Are you hosting a podcast? If so, kudos to you! We love podcasts and value their authors/hosts, who always bring the most brilliant topics to the table.
If you've been successful for a while, and you have a sizable portfolio of guests, stories, and wisdom to share, plus an audience who checks in regularly for your updates, why not take your career to the next level by turning your podcast into an eBook?
Should You Turn Your Podcast Into an eBook?
Here at The Urban Writers, we work with countless authors who are all experts in their niche, one way or another. Some have academic and practical experience, and others simply became passionate about a topic from their own experience and then did research to overcome an obstacle or resolve a problem.
The fruit of their labor were some of the most creative, authentic, and compelling book ideas we've seen. As a podcast host, you too have a valuable message to send. It's even better that you don't need a decade of experience.
Only a year or two of bringing different people onto your show can yield your life's work, which is both on and off-air experiences with guests, different stories, and angles that you've explored.
Do you still have doubts? Let's remove them all by explaining why, as a successful podcast host, you simply MUST publish a book:
Reason #1: Unique Experience
You don't have to be a qualified expert in your niche to be a figure of authority. As someone passionate about your guests and stories, you did research, interviewed people, and were certainly an esteemed professional for folks to take the time and join your show. They don't do that just for anyone! Now, think about this. If your guests saw you as qualified enough to talk about certain topics—and your audience agreed—why not assume that position?
Reason #2: Audience
Do you know what writers struggle with the most? Finding readers. Getting their book out there. Sparking people's interest to gain at least a dozen initial purchases in hopes that their book will kick-off.
You don't have to worry about this! If you have at least 1000 regular listeners and a portfolio of interesting guests whose names and images will further promote your book, you've got all it takes for a successful publication. You only need one more thing...
Reason #3: Content
All of the source content for your book has already been created. Not only are your audios and videos superb foundations to build quality content that everyone will want to read, but so are your scripts and documentation!
Reason #4: Sales and Business Growth
You can't be wrong publishing a book. Media and audiences sure love to criticize, but everyone loves a person who writes. With non-fiction, the expectations aren't even as sky-high as you'd expect. A reader will purchase your book expecting to get some more of your unique vibe when they're unable to listen to the podcast.
However, being genuine and authentic, being ethical in emphasizing that certain claims are based on your opinion and analysis, and showing humility and sensitivity in addressing other people and events will get you far in the world of literature.
Even if the audience disagrees with the things you wrote, there won't be as much backlash as it usually is with other media, like TV and video. In short—there's nothing to fear or lose.
8 Steps to Convert Your Podcast Into a Book
Follow the basic principles of ethical writing, and you can gain more expertise, authority, and exposure. Think of your book as a foundation to build the next stage of your career.
Taking the time to work on something that your readers will love and find useful increases your value in their eyes. Publishing a book can help further grow your podcast, not to mention the sales and royalties that come from it.
Now that we've persuaded you that you MUST take your valuable experience and put it in writing, let's lay out the basic steps for converting your podcast into a book:
Step #1: Research and Content: Decide on Your Book Theme
One of the best things when writing a book as a podcast author is that you already have the content. That is, in its raw shape. Study your recordings, videos, notes, and interview transcripts before you decide on the book theme.
Your book shouldn’t be a simple collection of interviews and personalities. Instead, it should revolve around a central topic, a common thread, and a philosophy that guided your work during a selected period of time. Once you’ve selected a book topic, it’s time to get more specific.
Step #2: Book Outline and Notes
First-time authors usually think that the most important part of writing an outline is listing the chapters, their titles, and descriptions. However, the most important aspect of writing an outline is knowing with 100% certainty what you want your book to be about.
Your stories need context, from which you’ll narrow down the source content even further to cover a very specific topic with a very specific message. From there, you can begin conceptualizing and working on your idea chapter by chapter and section by section.
Step #3: First Draft
Now that you have a pretty good idea about what you want your content to look like, start writing. Don’t be scared, it’s just your first draft! There will be plenty of time to make changes and corrections.
For now, focus on putting all of the ideas and stories that you want in writing, with the exact style and tone that matches your vision for the book. This is usually the longest phase of creating a book, and the most difficult, so be strong!
Step #5: Revising
Now that you wrote your first draft, it’s time to polish it. Go through the manuscript once again, and check if the book reads well, if the tone and content align with your original idea, and if the layout is what you want it to be.
If you feel like there are any changes that you want to make, do it! Move chapters and sections around, trim content, and add stories, puns, and jokes where you see fit. Don’t forget to include your unique insight into the topic. It’s your book, so don’t let it become a collection of other people’s interviews!
Step #6: Editing
Now that you have the core of your book in writing and all of the chapters are in place, it’s time to polish your work. Have a professional editor look through the manuscript to make changes that will improve style, tone, flow, and readability.
Make sure that your book is edited well, since you don’t want months of your hard work to receive poor ratings of typos, right? Let the editor suggest minor and major changes, and be sure to make those that you feel will improve the book.
Step #7: Design and Formatting
Now that your manuscript is polished and ready for publishing, it’s time to style it so it appeals to your audience. First, make your cover designs, front and back. Talk to professionals about the best styles, fonts, colors, and visuals. This may be time-consuming, but I’ll be worth it since it directly impacts sales.
The same way your book needs to be polished on the outside, it needs to be well-formatted on the inside. The layout of your book, from font to margins and paragraph styles, must be inviting and easy to read. It should also reflect the unique style and tone that your podcast has, for a fuller, more authentic experience.
Step #8: Distribute
It’s up to you to decide how you want to sell your book. Some authors post their eBooks on their websites and set up online payment, while others use Retailers like Amazon. It’s up to you!
As you can see, there are all kinds of reasons for publishing an eBook as a podcast host and zero against. Use all of your creativity and dig deep into the essence of your podcast to discover unique ideas that your readers will want to know about.
Avoid the mistake that podcast hosts sometimes make, which is to just transcribe your interviews and publish them as a book. Readers aren’t interested in such publications, and it could hurt your reputation.
Instead, find out what topics and stories were most popular among your audience, and simply give them more of what they want. If you still struggle with the idea of writing, check out our book services, that include writing packages, cover designs, and more!