One of the biggest challenges for B2B marketers is to find enough time and resources to create stunning eBooks and other lead generation assets that help us convert strangers to leads on our website. Traditionally, the whole process takes somewhere between 30-50 hours and involves serveral team members. But there is a better way: recycling content! We teach you how using a free tool called Beacon.
Hello everyone, we’re about ready to get started. I wanted to first thank everyone for joining today. This webinar will be detailing how you can create stunning lead generation assets, with a specific focus on ebooks, in 60 minutes or less.
Dani: My name is Dani Carlo and I am joining you today from San Diego, CA. I am the Inbound Marketing Specialist with 3P Creative group and a fun fact about me is that I have been sky diving 4 times. My first time was on vacation out here in San Diego and I had so much fun I decided to move here for good!
With me today is my co-host Kevin McGrath from Beacon. Kevin - can you tell us a little bit more about yourself?
Here’s a snapshot of our next hour together.
I’d like to start by asking you an honest question: Let’s say you’ve decided to adopt a new puppy. You think it will be the perfect addition to your household but it’s your first pet and you want to do everything the right way.
How would you go about finding the information you need? Would you drive all the way to the store and hope to find an employee to make all of the best recommendations from food to training? Do you drive around until you find a billboard? Call around and ask for opinions? More than likely, the answer to all of these is no.
If you are like most buyers, you will start by doing your own research online. You will turn to Google and type in questions like: Which brand of food is best for puppies? What does a puppy need in the first month? What to know about foster dogs… You will make your decisions on your own time, going through endless suggestions for the right doggie shampoo, puppy nail clippers, and what food to buy.
Now… how useful would it be if you found a resource online called “The Complete Beginner’s Guide To Buying Your First Puppy” or “The Definitive Checklist of What Your Puppy Really Needs.” wouldn’t you be more or less likely to buy from the pet store that offered these resources? If the eBook is good, it can build trust, establish your company as a thought leader and more buyers to buy. This kind of behaviour is typical to today’s buyers.
So, let’s look at this buyer’s journey more in detail
Awareness: What do puppies need in the first year/ Specific dietary needs Consideration: Here are the brands that cover the dietary needs of a new puppy Decision: Why our dog food is the best possible brand for all of your needs
Here is the scary news for sales: Buyers will complete between 66- 69% of the buyer’s process before ever contacting a sales person.
This means by the time they ever pick up the phone, visit the store or even contact you through your website, they will already have: Preconceived notions and objections Frustration with the research process because it has taken so long Emotional association with your brand Opinions you may have a hard time influencing after the fact.
But that’s not even the worst part. The real scary part is that is unlikely most prospects will ever actually contact you which is exactly why we need to be able to influence this process earlier on!
Kevin - So with that in mind, when someone is in that research phase it’s vital that you find a way to stay in touch with them.
Think about how many people stumble across your website, read some helpful content and then disappear before you ever get a chance to talk with them.
The best way to influence prospective buyers when they are in the research phase is to just be helpful! It sounds really simple but if you can offer someone content that helps inform them then they will consider you an authority on that subject. If they see you as an authority figure they will be more likely to purchase from you when the time is right.
Downloads like eBooks or checklists are a great excuse to ask someone for their email address.
Some marketers like Brian Deane have reported an increase of 785% on the opt-in rates of his email forms when he offers a content incentive.
Think about it - how many times have you ignored one of those ‘sign up to my mailing list’ forms? But if you were offered a high quality eBook instead you wouldn’t think twice about giving up your email address because you’re getting something instantly in return.
Inbound Marketing is all about easing the buyers through their own buyer’s journey by providing helpful information that establishes you as a thought leader, the industry expert and their best solution without being pushy or selling. You want to genuinely provide the best fit solution for their needs. (Slide)
By creating content specifically designed to appeal to your ideal customers, inbound attracts qualified prospects to your business and keeps them coming back for more.
The ultimate goal is to create targeted content that answers both prospects' and existing customers' basic questions in a way that makes it easy for them to share that content with thier peers.
In order to obtain visitors, leads, customers, and promoters, you must Attract, Convert, Close, and Delight your prospects.
According to DemandGen, these are the most popular types of content prospects have used over the last year when making purchasing decisions. Although eBooks are massively important with 68% of prospects using them to influence their buying decisions, white papers, case studies and webinars like the one we’re all at right now also have a significant influence.
Kevin? The best part of Beacon is you can use it for so much more than eBooks - things like checklists and case studies are really easy to make with Beacon.
So, let’s take a look at this buyer’s journey in terms of content creation. Each of the 3 stages has different types of content that work best.
When prospects are in the awareness stage…… work best.
During the consideration stage… are the most successful
And when prospects are in that final decision making stage… are ideal.
By now we’re probably all thinking wait, Why isn’t everyone doing this?!
Creating strong lead generation assets is a no-brainer. The statistics are there, we can see how successful it is, so why aren’t we all making eBooks already?!
