‘When am I going to get it all done?!’
Whether it’s blogging, Facebook, Instagram or Snapchat, as small business owners it can feel like there are a million things we should be doing to promote our businesses.
In fact, it’s one of the most common hurdles when it comes to writing a book – with everything else you’re supposed to be doing, how on earth can you find the time to write a book?
Well, what if I told you that your book isn’t just an investment in your credibility that will pave the way to new clients, partnerships and opportunities, but that it can also become the secret weapon in your content marketing strategy?
What most entrepreneurs don’t realise is that your book isn’t just a book – it’s 30,000 to 50,000 words of content that can be used to consistently promote your business!
Once you’ve written your book, you have 30,000 to 50,000 words that can be leveraged for:
- Blog posts
- Guest articles on other websites
- Facebook posts
- Instagram images
- And more!
The content in your book could even be used as a launch pad for a new podcast or an online course.
And the best thing about this strategy?
The hard work’s already done! (Or it will be, once you’ve written your book.) The content’s already there, and you don’t even need to be the one copying, pasting and scheduling – with some clear instructions, a good VA can do it for you!
So where do you start? Read on for the 4 steps to leverage your book in a 12-month content marketing strategy.
Step 1: Turn every chapter into a new piece of content
Did you know that every chapter in your book can be used as a blog post, article, video, webinar and more? In fact, if you organise your chapters the way I recommend in Book Blueprint, you can go even further.
In Book Blueprint, I recommend organising every one of your chapters like a mini-book.
What does this mean?
If you look at most nonfiction books, you’ll see they have:
- An introduction
- A conclusion
- Chapters in the middle
When it comes to the chapters themselves, each chapter then has:
- An introduction to the chapter topic
- Subtopics that help you explain the subject in more detail
- A chapter summary or conclusion
If you’ve done this well, and have covered the what, why and how in each subtopic, you have two options – each chapter can stand on its own as an independent piece of content, or each subtopic could be its own piece of content.
What does this look like in practice?
Take a look at the table of contents for Part 1 of my book, Book Blueprint:
There are two chapters here, each of which have been broken into subtopics. I could then create up to 10 pieces of content from this:
- ‘The 3 tests of a bestselling book idea’
- ‘Why passion is key when writing your business book’
- ‘2 steps to choose a book idea your readers can’t wait to read’
- ‘Do you have the knowledge to write a book? Find out with this deceptively simple test’
- ‘What sort of book should you write? 4 book types, and which is right for you’
- ‘2 reasons every entrepreneur should write a how-to book’
- ‘The key to thought leadership – write a book’
- ‘A million quick and dirty tips? How to turn them into a book’
- ‘Short-cut your author journey, while avoiding the major traps of the dreaded interview book’
- ‘Why a memoir is the worst first book for entrepreneurs’
And, because this content is well structured and in-depth, I don’t need to do any more writing – I could copy the content directly from my book and hit ‘publish’ today.
If you struggle to get this much out of every chapter, don’t panic (I get a little crazy when it comes to creating content). Instead, see if you can find 12 ideas from across your entire book – that way you have one piece of content a month for a whole year.
Step 2: Translate the same content into different formats
The low-hanging fruit in this strategy is simply to copy the content from each chapter (and/or subtopic) and publish it as a blog post.
But why stop there?
You could also use the exact same content in these ways:
- Depending on word-count limits, a chapter or a subtopic could also be a guest post/article on another website that reaches your target audience
- Each subtopic could be a 90-second to five-minute video that you post on YouTube or Facebook as well as on your blog
- You could use a chapter as the script for an in-depth, 45-minute webinar
- Your chapters could be the starting point for a podcast – have 5-10 evergreen episodes with each one covering one of your chapter topics, or use your chapters as question prompts for interviews with your colleagues
- You could even use a chapter as the subject of a keynote presentation (if you’ve ever seen me speak, you’ll that the first two chapters of my book are the focus of my go-to 60-minute keynote)
Different people engage with different types of content. Yes, some people like to read, but others prefer to listen while others prefer to watch. If your content’s available in a range of different mediums, you have a better chance of reaching all of them!
It doesn’t need to take a lot of time, either. If you’ve written a book, you already have the content – you just need to put aside one or two days to record audio or video versions of it.
