WHY PLANNING YOUR EBOOK IS IMPORTANT
Planning Your eBook
Although planning your eBook is very important, it is also possible to write a book “off the top of your head” without necessarily planning your eBook and still have it make all sense. Click To Tweet More often than not, however, you end up needing to do a lot of editing because what you thought made sense when you were writing actually doesn’t make sense later to anyone but you.
In other words, when you finish writing, without planning your eBook, the manuscript turns out to be needful of a lot of revising. That is the reason why I personally believe you need to have a plan for the Book you want to write before you attempt to put pen to paper.
This is especially true if you write eBooks to boost your business or to impact readers or inspire them to take action of any sort.
The reason is simple: You’ll write your eBook a lot faster and more effectively and the end product will fulfill your purpose if you take your time properly planning your eBook.
Let’s say you wanted to get an eBook written and then you assume you know all the stuff you want to write, so, you would be able to just sit down and write, which is what maybe you are doing right now.
So you refuse to produce an outline—or even to decide on the best audience for your eBook. It’s for everyone, you assume. You fail to decide who to target to best accomplish your goal for writing the book—or how to accomplish that goal with your book.
You may have had about 15,000 words written but upon careful review, all you seem to have in your manuscript may turn out to be broad concepts.
The truth, however, is that in order for your so-called eBook to make the desired impact and attract the envisaged readership, your book needs to provide solutions—and ones that a particular segment of your audience (a target market) could actually be able to identify with and implement.
Time to Revise
If you find yourself in a situation like that, you may not need to throw away what you have already written. However, after struggling to get that much of your eBook written, you now need to go back and determine if what you have put down is clearly focused enough, and whether it serves the goal you set out to accomplish, or if you need to rewrite, refine or revise it drastically to make your project viable.
That could be a pretty frustrating proposition when it might have taken you so long to get this far along. This scenario could have been avoided with planning. Nonetheless, you chose instead to write by just the inspiration of your mind without the necessary due diligence.
Writing with a Plan
You could, on the other hand, choose to take the time to do some serious planning.
You could start your eBook project by determining:
- Your ideal reader
- Your target market
- Your competition
With that information, you could better focus your idea on what your readers want and need and how to create the change you, as an author, want to inspire. This would make your eBook more marketable and reader-friendly.
Planning your eBook should also help you look at what other books have been published on your subject to see if what you are doing is different, new or necessary in the first place. Click To TweetIt could be possible that what you are saying is old news. That won’t inspire anyone to create change—or buy a product or service.
With the kind of research I propose, you could then create:
- A table of contents—basically an outline of your chapters
- Chapter summaries— a brief synopsis of each chapter so you know what content you will include
You would base these on your research, angling the structure and content of your eBook to the needs and desires of your readers and market. You also would be sure to make your eBook better and more unique than those already published.
Then you can review your proposed content to see if it is on target. You can achieve that by asking the following questions about the book
- Does the eBook address the needs of your readers (i.e. does it answer their questions, solve their problems or inspire them to change or create change?)
- Is the eBook unique and different from other eBooks on the same or similar subject in the marketplace already?
- Does the eBook fulfill your purpose for wanting to write it?
If you follow this kind of plan, which is what I recommended to my clients, you will find out that you can then write your eBook easily and effectively.
The whole book and every chapter will be outlined, and you can just sit down and write with a map that leads you from start to finish.
You may actually need to create a bulleted list of everything you plan to cover—all your main points—as well as the benefits you will deliver in each chapter.
If you then “write to the points and benefits,” you will easily stay focused and on target. You will fulfill your purpose, and your book will be just what your readers need and want. That means they will purchase it!
Feel free to share your experience with planning or not planning your eBook and how it affected the outcome the publication!
7 SIMPLE STEPS TO SELECTING THE RIGHT TOPIC FOR YOUR EBOOK
You’ve decided to write your first eBook or create your first digital product. Or maybe you’ve decided now is the time to write the next one to continue growing your business.
But, first, you have to decide, “What’s my topic?”
