6 ebook marketing tips to guarantee sales
If you have an ebook you want to sell, check out these six ebook marketing tips you can implement today. They’re effective and won’t cost you a dime.
You’re parked in front of your laptop as you comb through the final edits of your ebook and are feeling pretty good.
After all, it’s a big milestone to complete an ebook. To go from creation to publish, you’ve had to climb over several hurdles, like:
Choosing an ebook topic
Finding the right ebook template
Writing your content
Titling, proofreading, and formatting your ebook
Setting up a product page to sell your ebook
Publishing your ebook
Once you hit publish it’s time to celebrate, right?
Yes, but you may want to hold off on your big celebration.
You’ll need to sell your ebook first before making any yacht party plans.
If you’re wondering how exactly to market your ebook so you’re earning revenue from sales, we’ve got you covered today.
Here are six ebook marketing tips to help you start selling, beginning with linking up with an influencer.
6 Tips for marketing your ebook
#1. Partner up with an influencer to promote your ebook
Our first tip for you today is to connect with an influencer in your field and leverage a relationship with them.
Whether it’s guest posting on an influencer’s site or asking for a testimonial, influencer marketing is a dominant tactic in digital marketing today.
It’s no wonder, too, with 89% of businesses saying the return on investment (ROI) from influencer marketing is comparable to or better than other marketing channels.
The reason why it’s so impactful is you create a win-win scenario, where you provide something of value to your influencer and, in return, the influencer exposes your brand to their large audience.
Interested in getting in on the action? We recommend two powerful ways to tap into influencer marketing.
The first tactic is to guest post on an influencer’s site. Just be sure it’s a relevant partner that both of your audiences will benefit from. Ideally, work with influencers who have a broader audience reach than you so you can maximize your exposure.
To land a guest post, follow these four steps:
List your top influencers
Comb through their blogs to learn more about their covered topics and writing style
Brainstorm pitch ideas and email three pitching topics with a very brief summary of each, just like in this pitch email example you see below.
Follow up. Just like you, most influencers are busy. So if you don’t receive feedback right away, it doesn’t necessarily mean they’re not interested. A follow-up email can do wonders.
The second way to engage with an influencer in your field is to pick up an expert’s testimonial.
In the same way that you reach out to influencers for a guest post, drum up a list of influencers within your area of expertise who you’d love a review from.
You can then send an email complimenting them on the work they’ve accomplished and offer to send a free ebook for their valued review and opinion. While you may not receive a “yes” from everyone you reach out to, even just a handful of testimonials can boost your credibility.
For example, Tara Mohr, author of Playing Big: Practical Wisdom for Women Who Want to Speak Up, Create, and Lead, proudly displays influencer testimonials from renowned public figures on her homepage. It only takes three to make the vivid case for Tara’s work.
While this tactic is a larger ask -- as it requires the influencer to actually read your book -- if you can leverage your relationships in your industry, it’s worth the outreach.
How worth it? Very.
Testimonials have the highest effectiveness rating at 90% for content marketing.
Better yet, if you can score a video testimonial, extra kudos to you.
Video content has a 98% higher retention rate than text, where people remember only 12%. Not only do people remember video content, but video testimonials also convert well and rank as the third most effective content marketing tactic.
If finding free testimonials during your influencer outreach sounds far-fetched to you, another option is to pay an influencer to read and provide feedback on your ebook. (Just, as always, keep your country’s legal guidelines for incentivized reviews and endorsements in mind.)
Influencers aren’t the only ones you can ask for a testimonial, though. You can ask any happy reader of your ebook for a review, which brings us to our next tip.
#2. Ask for reviews for your ebook
Another way to bump up your sales and market your ebook is to ask your readers for reviews.
You can post your ebook on review sites like Goodreads.
Alternatively, you can display your reviews on a dedicated testimonial page or simply publish reviews on your product page where your ebook is listed for sale, just like Robin Harford, author of Foraging Through the Year, does.
