Writing Tips

Your Non-Fiction book – having the Right Idea

4340980647_3436e703ed_m_booksThe big idea

I’m assuming you have some idea of what you want to write.  You want to share your knowledge and experience in a particular field, which will help a certain group of readers.

So, for example, you’re a business coach, and you have successfully coached many entrepreneurs to have more successful businesses.  Now, the bad news is that there are thousands of coaches out there.  The good news is that you can specialise in one area and appeal to a niche audience. Perhaps your focus is on self-employed women, or SMEs?

Perhaps they are all a certain type of business, e.g., complimentary therapies or B2B (business to business).

Research your idea

Use Amazon to check out the competition in your field. Type in your search into ‘Books’ and see what comes up.

  • Find an angle that hasn’t been covered before or covered well before.
  • Remember that you are putting your own personal stamp on this.
  • Do it better than anyone else, e.g.  You could write it in a more accessible way.
  • Write it for your niche audience only – don’t try to be all things to all people.

Niche vs mass marketNiche versus mass-market

It is much easier to talk to a niche market i.e. a small distinct group of people who will relish your work, EG, self-employed women or complimentary therapists or women who want to make more of themselves.

You can go one step further and create a profile of a typical woman in this niche, even give her name.  So here goes:

Julia has been practising coaching for many years.  She has helped many women to realise their dreams, taking them from being frustrated and stressed to being in control of their personal and work lives, achieving a balance between them and learning to enjoy life and be more fulfilled.  She now wants to showcase her expertise by writing a book.  This will raise her profile and her credibility and help her to take their business to collect level.  Julia does lots of networking, but finds that she comes across other coaches and her business card and leaflet about what she does is not as impactful as a book showcasing her expertise would be.

The problem with the mass market approach

If you try to be all things to all people, your message will not resonate with anyone in particular. Taking the example of a coach, this would be the mass market approach:

Mary coaches, any adult with any problem from wanting to give up smoking to wanting to be more successful in business. Some of her clients are stressed, some very confident but unfulfilled.  Some have work-life balance issues as they are workaholics, some have relationship problems and some want to lose weight.

Confused??  It’s mind-boggling, isn’t it?

What exactly is Julia good at?  And where does her expertise lie?

It’s like saying she is the answer to all problems.  How can she be?

Hence, this is not going to resonate with anybody.  It’s more likely to lead them to thinking she’s trying to cover all bases.

By specialising in one area of expertise, you will only make an impact on your target audience, but it will be a great impact likely to get a good response.Ask-an-expert-1

Here is an example of a dialogue between a coach getting it right when she meets Anna at a networking event:

Anna: ‘What do you do?’

Mary: ‘I help women to lose weight through a coaching program that changes their relationship with food so that they can achieve the figure they want.’

Anna: ‘Wow!  Tell me more; how does it work?’


Of course, when the coach talks to a woman who doesn’t want to lose weight, she might not get this reaction. However, Anna may well have a sister, a friend etc.. who would be interested in this service.

The main point here is that your message is so much stronger because you’re concentrating on just one aspect of someone’s life. You are saying this is my area of expertise.



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