You most likely fall into one of two camps. Camp 1 is where you need more ideas and clarity about your project. Camp 2 is when you have a ton of ideas but aren’t sure which one to pursue…
If you fall into camp 1 – then you need more ideas about what to write. You may like the idea of writing an eBook but wonder if you have enough expertise. You might be asking questions like…
“What could I write about?”
“What is the right topic?”
“How do I really know it’s the right one?”
“Will my clients like it?”
“Will it be good enough?”
“How do I make it stand out from everyone else’s eBooks on the same subject?”
You need to start at Step #1. (See the 7 Steps below)
Or, you fall into the second camp, which is about having too many ideas. You may be like many entrepreneurs who are highly creative and see possibilities everywhere they go. This can be as much of a frustration because you never know which idea to commit to you end up doing a little bit on each project and nothing ever really gets finished.
You ask yourself questions like.
Which one do I make real?
Which one is the right project?
How do I choose?
- Dig Into Your Treasure Chest of Gifts
- What Are Your Clients Asking For?
- Brainstorm Project Ideas
- Where is YOUR Energy?
- Identify Your Business Goals
- Your Project Sweet Spot
- Make Way for the Action
#1: Dig Into Your Treasure Chest of Unique Gifts
If you aren’t feeling confident about what to put into your digital project, then you want to start with some personal discovery. Click To Tweet Excavating your own treasure chest of experiences, talents, strengths, passions, and gifts will give you the confidence and the creativity you need.
I can guarantee that there is no one in the world who has your unique blend of knowledge, skills, real experiences, perspectives and resources. And there are people out there waiting… to hear it from someone like you! Get out a blank piece of paper and brainstorm your Treasure Chest of Gifts.
Set aside some time to write down all that you have accumulated in your own treasure chest of gifts including:
Your Experiences – These are the things you have handled, dealt with, gone through, been a part of, or created. They can be in your business or in your personal life. For example, I used to be a VP of Marketing for 50 shopping centers across the country. I helped lead $1,000,000 grand openings, coordinated advertising campaigns and multi-center launches, even the simple in-mall Santa parade.
You may have experienced rough patches of financial stress, bankruptcy, illness, or know a lot about how to manage projects or help people to get along. Capture these – they make you absolutely unique!
Your Style/Personality – What are adjectives to describe you? Are you quirky, quiet, calm, loud, funny, stylish, hip? These are all part of your unique personal brand and message for your project. It will make it stand out and be different from everyone else’s eBook about the same subject.
Your Natural Strengths – What are you good at doing? When are you in top form? What is easy for you? Where do you jump in and help? These are areas to bring into your project.
Your Learned Strengths – What are the things you are good at but don’t really get you excited? I have a client who is a former Certified Public Account and she is now a coach. She knows financial data well but isn’t interested in that career path. However, she can easily bring that perspective in with her clients when she is coaching. She can certainly add this unique experience to her eBook to help her stand apart from others.
Your Passions – What do you love to do? Where do you spend your downtime? What fascinates you? What makes you upset or angry? These are all clues to areas you naturally probably know a lot about or want to help change or fix? You can collect and share the resources, stories, experiences, and checklists you’ve gathered in this area.
It’s good to keep your Treasure Chest of Gifts out on your desk or on the counter for a while and keep adding to it as you remember more things to add. Keep asking yourself: “How can I blend these together to help others who have a need in this area?” This will give you lots of possibilities for content and topics for your eBook project!
#2: What Do Your Clients Ask You For?
Now it’s time for a little external research – it’s easier than it sounds. What do your clients ask you for, over and over again? When you are on a teleclass, webinar, coaching or consulting call, what types of information, resources or wisdom do they want from you?
Keep a running list of what your clients and potential clients ask you for. This is the perfect fodder for a potential eBook or product.
#3: Brainstorm Project Ideas
Now is the time to capture all your potential project ideas. Start ideation flowing by creating a mind map. Write down all the potential projects swirling around in your mind… Ideas that popped into your imagination while discovering your treasure chest of gifts… Ideas that came to you as you made your lists of client questions…
Don’t edit out ideas that you think won’t work.
Crazy ideas. Little glimmer ideas. Half-baked ideas. What if… ideas.
Just let them fall out of your head and onto your paper.
Tip: Just because you have the idea doesn’t mean you HAVE to do it!
