Did you that consumers in the US spent more than 5 billion dollars in 2014 purchasing eBooks? This number sounds insane, but according to Statista it is expected to swell up to 8 billion dollars by 2018.
With the number of smartphone users on the rise, eBooks have become a convenient way for people to learn about new skills and stay updated on the topics of their interest.
People are willingly consuming more content than ever before.
As a blogger, you’re clearly missing out on a highly lucrative market if you don’t sell eBooks.
Your blog has a dedicated following, and there are people out there who’re willing to pay you if you can share your knowledge with them.
Publishing and selling eBooks is easier than ever before thanks to dozens of user friendly tools that are available online.
So what’s holding you back?
In this post, I’ll share exactly how you can create, design, launch and sell an eBook that not only earns you big bucks, but also attracts more subscribers to your email list (so that you can make more sales).
1.Develop and Fine Tune Your Buyer Persona
Before you start writing an eBook, you need to identify your ideal reader. Research indicates that marketing campaigns that are targeted towards particular buyer personas are 2 – 5 times more effective than generic campaigns. Similarly, targeted email campaigns have a 14% higher open rate and 10% higher conversion rate.
So clearly, you need to identify your ideal reader before proceeding.
In order to develop the right personas, here are some of the questions you need to ask yourself.
- Who is your ideal reader?
- What information is he looking for?
- What’s his professions?
- What’s his career level?
- How can your eBook add value to his business?
- How desperate is he for the solution you’re offering?
- How much money is he willing to pay for that solution?
You can go on and on with this. The more clarity you have about your ideal buyer, the more targeted and valuable your eBook will be.
You can find out more about your ideal buyer by looking at your most popular blog content, comments on your posts, running surveys etc.
This infographic by HubSpot describes the process of constructing an ideal persona
2. Identify Topics That Your Audience is Dying to Learn About
Once you have more clarity on your ideal buyer, you need to come up with an initial list of topics for your eBook.
These topics will be primarily based on your understanding of what your potential buyer is looking for. List down all the ideas that come to your mind.
Research on industry specific forums, Quora and LinkedIn Groups. Study competitor blogs and see what they’re offering to their readers.
Amazon is another great place to research titles. Search Amazon for eBooks related to your industry and identify the ones that have lots of reviews and sales.
Don’t try to find the perfect idea just yet. Just list down relevant titles.
3. Get Specific, Develop Focus and Go Deep
Now that you have a long list of titles to choose from, identify the ones that are closer to your expertise. But don’t confuse expertise with perfection.
No expert is perfect, and every expert has room for improvement.
You don’t need to create a perfect eBook. You just need to tell your readers what they don’t know yet.
Things that are common knowledge for you might be expert advice for someone else. That’s how it goes.
So don’t fall prey to the perfectionist syndrome.
Identify the topics that are closely related, focus on one problem, go deep and share as much value as you can.
For example, instead of creating an eBook on “How to Make Money with Blogging”, try narrowing it down to “How To Create a Profitable Blog with Affiliate Marketing” or “The Only Traffic Strategy To Take Your Blog from 0 to 100,000 Visitors per Month”.
4. Make a Plan, Set Deadlines and Start Writing
This is the stage where most bloggers struggle. Coming up with the right eBook topic isn’t that hard. But disciplining yourself, planning your eBook and then holding yourself accountable isn’t easy.
But you have to do it if you want to complete your eBook in time.
Start with a content plan. Break down your main topic into sub topics. Make a table of content for your eBook. Decide the number of chapters or the main sections of your book.
Now set deadlines for each chapter on your list, and hold yourself accountable if you don’t meet them.
Make a daily writing plan and follow it religiously. In my experience, an initial commitment of 500 words every day is manageable.
Once you get in the flow, increase this to 1000 or even 2000 words per day.
Along with text content, add relevant images and snapshots to your eBook. To create your own images, you can use Canva. In fact, you can also use it to create the title of your eBook once it’s completed.
5. Create a Distraction Free Landing Page
An effective sales landing page can be the difference between a wildly successful eBook and an average one.
No matter how valuable your eBook is, if your landing page is not optimized for conversions, you’re likely to find visitors bouncing away from your landing page.
Everything on your landing page should be focused on making the visitor click on the Buy Now button, enter his payment details and make the purchase.
The whole process should be distraction free and completely seamless.
Lead Pages is a good option for creating distraction free and mobile responsive landing pages for your eBook.
Another great option, and one that I particularly like, is Selz.
Using Selz you can create a minimalistic landing page that already has major payment processors and email marketing tools, like MailChimp and AWeber, integrated with it.
Or you can create simple product widgets that can be placed in your blog sidebar or a dedicated landing page.
The reason I like Selz is that it offers a seamless buying experience that does not involve any redirections, and completes in the same window. The landing page, the product widgets and the checkout phase are all mobile responsive.
This significantly impacts the shopping cart abandonment rates.
You may also want to look at GoSpaces, a dedicated landing page app for selling eBooks and digital products.
The key point to keep in mind here while creating a landing page is that it should minimize clutter, provide a seamless buying experience, and should be optimized for conversions.
Along with placing your eBook on the landing page, you may even consider offering a summary of your eBook or a blue print of your strategy for free, just to get visitors on your email list. Once they become your subscribers, you can work on them with a series of emails and convince them about the value of your eBook.
6. Generate Momentum with Testimonials and Pre-Launch Emails
Designing, writing and publishing your eBook is just one part of the equation. In order to execute a successful book launch, you need to create early momentum and engage your audience in a variety of ways.
First up, start getting in touch with some of the other authority bloggers in your niche and offer them a free copy of your eBook. Instead of targeting the biggest names in your niche, focus on bloggers who have a considerable following but have not reached celebrity status yet.
Ask these bloggers to have a look at your eBook and request their feedback. Use the positive reviews as testimonials for your sales campaign.
Also try building partnerships with other bloggers by offering them commissions on your book sales.
Develop a series of pre-launch emails for your email subscribers, and describe the problem that your eBook solves. Offer exclusive pre-launch discounts to your subscribers who sign up early.
In short, build momentum before the launch.
7. Aggressively Market Your eBook with Facebook Ads
Once you launch your eBook, use the power of Facebook advertisements to target your ideal buyer personas.
Facebooks ads is a powerful and cost effective way to get your message across to potential buyers.
While choosing the target audience in your ad campaigns, target people who’re following some of your closest competitors and their products.
Start with a small budget and test 3-4 different ad sets with high quality images and enticing headlines.
Track the results, make changes to your ads, and finally run a full-fledge campaign using the best performing ad.
In all your ads, route buyers to your sales landing page, so that they immediately see your message and sign up for your eBook.
Here’s a detailed guide on setting up effective Facebook ads.
The demand for eBooks is increasing exponentially across the globe (especially in the US). In order to take advantage, you need to stop planning and take action. The steps I’ve shared in this post should provide you a general guideline on how to create, design and launch an eBook. However, you need to launch your first eBook ASAP in order to practically understand the demands and needs of your target audience.
So my advice is simple, you have the right tools to create an eBook, and you enough knowledge about your niche to provide value to your readers.
It’s time you stop doubting yourself and take action.