Two words: Time & Resources
The traditional process for creating and producing an eBook isn’t easy! The process is lengthy and involves several team members: Marketing team agrees on a general concept and outline, target audience and goals which can take up to 3 hours. Graphic designer creates eBook design template which can take anywhere from 6- 10 hours Inbound marketer researches and writes first draft. Works with copywriter and / or editor to finish copy of the offer which will total anywhere between 8-12 Hours depending on how many rounds of revisions need to be made. Graphic designer will create eBook and adds images and design elements which will take another 6 - 10 hours. Marketing team takes offer, creates landing page and promotional assets which will take another 2 - 4 hours.
So why isn’t everyone doing it? Many marketing teams just can’t take the time and manpower necessary to create a quality eBook, despite the obvious value of having these resources… Which brings us to a better solution.
Dani has done really great job of explaining why eBooks are such a valuable marketing resource so I’m going to take some time to walk you through how you can actually produce an eBook using Beacon.
It’s really easy and because Beacon automates a lot of the tasks involved in the traditional eBook creation process we can reduce both the number of steps and the time it takes to execute on them. So it becomes a really simple 4 step process that should take less than an hour.
The biggest objection that I hear to creating eBooks is that people don’t have the time to write a book. But the best thing about a marketing eBook is that you don’t have to. You can recycle content that you already have and just cut out the entire writing phase. Have a look through your blog, your sales proposals, your presentations - you already have a lot of content in some format or another. Look for a common thread – you may find that new customers always ask the same questions for example. The answers to these questions could form the outline of an eBook. If we think about Danni’s puppy example I bet people who have never taken care of a puppy before might ask about what to feed it, how to house train it, what toys are suitable? You could take the answers to all those questions and make a short eBook out of it. With that in mind I think it’s important to not squeeze too much content into your eBook. We would recommend using 5-10 articles to make up your eBook. If you have more than that then I would recommend splitting them into a series. So you could do a whole book on what to feed a puppy and then another book on house training it. More content is good and splitting the content into several books makes it more accessible. If you’re still not sure about what content to include in your book take a look on Twitter and Facebook and see which of your posts performed best in terms of social shares - this is a good indicator of what content resonates most with people. And you could say the same thing about the comments section on a blog - what articles have sparked debate or even controversy? If people feel compelled to comment on your article then that’s the sort of content that should be included in an eBook.cc
Another, slightly more technical approach to choosing what content to recycle is to use Google Analytics. It provides a really objective insight into which content people prefer.
Pick a wide date range of at least a year to help you find that evergreen content. Then if you look under the behaviour menu on the left hand side you can get a list of which posts have generated the most traffic. Next, look for the 5 most popular posts on a related subject. These posts have to make sense when read together in an eBook format.
Once you have decided on the content that you’re going to include in your book you will need to import it into Beacon This screenshot shows the process for WordPress blogs but Beacon is also compatible with HubSpot So you’ll want to search for the title of each post and once you’ve found your 5 posts just click ‘create’
Beacon comes preloaded with about a dozen themes that you can use a starting point. All of these themes have been professionally designed and include stock imagery, complimentary color schemes and typography that has been optimised for readability. If you can’t find one that perfectly fits your needs then I would recommend picking one with colors and fonts that are close enough to your core brand. This means that you only have to make small customizations rather than creating an entirely new theme. The images are the easiest things to swap out so don’t let a certain image put you off - you can easily change that later.
This is the main Beacon interface. Preview on the right, control panel on the left.
Beacon automatically adds a cover page, table of contents and a call to action. So instantly this feels less like a random collection of blog posts and more like an eBook.
The next thingg we should do is edit our book. We can change both the content and the design. On the right hand side of the screenshot there is the preview of what your book looks like and on the left hand side you can make your edits. So in this example I changed the text that would appear on the cover page. But say we want to customize how this book looks. That cover image for example isn’t really suitable.
So we can swap that for a picture of a puppy. The image will be automatically resized so again you don’t have to spend a lot of time wrestling with design software. But now the blue box at the bottom is kind of in the way.
So I can use the layout tab to experiment with a different layout. These are all 1 click options so you can quickly experiment without having to manually rearrange the page each time.
Beacon also includes a range of recommended color palettes. These are a collection of colors that are preselected to compliment each other. So you don’t have to spend a lot of time trying to find the perfect color combination. By selecting one of these color swatches on the left hand side all elements on the page will be automatically recolored to match the swatch. Again - this saves you from having to manually change the color of every element on the page. If you have precise brand colors that you have to use then you can input the color codes too.
The recommended fonts tab works just like the colors. There are a bunch of recommend font pairings - that’s fonts that will look good together without you having to spend hours on trial and error. And again if you need specific fonts you can customize them manually too. Now that we have the design sorted, let’s move on to the content.
