If you make a living by selling services and ideas to clients, then Michael Port’s Book Yourself Solid might be the most useful business book you ever read.
Michael explains how you can benefit by creating information products such as a book. Since he says it so well, I’ll just quote him:
Products create opportunities for multiple streams of passive or leveraged income. They can be in retail stores or online, at your web site and the web sites of your affiliates, 24/7/365, with worldwide availability. You can consistently get orders for your products from people all over the world.
Having a product enhances your credibility with your prospects, your peers, meeting planners, and the media because it establishes you as a category expert and sets you apart from your competitors.
Products can help you land more clients because they speed up the sales cycle. Since your services have a high barrier to entry, your potential clients may need to jump a few high hurdles to persuade themselves they need to hire you.
Having a product to offer based on your services gives potential clients the opportunity to test you out without having to take a big risk. Then if they connect with you and are well served by your product, they will upgrade from the lower-priced product to the higher-priced service.
If you use public speaking as one of your marketing strategies, having a product at the back of the room when you speak gives you credibility, and you also have a relatively low-cost way to introduce prospects into your business and generate ancillary revenue at the same time.
Products leverage your time…. For example, if you speak in front of 100 of your prospects and you’re able to sell a couple dozen of your information products at $50 each, then you’ve just increased your hourly rate from $100 to more than $1,000 an hour.