In the business world today, books are the new business card, and one that is unlike the rest because it won’t get thrown away. Amazon #1 bestselling author Donna Gunter shares how publishing a book is going to help your business. By leveraging your knowledge to gain authority status in your industry, Donna proves how books have become the ultimate marketing tool. She tells you all about it in this episode, along with personal stories of how a book changed a client’s business results.
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Publishing A Book: The New Business Card with Donna Gunter
On this episode, we are bringing to you, Donna Gunter. She is coming all the way from Texas to tell us how publishing a book is going to help our business. Donna, welcome.
Thank you. I’m happy to be here.
Donna, how did you get started in having your own business?
It’s a long story, but to give the cliff notes version of it, I started out in higher education administration. I got burned out in that. I had wanted to be an entrepreneur. I had a short business stint as a crafter. I discovered that turning my hobby into a business was a bad idea. I went back into nonprofit management. By that time, I was disgusted with my life. I lived in Massachusetts at the time. My marriage is on the rocks and I’m unhappy with my life. I blew up my life, moved back to Texas. In the meantime, I had taken a short course on how to be a marketing virtual assistant. I moved back to my small rural East Texas hometown and opened up a business in my mother’s garage. Thank God for the internet because that gave me clients since my little local town has as its primary industries, bass fishing and forestry, neither of which were my target market.
How did you get into publishing the book and where did that all fit into the bass fishing and the forestry?
I still have done nothing with forestry and bass fishing quite frankly, but I hope never too. It’s not an interest of mine at all.
You’ve been in forestry country.
I had discovered in promoting my marketing virtual assistant business that I hated to market myself, but I love telling people about how to do things. You all love the educational aspect of that. That’s became known as educational marketing and now it’s known as content marketing. What I discovered was that whole piece that I was doing naturally sharing what I knew drew people magnetically to me. They would come and read stuff on my website and they would show up. We would have a strategy call and they would say, “I’ve spent three hours on your website. I know what you do and how you do it. I want you to help me do that for my own business too. Can we get started?”The best way that you can promote books is by giving it away rather than selling them. Click To Tweet
That was much more comfortable than having to have a sales conversation. Leapfrog another ten or fifteen years, I discovered book publishing, which was the ultimate content marketing tool. I took it out on trial run with nine colleagues and we all got author credit for what I call a multi-authored book on marketing. Each of us wrote a chapter on our marketing specialty that became an Amazon bestseller. I was thrilled with the results that I can produce for clients and how happy they were and how much that changed their businesses and gave them authority in their marketplace. Then I decided to focus my business efforts totally on helping other business owners publish their own books.
You started out with group publishing books, how does the book help with content marketing?
I help my clients publish what I call a one-problem, one-solution book. We take a look at their target market.
You make it sound easy, Donna.
It’s a very short book. It is from 50 to 70 pages. Most business books are 200 pages. Most of them go unread except for maybe one or two chapters that apply to whatever you’re looking for at the time. I like to help my clients design a short book that covers one problem and one solution that they provide for that. It’s designed to be read in a short sitting like while you’re sitting in the car waiting for your kid to come out of recital practice or on the way to work if you’re coming to commute on train or bus. You’re talking about what you know and helping your prospect overcome a problem, it does cement you as the authority in their minds.
When they get ready to solve that problem, when the pain becomes deep enough, you’re the first person they think of. Unlike a business card, unlike a brochure, unlike some folder, they haven’t thrown that book away that’s sitting on the desk, that’s sitting on the bookshelf. For whatever reason, they can’t use it. They’ve passed along to somebody else. One, being a book author still has enough all with it that you’re somebody, especially if you’ve authored a book. Two, we’ve been brainwashed by society not throw books away because they’re valuable. Those two features in combination with talking about what you know naturally in your book, all cement you as that trusted local authority that someone would go to. If you’re a bride and you need your teeth whitened before your wedding and you’re Googling the dentist in the area who do teeth whitening. You see one of them has a book and it speaks to you because it’s aimed at brides. You might think, “I’ll get a copy of that book.” You might get a physical copy or a digital copy depending on how the dentist is giving it away. You read it and then you become ready to hire that dentist.
We are getting Gunter genius right here. The book is one problem, one solution so that makes it easy on the author. The second thing is 50 to 70 pages, a much higher probability that people will actually read the book. The third thing is that the book is a business card that people don’t toss away. How do you help people come up with the one problem, one solution? What problem or solution because how would you determine that focus?
A lot of my clients are local business owners and they’re looking for a different way to get out in front of their market. One, the book stands out because it distinguishes them in their marketplace. We start to talk about in order to get to that one problem, ask them their favorite service that they like to provide or the most profitable service they like to provide. Ask them to brainstorm some problems that people have around that service and then talk about what the solution is that they can provide. Through this question and answer process, we come up with that topic, then I go and it takes a little bit of time and comes up with a series of specifically designed questions to get them to talk about that topic. Most business owners love to talk about their business. They love to talk about themselves. They don’t like to write about it. I’m weird and that I like to write, I get to record this and then copy edit it. At any rate, we come back then after those questions have been designed. My client has the questions, they’ve created some talking points for themselves and then we conduct about 50 to 60-minute interview, which is transcribed and manipulated through some copy editing into that 50 to 70-page book.
