Ok, let’s get down to brass tacks about eBooks and whether you should write one for your company by looking at the Pros and Cons of this idea.
First the Pros:
1. Establish Credibility for your company. This is perhaps the singular most important benefit of writing an eBook. It tells your market that you are an expert in your subject matter and that you are a knowledge-transfer agent that causes changes using your value process.
2. Establish that you are a communicator who has command of both the spoken and printed word. In today’s flat marketplace being able to provide thought leadership in a direct, useful and profitable framework helps set you apart from your competition.
3. Establish your Point of Difference within your key target markets. One of the biggest benefits of writing anything is it forces you to think through what it is you have to offer that is of value and what is not. Anyone who writes a daily or weekly blog on a schedule knows that this is not always an easy process and this fact will let your key customers know that you care enough about them to write down your best thoughts.
Now the Cons:
1. It’s not always easy to write an eBook. You need something of value to offer. Don’t just re-write someone else’s thought train. If you have 100 pages in you to offer then write that. Some of the best-selling books are short. Big ideas don’t necessarily need hundreds of pages to get the point across.
2. It represents a time commitment. I know authors who can write a book over a weekend but that’s because they have been observing, recording and thinking about their topic for a year.
3. It can be a frustrating process if this is your first time. So you might want to consider writing a daily or weekly blog first for six months with the thought in mind that you will re-pen your blogs into an eBook.
If you do decide to write an eBook there are three essentials to making it a success:
1. Solve a problem. Don’t just provide fanciful biographical stories or rant on about what’s wrong with the economy. Be clear with yourself about what you are trying to accomplish and remain true to this vision from start to finish throughout the book.
2. Know exactly what your intended audience/reader wants to know more about. This takes time and research. Don’t assume you know without asking key people to test your assumptions.
3. Be different. Don’t rehash someone else’s rehash. Don’t be boring. Tell your story in an easy to read and enjoyable way.
So whether you are writing for an online audience or looking for a way to re-position your company in one-to-one settings, an eBook is an excellent marketing tool to accomplish these goals. And for those who are either in the publishing, printing or creative arts there is even more reason to author a book given that a large cost factor can be eliminated in-house!