How to Write An eBook For Maximum Conversions… 3 Simple Steps For Success

Conversion Optimisation (CRO), Website Content 0 Comments 12 Views 0 Like

Discover our formula for creating super-sales converting eBooks quicker than you can scoff a midnight kebab on a Friday night. Oh and it’s completely pain-free… unlike your Saturday morning hangover!

Are you an eBook virgin? If you find the task of creating some sort of ‘lead bait’ (like this eBook to your left) to increase your website conversion daunting, whether it be an eBook, a checklist, a cheat sheet, action plan, a kit or whatever, then this post is for you.

In the last 9 months since launching our current website,we’ve had 1,608 conversions from eBooks which I’ve written and I certainly wouldn’t call myself a writer. Was I crapping my dacks the first time round? Hell yeah! But once I got into it, I actually really enjoyed it and my money says that you will too.

 

So don’t think that you’re not good enough and you need to pay a writer. That’s baloney.

Don’t undervalue yourself. You’re in business so you know what you’re talking about or you wouldn’t be IN business. Capice?

Please believe I know what I’m talking about, an eBook works. You can do it.

If you’re afraid it won’t be good enough you need to read these next four lines over and over until it sticks:

  • You are the expert
  • You have all the answers
  • You are the guru in your niche
  • You know the info people are desperately searching the net for right now.

What I’m saying is, they want what’s in your head. They really do. So let’s give it to them!

Having a small business website these days without publishing any quality downloadable content you can use in exchange for an email address to build your list is like a marriage with no love. It’s pointless.

Why waste so much time, money and effort into creating and marketing your website if you’ve got no carrots to dangle when your visitors arrive?

That’s where an eBook is the perfect carrot to dangle.

Now I’m not talking about writing an epic novel. Don’t have a panic attack before we’ve even started! An eBook can be as little as 10-12 pages and as long as 300.

For the purpose of this exercise, let’s look at creating a free eBook that is 50 pages or less.

 

So, what makes one eBook convert better than another?

Before we get started, I thought I’d squeeze in a little eBook 101 so we’re all on the same page.

A great eBook does the following:

  1. Solves a problem. If it doesn’t solve your ideal customer’s problem, then Houston, we have a problem.
  2. Builds trust. The whole idea of creating this sort of lead bait is to get prospects to know, like and trust you. So if your eBook doesn’t build trust it’s going to be dead in the water.
  1. Takes a stance. Don’t do or say the same things everyone is saying out there. Have an opinion, be a thought leader, stir the pot. Don’t go overboard but if you do this you’ll find it will positions you as the guru expert in your niche and the conversions floodgates will open.
  2. Over-delivers value. To put it bluntly, don’t write crap. Just because it’s free, that doesn’t mean it can be mediocre. Make it unbelievable value but only tell part of the story. Or in other words, only serve the petite entrée and not the full main meal so you leave people wanting more.
  3. Converts its butt off for you. Of course it has to convert. Is the Pope Catholic? Duh! Okay, let’s move on…

 

Step 1: Research

The first thing I want you to do is get into research mode. Here are the steps to follow:

  1. Determine who your target audience is. Who exactly are you going to be writing for? What are their most pressing problems? I find creating personas is a great way to really get inside our target’s head. It helps me put myself in their shoes and write better content.
  2. List the pre-sales questions you always get asked. Jot down the top 10 questions you get asked all the time by your prospects. If you want to see how I do it, read this post How to Create 101 Content Ideas in 60 Minutes or Less. This alone can be your whole eBook eg ‘The Top 10 Questions on Everyone’s Lips When Buying A Pink Widget”.
  3. Ask your clients. What do they want to know about? Why did they buy from you? What problems are they still facing even though they’re already clients? Ask questions like“What frustrates you the most about {insert product or service here}?”
  4. Search trending topics on Twitter. This can tell you a lot and you can get a ton of great ideas. Simply go to https://twitter.com/search-home and start discovering possibilities.
  5. Research popular bloggers. Look at really popular blogs in your niche that have already got lots of comments and social shares. Make a list in an Excel spreadsheet and then dissect them. Study their headlines. What makes them so appealing? What answers are people searching for? What information are people seeking? (Note: This is also a great way to come up with headlines for PPC ads by the way — there’s a little bonus tip you didn’t see coming eh?!)
  6. Keyword research. Look at what keywords people are searching using the Google Keyword Tool.
  7. Competitor Research. Who says you can’t spy on your competition? Take a quick squiz to see what they’re up to then make sure you do it ten times better.
  8. Check out the most popular books on Amazon.  You can see what people want by researching the top sellers lists on Amazon, so get to it!
  9. What’s your passion? Now it’s time to do some soul searching… what do you love about what you do and how you help people? What drives you in your business? Why did you start your business? Why do you keep getting out of bed in the morning? Go back to the roots of the ‘why’ and make some notes around your passions.

 

People buy the ‘why’, not ‘’what’ it is that you’re selling.

That’s according to New York best-selling Author of Start With Why, Simon Sinek. Almost every leader in corporate America has a copy, so I’d suggest you jump on the ‘why’ bandwagon too.

Make sure include YOUR why when you write your eBook. That why will shine through and really help you connect with your audience.

 

Step 2: Brainstorm killer eBook ideas, titles & outlines

The first eBook I ever wrote was 10 Things Your Web Developer May Not Tell You.’  If you were in the market to buy a website and came across this book on my website, would the title make you want it?

The trick to creating an eBook that converts is not only a killer title but it also needs to suit your prospect and where they are in their journey to buy what you sell.

