Before starting to write and self-publish a book, authors should ask themselves, What are the challenges and threats my ideal readers are facing?
This is the 12th in a series of questions, ideas, and tips that authors should address before starting to write and self-publish a book to build your personal brand.
What are the external forces acting on your ideal readers?
Nonfiction writing and publishing success involves writing a book that readers want to read. Nonfiction readers buy books to solve problems and achieve goals. The starting point is to examine the broad forces acting on your readers and their careers or businesses. These include:
- Competition. Competition for scarce resources is a part of life, and always has been. In today’s global economy, the competition is fiercer than ever. The flat world that Thomas L. Friedman described in his bestselling book means that competition is just a click away. Every business and every job-seeker faces increasing competition for scarce resources, including jobs, customers, ideas, and profits.
- Economy. Compounding the challenge of global competition, since 2008, the world’s economies have been fighting stagnating sales and more and more demanding financial markets. Uncertainty over the world economy is making it harder and harder for both consumers and businesses to obtain the financing they desire and need.
- Technology. Personal computing and communications technology has accelerated the pace of change, reduced the time that breakthrough advances deliver meaningful advantages. The time that a new technological advancement offers a firm a compelling advantage has shrunken from years to months. Soon, “everyone” is using it, and it’s time to develop (and finance) a replacement technology.
- Productivity. At every level, from mail room to board room, everyone is struggling to be more productive…to get more done, faster, and with fewer resources. Businesses are struggling to cut costs at every step. Yet, there are more distractions from today’s always-on smartphones and tablet computers and an incoming tsunami of information from the Internet.
Once you understand the broad context of forces acting on your ideal readers, you’ll be better able to examine their frustrations, problems, and goals in greater detail.
Click the book cover to download my (currently) free workbook, 99 Questions to Ask Before Writing and Self-Publishing a Brand-building Book.
Use it as a framework to analyzing your goals, your readers, your competition, and for creating a personalized content, marketing, and profit plan for your book.
Addressing the 99 questions it contains will save you time and help you avoid false starts and wasted effort. It’s like having an expert book coach by your side as you review your goals, analyze your readers, examine your competition, and–at every step–assess your options and make better-informed decisions.
Share your progress writing your book or creating a content marketing plan. Have you analyzed your ideal readers’ challenges and threats? Have you started to create personas that describe who your readers are, what they are doing, where they’re doing it, and how they’re likely to approach your book? Share your experiences and questions as comments, below. Use my online form to ask questions about your ideal readers, and review earlier posts in this series.