3 Steps to Getting the Best Return When Hiring a Ghostwriter: A Guide for CEOs

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Talk With a Ghostwriter

You’ve wanted to publish a book for years but haven’t had the time to sit down and actually write it—and even then, writing isn’t your specialty and you have little writing experience. The solution is to hire a ghostwriter to anonymously write your book for you by bringing your experience, knowledge, and anecdotes together in a compelling narrative. 

It’s a great solution: you want to share your ideas, and the ghostwriter knows how to turn them into a great book with bestseller potential. Even though you’re not the one doing the actual writing, the book will remain yours, proudly displaying your name, and only your name, on the cover. Since all the ideas are yours and the ghostwriter is merely helping you find the right words, and since the ghostwriter agreed to anonymity, you don’t have any ethical concerns.

To get a quote and learn more about the process of collaborating with a ghostwriter, check out our ghostwriting services for CEOs

Hiring a good ghostwriter isn’t cheap. To ensure the best return on your investment, follow these three steps.  

1. Be clear about your goals and purpose

To write the best book possible, your ghostwriter needs to know exactly what you want out of your book and what your goals are. Before you even start working with a ghost, you should know the target audience for your book, the purpose of your book, and what you want your book to project about you and your brand. Discuss aspects such as the page or word count, milestones, payments, and deadlines with your ghostwriter in your first conversation. If you don’t know how long your book should be or what reasonable deadlines for ghostwriting are, you can do some research beforehand and lean on your ghostwriter’s expertise during your initial meeting.

Once you’ve signed a contract, you should share any outlines, drafts, or notes. Also share any supporting documents that might help your ghostwriter understand your project, what it means to you, and what you want the final product to say about you. They can’t do that without your help, dedication, and openness, which is why you need to be prepared and ready to answer their questions about your goals and your book’s purpose. It’s important to hire a ghostwriter you like and feel comfortable having deep and personal conversations with, because you need to dive deep into the details for a successful book. The ghostwriter also needs to really understand you and how you think so they can write your book in your own voice.

2. Hire a qualified ghostwriter with a business background 

Professional ghostwriters are usually well versed in many topics and have diverse backgrounds, but you want to work with someone who will understand your shorthand, slang, and jargon without getting lost. You want someone who understands your world, who knows it, and who won’t need a tour to get their bearings. Maybe you just need someone with experience in business more broadly, or perhaps your project necessitates a ghostwriter with expertise in a specific industry, like engineering or food science. Whatever your content, make sure you’re working with a ghostwriter who understands what they’re writing.

Don’t be afraid to be specific about your requirements. Whether you’re writing about leadership, marketing, or finance, a well-rounded ghostwriter will hit the ground running and finish your book sooner than someone with a completely different background. 

3. Understand that hiring a ghostwriter isn’t cheap 

If you want a high-quality, industry-standard book with the potential to get you on a bestseller list, you need to hire a professional, experienced ghostwriter. And they don’t come cheap. Legitimate ghostwriters with business backgrounds can charge large sums of money because they know what they bring to the table and how their work will positively impact your personal brand and your business. They are in demand and require a great deal of expertise and specialty skills, and writing takes time and effort. A ghostwriter worth their salt will ask for sizable monetary compensation.

If you’re looking for an expert who will transform your ideas into a polished, engaging book, don’t haggle their fee or undermine their value. Treat them as a business partner and pay them as such. Also keep in mind that the more you put into this project—the more you invest of yourself, your time, and your money—the more you will get out of it. Conversely, if you hand off your deepest feelings, thoughts, and stories to an amateur with low rates, you won’t get the book you wanted. In fact, a poorly written book will likely degrade your reputation.

If you’re ready to achieve your goal of becoming a published author, contact our ghostwriting services for CEOs team and take the next step in growing your business and your personal brand. 

Talk With a Ghostwriter