When it comes to your book, it pays to be you

Your book must have an implicit benefit to the reader – a reason for that reader to select your book instead of the two or five or ten or fifty other books on the same subject. A well-thought-out, unique angle for your book is an excellent way to differentiate yours from all the others out there and offer additional reader benefits.

Have you got stuck wondering how your book will fill a new or currently unmet need in the market?

Most of us don’t set out to rehash a book that has already been written.

What motivates us is the recognition that readers have a knowledge or skills gap that needs to be filled. As the expert, you have the confidence to know you have the additional information, credibility, tools, techniques and resources needed to fill that gap for the reader. 

If you think about your teachers at school, didn’t you find that somewhere a joy to learn from because of how they brought the subject to life and their take on it? That sort of thing can become a very powerful unique book angle for you.

Choose from one of these unique book angle strategies

Here are 16 ways can you make sure your readers will find your book more appealing and sufficiently differentiated from competitor books.

1. More depth

You can make sure your book covers an aspect of your chosen topic in more depth because it is insufficiently addressed by current books in the marketplace.

2. More scope

The existing books focus on a narrow aspect of a particular topic and you could take a more general approach

3. More relevant / targeted

It answers specific questions you asked when you got involved in the topic (e.g. how to cope with being an only child caring for an aging parent, struggling with a specific illness, who lives a long way away) — questions you couldn’t find answers to in other books.

4. Your unique experience

It answers questions people ask you about the topic. They want your take on the topic. Think about what people have asked you when they have met you face to face, via email, social media or your website contact form. They want your opinion because you can walk the walk and talk the talk.

5. More comprehensive

If you have experience and skills in 2 related specialist subjects, can you combine the 2 approaches to create something new? For example, someone with a lot of experience about freshwater fishing and wild camping in remote areas could combine the 2 subjects and teach readers how to fish in comfort and safety in the wilds. Have a look at your competitor books on Amazon, and be on the lookout for books readers also bought in a related genre to get some inspiration for potential combinations.

6. More cutting edge

It publishes new, recent, or little-known research on the topic. This can be particularly appropriate if you are a leading expert involved in that research.

7. More straightforward

It makes technical or scientific knowledge more accessible to the average reader.

8. More current

It is more current than existing books on the topic. For example, a book about planning scenic car journeys in an electric car that explains where to find charging points along the way.

9. More credible

You are a recognised expert in the field, for example, you are a keynote speaker, your name on the cover will be a selling point all by itself.

10. More advanced

If there are only beginners level books on your subject, you could write a book for intermediate or advanced readers.

11. Different style

If all the competitor books are “how to” style, could you write a tips or personal journey book instead?

12. Less annoying

Check out the bad reviews for competitor books? What was it that readers specifically hated about the book? For example, readers complained there were no supporting images to help them understand a visual concept. Can you solve those reader gripes by adding some artwork instead of using words?

Equally, could you check all the elements in the competitor books that got positive reviews, and make sure your book covers all of them rather than some of them?

13. Different tone of voice

Are competitor books too dry, dull and serious? Can you inject some enthusiastic and motivating language? Could you use some humour? Perhaps a cartoon might lighten the mood? Or are competitor books too flippant and not adequately explaining the consequences and risks of a particular course of action?

14. Different approach

Can you include editable forms, checklists and templates and other media like demonstration videos to help readers master your subject?

15. Different price

Can you change the price of your book? Can you undercut a very expensive academic textbook and still offer a high-quality experience to the reader?

16. Different format

Even if there are printed books on your topic, if there are no Kindle books, you can sidestep the competition. If there are only paperback field guides that get dog-eared and bashed about in a rucksack, can you offer a durable, hardback version? Can you provide supporting information like audio and video or editable files to help readers get the most from your book?

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