Book writing for buzz: fast track success by hiring a ghostwriter
You’ve got terrific original ideas and plenty of knowledge to share. You’ve tried to position yourself as an online expert to capture your share of that elusive but oh, so glorious buzz – but, so far, no luck (or perhaps you simply don’t have enough time to invest in your quest). What do you do next? Well, you already know that, to attract attention and gain prestige, you first need to create quality content that is better, more interesting, more targeted to your audience, and more valuable than what others are creating. One of the more effective ways to do so is to write a book.
Benefits of book writing as a buzz marketing technique include:
- This is an outstanding, time-proven method of establishing yourself as an expert.
- This greatly increases the potential of having your name and your expertise appearing in major sites across the Internet (such as Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com and the like) and in the search engine results pages when people search on your area of expertise.
- This is a marvelous way to get yourself interviewed by news outlets and/or bloggers, which further increases the reach of your influence and gives your name and book title even more prominence in the search engine results pages. (Caveat: if you choose to self-publish, many top news organizations will not interview you or profile your book.)
- People often share news of a new book through social media channels, giving your platform and book an even better chance of going viral.
Major downside alert: writing a quality book takes a LOT of time and can feel overwhelming, especially if you’ve never written one before. One solution is to hire a ghostwriter who can take your ideas and write the book for you!
Benefits of deciding to hire a ghostwriter include:
- He or she already knows how to write a book and can save you plenty of stress.
- This saves you valuable time and allows you to spend more of your time doing what you do best.
- The book can still be in your name (more about that later) so it has all of the benefits associated with buzz marketing mentioned above.
Before you go that route, though, you’ll want to be clear about your own expectations as well as those of your ghostwriter.
Questions to ask yourself BEFORE you hire a ghostwriter, as well as topics to discuss WITH a potential ghostwriter:
1) How much of the material will I be creating and how much research will the ghostwriter need to do? Possibilities include:
- I will write a rough draft of the book and the writer will refine the text
- I will provide notes and outlines and the writer will flesh it out into a book after doing supplementary research
- I will provide concepts and ideas and the writer will do the research and write the book
2) If the writer will be doing at least some research, what sources are acceptable for him/her to use? Possibilities include:
- Only resources that I provide and/or approve
- Non-wiki resources
- Any resources
3) What fact checking procedures will I have in place to double-check the accuracy of any new material provided by the writer? Possibilities include:
- I will request a list of sources from the writer and double-check any facts that I am uncertain about and make sure that any quotes/material used fits within fair use guidelines
- I will request a list of sources from the writer and double-check any facts that I am uncertain about
- I will spot check facts in the manuscript
- I trust the writer and do not plan to fact check/do a fair use check and/or all of the facts will come from me
4) Who is the target audience for the book?
- Educational level: what level of language/jargon should be used?
- What is the end goal of the book?
- What action do you want readers to take?
5) How much am I willing to pay the writer to write my book?
- Do I want to pay by the project?
- Do I want to pay by the hour?
- Do I want to pay by the page?
- Do I want to pay by the word?
6) When are payments due?
- Is a down payment required?
- Are there payments due after each section of the text is delivered? When and how much?
- When is the final payment due? In other words, when is the project officially “done”?
7) What is the policy on revisions?
- How is a revision defined?
- How many revisions are included in the writer’s fee?
- What is the fee for revision requests that go beyond the standard?
8) Who decides the concept of the interior images/photos?
- Who finds the images?
- What is the budget?
- Who verifies the copyright/credits/fees?
9) How is authorship listed?
- Your name
- Your name followed by the name of the ghostwriter
- Your name as told to