An instructional ebook can be a powerful tool in your content strategy. Your own ebook can position you as an industry authority and help your customers perceive you as a trusted expert in your field. You can write an e-book as a free opt-in to build your email list, or you can use an ebook as a content upgrade to sell as a digital product. Whatever the purpose, a well-written e-book can help you gain the trust of potential clients and build your brand. When they read your ebook, they’re more likely to read your blog or visit your website.
Maybe you’ve thought about writing an e-book but struggle to find the right words or get your ideas organized. You know that you have something to write about, but the task is somewhat daunting. You just can’t seem to get started. If you don’t have the resources to hire a professional writer, it’s not as hard as you might think to write your own ebook. That’s why I’ve compiled some simple steps to help you get started.
Identify A Great Ebook Topic
The trick to selecting your book topic is to really understand your customer. Think about your customers’ most common problem. If your ebook answers their most pressing question or solves their most persistent problem, they’ll want to hear what you have to say. Do some market research to help validate your topic idea. What questions do your current customers ask you the most? Join some Facebook groups in your niche. What discussions are taking place? What are the most frequently asked questions? What struggles are they dealing with?
Write An Outline and Table of Contents
Start by outlining your topic so that you’ll have a framework to follow as you’re writing and organizing your ideas. Planning your book from the start helps save time and allows you to write more efficiently. Use your earlier research to clearly define your audience. The more details you include when describing your ideal audience, the better. Set a goal for the number of words you would like to write. When you have a goal to work towards, it helps you make progress towards finishing your book. After you have your ideal audience and desired length established, create a high-level view of what you’ll be covering in your book. Your outline does not need to be set in stone, it just helps you stay organized and serves as a reference point on your progress Your outline will eventually become your Table of Contents.
Just Start Writing
I recommend setting a daily goal on how many words you would like to write each day. Set aside a specific time each day to accomplish that goal. Start by working on one chapter at a time. It helps to use a simple question and answer system for each chapter. Ask why, what, when, where, and how questions on your topic. Continually refine your writing until you’re sure that you’ve clearly and effectively answered those questions.
We have some resources to help you get the job done in a fraction of the time. It’s as easy as downloading one of our e-book templates, following our Irresistible Writing Formula and dropping in your text.
Proofread and Review
Read through your work with a critical eye. Look for typos and misspellings. Replace all uses of the passive voice with the active voice. Instead of, “The dog was brought to the vet by its owner,” you would say “The owner took her dog to the vet.” For more tips on what to watch out for when proofreading, check out my previous article here. Reading your work aloud also helps you catch grammar and usage errors. Don’t forget to install Grammarly, your personal grammar coach to help you along the way. The last thing you want is for your readers to point out grammar and spelling errors!
Format Your Ebook
Once you’ve finalized your text, you can begin thinking about laying out your pages and adding some graphics. You don’t need to be a graphic designer to do this. As long as you remember some basic page design principles, you can create a presentable ebook without breaking the bank. When laying out your pages, you want to:
- Break up text with plenty of white space
- Add quality images without cluttering the page
- Use headings and call-out boxes for emphasis
You also don’t need to invest in expensive software. Microsoft Word, Powerpoint, Apple Pages or Keynote can work well for basic page layout. Free tools such as Canva can help you create your own designs, while photo sites such as Unsplash offer quick access to beautiful images. Once you’re finished with your design, simply export your document as a PDF, and you’re done!
Note: If you’re planning on publishing your ebook on Amazon, you’ll need to format your book using their Kindle formatting guidelines.
So if you’ve been thinking of writing an ebook, it’s worth your time to get started right away. An ebook is good for your business. You’ll help build customer trust and boost your authority.
What topic are you thinking of writing about?