If you want to get more quality leads and loyal clients, share your knowledge with the world, grow your mailing lists, and track how your audience interacts with your content, an ebook is the best way for you.
Сreating an ebook may seem a bit scary, but it’s easier than you think, and you are definitely able to make an ebook on your own from start to finish. It won’t be an amateur document no one wants to read, but a beautiful enticing ebook that grabs readers’ attention.
We’ve come up with a strategy for you as well as step-by-step guidelines on how to make an ebook. By the way, if you don’t have PDFs yet, read about easy-to-use tools that help you create PDFs from scratch in no time. And if you have ready PDFs, you can easily turn them into digital ebooks that engage and sell.
To create engaging content, you have to choose a relevant topic. You can research what your potential readers are interested in this week or month, and what problems they are struggling with. Otherwise, you can share your own research and expertise on industry related issues. Try different approaches and don't doubt your ebook’s relevance and value:
- Use Ahrefs, a data processing toolset for SEO and marketing. With the help of the Content Explorer feature, you can find the most popular content on any theme and see its relevance, referring domains, search traffic, and number of shares.
- Research Medium’s Top Stories: Browse popular article tags to see what people are passionate about right now.
- Use Pocket’s Explore feature to see how many times a blog post has been saved. It shows if a lot of people find a topic or a headline worth checking out. Also, don’t forget Pocket’s Recommended tab, where you can find the most-saved articles from around the web.
- Read niche forums, communities, Slack groups, and Quora. What questions are people asking? What problems do they discuss? Is your unique experience relevant and can you share it with others?
An outline is simply a framework for presenting the main and supporting ideas for a particular subject or topic. Making an outline can help you structure your ideas and distribute them throughout the e book. It allows you to see the whole picture and get rid of misplaced or irrelevant excerpts.
An electronic book, as any conventional book, has a standard format: introduction, main body and conclusion. It is also divided into chapters. If all the chapters follow the same structure, a reader can understand what to expect.
There are plenty of different approaches to making outlines. You can choose whatever works best for you: write a list, draw a mindmap, work backwards (start at the end: what is the impact of your ebook? What goals do you want your readers to achieve?)
Don’t forget to examine other ebooks and books. Look through several books and their tables of contents to see what topics appear in almost every book. Is there anything that you can add to your outline?
You can learn more about writing outlines in this helpful article.
After making the outline you reach the biggest step - writing itself. And what is the most important and often difficult thing about writing? To actually start doing it, and regularly. “Nulla dies sine linea” (not a day without a line), as the latin expression rightly suggests.
To turn writing into a habit, you have to organize your writing routine. Below are a few useful tips on how to achieve it. We follow these tips every day as well, or at least trying to. :)
- Commit to writing a certain number of words a day. Try to estimate the length of your future e-book and set a writing deadline for yourself, in order to understand how many words you should write daily.
- Focus and make sure nothing distracts you when you’re writing. Listen to music, if that helps you concentrate. Use apps that keep you from distractions. A nice list of such apps can be found here.
- Don’t edit while you write. You’re writing your first draft, the main purpose of which is to put your thoughts down on paper or screen. You can come back to the draft in a few days, and then again at the editing stage (you may find that it doesn’t need any editing after all).
To get inspired, look at some habits and rituals that help the writers at Copyblogger to make their writing awesome.
All the previous steps were probably more or less familiar to you, but designing an ebook might be an altogether foreign concept. However, this step can’t be ignored - your work should look great to catch your readers’ attention.
Don’t worry, you can design your ebook even if you’re not a design pro.
First of all, you can create a style guide for your ebook and keep to it:
- Choose fonts: don't use too many different typefaces and colors. A common recommendation is to use a maximum of three different typefaces in a maximum of three different sizes and colors.
- Choose color: use 2-3 primary colors that are consistent with the style of your brand for things like background and font color. Select 3-4 secondary colors that can be used to make certain elements stand out (i.e. buttons, links, forms).
- Choose resources for photos: these can be the websites you usually use for stock photography (for example Shutterstock, Death to Stock, Stocksnap, Unsplash).
- Decide what kind of images you need (landscapes, portraits, objects, color schemes, etc.) and what their sizes should be.
A very useful article 26 digital typography rules for beginners can help you with small details.
Check out how stylish and engaging the images and texts look in this ebook. Everything is so tasty, so don't try reading it on an empty stomach :)
Look how all the elements, photos, fonts and colors complete each other in this ebook and create an atmosphere of warmth and coziness.
Launch and promotion
Hurrah! You’ve created your ebook. Now it’s time to launch and promote it. You may have already decided how to promote and share it to achieve your marketing goals, so we’ll just cover the main methods here:
- Create a landing page on your website to advertise your new ebook. Don’t forget to feature a CTA or a link to your landing page on a resource page or even a homepage.
- Promote your ebook through your blog, if you have one. If you've learned how to start a blog already, then you can publish an excerpt of your ebook as a blog post, or write a new blog article on the topic that relates to your ebook. Then you can link to the ebook at the end of your post, encouraging readers to keep learning.
- Include the ebook into your emails or newsletters to share it with your active clients.
- Leverage paid advertising and co-marketing partnerships that will help you promote your ebook to a new audience.
- Announce your ebook launch in social media and insert a link to your ebook in your posts.
There’s also a way to distribute your ebook without creating any landing pages. With the help of FlippingBook Online, you can add a lead capture form right to your ebook and start promoting it right away. This allows you to do the following:
- To analyze statistics and qualify leads: If a lead leaves you their information, you will be able to see how many times they have viewed your ebook and when they left you emails. This can help you to determine the quality of the lead more easily and contact them at the right time.
- To get content engagement: The FlippingBook lead capture form reduces the friction associated with accessing gated content—your readers simply enter their email address and name and can read your ebook at once. There's no need for any complex landing pages.
- To make a preview of the ebook: This can help building trust between you and your audience. It's a way to make them sure that your ebook is worth their valuable and personal information.
Go ahead and start creating ebooks right away
Now you’re fully equipped to set up your process of creating ebooks.
Yes, it takes time, effort and energy, but writing and publishing your first ebook will be a great experience. You’ll get an amazing piece of promotional and lead-generating content that will bring you many benefits and work for you for days and even months. It’s totally worth trying.
Did this article give you the confidence to engage in creating ebooks? If you have any questions or suggestions, we’ll be glad to discuss them in the comments below.
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