You get your book done in an hour basically. I do think it’s important, Donna, to speak it out because when I was writing my book, everyone was like, “Just say it out loud.” Because then you’ll know where the errors are.
That’s a great tip if you’re editing your own book for sure to read it out loud. I was looking at incorporating audiobooks as a part of my services. The guy that I was listening to was selling his course on how to create audiobooks. He said, “If you’re going to read your book loud anyhow for copy editing purposes of catching errors, you might as well just record it and have your audiobook created at the same time.” I was like, “This is genius.”
Let me ask you about a success story because you’ve got local area businesses. What’s a client that you’ve had that once they had the book or something that it helped their business? What kind of changes or results did they see once they were an author?
One person, in particular, he wrote a very unusual book. It was entirely to speak about his time as a trademark and copyright attorney. Those two things don’t relate to each other. He had a very humorous way of looking at that. As a result of his writing the book, he got all kinds of acknowledgment and acclaim from other business owners who were trying to figure out the copyright and the trademark patent process for themselves. The most amazing thing that’s happened to him is that he’s on board with a space program, believe it or not. Because they read his book and they thought that how he presented the information in his book was wonderful. He’s working with a developer who’s trying to get to the moon or the Mars or whatever. It’s one of the private space programs at any rate as a result of him being a published author. That blew him away. He never thought when he started on this book that would be one of the results he would experience.
Basically, it got him the publicity and I think what I hear from you, Donna, is he let a little bit of his personality show up. They caught the feeling, “This is a fun guy to work with. He’s not another boring attorney that talks above you and you’re not sure what they said.”
He said that’s the reason he adopted this pirate persona in his book because everything he had read up until that point had been dry and dusty and boring as all get out. He didn’t want to be that boring patent attorney or that boring copyright attorney. He wanted to stand out in his field and he succeeded in spades.
I did Engineering at Texas A&M and I passed the patent bar, so I totally understand the level of intensity and bringing some humor, especially as a student. The material was so dry and if the presenter of the professor or whoever was drier on top of it, it’s hard to swallow. Bringing a little bit of humor into a dry subject I think would make a huge difference.
It will keep you awake for sure because otherwise, it sounds like it would be a big snooze fest.Everybody's got something to say, especially if you're a business owner. Click To Tweet
You did the joint venture book with nine other authors. Do you recommend the joint venture or do you recommend going out and doing your own book? What have you learned since you’ve gotten into this promote your business with a book?
It depends on somebody’s budget. I think you can be successful in both but of course, your own book is going to be just you and the book. You get more space and more pages to better expand upon the solution that you’re providing for whatever problem you might be having. However, a multi-author book or joint venture book can be powerful for people who want to create their own little networking groups. Let’s say you’re a wedding planner and you want to dominate maybe the Southern California area. You get other business owners that you would normally recommend as a part of your business. You had the DJ, you recommend, the limo company, the officiant and the event planner. All of you come up with a chapter and you all contribute to the book. You reduce costs that way, but what’s very cool is that you all also agree to give it out to all of your clients. The pin is saying you’ve got ten total people involved in this book. You’ve multiplied by ten your networking ability because you’re giving it out to your clients. If the other nine are doing their jobs, they’re giving it out to their clients as well. You’ve created an expansive opportunity for yourself and everybody who’s an author in that book.
How do people find out more about you, Donna?
They can go to DonnaGunter.com and get some basic information. I do have a special offer for people that are reading this. I always tell my clients that the best way that they can promote their books is by giving it away rather than selling them. I like to walk my talk. I would like to invite your audience to download a free copy of my book, Make Them Choose You: How Local Business Owners Can Double Their Business, Get Customers Consistently and Have More Free Time WITHOUT Being Held Hostage By Expensive Marketers by visiting MakeThemChooseYou.com/HR for Heartrepreneur Radio.
We’ve got a great special offer. Donna, what is one thought you want to leave our audience with?
If you think that you can’t write a book, abolish that right now. Everybody’s got something to say, especially if you’re a business owner. There’s a journey that you’ve had to get to where you are. You’ve got a special gift to share and shouldn’t everybody know about it by you telling them what you can do for them in your own book?
Thank you so much. We have been with Donna Gunter, MakeThemChooseYou/HR and get your free copy of her book so you can get to be that expert in your community. I am Sam Mak. I am your guest host. We appreciate your five-star reviews. If you want to find out more about me and to turn diversity into dollars, you can go to my website at www.SpeakerAuthorMotivator.com.
About Donna Gunter
Donna Gunter, Amazon #1 best-selling author of Make Them Choose You, Brand Yourself as the Trusted Local Celebrity, and Biz Smart Quick Guide: 10 Strategies to Online Visibility for More Traffic, Clicks and Profit!, helps entrepreneurs, consultants, speakers, coaches and professionals stop the client chase by leveraging their knowledge to gain authority status in their industry.
She then dramatically amplifies their message and shows them how to convert the new audience into high-paying customers. Using her proven Become Business Famous signature seven-step system, she works together with her clients to build powerful personal brands and grow their businesses through speaking, publishing and publicity.