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Why Every Attorney Needs to Write a Book

If you are like most attorneys, you’ve thought about writing a book. You know intuitively that it will be valuable to your brand and your consulting career. Yet finding the time is difficult—if not impossible—in your busy consulting schedule.
According to Elaine Biech, an established expert on both the profession of consulting and authoring books (she has published almost 80 books), writing a book has become a requirement for every attorney who desires to demonstrate authority. And, she adds, you don’t need to give up your consulting practice to write a book.
“It’s become a cliché to say that ‘a book is the new business card,’” says Biech, keynote speaker at the recent Second Annual Business Writers Conference and author of Training and Development for Dummies (Wiley, 2015, ISBN: 978-1- 119-07633-9, $26.99). “But it’s so much more. Calling your book, a ‘business card’ underestimates the true value of just how important a book can be to your career.”
The conference—which took place on April 19-21, 2017, in Birmingham, Alabama—attracted executives, service professionals, and entrepreneurs from an array of industries seeking to network and learn best practices from some of the most accomplished experts in business book publishing.
Biech delivered a keynote as well as a full-day pre-conference workshop where she helped new authors understand the publishing industry, compare the differences between using a publisher and self-publishing, and gain skills to market a book. Most importantly, she shared her secrets for writing a book in two weeks. Biech states, “It doesn’t need to take a year to write your book.”
Biech’s most important message was that every attorney needs a book to demonstrate their expertise to current and potential clients. Here are five reasons why she made this bold claim.

1. Your book is a marketing tool.
A book can generate new business, close a pending deal, and remind previous clients that you are still available. Consider all the ways you can use your book to market your legal consulting. You can give it to contacts who will spread the word about you, your book, and your skills. You can send it to potential clients. You can send a copy to people you would like to meet or with whom you’d like to network or partner. A book can be a powerful tool to help open doors that may not have been within your reach in the past or close a deal that’s been hanging open for a while.

2. Your book helps you establish your expertise.
You are probably already an expert in what you consult about, but a published book adds legitimacy to your career. When people see that you have a published book on bookshelves, they naturally assume that you are a top-notch authority—more brilliant than before you wrote your book. And actually, you will be. The act of writing a book forces you to think more clearly and more deeply about your area of expertise. The content that readers can hold between the two covers in their hands boosts your credibility.

3. Your book can help you build your reputation and your brand.
Writing a book about your legal consulting practice sets you apart from the rest. If given a choice of someone you would hire to solve your most pressing problem, whom would you choose? A published author or an unknown entity? Yep! Most people would choose the author. By writing about your models or the principles upon which your consulting practice is based, you help your clients and potential clients understand what you represent, what you value, and how you will be valuable to them. A book demonstrates the philosophy, skills, and tools you incorporate into your work better than any discussion can.

4. Your book can increase your name recognition.
You will be viewed as a thought leader, and people will recognize your name and the name of your book. It raises both your profile and respect for your company. This can help when submitting proposals to speak at conferences or to keynote for corporate or association events. Your book generates attention, raises your visibility, and gives you multiple excuses for media coverage. A book can position you as the expert in your field.

5. Your book can help you make money.
Don't be fooled into thinking you will get rich from book sales. Almost no one does. However, your published book gives you and your legal consulting practice the legitimacy to increase your rates and an entrée to attract more work with less marketing investment.
A book can help potential clients find you. When people look for experts, they often search for “who wrote the book on...?” Having a book helps people find you with their search. That’s one of the reasons selecting a title is extremely important. Remember, you will make more money through the business it generates than the sales it produces. A book serves double duty for an attorney. “It can be a quality marketing tool and at the same time prove your capability and expertise,” says Biech. “Your book doesn’t take a lifetime to write. You can do it in as little as two weeks. Don’t waste your life wishing you could write a book. Get that wish out of your head and between two covers. Start your book today!”

Mary Juetten

Mary Juetten is founder and CEO of Traklight, and has dedicated her more-than-30-year career to helping businesses achieve and protect their success. In 2015, Mary co-founded Evolve Law, an organization for change and technology adoption in the law. She was named to the ABA’s Legal Technology Resource Center 2016 Women in Legal Tech list and the Fastcase 50 Class of 2016. She serves on the Group Legal Services Association Board. Follow her on Twitter @maryjuetten and find her new book, Small Law KPIs: How to Measure Your Way to Greater Profits. Previously published in Attorney at Work.

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Filed Under: Featured StoriesPersonal Development

About the Author: Mary Juetten is founder and CEO of Traklight, and has dedicated her more-than-30-year career to helping businesses achieve and protect their success. In 2015, Mary co-founded Evolve Law, an organization for change and technology adoption in the law. She was named to the ABA’s Legal Technology Resource Center 2016 Women in Legal Tech list and the Fastcase 50 Class of 2016. She serves on the Group Legal Services Association Board. Follow her on Twitter @maryjuetten and find her new book, Small Law KPIs: How to Measure Your Way to Greater Profits. Previously published in Attorney at Work.

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