EBook sales have skyrocketed due to the emergence of the internet as a dominant entity. The rise in their popularity can also be attributed in part to Amazon Kindle. The internet has changed the face of society tremendously and it really fits the bill for the times that we live in. In this information age people whether they be consumers, customers, or just those seeking information need a vehicle that is convenient and fits right in with their daily routine. On this point the concept of how to format an eBook comes.
I sat in the doctor’s office not long ago and noticed that everyone there was engaged in some activity other than just waiting to be called, and all of their activities revolved around the internet. The nature of our society is changing. People want information quick, fast, and in a hurry. The iPhone or iPad is a problem solver for most of us because it gives us the convenience of being able to access just about any and every type of activity and to conduct many hundreds of different tasks online at any place and time.
I can remember in my time that when you went to a doctor’s appointment you sat there and hoped he or she had a good magazine for you to read. Doctors now don’t have to have reading materials on hand in order to entertain the patient while he or she waits because the internet provides a countless plethora of activities.
I am not normally a shopper but in a recent visit to a local shopping mall I noticed that there were charging stations placed at various locations where you could sit and plug in your wireless device. Many people simply plugged in their devices and continued to use them as they were charging.
We, as artists need to embrace this new technology and recognize that the days of the paperback novel or magazine are probably in fact limited.
What You Will Get Here
I would certainly consider publishing EBooks as a viable alternative to printed books for many reasons; First of all the cost of publishing an EBook is significantly less than what it will cost you to publish a paper book. EBooks cost so much less for many reasons but an electronic transaction cost practically nothing at all to produce.
There are no paper cost, costs for ink, shipping charges, and they don’t need to be wrapped or handled at all by human beings. Your EBook may be kept short and informative or you can write it is the traditional book style. Keep in mind that in this information age people prefer a product that is quick and to the point. The average person will quickly lose interest if the book does not capture and hold their attention.
You can promote your book online which is far less expensive than any other way to do so and give your readers excerpts of your writing to pique their interest very quickly and easily.
How to Format an ebook
Writing your eBook
- Choosing a Topic: The key to online writing is passion. Your excitement for the subject will bleed through to your customers and if they are in the niche that you have chosen they will respond to it in a positive manner. If you are going to go through the process of writing any type of book you should certainly be excited about the topic because if you aren’t you probably won’t complete the task anyway.
You should also know how to speak directly to your audience. You have to determine who you are writing the book to before you begin and write it in their language and on their level. One of the biggest mistakes that you can make when writing an EBook is to make it a document for general use. If you do that it will probably not be read by anyone.
The title, heading, captions, and body of the book need to grab the attention of the reader and they won’t do so if it is not something that he or she is very interested in. Remember that the internet is a good thing but one thing about it that may be a fallacy is there is almost an overload of information there. This causes competition for the attention of the reader’s attention and grabbing and maintaining the reader’s interest is the only way to keep him away from the competition.
- How long should it be? My answer to you would be this; how long can you hold the attention of the reader? My own rule is to write just as long as I have something new and intriguing to say, after that it’s time to leave it alone.
Try to leave the customer on a high note at the end of your book. You may even want to leave them anticipating your next book but whatever you do don’t lose their interest.
- How to choose a Title? Keep in mind that the title is the first thing that your potential reader or customer will see so it needs to be something that will grab and hold their attention. It needs to do two things immediately. It needs to provide the reader with a subject and it also needs to compel him to want to see what follows.
Remember that you are competing with many thousands of authors on the internet so it may be a good idea to be very radical in your choice of a title, but you certainly need to be unique in your approach. A radical approach may “shock” the reader into investigating the content of the book. If it does it has done exactly what it needed to do.
- Content: The content of your book needs to begin where the title left off. Your verbal performance can’t drop off after you have caught their attention with a title. Your content will HAVE to be radical if your title is radical, but don’t forget that you also want it to be informative or even sensational. Your reader will discontinue the interaction the moment that you lose momentum in your approach and once it has been lost you will not regain it.
You need to be sure not to use the common clichés that most other authors use. The research that you put in when you are choosing the words for your book will pay off in golden dividends when it becomes time for your book to perform.
- Format; the PDF format is the most common and easy to use so I suggest that you use it from the beginning. If you use this format you will more than likely save yourself many formatting problems down the road. It is better to start out walking on the easiest trail and stay on it rather than to have to switch later on.
- Grammatical Quality; it is imperative that your book be of impeccable quality. You will certainly need to do one or two rough drafts before you have it edited.
