Are ebooks out of fashion?
Not if they are done right.
Today’s post will be THE ultimate guide for you to create an epic ebook that will bring your blog and business to the next level.
Making an ebook: Why would anyone want to write an ebook?
Depending on your objective, how you write and position your ebook would vary drastically.
Most of the time, there are really only 2 possible reasons for people to want to create an ebook:
You want to use the e-book as a freebie
You want to sell the ebook
You have knowledge that people want, and packaging it into a nifty ebook will leverage your time as you can sell multiple copies without spending any additional time and energy.
Knowing what you’re going to do with your newly created ebook and getting real clear on the role it has in your business is important.
Your ebook has to fit into your overall online business model. If it isn’t part of it and you want to write an ebook for the sake of writing one, I suggest you stop right now and save your precious time 🙂
Once you’ve figured out why you want to write your ebook, here’s what to do next:
Step 1: Set your ebook goals (0.5 days)
Set goals for your ebook launch. Get a notepad and write down the following:
- How many copies do you want to sell?
- Who are you hoping to impact?
- What are you hoping to achieve from the ebook? Be specific. (subscribers? $? recognition?)
- When do you want to launch your ebook?
- Are you going to hire help?
- Do you have a budget for your ebook?
Step 2: Confirm that you actually want to create an ebook (0.5 days)
Before you start writing, you want to be convinced that writing an ebook is THE choice for you. I mean, you wouldn’t want to start writing but give up mid-way, right?!
Aside from ebooks, there are many other alternatives to package your knowledge. For instance, you can always record your videos and publish them online.
Here is why making an ebook is great for your blog + biz:
- People keep ebooks on their desktop for a long time (aka there’s longevity)
- They can consume your ebook at their own pace
- It is convenient for someone to read an ebook quickly, as opposed to more time-consuming alternatives like videos
- Ebooks cater to people who love to read
- A great medium for you if you like writing
- Requires no additional effort (aside from marketing it) after writing
- Not very expensive to create
Oh, and… You get to improve the world, one ebook at a time!
If an ebook is the medium for you, move onward!
Step 3: Deciding on a topic and validating it (3 days)
It is essential that you write an ebook about something that people actually want. This is something that many entrepreneurs neglect, sadly!
The process of finding a topic for your ebook is similar to the process of finding a niche for your blog + business. You need an ebook topic idea that you are an expert about, but is also profitable . You may be extremely passionate about writing about a certain topic, but if nobody wants to read it, you’ve just wasted your time.
First, brainstorm possible topics to write about.
Right now, open that notepad of yours… and write down possible topics for your ebook.
Some questions to consider:
- What are you passionate about?
- What topic has your audience been constantly asking you about?
- What do people ask your help or advice for?
- What are you good at?
- What can you teach people?
- What are some books in your niche that are popular – what topic are they on?
Next, validate your idea.
You can do this by getting on a phone with your clients, blog readers, or people whom you’re trying to reach with your ebook.
Do some market research, my friend. Don’t just stab blindly in the dark and expect to hit the jackpot.
Before you start writing your ebook, you have to be confident that there will be demand for what you’re writing about. You do that by validating your idea.
Step 4: Title (1 day)
Having a catchy headline is extremely important. It is literally what will make or break your ebook. I would say that it may be as important as the contents of your ebook.
An attractive title will immediately magnetize people to download or buy your new creation.
What makes a great title?
Well, I have a post here with 190+ catchy headline templates you absolutely need. There’s even a printable template.
A couple of tips of what makes a great headline:
- Open a curiosity gap. “How I lost 40kg in 20 days”.
- Make it specific. “4 steps”, “5 hacks”, or even specific results like “300 subscribers in 72 hours” will work really well.
- Short and sweet. Don’t have a title that’s too long; people will lose interest.
- Link it to a potential activity or end-result that people desire. “Lose belly fat/ make more money/ find your soulmate” are all results that people will pay a lot for – if you’re offering it for free they’re very likely to subscribe just to check what you have to say.
Now that you have the title all settled, it’s time to start creating the actual ebook itself.
Step 5: Write the outline of your ebook (3 days)
As I’ve mentioned before in this post about the 11 things you should do before publishing any blog post, writing an outline helps you to create quality content much faster.
Writing your outline is a small stepping stone to writing the full version of your ebook.
An outline helps you to:
- Get real clear on what you want in your ebook
- Get into the zone of writing
- Get more motivated to complete the ebook
- Ensures you don’t miss out anything later
- Write your ebook faster
So yes, start with your outline. It also double-ups as a content page, if you’re including one in your ebook.
