In our last post, we were looking at ways you can monetise your content. Today, I’d like to step away from the idea of making money (although you most certainly can sell you ebook) to talk about how to add an ebook into your content marketing. It’s a lot easier than you might think.
I can practically hear you thinking: “Whoa there, hang on! An ebook? I’m not an author.”
Well, no you’re not. (Wait, are you?)
You don’t need to be. What we’re talking about here isn’t writing a work of fiction, we’re talking about creating a piece of content marketing that is:
- useful to your target market
- full of good information that you already have to hand
- so valuable to your audience that they’ll easily convert – this is no ‘freebie’
- created once and revisited over and over again
Sound good to you? Let’s get started then.
What’s your ebook about?
The first thing you need to decide is what you’re going to write about. This might be easy for some of you, and it then again, it might not.
When we put together our 15 page ebook (get it by subscribing to our newsletter on the right), we knew we wanted to give our readers some simple starting points for content marketing copywriting. The difficult part actually became cutting it down to size!
The important thing is to write about something super important to your audience.
One way to make it easy on yourself
If you’ve been blogging for a while now and you have some really popular posts – or even just several posts and articles your audience finds really really useful, you can do what many popular bloggers do – pull them all together to create a simple, authoritative ebook covering your topic in depth.
The advantage of this for you is that you simply need to gather the content, order it and edit it into a single volume and hey presto you’ve got an ebook.
The advantage to your audience is that they get everything in one place – no hunting around on your site for the posts.
Even better, you can add material to your ebook that sweetens the deal for the reader and gives them exclusive information that’s not in your blog posts.
Write an ebook from scratch
Okay, not everyone has a wealth of articles and posts to pull from. Or, perhaps you’ve picked a topic that you’ve never written about before.
No worries. You could hire a copywriter to put it together for you (cough cough).
If you want to tackle the writing yourself, there’s a great post over on Copyblogger on how to do this: How to Write a High-Quality eBook in 30 Days. It’s really quite a simple process.
Schedule in the time to put it all together and you’re on your way to sharing your ebook.
Publishing and distributing your ebook
Because we’re not talking about your next novel here, I’m not going to talk about publishing an ebook on Kindle and self-publishing, etc.
What we’ll look at is where you can use your ebook in your content marketing funnel.
Ebooks can be used as an incentive for signing up for a newsletter or email marketing. Prospects can always unsubscribe, lowering the barrier to signing up in the first place. But putting your ebook there as an incentive gives them a reason to share their email address beyond your promise of an informative newsletter.
You could also use your ebook as a value-add.
Let’s say you’re a legal firm and you get an enquiry through your phone line. Get reception to ask for an email address while they book the initial appointment. Then you can send the prospective client an ebook that covers the nature of their query to read BEFORE they come in to meet with you.
This puts you on good ground with your prospect / client as it creates a bit of that magic ‘reciprocity’ and leaves them feeling (hopefully) grateful that you’ve shared ‘something for nothing’ and have anticipated their needs.
Hopefully this leaves you feeling ready to create your own ebook. When you do, we’d love to read it.
Next time, we’ll address what to do with all those old blog posts (if you aren’t using them in an ebook!)