5 Types of Business eBooks and Why You Need to Write One

It’s 2016, and simply publishing a new blog post every week may or may not help your brand stay on top. To truly stand out from the sheer volume of downloads that take place daily, brands need to diversify and optimize every piece of content. A properly developed and marketed ebook can take your content offerings beyond newsletters and blog posts.

Reasons to invest in an ebook

At first you might be thinking “Aren’t ebooks just a way for companies to get their audience to share contact information?” or “I’ve never read a valuable ebook, so why invest in one?” Some companies take advantage of the purpose of an ebook. They use the format as a way to hide the same information they’ve been peddling for years. However, valuable ebooks do exist. They can help you:

  • Generate leads. Whether you choose to distribute your content or not, the simple act of creating and marketing valuable content will bring interested consumers to your doorstep. If you focus on delivering value-driven content first, your audience will never leave thinking the experience is a waste of time.
  • Building credibility and thought leadership. E-books allow businesses to showcase their industry experience and expertise. As a general contractor, retail store owner, lawyer, or any other business owner, you have a reason to start your business. You understand something that would help your clients in their own lives. An ebook is a perfect way to demonstrate your authority and build relationships with potential customers.
  • Maintain competitiveness. Although e-books are popular in some industries, you won’t find download links or forms on every website you access. If you’re willing to take the time to write a free, expertly-written ebook for your clients, you’re automatically ahead of your competition.
  • Create value. Consumers appreciate when companies add value to the relationship in any way. Developing an ebook shows that you care more than just your profit – you really want to help your customers achieve their goals. When you find your niche to write an ebook, consumers will thank you for your ideas.

Types of eBooks

Here are five types of ebooks that can help you narrow down your search for the perfect topic:

  • Do you know about industry trends, consumer insights or new advancements? Publish your business results in a research report to help readers understand and use the data.
  • The ultimate guide. Ultimate Guides are designed to take a reader from A to Z on a topic. For an online store business, this may mean going through the stages of a redesign from the customer’s perspective. For a construction company, this may mean explaining the decision-making process a client will need to understand for a new build. Find your niche and include everything you know in this type of ebook.
  • A beginner’s guide. If you don’t want to go into too much depth, opt for a beginner’s guide. These are designed to cover the basics of any subject. For companies that focus on full product lines, such as fragrances or essential oils, a beginner’s guide can educate readers on the basic idea of ​​aromatherapy and what popular scents can do.
  • Product/service prospecting. They are excellent for launching a new product or service. Use an ebook to dive into the new offering and offer actionable insights businesses can use today.
  • Industry Exploration. Explore your niche in the industry, past advances and future trends, or focus on the whole industry. If you have expertise in your field, use it to share insights, including what your business has learned over the years and what you think the future holds. People are always eager to read about first-person experiences in the field.

In the world of ebooks, anything goes as long as you have a clear structure. Many present a problem-solution structure. If you get stuck, do a simple search for ebooks in your field. Browse the titles and descriptions to get some ideas for your own content.

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Hammer the details

After deciding to invest in an ebook, avoid rushing through the content production process. Take the time to ensure the finished product meets your content goals. Consider these details to produce an ebook that serves you well:

  • Don’t sell it unless you’re sure. Avoid asking for financial compensation for any ebook; readers will likely go elsewhere. If you plan to close your ebook (for example, requesting an email address or other contact information), make it worth it. Only share high-value content and consider offering additional promotion, such as a discount or special offer.
  • The length is good, up to a point. Many companies think they have to create a manual if they invest in an ebook. Ebooks come in all shapes and sizes. Some are only 15-20 pages, while others can be over 100. Let the content guide you to the right length for the topic. You will know when you have sufficiently covered each point. Do not insist.
  • Work with content writers if needed. You don’t have to be a writer to produce a great ebook that adds value to your brand. You just need to have access to a writer who can take your ideas and put them into practice. Partner with content writers who can turn your knowledge into an engaging and accessible piece. With a verbal interview or a few handwritten notes, a capable writer can turn around an ebook in no time.
  • Producing the book is only half the battle. Think about your strategy for getting the word out. You may need a separate landing page, teaser content, targeted emails, and social media posts. Consider creating a short video to introduce the topic and reason for your writing. E-books often require their own marketing campaigns, but they also produce a higher return than other types of content.
  • Don’t forget to frame the content. Set the stage for why you are writing the ebook and include a paragraph about your organization in each ebook. Although you shouldn’t use content to directly sell your products or services, your audience should know who you are and why you care about the topic. Don’t post generic boilerplate information, though. Include a blurb about how your brand connects to the subject matter.

E-books sound like huge businesses, but they don’t have to be. With the right goals and a solid strategy, you can start working on a brand positioning ebook right now.