If you’re looking for a streamlined way to manage your website, take advantage of this no-obligation 14-day trial, where you’ll find a simple dashboard that allows you to upload, sell, and promote your ebook without wrestling any cumbersome tech issues.
Regardless of where you post your reviews, be sure to feature them as much as possible.
Why? Because, just like testimonials, reviews work.
So, aim for at least five reviews to reach your conversion potential.
Since they’re a smaller ask than testimonials, they should be easier to land. After all, where you need a quote or extended verbiage from your ebook reader for a testimonial, you can collect reviews in a simple survey or rating format.
Of course, like most details in your business, it’s worth trying out different formats to find out what works best with your audience. One audience may prefer formal surveys, and another may respond better to open-ended questions.
Our next tip also requires slight finessing to meet your audience’s specific needs.
#3. Repurpose your ebook content
The third marketing tip we recommend is to repurpose your ebook content and post various formats across different platforms.
You’ve done the majority of the heavy lifting by writing and publishing your ebook. It’s time to give it some legs.
We recommend three ways to repurpose your ebook content, the first of which is to pull concepts from your ebook and turn it into a blog article, just like Mel Robbins, author of The 5 Second Rule, did.
Mel published a blog article titled “You’re never going to feel like it” that included related concepts gleaned from her book. (Hint: Use the 5-second rule to get something done because you’re never going to feel like doing it).
The second platform to repurpose your ebook content is your social channels.
Using the same example from Mel, you can catch her referencing content from The 5 Second Rule book in her social posts, like this one on Instagram.
As you can see, her Instagram post syncs up with her theme of using the 5-second rule to avoid procrastination, which is a key lesson pulled from her book.
Thirdly, you can also repurpose your ebook material by creating a powerpoint presentation and uploading it to Slideshare.
Mel also did this and published a 12-slide powerpoint to Slideshare that featured concepts covered in her book.
Mel’s 5-second rule is featured on the first slide.
This tactic provides her the opportunity to get her book ideas in front of more people, ultimately attracting them to purchase her book.
And, if you take advantage of this tip and repurpose your ebook content, chances are you’ll be miles ahead of your competition. A whopping 56% of leading marketers use repurposing sporadically with 2% not repurposing content at all.
As for what to do when you’re not repurposing content, try having a good-old-fashioned chat with your audience.
#4. Engage in online conversations
Another effective way to grow your ebook audience is to hunt through relevant social media, online forums, and community platforms to find groups of people who can benefit from the material in your ebook.
With nearly 3.5 billion daily active social media users, you’re bound to find a relevant new audience for your ebook. If you’re curious about which social platform is the most widely used, Facebook is still the market leader with 68% of US adults using the channel.
To leverage the ever-popular social network, simply hunt for like-minded people within the Facebook groups section.
For example, if you’ve published an ebook for musicians, a quick search in Facebook groups for “musicians” results in thousands of targeted members who may be interested in your ebook content.
Once you’re in these groups, simply engage by providing valuable educational information.
However, don’t jump straight to the sales pitch. As you engage in natural conversations and build up a rapport with group members, link to relevant content on your site that ultimately promotes your ebook.
Don’t force it. People can smell insincerity from a mile away. Keep it honestly helpful and mutually beneficial.
The same rule applies for the fifth tip today, as well.
#5. Promote your ebook with email marketing
This tactic is dead simple: to market your ebook, send out messages in an email sequence featuring key content from your ebook.
If you’ve been building an email list, this is a great opportunity to promote your ebook to your growing subscriber list.
Why is email a good avenue for marketing your ebook? People love to check their inboxes.
They love it so much that more than 50% of people check their personal email account more than 10 times per day, and email is overwhelmingly the preferred channel to receive info from brands.
So, needless to say, writing a compelling email sequence promoting your ebook can go a long way.
