Write a How To Book

Many people are searching for simple solutions to solve what appear to be complex problems. They want to see the solution laid out in a few easy steps. Of course, not all complex problems can be addressed that easily. However, you have already solved the problem, and you’ve done it well. You honed the skill, expertise, and knowledge and you practiced it regularly in the performance of your work. You’ve been recognized as a subject matter expert and you conduct regular workshops or seminars with workbooks for participants.

The topics of such knowledge are very diverse and can include anything from tiling bathrooms to improving team communications in corporations. One challenge you face is that you are limited by your time, and you can only be in one place at a time. How can you reach more people with this important and helpful information?

Capturing your knowledge in a book performs some important functions: it lends credibility to your work to attract new business; it upgrades your current business with a professional publication; and it allows you to reach many more people with your knowledge, even when you are asleep. You already have all the material for a good ‘How To’ book on the topic. Getting from here to a finished book is easy for you: organize the information, complete the writing and add any relevant diagrams or photographs.

Organizing the content follows the same basic steps you followed in performing the project or developing the workshop. Be very explicit about the purpose of project or exercise. The title of the project, workshop and/or book, in this case, is very simple: “How To…,” or “Seven Steps To….” Such a title is self-explanatory and connects the reader with the actual purpose of the work immediately. They will find it quickly and know they have found the answer to their search without having to read further.

Describe the expected results someone may achieve by following your process. Speak in terms of outcomes and include visual examples like charts and photographs where appropriate. Include benefits such as cost savings, timesavings, improved productivity, or other measures of improvement.

Create a list of the resources required to complete this project or exercise. These can range from hand tools, power equipment, computers, flip charts, writing pad and more, depending on the nature of the project. In addition, discuss any requirements related to the physical space where the work is conducted. Reference your web site, or blog, as a great resource for additional tips and suggestions, and for answering frequently asked questions (FAQs) by people who have attempted to perform the process in question.

Write out the specific actions to take in plain English. Organize the actions into clear steps, along with resources required, to accomplish each one. Include diagrams or photographs. Ensure that each new step is a logical building block on the previous step. Simplicity is the key. The less you leave to the imagination of the reader, the better. By now, the tasks in this process are second nature to you. To someone new to this work, the project steps can be daunting. Don’t skimp on details that help to simplify the steps.

Finally, a very important element supporting the credibility of your work is customer testimonials. People prefer to hear from someone else who was hesitant at the start of such a project. Their experience at navigating the process with ease to reach a successful conclusion provides great encouragement for prospective readers and buyers. Include testimonials in your book and, of course, continue to collect them on your web site. You have the knowledge and experience with your process; you’re halfway to having a great book that can increase your marketing potential.