There's nothing new about "idiots' guides" or shortcuts for those who want to write that exam essay without reading the text on which it is supposed to be based, or that love letter without thinking up winning phrases for themselves. I've just been reading a fascinating essay on Elizabethan and Jacobean examples.
The merchant William Fulwood in 1568 produced The Enime of Idlenesse: Teaching the manner and stile how to endite, compose, and write all sorts of Epistles and Letters: as well by answer, as otherwise, Devided into foure Bokes, no lesse pleasaunt than profitable.
He tells his "reasonable Reader" that this is not for the "cunning clearke" but the "unskilful scholar that wanteth instructions". It wasn't just for business, also including "what sorte thou mayest (I say at such vacant times) take thy penne in hande and gratifie thy friend with some prettie or pleasant conceit".
It went through eight editions up until 1621. By that time, women were also seen as a market. The Academy of Complements. Wherein Ladyes, Gentlewomen, Schollers, and Strangers may accomplish their Courtly Practice with most Curious Ceremonies, Complements, Amorous, High Expressions and formes of speaking, or writing ... with Additions of witty Amorous Poems. And a Table expounding the hard English Words. This was published, perhaps unsurprisingly, pseudonomously. by one "Philomosus". There were Puritans around, but they were not yet in the ascendant.
Travel guidebooks and phrasebooks start about the same time. One of the first in English was probably Andrew Borde's The fyrst boke of the Introduction of knowledge, which contained all of the information we'd recognise: descriptions of countries, their monetary systems, and useful foreign phrases. It was published in 1542, less than 70 years after printing had been introduced into England - it is amazing how fast printers learnt to seek out new markets.