I don’t know about you but when I get an idea for a book, I want to start immediately. I know many authors are mappers or plotters and some stop to outline their scenes and content prior to sitting down to write. If you are like me you’re a “pantser”. That’s someone who likes to write “by the seat of their pants”. We hurry off to our computers and start typing. Have you ever though about a business plan for your book?
Whatever the case may be, it’s likely that you’ve never thought about doing any kind of business planning. As a matter of fact, I’d wager none of you have really even considered your book as a business. I know I haven’t until recently. Yet, every book project can benefit from the author taking the time to sit down and work out a business plan. It doesn’t matter which way you decide to publish your book, a business plan will help you produce a more marketable and profitable book.
The creation of a business plan for your book requires you to evaluate your idea from a business as well as a creative standpoint. It’s simple; publishing is the business of selling books and a business plan will help you determine if your idea is saleable. In other words, you must consider if your book is a marketable concept.
Don’t get me wrong, this is not about creativity vs. marketability. Both are essential for a profitable book. You don’t throw creativity out the door to create a marketable product. As a writer, creativity is cornerstone of your work. However, make sure that your creative idea will also sell. After all, you’re doing this to make money, right? A properly created business plan will help you do just that.
- A business plan will help you focus your book on your target market. To do this you must identify your primary reader and target market. Once you have narrow this down you can determine what content best serves the people in your market. A book that offers benefits to the most people in a specific market has the highest likelihood of selling. By studying the needs and desires of your target market you can more easily decide what value and benefits to add to their lives through your book.
- A business plan will guide you in writing an exceptional and needed book. Your business plan will include a competitive analysis that compares your book idea to existing successful books currently on the market. This helps you decide how to make your book better and different from current profitable titles.
- A business plan will help you refine your idea. When you take time to look at the market and competition for your book idea you can tweak your initial idea to make it more marketable. You can create a better idea that will best serve your ideal reader and rise above the competition.
Simplified, you can combine your competitive and market analysis to help you make content decisions that will increase your book’s chances of becoming a popular category option.
- A business plan will help you plan for success. Books only succeed because their authors help them succeed. Your business plan will include a promotion plan as well as a description of your author platform. In order to plan for success it may it may require you to take a year or more before you publish your book to build an author platform (a fan base).
Writing by the seat of your pants has its place and often turns out inspired works. In today’s competitive publishing industry marketability is still the key. If you will take the time to do some initial planning, you will increase the likelihood of producing not only a more creative but a more profitable book.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. You can leave leave a comment here…
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