How Financial Advisors Can Write A Book (And Use It To Get Clients)
NOTE: If you’re a new financial advisor, make sure you check out Your First Year As A Financial Advisor, where I reveal several things every new financial advisor ought to know.
Should financial advisors write a book?
Many advisors have considered writing a book but aren’t sure where to begin. Because while writing a book has many benefits, it can also be intimidating.
I’ve written several books throughout my career, as well as dozens of newsletter issues, hundreds of blog articles, and thousands of emails. At this point, writing is second nature to me but I’ll forget how daunting the process seemed at first.
Let’s explore how financial advisors can write a book and use it to get clients…
Why Write A Book?
Having a published book is the pinnacle of authority marketing. We regard books are intrinsically valuable and treat authors with respect.
It makes sense because a book gives you a sneak peek of the author’s deep grasp on the subject matter. Nothing else builds credibility quite like a book. And because all financial advisors want to build trust and credibility with their target audience, a book can be a perfect fit.
You can’t fake your way into a good book. Either you know your stuff or you don’t.
A book also shows that you’re committed to your subject. If you’re a financial advisor who specializes in working with a niche and you write a book for that niche, it’s the ultimate symbol of dedication. It shows your market that you’re serious about helping them.
Some people will tell you that a book is the new business card but I think a book is far more impactful. Because you can order business cards in about five minutes - it takes no special talent or skill. Anyone can order business cards. Very few people put in the time and effort to write a book.
Should You Write A Book Yourself?
Not all financial advisors are natural-born writers. I totally get that.
That’s why ghostwriting services exist. You would be shocked at how many of the most popular business books are ghostwritten. Ronald Reagan even joked about his autobiography by saying, “I hear it’s a terrific book. One of these days I’m going to read it myself.”
A ghostwriter’s job is to help you articulate your ideas into written form. If you’re considering hiring a ghostwriter, ask yourself the following questions:
If you’re considering hiring a ghostwriting, make sure you do your due diligence. Ask to see examples of the writer’s work. If he or she can’t provide a decent portfolio, move on.
Also, be sure to provide as many resources as you can. The more you can help the ghostwriter, the better your book will be. You should come prepared with LOTS of stories and anecdotes he or she can include in the book.
Perhaps the biggest downside to hiring a professional ghostwriter is the cost. Ghostwriting fees can vary depending on the ghostwriter’s experience and the amount of work required. You should expect to pay at least $20,000 for a full-length book. Elite ghostwriters can charge $100,000 or more for their services.
However, hiring a ghostwriter can be tax-deductible for you. (Of course, make sure you verify this with your accountant.) It may make sense to hire someone else to write your book because your time is not deductible. If you spend 500 hours writing your book, you can’t deduct any of the forgone income. But if you hire someone to write the book for you, you should be able to deduct that cost.
How To Get Your Cover And Title Right
People DO judge books by their covers, so don’t go cheap. Hire a professional designer to ensure your cover doesn’t look like it was made in Microsoft Paint.
Look at other covers in your industry or niche to see if there are any themes. Don’t be afraid to use some of these tropes because they will help people identify your book as being in the genre you want to be in. You want your cover to stand out by looking awesome, yet ensure it meets your niche’s expectations.
One of the best ways I’ve ever found to pick book covers is this: get a few mock-ups and run an engagement ad online asking people in your niche to vote. If one cover gets an overwhelming amount of votes, you have your winner.
You can also get input by posting your covers on social media, sending an email to your list, or asking friends in your niche. The idea is to identify which one of your mock-ups resonates the most with your audience.
You can use this same idea when it comes to picking your book’s title. Write an article summarizing the contents of your book. Then, run an ad targeting people in your niche but change the title to reflect your book title.
For example, let’s say you had your title narrowed down to two choices. You would run a split-test to see which title got more engagement and/or cheaper clicks. If your target audience enthusiastically clicks one title over another, you have your winner.
I used this approach when titling my email marketing system. I ran an ad online with these two headlines:
“How To Get Appointments On Autopilot” won the split-test, so I named it “Appointments On Autopilot”.
How Financial Advisors Can Market Their Services With A Book
If there’s one thing I could tell all financial advisors who are interested in writing a book, it would be this: make sure you have a rough idea of how you plan to use your book for marketing.
Do NOT just write a book for the sake of writing a book. If you do, I can almost guarantee that it will be a waste of time.
Forming a plan of how you will use the book to get more clients will allow you to see how your book will fit into your business development strategy and give you the motivation to keep writing when the going gets tough.
Here are a few ways financial advisors can get clients with their books:
1. Give Your Book Away
Give your book to your prospects. Like I mentioned at the beginning of this article, it’s the ultimate credibility-booster.
Give your book to clients. They will appreciate the gift. Give them two more copies to give to friends. If you have a niche, this strategy is even more powerful because people tend to know other people in the same niche.
