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Are Books the “New Business Card”?

By Kate Victory Hannisian

Chief Editor, emerson consulting group

Published in The Blue Pencil Blog

Kate Victory Hannisian“Books are no longer simply books, they are branding devices and credibility signals — not to mention the reason their authors command large speaking or consulting fees.” So says Ryan Holiday, in a recent column on the Fast Company website. His point is that authors of non-fiction books are increasingly diversifying their income streams, with many making “substantially more money through new business generated by a book, rather than from it.”

This is a trend that’s been building for some time; I’ve seen it reflected in my own work with clients. Discussions about non-fiction book projects go beyond content and audience to encompass ideas about what the book can do for the author and the author’s business.

Smart thoughtleaders think of their non-fiction books as multi-purpose tools. Books can be a calling card for the author’s business, a demonstration and confirmation of his or her expertise, a vehicle for sharing new ideas and valuable content, and a way to build additional revenue streams from consulting and/or speaking engagements. For a concise take on how this works, see my colleague Ken Lizotte’s excellent book, The Expert’s Edge.

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Kate Victory Hannisian has extensive experience as a writer, editor and content developer. Kate works with emersongroup clients on a variety of projects, including book manuscripts, book proposals, articles for professional and trade journals, and content for websites, special reports, blogs and e-newsletters. To contact Kate, click here