This 10 things eBook was so well received that I thought to myself ‘what else do people need to know when they’re about to start building a website?’

Need some help creating your lead-boosting eBook?
Give your friendly web geeks a call!

Then we created our Website Starter Kit which goes into great detail about everything you need to know to create a profitable and high converting website from the get-go.

We know that if anyone takes the time to complete our survey to get our free Starter Kit (which is just as valuable as any $500 paid product I might add) they’re exactly the kind of people we want to be talking to because sooner or later they’re going to be in the market for a website.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m not all about content just for the sale. You’ll find loads of content I create on a regular basis to help people win big online, like our Ultimate Conversion Checklist, and that’s just because I’m passionate about helping the little guy but…

 

 

Right now, for your first eBook, you need to think about where your prospects are in their journey with you and create something that helps educate them on your product/service and moves them along your buying cycle towards a sale. You can earn the karmic points later!

YOUR ACTION STEPS:
  1. Brainstorm 10 eBook Titles. Review all your research notes you compiled earlier, and together with your keyword research, start brainstorming eBook titles. I want you to come up with 10 then by process of elimination, narrow that down to the top 3. For great tips on writing magnetic headlines, check out this series by Copy Blogger.
  2. Create an outline of your eBook. Remember, it doesn’t have to be an epic, people don’t have that much time these days anyway so keep it short and sweet but enough to wet their appetite. List ideas for chapters, bullet point pertinent points for each one and nut out your table of contents now. Jot down any client or personal stories you want to talk about to help people remember your message. Don’t go overboard for your first eBook; it could even be just 5 chapters, who cares? So long as you’re solving problems, everyone’s happy.
  3. Ask some close friends or clients for feedback. Tee up a coffee date, send around a group email, ask your peeps on your Facebook page, phone a friend — whatever rows your boat really but I suggest you get some feedback on your initial ideas before you start writing.

 

Step 3: Write, design & publish

By now I can only assume that all your ducks are lined up and you’re itching to start writing huh? Well if not, shame on you! Think of all the people you’re going to be helping.

This is not a chore; it should be a fun and exciting exercise. I’d even go as far as to say that you’ll even get a rush from it when you upload it to your site.

So here’s the step 3 of my 3 steps to success:

  1. Start writing. Yep, it’s rocket science isn’t it? Sit down, eat that frog and just start writing. I wrote my first eBook in a day. Then I slept on it, edited it the next day, got a few colleagues to proof-read it the day after that then shipped it to design to make beautiful. I then did a final proof, wrote the teaser for the website and it was ready for upload. Before you start each chapter, ask yourself “what problem am I solving in this chapter?” and it’ll much easier to get it all down.
  2. Use what you may already have. Have you already got blogs, case studies or articles that you can use to build upon? There’s nothing wrong with repurposing content so long as it’s relevant and up-to-date.
  3. Write like you talk. Don’t think you have to be an accomplished author to write an eBook. People will appreciate and connect with you more if you just say it how it is, no jargon, no fluff, just plain ole’ English!
  4. Just keep writing. Don’t stop until you finish the first draft. Don’t worry if it’s not perfect, just get it all out, you can edit it later.
  5. Edit and polish your first draft. Sleep on it and come back with fresh eyes tomorrow for a final edit then send it to a friend or colleague for feedback and edit.
  6. Write your sales copy. What key takeaways will your readers get after reading your eBook? Make it really valuable and remember the WIIFM radio station (What’s In It For Me?). Write a headline, sub-heading and three bullet points to include in your opt-in box or download page whilst your waiting on edits.
  7. Design your eBook. Please don’t do this at home folks. Seriously. If you don’t already have a designer, it pays to hire one. If cash is tight, head to oDesk or Elance and source an el cheapo freelancer. You should be able to get your whole eBook designed for a couple of hundred bucks. You should also get your designer to create some really awesome, actionable graphics to promote your eBook on your website.
  8. Decide on your opt-in strategy. Once you get some more eBooks under your belt, I’d totally suggest you test giving some content away entirely free with no opt-in but for now, you need to increase conversions to build your list so an opt-in it is.You could decide to use the opt-in to entice people to signup to your newsletter. Great! Or you could decide to use it to build your list by having a checkbox at the bottom of the opt-in box asking users if they also want to join your mailing list.Please, just don’t get greedy with the information you ask. If you can get away with just snagging an email in one field, do it. If you really want their first name to personalise emails and auto-responders, then make it two fields max.
  1. Upload and watch your conversions skyrocket! Check your analytics and keep and eye on what it does for your conversions. If your website conversion rate doesn’t increase due to your eBook then email me personally and I’ll give you some tips on where you may be going wrong.
  2. Now, start brainstorming the next one. Just kidding. I know you’re busy. Take a big deep breath and give yourself a pat on the back. Well done!

Now… get marketing!!

You shouldn’t wait for people to find your website and then magically find your eBook somewhere inside it. That’s going to get you a poor return on your time and efforts. You need to use it as bait to draw people to your site and then get them to beg to be on your list.

Do whatever it takes to pull people to your site and download your bangin’ new problem-solving, butt-kicking pride and joy eBook!

Want some hints how to promote your new eBook out in the world?

  • Promote it via your social media channels
  • Ask your friends to share it
  • Send everyone you know an email about it
  • Add it to your email signature

So go now young Jedi, I have imparted my knowledge… you now have the force within you. 🙂

 

So are you in?

It takes a second to make a decision to be successful; the rest is just implementation. C’mon, it’s easy. Is it ‘yes’ or ‘no’?

Show me your commitment by leaving me a comment below and tell me about your eBook idea. If I can help you brainstorm killer titles I will!

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