More specifically, use your email sequence to tap into your audience’s biggest problem and describe how your ebook solves it for them. For a five-email sequence template to follow, check out these steps from our email marketing guide for online courses:
Email 1 - Introduce and engage
Email 2 - Share key insights
Email 3 - Introduce your ebook
Email 4 - Overcome objections
Email 5 - The final pitch
Basically, focus on educating your audience throughout your sequence so you become both a trusted expert and a reliable source of help for your subscribers.
For example, check out this email I received this morning from MarketingProfs.
Their featured articles are educationally based and position them as the experts on marketing, which means I can trust them as the resource for anything related to the topic. If MarketingProfs were to sell me an ebook, chances are I’d trust the info in that ebook.
And while buying an ebook isn’t (normally) a large purchase, trust still plays a significant role in your audience’s buying behavior. The more exposure your audience has to your ebook over different channels -- including email -- the more they trust you, recent research has found.
Skeptical about engaging with folks on your list who don’t partake in your other info products for sale? Don’t be.
Even if your emails are going to people who declined your digital products on the first-pass, re-engagement emails are still effective. Almost 50% of the recipients who receive your win-back email will engage with your next series of emails (which is just one reason why email consistently tops the list for small business marketing tips).
OK, I’ve got just one more tip for you today, and it’s going to sound really out-of-left-field, but hear me out.
#6. Give your ebook away
While this may sound counterintuitive to your end goal of selling ebooks, initially giving away your ebook for free can benefit your business overall.
You gain exposure
You gain testimonials and reviews
A perfect example is our previously mentioned influencer testimonial tactic. To score that testimonial in the first place, you’ll need to give the influencer a free copy of your ebook, right? Well, this concept applies to various other eager readers as well.
After you’ve given away your ebook (with ample time for a read-through), ask for a review in return. Let the rule of reciprocity work its magic, where doing something nice for someone spurs an emotional desire to return the favor -- in this case, purchasing your ebook.
Plus, some people generally love providing their opinion.
For instance, avid reader Shelly enjoys reading and reviewing so much she dedicated an entire site, Shelly’s Book Corner, to featuring her book reviews.
The important factor here is to give your ebook away to key readers. Consider giving your ebook to:
Your top clients - Tap into the enthusiasm of your biggest fans and gift them with an exclusive offer (i.e., offer your ebook for free as a thank you for being VIP-status)
People who opt-in - This is where you can run a promotion and offer your ebook for free for a limited time to folks on your email list
By giving your ebook away as an exclusive gift, your audience will feel like they’re getting special treatment.
Which is important because 79% of consumers in the US and 72% in the UK only consider brands that demonstrate they genuinely understand and care about them.
And people who feel special and unique are more likely to recommend your brand to their friends, which can result in more sales. In fact, people are 90% more likely to trust and purchase from someone recommended by a friend.
All in all:
When you give your ebook away for free to someone who truly benefits from the content, a positive review or shoutout to their network about your ebook can bring in more potential purchasers for you.
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Move beyond the publishing point and start selling your ebook
If it were a perfect world, your published ebook would be flying off the digital shelves without you having to lift a finger.
But that’s not the world we live in, and you’re going to have to put some elbow grease into getting those books off the shelves.
To score sales, follow these ebook marketing tips:
Connect with an influencer and reach out to people who can help you gain exposure. Offer to write a guest blog, give away an ebook, or pay for someone’s time to (honestly) review your book in exchange for a high-profile testimonial.
Run a review campaign and ask your ebook readers to officially review your book. Then you can post their reviews on various sites, including your own product page, to gain credibility.
Repurpose your ebook content and deploy bits of info from it on your blog, social channels, and Slideshare.
Find relevant online communities to join and engage in conversations that allow you to educate and help members for free.
Send an email sequence to your subscriber list that educates your audience and helps them solve their problem while positioning your ebook as a solution.
Give away your ebook for free to key people, such as your best customers, who will share their enthusiasm for your authorship.
Congratulations on finishing your ebook, and double-congratulations for landing your first sale with these ebook marketing tips.