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August 20, 2015

Cindy Penchina, President


It can seem easy at first. Almost casual. “Let’s just put together an ebook.”

But ebooks are a big undertaking, and shouldn’t be entered into lightly. They require a lot of time and effort to reach one end goal: lead generation. In an ideal world, that effort would always yield a plethora of qualified leads for the taking. But let’s face it; things aren’t always ideal, and sometimes the leads you get won’t be the ones you were looking for.  You are going to get some unqualified leads regardless, but you can limit how many you get through careful marketing.

So if your ebook isn’t generating leads, it means you haven’t put together the right one for your customers. So, to figure out how you can avoid this mistake in the future, let’s talk about what you should be doing.

A content marketing ebook isn't the same thing that you buy for your Amazon Kindle. Instead, it’s a highly-specialized electronic pamphlet on a specific, specialized topic that’s of interest to your audience. No matter the topic, length, or size, the main purpose of an ebook is to provide information that educates your audience as much as it leads them to your service as the best possible solution to their problem.

But you don’t just give them away. You ask for something. A name. An email address. So in order to download the book, all they have to do is give you a teeny tiny piece of contact information – and then you’ve got ‘em: warm leads, ready to talk about what it is you do.

Now, everyone who signs up to download needs the service you provide on some level; but sometimes your leads are tepid, either because they didn’t know what they were getting or because the book wasn’t what they were expecting. To avoid confusion, focus your ebook on one specific topic, such as “The Essential Guide to Internet Marketing,” and make sure the copy on your landing page is clear, concise, and interesting enough to whet your audience’s interest. When planning an ebook, use your marketing personas to consider what they would like to read – and then pick. Specificity breeds interest, so work towards maintaining that interest by providing real and relevant content on every page. You can’t be everything to everyone, but you can be something huge to someone in particular.

When writing, give your audience all the information they need on the subject. Don’t just self-promote. Let them know you understand them by specifically addressing their problem. Discuss the pluses and minuses of every solution to the problem and then and only then should you start marketing your services. As with all inbound marketing, it’s important to get the client on your side before you hit them with your solution.

Once your ebook is written, set yourself up for success by advertising it on your website and social media pages, creating a clear call-to-action that prompts interested users to download. Make sure your landing page is filled with content that is optimized for search engines and answers the questions of why users should hand over their contact information to you in the first place.

Finally, market your ebook through every appropriate channel. Utilize already-existing partnerships to co-market your ebook, blast your primary lead list, promote it through your blog, and push it like hell on social media. You’ll increase your conversion as it spreads through shares originating from your social media network.

Which is kind of the point.

Even though it’s a lot of work, creating an ebook can get you new prospects and generate new leads that are already interested in you.

So hop to it already.

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