You need to have an expert edit your book because sometimes our personal bad habits will carry over into everything that we do. Fresh eyes will pick up those inner flaws that we express outwardly in our writing. I also suggest that you use an online service that will detect grammatical flaws which is fine, but you will still need to have the content edited for flaws in style and presentation. A poorly written product will certainly cause you to lose the attention of your reader. If he or she associates your name with the poorly produced product they may never read anything else associated with you again. Once again here an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.
How do I Configure the Cover?
Once again remember that your cover will certainly need to capture the attention of your reader. Whichever design that you choose to use should be informative and colorful.
The cover serves the same as the subject in that it will cull out the person to whom you are marketing the book. Once again do not attempt to create a generic design here. Cater strictly to your target audience and remember that you still need to do something to overcome your competition. You may want to be radical here again. If you feel that it is necessary then by all means do what you need to do.
I suggest that you employ a professional with many years of experience in this field. A professional will be knowledgeable in how to market to your particular clientele and the steps that you need to take in order to grab the attention of your readers.
Identify Your Target Market
Here you really need to remain true to the niche that you have chosen. Research your target audience in order to insure that you know every possible thing about them. It is not enough to know age and income levels. You need to get the book in front of their faces in order to get it to sell. In order to do this you will have to know their habits. What sites do they visit on the internet? Which sites do they visit the most? What time of the day do they visit? When are they likely to seek information? When will they shop?
These are just a few of the questions that your marketing campaign should ask and you should be as specific as you possibly can. The more specific that you are3 here the better for you in the long run. You don’t need to waste your marketing efforts and dollars in unfruitful places and searches. You may have to create a few EBooks for free download sites just to gather information about the people who want to read your subject matter.
Yes you need to make a profit but here your best bet is to look up what the competition is doing in terms of pricing EBooks which are similar in length and subject matter to the one that you have in mind.
It is not always necessary to attempt to undercut your competition but you certainly need to be competitive with them. One thing that I have learned is that when you price a product or service too low the customer will sense that it had no inherent value and will often choose a higher priced product. On the other hand if the price is much higher than the rest of the market he or she will probably not choose to even look at it, even if you feel that it is a superior product.
A wonderful thing about marketing EBooks is that it is virtually impossible to lose money because there is no cost for products and little cost for things such as labor, shipping, and storage.
If you are confident in your writing abilities you may want to put the first few books out there for a very nominal cost just to get them into the hands of customers. Many times the quality of the product will garner word of mouth business for you. If you win over your readers through superior quality he or she will be on the lookout for more upcoming publications from you.
The Landing Page is Critical
The landing page is something common to the internet. After your customer sees the title of your EBook it should direct them to a landing page which is a page of the book. Here you have gained their attention and it will be critical that you keep it. A well written and researched landing page can mean all of the difference in the world for the success of your book.
You need to invest maximum effort on the presentation and suitability of your landing page so as to pull your potential customer closer into intimacy with your book. It is right here that you need to capture the mind of your customer and invite him to explore your book, so it has to be nutrient dense. When I use this term I am using it to say that here you need to absolutely shoot your best shot as far as marketing the contents of the book here. Hit several very specific, very key points here to make sure that you grab the reader’s interest.
The purpose of marketing online is to create a footprint that leads to your EBook. Think of the internet as a community with many different roads. You want as many of these roads as possible to lead customers to your book. The best way to do so is to have links on many different social platforms that will lead back to your book.
Social media seems to be the up and coming king of the hill as far as this is concerned. Use as many different social platforms as possible to establish yourself as a viable presence and add links back to your landing page. You may use informative snippets from your book to do so. The object of using social media is not to advertise your book but to get the potential customer to click on the link to your landing page. Once you get them there the purpose of the landing page is to get them to go to the book and to download it.
If the quality of your book is exceptional you may get word of mouth interest. This can come in the form of your information being shared over the web or verbal communications.
Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are excellent platforms to use as are many others. Use as many different social platforms as possible because potential customers are everywhere.
Blogging is also an excellent way to generate traffic for your book and I have used blogs for years. WordPress is probably the most user and internet friendly blogging site and it is also free.
You can also write and submit articles on the web as there are many hundreds of free and even some paid article directories. The more you get your links out into the internet the better the potential return on your sales.
Search Engine Optimization
If you have created a website for numerous EBooks you have to be sure that it is optimized for the search engines. It has to be constructed in a manner that search engines can easily find and index it. It also has to be search engine friendly as far as their ranking criteria goes. You want your site to appear at the top of the search engines anytime a relevant search is conducted on the topic or any other relevant topic.
The steps above are just a few of the things that you need to take into consideration when you plan to market an EBook online. If you study this list and put these steps in action you will have a much better chance of success in publishing an EBook that will perform far above average as far as sales is concerned.