The sweet spot in pitching to a prospect for a book to be ghostwritten is to frame that as a total package. In this fast-changing world of how books are published, distributed, and promoted, clients are confused. Often, because they are professionals of wealth, influence, and power, they won't disclose that they know that they know very little about the new state of affairs in the book industry.
So, we who have been in the game have to tap into that knowledge and insight gap - and demonstrate to the prospect that we are the ones to fill it. That's how we win the contract to ghostwrite the book, over our competitors. Yes, we pitch the package.
Today I again nailed down the business by explaining to the prospect what a book needed to achieve his goals. That briefing including how to position the topic, the need for even at this preliminary stage a chapter outline and competitive analysis, the pros and cons of self-publishing versus the agent-publisher route, and the necessity of having a top publicist, especially if the book is initially self-published. Enough sales and buzz could bring establishment book publishers to reprint it in the traditional way.
Being a ghostwriter is just the tip of the iceberg. We have to have down cold the commercial aspects of how a book does right by the author whose name is on the cover.