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HOW TO CREATE
COMPELLING EBOOKS
That People Will Actually Want to Read!
visually.com
visual.ly
visually
visually.co
visual...
eBooks.Sometimes overlooked and
often underutilized, eBooks
are one of the most effective
content marketing tactics. They ...
AtVisually,weknowathingortwoaboutcreatingkillercontentthat
people want to engage with. By creating successful eBooks aroun...
STRATEGY DESIGN DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS
Like all other forms of writing, it is imperative
that you plan your strategy befor...
Keep it Simple, Stupid.
Yes, the age-old advice applies here too! Even if your
topic is complex, take a simple spin on it ...
STRATEGY DESIGN DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS
eBookshaveuniqueconstraintswhenitcomes
to design – they must be optimized for digit...
This advice for aspiring writers
applies to those writing content
for eBooks, too. If an editor’s fresh
eyes dictate a cha...
Get in the war room and make sure you’ve thought
of every distribution tactic possible and have it
sketched out and ready ...
LANDING PAGE
Where do you create a landing page for your eBook?
▪	 1. What should be on the landing page – anatomy of an e...
You’re not in the business of selling eBooks. You’re
out to sell your product or promote your brand. So
common sense dicta...
STRATEGY DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS
Ah, the power of analytics. With them we
can find answers to questions like:
•	 Which pros...
But without analytics, we have just another
piece of content that may or may be
providing an impact.
There are two main ca...
Set up tracking tools to understand how readers are interacting
with the content:
•	 What would people be highlighting if ...
Like this eBook? Please share it with your
friends and colleagues.
Want more great content?
Visit our Resource Hub to down...
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How to Create Compelling Ebooks

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Sometimes overlooked and often underutilized, eBooks are one of the most effective content marketing tactics. They position brands as thought leaders. They promote
sharing and awareness. Oh, and they don’t
have to be printed or be produced in a
studio, so they’re one of the fastest and most
cost-effective content type to produce.

Published in: Marketing
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How to Create Compelling Ebooks

