Using a ghost writer makes good sense for small to medium-sized family businesses, according to leading family business expert
"Although they could benefit from having a skilled writer as part of their sales and marketing team, family business owners may not feel they can afford a writer on staff. But just as every business should have a CPA to help with the financial reporting, family businesses should consider the advantages of having a ghost writer on call."
Schwerzler has been studying and advising family business entrepreneurs for more than 40 years and he is the founder of the
Family Business Institute.
The first advantage, especially when the ghost writer is an experienced business writer, is handing off the tedious and time-consuming tasks of writing content for so many different mediums. A seasoned professional writer will also understand the company’s vision, mission and its business plan and be able to communicate the messages that reflect the family’s best interests. Some examples of when a family business owner should consider using a ghost writer include proposal letters, employee newsletters, online newsletters, advertising copy writing, and creating a company legacy with a published history book.
Proposal Letters can make or break a growing business. Well-crafted proposal letters can create a strong, positive first impression of the professional capabilities of the business. Poorly crafted proposal letters create a strong negative impression. One can only wonder how many great business ideas get tossed every day because the writing of the proposal letter contained misspelled words, poor grammar, and poorly constructed sentences. An expert professional writer is also an excellent editor.
Proposal letters are also associated with efforts to raise capital with banks and other lenders. Financiers who do not know the business or the owner of the business are often making credit decisions – and their only impression comes from the proposal letters.
Proposal letters are also used when a family business is seeking to develop new vendor relationships or when asking for better credit terms from current vendors.
Proposal letters can also affect business growth strategies such as joint ventures. How many business leaders will take time to investigate a business opportunity coming from a company whose communication fails to accurately explain or define the benefits of working together?
An expert ghost writer brings a fresh viewpoint and perspective to presenting your family business to others.
As the business grows, employee newsletters are one of the best tools a family business can use to create a cohesive work force. It is an important part of developing the infrastructure needed to sustain profitable growth.
Employee newsletters are not just for the employees – the families of the employees also read them. It helps to create recognition in the community – a great way of showing that the business is a good place to work – that the family business cares!
Employee newsletters can be used to bolster recruiting efforts as prospective employees can gain a good understanding of the values of the family business.
An expert ghost writer can add sizzle to employee interviews... your employee will be thrilled to be able to explain their importance to an "outsider" whereas they assume you already know it.
Publishing and mailing externally distributed, printed newsletters may be too expensive, but staying in touch with your clients and potential clients is still a must. Online newsletters can be a far less expensive and more easily managed way to keep new products or services, or updates about the company in front of your market.
Most web sites are just “placeholder” sites that are basically online brochures. By creating additional pages to an existing site, with content that changes on a regular basis, web sites can become a dynamic form of external communication. Reaching clients and prospects with fresh content is as easy as a regular e-mail that hyperlinks to the online newsletter. And ghost writers, working with webmasters, can make it all happen from their offices.
Advertising Copy Writing
Many business owners feel they are the best-suited person to talk about the features and benefits of their products and services – and most of the time they are RIGHT! Because a business owner talks smart about their business, they feel they will be as equally effective writing about their business – WRONG!
Advertising copy writing is a real art form. Creating brochures and other marketing materials using computer software systems may seem easy, but advertising copy should be developed and written by an expert ghost writer.
One of the most recurring themes heard at funerals of family business founders is, "I wish we had taken the time to interview Dad (or Mom) before now and captured all those great stories and history.”
Intuitively, family businesses know how important it is to preserve the company’s contributions and commitment to the community. It goes beyond mere posterity. Creating a history book or a video history of the family business is a tremendous way to pass on the legacy of the founder(s) and advance the mission, the vision, and the relationships between company and the community.
A ghost writer skilled at working with family businesses will know how to conduct interviews, research and gather information, and compile the business and family history into a book or video. The result is a tangible company legacy that adds value and a sense of working together toward a higher purpose among family members, employees, vendors, customers and the surrounding community.
If you would like to discuss a family business history book or video, use the Ask The Expert form (below) to connect with our family business ghost writer.
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