Step 6: Writing (7 days)
Once you’re done with the outline, it’s time to proceed with the actual writing.
It doesn’t matter which software you used. Just get it done. Microsoft Word or Apple’s Pages work. You could even write your ebook like an extremely long blog post in your WordPress dashboard, if you’re more comfortable with that.
Just get it done. Do not use not knowing which tools to utilize as an excuse to not write your ebook.
Block out specific periods of time and get down to doing it.
Make your content interesting:
- Include examples if possible
- Facts tell, stories sell
- Get more personal
- A sense of humor will go a long way
- Give your best content, don’t hold back.
Make your content readable:
- Write in paragraphs, make it scannable.
- Add images where relevant
- Have appropriate sub-headings
- Make sure your ebook chapters are of an appropriate length
Step 7: Proof-read (3 days)
Either hire someone, or get that friend who is a grammar nazi (we all have that friend!) to do it. Or at the very least, read through your own ebook multiple times and correct any language errors.
You can also utilize Grammarly, a free tool that will help you to detect language errors in your content.
(You can check out this post about what are the best blogging tools – there are many tools in that post which help bloggers with the writing and proof-reading process)
You want to give the impression that your ebook was professionally written – people are spending their precious time on your ebook, so you want to reassure them that they are reading quality stuff!
Step 8: Design (5 days)
Here’s a scary fact: Your content can be simplistic, but if your design is top-notch, people will still perceive your ebook as high value.
Many people underestimate the importance of design… but it is really important.
People judge based on appearance!
Fonts, colors, and images
This goes without saying, but use professional, clean fonts and colors for your ebook.
Exercise common sense. Don’t use Comic Sans, or pluck Clipart from the net.
If you need images for your ebook, make sure that you only use high quality, professional images.
If you don’t know where to find these images, check out this blog post: Where to find free, high-quality stock images.
Have a professional looking ebook cover
Here is the one I used for one of my older ebook (I’ve since retired it):
And here’s another, more modern looking one of my now retired ebook on an iPad:
I will probably write another blog post about how you can design an ebook cover so that you have that covered 🙂
Update: It’s up! How to Make a 3D Ebook Cover in 10 Minutes (With Photoshop)
Step 9: Market it (7 days)
There’s no point in creating your ebook if nobody knows about it. So, promote the heck out of it! It is important to learn how to market online for your ebook to succeed.
Network with others
Do you have friends that will potentially be interested in your ebook? Don’t be afraid, send them a personalized text or email and ask them if they would be interested in purchasing your labor of love.
Remember, if your ebook offers great value, you are doing them a service! In fact, that was how Gary Vaynerchuk sold many copies of his books – by reaching out to old connections and asking them to buy.
Send samples to bloggers who have an audience whom could benefit from your ebook (and are not competitors) and offer them a cut of your profits. Affiliate marketing works wonders, especially when you don’t have an audience!
Be available and present
Be around. Respond to inquiries. Keep an eye out for people who could benefit from your ebook.
Actively post testimonials.
Your energy should be focused on promoting your ebook – remember, what you focus on grows.
Tap into your existing audience
If you are building your list, make sure that you leverage on it. After all that sweat and blood you’ve spent cultivating your email list, you want to use it to market your ebook, my friend.
Send an email out to your list. Heck, send multiple reminder emails and tell them why your ebook is so amazing!
If you have been providing your list with value, your subscribers would want to hear about it, trust me.
If it’s something you’re selling, you can even offer a sneak preview of your ebook to give them a taste of how amazing your ebook is.
Use social media
Social media is just that – a social platform where people hang out and mingle.
It is also an opportunity to find potential readers for your newly created ebook. Leverage on the different social media channels and find your tribe there.
If you need more help with that, my 12-day blog traffic mini course will help you get acquainted with the different social media platforms and how it can get you more eyeballs for your biz.
Write about it, post it on your sidebar
Toot your own horn. Get rid of any fear you have about self-promotion. Write a blog post about how amazing it is. Put a picture of your ebook on your website.
Use your blog as a mouthpiece to publicize your ebook, your readers will appreciate it.
Here’s a summary of how you can create an ebook:
- Step 1: Set goals for your ebook
- Step 2: Be 100% sure that an ebook is what you want
- Step 3: Decide on a topic and validate it
- Step 4: Craft an attractive ebook title
- Step 5: Write your ebook’s outline
- Step 6: Write the actual ebook
- Step 7: Proof-read your ebook
- Step 8: Design it nicely
- Step 9: Market your ebook
I hope that you’ve found this post useful!
Continue on to part 2: How to Make a 3D Ebook Cover in 10 Minutes (With Photoshop)