Writing an ebook for content marketing: Publicise the product

Posted on June 21, 2018 by Rodney Gedda tagged with , , , under Strategy

This is the fun part, right? Once your shiny new ebook is complete you can go to town with the direct marketing and publicity. Here are some of the things to consider on the publicity playing field with an ebook in your pocket.

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With the right planning, approach and content your ebook can be the little gem of your content marketing activities. And, like other content, will feed nicely into established marketing programs.

This brings blog series on writing an ebook for content marketing to an end, but I will keep it updated with new posts as developments in this area progress.

Writing an ebook for content marketing: Cost all components

Posted on May 21, 2018 by Rodney Gedda tagged with , , , under Strategy

There’s an old saying among project management circles that a project should be delivered on time, on budget and on scope. In reality you should pick two. Nevertheless, it’s good to gather an idea of what a project is likely to cost before you begin.

As I outlined in my Introduction to Content Marketing report, one of the attractions of content production as a form of marketing is the barrier to entry is acceptably low. Even if the cost of content is in line with other forms of marketing, you don’t need to commit a large amount of cost and resources to get quality results. The same can be said of ebooks. While they do require more time and resources compared with something simple like a blog post, the cost to produce one is not unreasonable for a mature marketing organisation.

As always, the final amount spent will vary depending on the extravagance of the desired outcome, but generally speaking the costs for this type of ebook project can be broken down as follows.

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When dealing with a number of suppliers for an ebook project it is also a good idea to keep an eye on the amount of time in-house staff spend working it, including dealing with third-parties. This is difficult to quantify for many organisations, however, good suppliers won’t simply work to an hourly rate (or agreed fee), but work with you in a business capacity to ensure the best outcome is achieved. Make sure all stakeholders have skin in the game!

Writing an ebook for content marketing: Flex the format

Posted on April 21, 2018 by Rodney Gedda tagged with , , , under Strategy

In step 2, I covered the key components to consider in an approach to an ebook project. In step 3 I will outline what to consider regarding the format of the publication itself.

As you can imagine longer form content pieces can take many shapes and sizes. As part of your project scope you will need to decide how much time and energy you are prepared to set aside to produce a quality ebook without it becoming a never ending story…

Here are some guidelines for what’s involved in creating the ebook once you have decided on an approach to the content.

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Decide on the most suitable approach and variables like length and type of content to be included and work towards developing a scope of the ebook project. Once you have a scope and budget in mind, meet with your editor to discuss timing and start working on the content.

When you have decided on the format of the ebook, you’re almost ready to begin. But before you do, it’s good practice to budget for your ebook project. In the next step I’ll go over the costs involved in creating an ebook for content marketing.

Writing an ebook for content marketing: Align an approach

Posted on March 21, 2018 by Rodney Gedda tagged with , , , under Strategy

In the first blog of this series I described the three popular outcomes for longer-form content marketing. In this post I’ll dive into what should be considered as part of the ebook project approach. In project management circles the term “approach” refers to “how” the project will be achieved.

Having settled on option two (guide or ebook) as the preferred outcome, you need a framework for deciding which components will comprise the final work and which stakeholders will take ownership of each component. Prudent planning is an essential ingredient to the success of any project.

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The last few points – scope, budget and the grid – will be covered in future instalments of this blog series. For now, put together your preferred approach for your ebook using the guidelines above.

Writing an ebook for content marketing

Posted on January 20, 2018 by Rodney Gedda tagged with , , , , under Strategy

I’ve had a few recent discussions with people asking me about creating a piece of reusable content in the form of medium-sized report, or ebook, that can be used for marketing, lead generation and sales collateral.

To answer that question I usually start by saying there a numerous options for creating reusable content and a popular one is the trusty whitepaper report. Whitepapers are low-risk projects that can be produced fairly quickly for organisations on a budget – and a pressing campaign deadline!

In this case the person had a copy of an ebook guide produced by a multinational software company and was captivated by its long-term appeal. To that I said whitepapers can be appealing too, you just need to have meaningful content in them. But no, he was convinced he wanted some that is “kept and continuously referred to rather than read once and discarded”.

With that in mind I’ve decided to put together a multi-part blog series on what’s involved to produce a longer format ebook for content marketing.

Start with understanding the desired outcome

Before you start writing your ebook, think about the options you have for longer-format content. Assess whether one or more pieces of longer-format content will work with short-format content like that found blogs and social media. And, as always, consider how the final work will fit in with your overall marketing and customer relations strategies.

In the case of an ebook, the main outcome for the business is a guide that can be used as a reference over a long period of time rather than a single-campaign whitepaper report.

The table below summarises common outcomes for report-oriented content marketing.

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Successful publishing projects require diligent planning and a mandate as to why you want to do it in the first place – ebooks are no different.

In the next instalment I’ll discuss the key steps involved in producing an ebook for marketing.