Using eBooks can provide an opportunity to generate engagement with your target audience in a way that offers educational benefits rather than just promotions. With this type of marketing publication dedicated to your products and services, not only will you market your business in a credible fashion, but you will also educate your prospects without pushing them away with a heavy sales pitch. You will find that those who use this kind of sales strategy experience a new level of response and feedback from their leads.
You may be unfamiliar with an eBook being used as a marketing tool as opposed to being an entertainment or educational publication. You can use eBooks from a marketing standpoint as a free or very inexpensive product that delivers some form of an educational takeaway for the reader. The content of these books can explain an industry-vital concept or a review of basics for customer knowledge.
For example, a financial advisor could write and promote an eBook that goes into detail about the services he or she offers, such as Roth IRAs and mutual funds. The reader is then educated without the pressure to create one of these accounts or initiate a transaction with the advisor. In the meantime, the reader will see the advisor as a valuable resource of information pertinent to their needs. When the time comes, the reader will feel comfortable approaching the professional already knowing that they are knowledgeable about the industry and their work.
Most eBooks require an email address to read the publication. Once you have this information, you can further engage your prospect through email correspondence such as newsletters and eblasts.
An eBook should be 100 percent focused on the customer and their potential needs. When writers create these online publications, they have two goals in mind. The first is to inform the public and the second is to position their brand as an idea leader in the industry. As you can see, both of the goals center around the mindset of the reader. Remember, you can make your eBook an invaluable marketing tool if you do it correctly.
Make it interactive, request feedback from you customers through comments. Try using customer testimonials and then use them as case studies (just make sure that they are informed of being in a publication.)
How do I begin writing an eBook?
First things first, you will want to research and gather pertinent information. Record the most commonly asked questions from your in-person and online customers. Then pick a few to answer in your eBook. Think about the most important and interesting aspects of the message you want to convey.
Next, think about your target audience. What do they want to read and in what tone? You might find the answers already lie in your day-to-day business. Give yourself time to think about this as capturing the correct tone and voice is crucial to effective marketing.
Divide your leads into categories based on background, lifestyle, age and more, then choose which personas to speak to in your book. You can narrowly define your lead audience into categories such as age, sex, ethnicity, background and more. Find out their potential values, who they admire and then draft a profile of your ideal lead. Go even further by researching where they hang out, what books and magazines would this ideal lead read? Think about websites they would frequent and the groups in which they would belong to. After you have gathered this information, compile it. Now, you can think as the reader would in all elements of your marketing. The key is to always ask yourself: “How would this be perceived by my target lead?” Marketing decisions should never be based on aspects of your artistic self-expression. Look at it as simply an effective way to communicate values through connecting your work with the interests and values of your target lead.
After you’ve thought about who you are speaking to, research keywords. Find out what search terms your target customers are using to find your company and let that help determine what topics you will be focusing on.
Remember, you can call upon existing content you have already created. Use testimonials, blog posts, interviews, comments, video transcriptions, and any other unused content you may have written in the past.
What is the format?
Let’s talk about speed. You can research, write, and publish eBooks in a fraction of the time it takes to create print books. They’re much faster to write than traditional marketing media and are easily accessible for your leads because they can review your content from virtually any device with an internet connection.
Break your eBook down into relevant, detailed chapters featuring in-depth analysis. You can include links, tweetable quotes, graphics and other interactive elements to enhance your readers understanding of your product or service. It can also be helpful to incorporate statistics and data relevant to the subject matter. This is particularly useful if your team has done this research and has generated the information that you are sharing. Encourage readers to share your content too!
How do we promote the eBook?
Now that you have the finished product, you can start promoting it. Begin by building anticipation. Treat your eBook launch promotion like an event with daily and weekly reminders. Use sample teasers, such as chapters or excerpts from your blog in advance. Find the other thought leaders in your industry and include their insights and quotes into your content. After you do this, let them know how inspired you are by their work.
Freebies! Give your lead a free download in exchange for a newsletter sign-up or an email address. This can be the beginning of a close relationship between company and customer.
Use your business website homepage, a dedicated landing page, personal blog, email newsletter, guest posts on partners sites and more to promote your new eBook. And of course, promote through social media.
By using social media, you have many promotional options, such as posting an engaging image from your eBook or an excellent quote to attract your target leads attention to click on your content. Try an interesting stat or fact. You can use popular hashtags relevant to your eBook’s content in your posts. A quick Google search will help connect you with software designed to target today’s trending hashtags.
Use Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linkedin and other platforms to promote highlights from your eBook. Be sure to design social banners that instantly grab a reader’s attention. Leverage your influencers as well. By doing so, you can help accelerate your promotional game plan. Find influencers in your community through social media platforms then connect with them in the hopes that they will share your content. Don’t forget to post in communities! For example, Linkedin is inundated with related groups connected to your particular industry. Or you can create your own group and then discuss your eBook to that audience.
It doesn’t end there. You can renew and repurpose your eBook for white papers, articles or blog series, case studies, infographic slide shows, and webinars. Be sure to send a revised version once a year to your email subscribers to re-engage, inform, and maintain loyal customers. An eBook is an excellent way to stand out in a saturated market. Showcasing your knowledge in this fashion presents your company as a leader while gaining valuable leads in the process.