There are many different ways to market your business using little books, and, while most of them involve lead generation, they can also be used to raise your professional profile, showcase your expertise, and increase your credibility. Because the books are short, you are also able to narrow down the subject matter to reach various segments of your target market and generate more targeted, better qualified leads.
While some people, myself included, say that free eBooks are overdone these days, I will qualify that by saying crappy free eBooks are overdone. A well-written, content-dense book that actually provides pertinent, applicable information will always be welcome. Declining attention spans (see: Little Books for Short Attention Spans) and information overload have created a greater interest in and market for little books.
So, that being said, let’s look at various ways you can market using little books.
You can write a little book, save it in pdf format and make it available on your site, either as a download or by sending it in an email. In either case, you want to have people opt in to your mailing list before giving them access to the book. The book itself can be a promotional style book, or a Tips/Hacks/Mistakes style book, or even a tutorial that explains a process that your target market can use. The main point is that you are giving people something of value in return for their name and email address.
You can also use your little book as a “Special Report” – a favorite technique of internet marketer Ryan Deiss. Deiss creates the equivalent of a little book, writes it up as a special report and sells them via Facebook ads and to his list at $7 (or some other low “tripwire” number). The beauty of that $7 price tag is two-fold: First it gives you a qualified lead; someone actually typed their credit card number in and showed that they are willing to pay for information. That’s huge. Second, if you are using Facebook, Google adwords, or any other paid advertising, each of those $7 sales helps defray the cost of the advertising. This is referred to as a self-liquidating offer. It’s a great way to get leads and build your list at low to no cost.
Another version of the self-liquidating offer is to create a hard copy of your book, and give it away for free—the person just pays for shipping and handling. The shipping and handling usually runs between $5 and $8, which pays for the printing of the book as well as the shipping and handling. In some cases, it can even generate a dollar or two of income. Again, a way to generate leads and have your marketing paid for.
Upload your book to Amazon/Kindle to reach a wider audience. If you have narrowed your subject matter down to appeal to a segment of your target audience, look for that category when you go to list your book. Amazon has categories, subcategories, and sub-sub categories, as well as hidden categories. Make sure you add keywords to your description, the more specific, the better. If you put your book into Kindle’s KDP Select program, you can offer your book for free for up to five days out of each 90 day KDP Select enrollment period. If your book is in KDP Select, it can’t be offered anywhere else on the web. Once you’ve done your free promotion period, you can put the price up to $0.99 if you want to keep it as inexpensive as possible. Your royalty at that price is only 30%, but the goal with little books is not to sell copies; it’s to get copies into as many hands as possible.
There’s also a “workaround” to give away your books for free permanently. It involves putting your book on other distribution sites for free and then having Amazon’s price matching algorithm kick in. Using the free promotion periods and the $0.99 permanent price works for most of us. It also gives you an excuse to announce you’re giving the book away for free every 90 days.
Try-before-you-buy marketing or “the puppy dog close” using little books. Sometimes people aren’t quite ready to fork over hundreds or thousands of dollars to someone they don’t know very well or only “know” on the internet. A little book, particularly one that showcases your expertise, can prove that you know what you are doing and that you are not just some slick marketer with a good line. It allows people to try you out before they invest money in you.
I like to use little books that show people how to do one aspect of what I teach. So, I could do a little book on how to organize and structure a book. Or how to develop a story arc. Just be sure that what you teach relates to what you offer and make sure it is something that people can do fairly quickly and easily. You don’t want to teach a complicated process right out of the gate. The goal is to give people a quick win, one that moves them closer to being ready to hire you.
Use your hard copies of your book as a companion to talks you give or seminars you do. If an event coordinator can’t afford to pay you to speak, ask if they have a materials budget. If they do, you can ask them to buy a copy of your book for the attendees (give them a bulk rate). If they don’t ask if you can sell copies of your book in the back of the room. If everyone is getting a copy, have them open up the book and do an exercise from it (if you can) or point out a case study or process that will show them you know what you’re doing.
Your book, whether it’s your signature book or a little book, is a marketing tool. These are just five quick ways to market with your book. You can learn some more by watching the video Big Profits from Little Books.
As you can tell, I love little books. They are quick and easy to write, they are easy for people to read and digest, and they are a brilliant marketing tool. What’s stopping you from writing your little book?