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Your First Business Book and The 5 AM Club

Your First Business Book and The 5 AM Club
Photo Courtesy: Adam Houlahan

By: Joshua Finley

Adam Houlahan is already widely recognized as one of the world’s leading authorities on building a business by leveraging the power and reach of LinkedIn.

What you may not know about him is that he’s also a successfully published author with three Amazon best-sellers to his name: “The LinkedIn Playbook,” “Influencer – the 9-step guide to becoming influential in any industry,” and “Social Media Secret Sauce”.

He was asked what motivated him to write the first one, why he went on to write two more and how the experience has shaped the way he runs his business, Prominence Global.

Potential business impact

“I’d never really seen myself as an author,” said Houlahan, “but then I attended the Key Person of Influence program run by Dent Global, and I realized the impact a book could have as a positioning and marketing tool.”

Houlahan notes with a wry smile that just realizing that a book was a powerful marketing tool didn’t mean it came to him any more easily. He’s always been more comfortable speaking than writing and still does dozens of live events every year, both in person and online.

Joining the 5 AM club

Getting the book done was a serious challenge. As a busy entrepreneur building a global business, finding time to think, plan and write was a daily challenge – one he met by joining the 5 AM club.

That meant getting up at 5 AM every day to write for two hours before turning his attention to the demands of running Prominence Global. That’s the kind of disciplined consistency it takes to get a book written. And that’s just the manuscript before you get to cover design, marketing and distribution.

Despite the hard work required and the challenge of keeping up with his hectic schedule, Houlahan says it was one of the best experiences he’s had in his business journey so far.

Your First Business Book and The 5 AM Club

Photo Courtesy: Adam Houlahan

Flow-on effect

Putting the books together has had a flow-on effect in ensuring that the services he offers clients and the content he posts on his own LinkedIn profile are laser-focused and crystal clear. Not only that, but it’s helped to elevate his market position as an industry leader. 

He says that seeing his books all race to Amazon #1 spot so quickly was a tremendously satisfying reward for the effort it took to get it done.

What’s made his books so successful?

If you’ve ever spent even a few minutes in conversation with Houlahan, you’ll know that the last trait you would associate with him is arrogance or self-promotion. So, it was no surprise when he answered this question by pointing to feedback from his audience rather than his own views.

He says that the consistent theme in readers’ reactions was about practicality.

They feel that his books offer so much more than theory. On virtually every page, there is practical wisdom and actionable guidance on how to get great results on LinkedIn.

If you were to take the time and put in the work to implement the recommendations in these books, you would go a long way to elevating your LinkedIn presence and improving your lead generation results.

What’s it all about?

Houlahan is well known for the quantity and quality of the advice he packs into his live presentations, online programs and bespoke LinkedIn marketing services. His books capture the essence of all of that advice in one place.

There’s everything from clarifying why you want to use LinkedIn for your business in the first place to how to build an algorithm-friendly profile and establish a LinkedIn marketing strategy that delivers consistent results.

The subtitle on the cover of “The LinkedIn Playbook’ says it all. Houlahan shows business owners how to use LinkedIn effectively to engage, connect and convert. That’s the baseline, and his book Influencer takes it further: How to become highly influential in any industry.

Strong new habits

He’s always been disciplined in the way he’s run his businesses but writing the first book helped to entrench strong new habits. 

He still gets up around 5 AM, goes for a swim or a walk and sorts out a bunch of tasks before the day gets going that would otherwise be distractions or simply not get done.

He notes that one of the keys to getting it done successfully was having supportive people around him. His family made space for the change in daily routine, his business partners were honest and genuine in their feedback, and his publisher held him accountable for output and quality.

So, why three books?

Here, Houlahan refers to the reaction his first book drew from the audience that’s been following his content for over a decade. Social Media Secret Sauce was a generic overview of social platforms, including LinkedIn. Within a few short years, he became most known for his insights into LinkedIn. Indeed, to release a book that was 100% focused on the platform and The LinkedIn Playbook was released.

Knowing that LinkedIn doesn’t stand still for long, he quickly realized that there would be a need for an updated edition every now and then, and with an established process, resources and support team in place, getting the second LinkedIn related book done, while still a challenge, was much easier.


Houlahan’s focus is impact. Not just an impact on his clients’ businesses but a positive impact on the world through his business, which is why he’s made Prominence Global a committed partner with the B1G1 global giving movement. Here’s what the B1G1 Chairman Paul Dunn said about Houlahan:

“You know how it is—you see a ‘how to’ book, and even before you open it, you know it’s going to be full of phrases like ‘I did this,’ ‘my experience is …’ And so on. The book becomes all about them and their story. Adam Houlahan doesn’t fall into that trap. He’s way too humble for that. This is what I call a ‘YOU’ book. It is literally all about YOU. And it’s all about doing the right thing and doing it purposefully so you feel great about doing what Adam gently suggests you should do. The nine steps are brilliant. Follow them … you’ll become a much more powerful, purposeful you. And you’ll leave (and live) a great legacy as a direct result.” —Paul Dunn (4 times Tedx Speaker, Chairman of The Global Giving Movement B1G)

A parting thought…

Reiterating that he never originally saw himself as an author, Houlahan cannot recommend the idea strongly enough. He believes in the old saying that everyone has a book inside them, even if it isn’t a blockbuster novel.

So, take the plunge, hit your keyboard and get your first book done.

You can connect with Adam Houlahan on LinkedIn or learn more about his books on his website.


Published by: Khy Talara

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This article features branded content from a third party. Opinions in this article do not reflect the opinions and beliefs of Net Worth.

Net Worth Staff


This article features branded content from a third party. Opinions in this article do not reflect the opinions and beliefs of Net Worth.