Give your book to your strategic alliances and centers of influence. It shows that you’re a force to be reckoned with and it can lead to even more referrals. After all, your strategic alliances can look good by referring their clients to the person who has literally “written the book” on a particular topic.
A book gets people to talk about you because it fosters word of mouth. How many times have you recommended books to friends and family members?
I’ve personally recommended Think And Grow Rich several times in my products, emails, and podcast. Over the years, my recommendation has literally reached hundreds of thousands of people.
Of course, I’m not saying your book will get recommended at such a large scale but wouldn’t it make a difference even if your book was recommended to five or six people in your target market per month?
Another amazing way to get more clients with your book is to give your book away at your niche’s trade shows, conferences, and seminars. Get in touch with the event organizer and ask if you can sponsor the event. If you’re a sponsor, the organizer will typically let you give away your book. If the event gives away a gift basket to attendees, this is a perfect opportunity to make yourself known.
ALSO READ: Top 10 Best Books For Financial Advisors
2. Include The Digital Version On Your Site
You don’t have to give away the whole book if you don’t want to do that. I’ve seen some people have success in giving away the first chapter or two.
I’ve found that merely having the book there builds credibility. So, in every section of your website where appropriate, mention the book. You want to maximize your opportunities and people typically need to see the same thing several times before they act.
ALSO READ: Why Most Financial Advisor Websites Are Terrible
3. Repurpose Your Book's Content
A book is a repurposing gold mine. It’s typically a few hundred pages that you can expand across social media, email, your website, and more.
Here are a few ideas on how you can repurpose your book’s content:
ALSO READ: 9 Awesome Content Marketing Tips For Financial Advisors
4. Use Your Book To Get More Signups
I’ve seen lots of people use free giveaways to encourage people to sign up for events. While some people would argue that giving away free stuff leads to lower-quality signups, I’ve found that giving something valuable up front can get some fence-sitters to hear you out.
For example, if you’re running a webinar then you could give away a digital copy of your book to anyone who attends the webinar. At the beginning of your webinar, just make it clear that you will give the download link at the end of the webinar. If you’ve ever done webinars, you know that one of the biggest challenges is getting people to stay for the whole thing - offering a giveaway at the end is a way to solve that problem.
I’ve also seen some financial advisors give away their books at seminars. Again, this is a great way to get people who may be on the fence to attend.
ALSO READ: 10 Actionable Seminar Marketing Tips For Financial Advisors
5. Put Your Book On Your Marketing Collateral
Because a book is such a powerful credibility-boosting tool, you should put the cover (or at least mention the book) anywhere you’d like it to be known that you’ve written a book.
For instance, one of the biggest objections prospects have when receiving a direct mail piece from a financial advisor is, “Why should I listen to you??”. Including a quick mention that you’re a published author who has written about your niche is a way to get your prospect to pay more attention.
Photos of your book are especially powerful on online ads, social media cover photos, website opt-in forms, and more. If you give out business cards, you can have your contact information on one side and a photo of your book (along with a link to download/purchase) on the reverse side.
6. Leverage Your Book For PR Opportunities
Getting media coverage is way easier when you have a book. Interviewers on media networks don’t introduce their guests by saying, “My next guest just wrote a killer blog post.”
I can think of dozens of people who have gotten attention merely because they wrote a book. I also know several advisors who know WAY more than other advisors but don’t get a fourth of the media coverage because they don’t have a book to build credibility.
Having a book - especially one that is written for a niche audience - is a great way to get attention when reaching out to bloggers, podcasters, and other influencers. It allows you to capture their attention more easily than all the other financial advisors who are reaching out and begging to get a share of their audiences.
Your "Secret Weapon" For Writing A Book...
If you’re a financial advisor who is interested in learning more about how to write and publish your own book, I encourage you to sign up for this webinar:
Brian Tracy | 5 Steps To Planning & Publishing A Best-Selling Book
I am one of Brian Tracy’s affiliates, so I get a portion of the sale if you purchase his book-writing program. However, even if you don’t purchase from that link, I encourage you to research his writing process and apply it to your own business. It’s that good.
This webinar is conducted by best-selling author, Brian Tracy. He’s a legend in the self-improvement space and he’s written more than eighty books. If anyone can teach you about writing and publishing a book, it’s him.
It’s an hour-long webinar where Brian reveals his proven process for planning any book from start to finish so you can write, edit, and publish your book in 90 days or less. I know it’s a bold claim but it’s the same process he’s used to write his books and build his legacy.
You’ll discover things such as:
If you’ve ever read any of Brian’s content before, you know he’s the real deal. So, if you’re even somewhat interested, I encourage you to register for the webinar here:
Brian Tracy | 5 Steps To Planning & Publishing A Best-Selling Book