In one of the final sections of our Publishize book, I list my 10 Keys to Success. Because I only briefly touch on them in the book, I’m expanding on them here. Here’s number six in the list.
Get Help When You Need It
Writing and publishing a book is a huge undertaking. As a self-publisher, you are undoubtedly an independent do-it-yourselfer. However, really trying to do everything yourself can become overwhelming and time-consuming.
Just reading all the publishing books you should read and finding out all the information you need to know can take years. It shouldn’t come as a huge surprise that I’m speaking from personal experience here; I started reading about publishing about 12 years ago.
Too many small business owners try to do everything themselves. Being a "one man band" is a sure way to create a lot of stress in your life. Publishing is complex, so think about what you are best at, do those tasks, and delegate the rest. Find people who are good at those things you either hate to do or aren’t good at.
To write, publish, and promote your own book, you need quite a few skills. Consider the areas where you may need support.
- Writing – Many people join writing groups, or participate in programs that provide support and accountability to help them finish a manuscript.
- Editing – I’ve harped on this one a lot in the past. Everyone needs an editor. You do too. Budget for this task.
- Layout – Unless you have professional software like Adobe InDesign and Photoshop and the skills to use them, you may want to consider outsourcing cover design and interior layout.
- Web Design – Unless you are "techie," consider getting help. Even if you opt for a blog site or template-based content management tool, you’ll want to pay for professional customization of the design.
- Copywriting and Public Relations – For some people, copywriting comes naturally. For others (like me) it’s hard. If you can afford a good copywriter, it’s money well spent. Most self-publishers do their own publicity, but these tasks also can be outsourced.
- Administration – When it comes to marketing, you may opt to promote your book through blog tours, teleseminars, social media, and other means. Having a virtual assistant (VA) to help with scheduling and other time-consuming minutiae can give you more time to do the things that only you can do (like write). I love my VA 😉
When you are outsourcing, always consider your budget and the return on investment. For example, I find that I need support and encouragement when it comes to marketing, so I have invested in a lot of marketing training over the years. Although I’m not yet at the point where I can afford to outsource copywriting, my current mentoring group gives me the support and feedback I need to write copy that works.
Some people are natural copywriters and don’t need the type of support I do when it comes to marketing. On the other hand, I’m technically inclined so I can do my own Web site updates. Many people loathe technology passionately so even adding links into a blog post is a struggle. For those people, hiring a Web developer to help with their site updates and design is invariably going to be a good idea.
Think about your skills and budget. Then go forth and outsource!
Get Your Book Done!
Many people set out to write a book, but many never finish. Why is that? After talking to countless small business owners who have expressed interest in self-publishing a non-fiction book, we’ve discovered a number of common problems aspiring authors and self-publishers run into. So we’ve created the Book Blueprint to help people realize their dream of publishing a nonfiction book that helps them attract new clients.
This home-study program gives you all the information, tools, and support you need to finish your book manuscript in as little as 90 days. Check it out!