be sure to screencapture all results. The rankings don’t last that long on Amazon. You will need these for marketing.
Step 14: Post-Launch: Thank your fans again for their support. Post the results of how high you got in the rankings. Did you get bestseller?
Step 15: Post-launch: Update all your bios with your new best seller status.