  1. 1. HOW TO CREATE COMPELLING EBOOKS That People Will Actually Want to Read! visually.com visual.ly visually visually.co visually.com Wordmarks Light Dark Icon
  2. 2. eBooks.Sometimes overlooked and often underutilized, eBooks are one of the most effective content marketing tactics. They position brands as thought leaders. They promote sharing and awareness. Oh, and they don’t have to be printed or be produced in a studio,sothey’reoneofthefastestandmost cost-effective content type to produce. 1: STRATEGY 2: DESIGN 3: DISTRIBUTION 4: ANALYTICS
  3. 3. AtVisually,weknowathingortwoaboutcreatingkillercontentthat people want to engage with. By creating successful eBooks around Video, Content Analytics, and Micro-Content, we’ve uncovered some best practices for eBooks themselves (how very meta of us!). Creating a successful eBook can propel your brand to new heights. eBooks are effective throughout the path to purchase, simultaneously generating valuable leads and driving greater consideration. But creating a top-notch eBook isn’t as easy as just sitting down and writing it. You need proper strategy, design, distribution and analytics to make the most of your eBook. In the pages that follow are Visually’s Best Practices for creating killer eBooks. We hope you enjoy! The Visually Team (P.S. We’re also here to help you create your own!) START A PROJECT
  4. 4. STRATEGY DESIGN DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS Like all other forms of writing, it is imperative that you plan your strategy before executing it. Each of these four steps builds into each other, and success at each stage is crucial for an eBook to succeed. Things to keep in mind: Strategy. WHAT YOU SHOULD THINK ABOUT BEFORE CREATING YOUR EBOOK
  5. 5. Keep it Simple, Stupid. Yes, the age-old advice applies here too! Even if your topic is complex, take a simple spin on it and make it as accessible as possible. Time it Well. Pay attention to your industry and see what is happening. Make sure your eBook hits on the most cutting edge and suitable industry trends. Create Something New. It’s likely that your topic has been written about before, but this doesn’t mean that your eBook can’t succeed. Do your research, see what is out there, and make sure you can either do it better or frame it differently. Educate First, Sell Second. The best eBooks can stand alone and aren’t aggressively promotional. Instead of blindly promoting yourself, instead inform readers about your industry and empower them to explore what else is in it.
  6. 6. STRATEGY DESIGN DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS eBookshaveuniqueconstraintswhenitcomes to design – they must be optimized for digital, remain short and succinct, and contain both copy and graphics compelling enough to keep readers engaged. Design. CONTENT IS KING, DESIGN IS QUEEN. Don’t treat them like leather-bound tomes. Make it easy for readers to find the parts they’re looking for by adding bullet points, thumbnail images, and live links throughout. Make it Skimmable
  7. 7. This advice for aspiring writers applies to those writing content for eBooks, too. If an editor’s fresh eyes dictate a change in direction throughout your favorite section, it is probably for the best. eBooks have evolved alongside digital media and can include videos, embedded animation, and swipeable interactive features. Most people will read your eBook on a screen, so choose accessible file formats and offer options for tablet and e-readers. Kill Your Darlings Treat It Like a Web Product Don’t Underestimate the Medium
  8. 8. Get in the war room and make sure you’ve thought of every distribution tactic possible and have it sketched out and ready to go. Here’s what ours looks like for this eBook: STRATEGY DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS IfaneBookispublishedonlineanditispoorly distributed, will it make a business impact? No. So be sure to follow these steps: Distribution. YOUR EBOOK IS NOTHING IF NO ONE READS IT. DESIGN Create a distribution checklist.1
  9. 9. LANDING PAGE Where do you create a landing page for your eBook? ▪ 1. What should be on the landing page – anatomy of an eBook landing page • Synopsis/blurb/ value prop of what you’ll learn from downloading it • Book cover • Lead cap form (what data should you collect) ▪ 2. How do you go about setting up a landing page? • Lander app/unbounce, marketo/hubspot, docsend/usedox ▪ 3. Talk about visual content formats for producing associated micro-content to promo eBook (gif, flat graphic, video, etc.) MICRO-CONTENT Different formats – gif, micro-video, static images Should it have text? CTA? Imagery? HOW/WHEN/WHERE TO PROMOTE AND DISTRIBUTE YOUR EBOOK Paid advertising for driving traffic to eBook ▪ • Facebook ▪ • Linkedin ▪ • Twitter – Twitter Lead Cards How to execute distribution/promotion ▪ Use something like Hootsuite or buffer to schedule posts in advance Anatomy of a good distribution message (Facebook, twitter, email etc) ▪ • Include visual micro-content as often as possible to accompany your messaging ▪ • Include some type of value proposition – let people know what they will get out of reading the eBook, how this will make them better at their job, etc. ▪ • Strong CTA Sharing ▪ • Ask executive team to share on their LinkedIn pages, twitter ▪ • Ask sales to share with their prospects ▪ • Include in your company’s email signature – you can use WiseStamp to do this automatically for your company and make sure the signature is still on brand. TRACKING Different tracking types ▪ • Marketing automation – cookie based (hubspot/marketo) for tracking behavior with leads ▪ • Traffic tracking – GA, Mixpanel, bitly – helps establish the volume of traffic the book is getting vs. downloads ▪ • Lead tracking/simple form capture -- marketing automation does this through their own form functionality but you can also use docsend, doxiq/usedox, wufoo —helps capture the contact info to be ported to marketing funnel
  10. 10. You’re not in the business of selling eBooks. You’re out to sell your product or promote your brand. So common sense dictates that you shouldn’t make the audience pay to learn about it. Charge only an email address (also like this eBook!) or newsletter subscription in order to market to readers later. Make it available for free —like this eBook! 4 Treat your next eBook like a movie launch. Instead of teasertrailers, create a teaserblog post. Instead of the NBC interview, interview an industry insider. Just make sure the hype is real! Whet your Audience’s Palate.2 Time to cash in all the favors you’ve been accumulating – ask your most popular and well- informed industry friends to share your eBook and help get the word out. Leverage your Relationships.3
  11. 11. STRATEGY DISTRIBUTION ANALYTICS Ah, the power of analytics. With them we can find answers to questions like: • Which prospects can you attribute to your eBook and how did these people find it in the first place? • Which opportunities, and how much were they worth? • How many people interacted with your eBook in total, even if you’ll mainly attribute their conversion elsewhere? • How engaged were they? Analytics. TRACK EVERYTHING AND PAY ATTENTION TO THE RESULTS. DESIGN
  12. 12. But without analytics, we have just another piece of content that may or may be providing an impact. There are two main categories of metrics to think about when considering your analytics strategy: Tools like Bizible can fill in gaps with tracking so you can see information beyond first and last click attribution – and there are plenty of users who will download your eBook in between. Prospect’s Marketing Channel(s) + Converted Lead Attribution Searched for you on Google Landed on your homepage
  13. 13. Set up tracking tools to understand how readers are interacting with the content: • What would people be highlighting if they had a printed copy? • Which sections are the most compelling? • Who is sharing what via social media? Total User Engagement with The Content Navigated to your eBook Signedupforthenewsletter Downloaded the ebook FoundapostaboutyoureBook Aweeklatercametoyourblog Contacted your sales team only after more interaction with your website Spent 2 months feasting upon your beautiful work
  14. 14. Like this eBook? Please share it with your friends and colleagues. Want more great content? Visit our Resource Hub to download eBooks, whitepapers and more. START A PROJECT Visually is your on-demand creative services team. We engage the world’s top creative talent to tell the world’s most important stories. From infographics to videos and ebooks, we’ve got you covered. Start your next content marketing project with us today. visually visually.com visual.ly visually visually.co visually.com visual.ly visually visually.co Wordmarks Light Dark

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