Something that I think is really important is to combine your recycled content with original content. With Beacon you can add as many supplementary pages as you like. Doing this not only rewards your blog readers with additional content that they haven’t seen before but it also helps to ensure that your book makes sense when read out of context.
So you can add entirely new articles of course but in this example I’m adding an ‘about the author’ page. You could also add an ‘about this ebook’ an ‘introduction’ or even an ‘intended audience’ page. You can add as many new pages as you need but again be mindful of your reader’s time. If you have too much content then you should think about separating it out into multiple books.
The last thing that I want to show you is the call to action page. This is the perfect way to end an eBook. It’s really important to guide your readers to the next step in their journey and CTA pages are perfect for this. This is a really focused page that doesn’t have a lot of content. If you wanted your readers to take 1 action after they read your book, what should it be? Should they read something else, should they book a consultation? This really depends on your business but make sure that you don’t just end the book abruptly - continue being helpful and it will pay off in the long-term.
Now that Kevin has walked us through the benefits and capabilities of Beacon. I’m confident that everyone here today will have a much easier time creating quality ebooks moving forward. We’d like to tie this new knowledge into our shared experiences with inbound marketing to close with a complete list of best practices to remember when creating your own lead generation assets and ebooks:
How to use existing content to create stunning lead generation assets in under an hour
How To Create Stunning eBooks
in 60 Minutes or Less
We are so excited you are joining us today!
3P Creative Group
Theory (15 minutes)
The Buying Process Has Changed & Today’s Buyer’s
How Inbound Marketing Can Assist
Typical eBook Creation Process & Why It Fails
Practical (20 minutes)
A Better Way To Create eBooks Using Beacon
Questions (15 minutes)
Please use the chat pane to submit questions.
We will address all questions at the end.
Please note: This session will be recorded.
The Buying Process Has Changed.
Has Your Marketing Changed?
Everyone Goes Through A Buyer’s Journey!
Prospect is experiencing
and expressing symptoms
of a problem or
→ Is doing educational
research to more clearly
understand, frame and give
a name to their problem.
Prospect has now clearly
defined and given a name to
their problem or
→ Is committed to
understanding all of the
available approaches and/or
methods to solving the
defined problem or
Prospect has now decided on their
solution strategy, method and
→ Is compiling a long list of all
available vendors and products in
their given solution strategy.
→ More research to cut down that list
to a short list and ultimately make a
final purchase decision.
Awareness Consideration Decision
Today’s Shoppers Complete Most Of Their
Buyer’s Journey Before Contacting Sales!
66-69%: No contact to sales team!
incentives can increase
opt-in rates by up to
— Brian Deane
Inbound Marketing: Translating The Buyer’s
Journey Into Actionable Marketing Tactics
Marketing Funnel = Maps
the process every buyer
goes through to the
inbound marketing tools
eBooks are great in turning
strangers into leads that we
can nurture and then close
Type of content used in the past 12 months to
research B2B purchasing decisions:
● White Papers (83%);
● Case Studies (67%);
● Webinars (75%);
● eBooks (68%);
● Videos (63%);
● Blog Posts (56%);
● Infographics (52%).
67% of B2B buyers rely more on content to research and make B2B
purchasing decisions than they did a year ago. (DemandGen Report)
Each Stage Has Different Content Offers:
Possible Content Offers:
● How-To Guide
● Educational Content
● Tip Sheet
● Cheat Sheets
● Tool Kit
● Beginner’s Guide
Awareness Consideration Decision
Possible Content Offers:
● Advanced eBook
● Case Studies
Possible Content Offers:
● Comparison Charts
● Purchasing Guide
● Product Literature
● Customer Success
● Pricing Guide
Time & Resources Are The Biggest Obstacles
To Creating Stunning eBooks
Traditional eBook creation process is long
and involves several people:
1. Marketing team agrees on a general concept
and outline, target audience and goals.
2. Graphic designer creates eBook design
3. Inbound marketer researches and writes first
draft. Works with copywriter and / or editor to
finish copy of the offer.
4. Graphic designer will create eBook and adds
images and design elements.
5. Marketing team takes offer, creates landing page
and promotional assets.
How Can You Use Beacon To Create An eBook?
Grab a free Beacon account via www.beacon.by
1. Recycling content
2. Import content
3. Choose a theme and customize
4. Combine recycled content with original content
1a) Recycling Content: Method 1
1. Look for a common thread
2. Less is more
3. Social shares
Recap: Using Beacon To Create An eBook
1. Recycle content
2. Import content
3. Choose a theme and customize
4. Combine recycled content with original content
To Make Your eBook Successful, Keep In Mind:
Item 31. Always be helpful, not selling!
2. Plan your blog posts strategically (with an
eBook in mind) to save yourself time down
3. Use evergreen content
4. Use (great) imagery
5. Create bite sized information
6. Keep branding and design consistent
7. Offer examples and anecdotes
8. Finish strong with a related call to action
9. Gate your premium content behind a form.
10. Follow up, don’t spam.
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