Step 3: Pull out key takeaways for social media
The next step is to pull out interesting facts and statistics, thought-provoking questions or the one key learning. Add a call to action, and you have ready-made content for social media!
These don’t need to be fancy or complicated – just something to catch your target market’s interest. Some of mine include:
- 34% of published entrepreneurs double their rates. Are you ready to join them? LINK
- Learn the 3 simple tests of a bestselling book idea LINK
- Discover the 5 entrepreneurial book types and which is right for you LINK
- 81% of published entrepreneurs get featured in the media. Are you ready to join them? LINK
- Having a book isn’t enough to transform your business. It needs to be the RIGHT one. LINK
How do you use these?
Here are some ideas:
- You can incorporate them into your blog posts using Better Click to Tweet, which allows your readers to share it with their networks.
- The video equivalent would be asking your viewers to share a piece of wisdom on Twitter (or whichever platform you prefer), like Marie Forleo does with her Tweetables.
- Share the updates directly on your social profiles – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and more. (Don’t forget relevant Facebook and LinkedIn groups!)
- Turn those phrases into graphics! This means you can share your content on platforms like Pinterest and Instagram, while photo posts on platforms like Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn get much higher engagement than text posts alone (on Facebook, photos have an 87% engagement rate, vs. 4% for a text link). This can easily be done by a freelancer on Upwork or Fiverr.
Step 4: Automate it!
Now I don’t know about you, but I’m not very good with consistency. When it comes to my marketing, I’d rather batch it all at once and then know that I’m set for the next three months, six months, or even 12 months.
The great thing about this strategy is it’s perfect for automating!
Just think about it – you already have all of your content. It’s all in your book. This means all you need to do is schedule it and you’re good to go.
This is how you do it:
- Start by looking at the number of major content pieces you have – by this I mean blog posts, videos, webinars and interviews. How many do you have?
- Then, divide this number by 12. This will give you the number of times you’ll be publishing a month. If it’s 12, you’ll publish one piece of content a month, if it’s 24 you’ll be doing them biweekly, and if it’s 48 you’ll be doing them weekly. (And yes, I know there are 52 weeks in a year – but most of us tend to take a couple of weeks off over Christmas, and you can do the same with your publishing schedule.)
- Schedule the content to be published on your blog over that period. If you have a WordPress website, you can set each post to be scheduled at a future date, while the Editorial Calendar plugin will give you a calendar view of what’s being published and when.
- Schedule the supporting content (Facebook posts, LinkedIn posts, Tweets, Instagram images, etc.) to be published once each piece of content goes out.
When it comes to scheduling social media updates, it’s a good idea to schedule each update to be posted several times – this gives you the best chance of reaching your target market. If you only post it once, on the other hand, then it will likely just get lost in the noise. Ideally, have a series of regular posts going out between one blog post and the next (so if there are four weeks between blog posts, over that four-week period you’ll continue sharing the first blog post).
When you schedule a post in Hootsuite it will go out at the scheduled time and then will disappear, never to be seen again. If you want to schedule it again, you need to manually schedule it a second, third, fourth and fifth time.
With Edgar, on the other hand, you can schedule posts in advance, but it also saves every post you’ve ever published in a library under a certain category. You can then create a weekly social media calendar, telling Edgar to publish posts from different categories on different days, and Edgar will go through your library of past posts and choose one to publish, without any further effort from you.
For instance, you could create a ‘Blog posts’ slot in your calendar at 11am on a Monday. If you have 10 updates in the ‘Blog posts’ category, every Monday at 11am Edgar will automatically publish one of them for you to Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.
As you add more new content to that category, Edgar will simply have more to choose from. This means your old updates never get lost – they’re constantly being leveraged and spreading the word about you and your business.
Your content marketing on autopilot
If you follow these four steps, you’ll have:
- A year of pre-written (or pre-filmed, or pre-recorded) content waiting to be published that will establish your credibility, your knowledge and the value you can give your potential clients.
- A bucket load of supporting content to spread the word about everything you’ve created – including videos, webinars, social media updates and shareable images – that will put your content in front of your ideal clients and encourage them to share it with more of your ideal clients.
- A system that ensures all of this happens on autopilot – driving traffic to your website, driving enquiries to your business and creating opportunities for you to convert your audience into paying clients – so you can focus on doing the work you love, rather than becoming a full-time marketer.
What more could you want?