Scribble yourself credible by Matthew Hill
Looking at the list of ITC recipients of this newsletter, I recognise it least 40 authors. These heroes have made the decision to write a book and to get it published. They are people who stand out from the crowd. They tend to have a higher social media presence, are more involved with credible organisations and they, probably, charge a premium for their time and work.
So what is stopping you?
When I speak to coaches and trainers at conferences and congresses and ask them why they aren’t more involved in writing and promoting their messages, I hear a narrow and repeating collection of responses.
“I am not a good writer”,” I haven’t got the time”,” I’ve got nothing original to say”,” everything’s been said on my subject already” and, ” I lack the discipline to complete a book.”
Many of these self-limiting beliefs turn into self-fulfilling prophecies.
In this piece I want to point out some of the benefits to being a published author.
- The credibility of authorship – despite social media, video cameras, and the ever-increasing number of opportunities to present in public, having your own book still carries more weight than just about anything else. When it comes to leveraging your brand, accessing opportunity and being taken seriously as an expert in your field, a book is critical. Many TV shows, and radio stations, will ONLY interview people who have published a book. When you tell people you have written a book, they hesitate and then treat you in a completely different way. It is one of the few things, that creates almost instant credibility.
- Opening doors whilst you sleep – a book, released and running free in the world, tirelessly works for you – converting strangers into acquaintances and admirers into screaming, raving fans who are happy to advocate your genius. Think of your book as advertising billboards or hoardings, shining like a beacon in all parts of the world, and hailing you as a key person of influence. James Joyce describes a stranger as being a friend that you have yet to meet. This is the magic of a book. It is a stranger converter.
- Your calling card – successful author and informational product creator Peter Thomson, says that going into a meeting and bringing a published book out of your bag, is a reliable method of testing the temperature and intention of the people sitting across the table. If they treat your tome with respect, deference and interests, your business relationship will be a constructive one. If they put their cup of coffee on it, you can pack up and leave early. They are not going to fully appreciate your value.
- Credo – there are millions of people out there, many of whom will never work with you. Likewise there are a few hundred people who would really benefit from collaborating and accessing your expertise. A book filters out the wrong people and warms up the right ones, generating a healthy interest and qualifying them before helping them to understand what you stand for before they get in contact with you. Think of a book as an elaborate filtering system saving you many unsuccessful blind dates and pointless meetings.
- Intellectual property – the discipline of writing a book centres on finding a structure to hang and place all of your thoughts and feelings. One of the best ways to do this is to construct a model – the 4P’s of marketing by Philip Kotler is a great example of a structure that resonates well with a wide audience. The discipline of forming a model is good for you as a communicator. It makes your message accessible to a target audience and becomes a vital pillar for your professional brand.
- Your book is management consultancy – Following on from 5. A good book takes the reader on a journey. Questions are asked, thoughts are experienced and, at the end, the reader may understand their lack, gap, space and pain with a new clarity. It is the uncovering and clarifying of need that propels the reader to get in contact with you and to engage at a deeper level.
- Your book is a publicity generator – linked to 1. A book can generate keynote speech invitations, magazine interview invitations and business meetings, where you are given a platform to convert the book’s message into a critical speech, a pitch or interactive audience session that will generate income and progress.
A final thought
In this post, I have attempted to briefly outline the extraordinary benefits of completing the writing and publishing process. For many people it is about making a decision to start. It is about owning your expert area and it is about putting a structure in place. After writing your book, there follows a complex procedure of publishing and promoting that makes the writing of the book seem like one of the smaller parts of the project.
If you commit to this process, I know you will enjoy yourself, benefit from the discipline and reflection involved, and reap the rewards of being seen as an expert. The bonus comes in the form of credibility from simply being an author.
Your move – feel free to comment or get in touch if this post has moved you strongly one way or another!