#4: Where Is YOUR Energy?
The next step is to check in with each one of your project ideas and rate on a scale of 1-5 how excited are you about each project (with 1 being Not Very Excited and 5 being Very Excited). Now circle which projects are 4’s and 5’s. If they are less than a 4, then leave them alone for now.
You want to stick with ones you are most excited about. There is natural momentum in your energy and enthusiasm. These are the ones that are more likely you’ll stay committed to and get completed.
#5: Identify Your Business Goals
Now move onto a separate piece of paper. I like to refer to the Top Ten Most Common Business Goals.
Answer this question: “For the next 90 days what are my top 3 business goals?” Notice I didn’t say “What are your top business goals?” Everyone has all these goals as their goals. You have to narrow down to three priorities for right now.
#6: Your Project Sweet Spot
Now it’s time to discover where all this comes together in that Project Sweet Spot! Refer to the top 3 possible project ideas that you are most excited about. Which ones also meet your 3 business goals over the next 90 days?
Your best project topic will be the one that has a lot of energy and enthusiasm behind it and meets your current business priorities. If it’s a tie, pick the one you are most excited and passionate about. It will be the one that is most likely to get completed and you won’t lose interest partway through.
#7: Make Way for the Action
Now that you have your topic for your eBook or digital product, you don’t want to stop there! Ask yourself: What do I need for this to be successful? Do you need time? Money? Help? Research? Referrals?
Identify what you need to get you going and make an action plan to get started. If it’s time, get out the calendar. If it’s money, identify how much and where can you get it. Help, research, referrals… you can you ask for them or figure out where to get them.
Answer these questions so you get the blocks out of the way and clear the path to a successful project! We’d love to hear what projects you are going to create!
Share with us your commitment to your digital publishing project in the comment section below!
FOUR CRUCIAL STEPS TO WRITING AND PUBLISHING YOUR FIRST EBOOK
Without a clear path, direction and focus, you may find that all the hype about Kindle book sales and generating leads for your business through your eBooks will not apply to you.
While it’s true many people have become quite successful writing, publishing and selling eBooks, if you sacrifice quality and a few essential steps, you may end up doing yourself more harm than good. You want to be seen as the go-to expert in your industry, not someone just looking out to make fast money.
Step 1: Identify Your Audience
While a print book will give you more credibility and make you stand out as the go-to expert in your industry, the Kindle market is quickly becoming saturated.
You need to ask yourself, “If I could sell my eBook to just one person, who would that person be? What do they look like? In what industry to they work? What are their hobbies?”
After you identify your audience, take time to research what eBooks are already available to them. What do the reviews say? Are they in a hot niche market? How many results in an Amazon search do you get when you search for your topic?
Contrary to popular belief, though a market may be saturated, if there are thousands of eBooks already in that market there’s a reason—because people are buying!
Here’s an example: I recently started an almost completely raw diet. I’ve been downloading eBooks and purchasing print books on the topics of raw nutrition, raw “non”-cookbooks, etc. I’m not just buying one book in this niche, I’m buying several!
If a niche is a hot topic and heavily saturated, that may be an indication it’s actually a good niche to write about and have a presence in. Click To Tweet If it’s not a hot topic and has hundreds or thousands of titles already available, it may be overly saturated. Hint: “hot” topics are often the subject of news casts and articles, and many social media groups may be formed around them. Think of the diet and exercise industry for some clear examples.
Step 2: Research the Gaps
Once you’ve researched what eBooks are already available and have skimmed the reviews, start looking in the reviews for what readers wish the book contained. What gaps are found in the marketplace?
You may find the same gap spoken about in more than one eBook title’s listing, and that’s a good indication you should write about it.
Don’t just jump into writing an eBook without doing a little research first. It might also be beneficial for you to purchase a few of the best sellers in your category before writing your own.
Read those reviews and eBooks, and note what you would do differently. How can you customize the same material to your specific audience?
Step 3: Write!
After you’ve researched your audience and know what gaps to fill, write! Carve out a block of time every week to spend time putting words to paper. Avoid editing as you write—simply let the words flow. You can always go back and edit your writing after it’s done. The fact is your eBook will never be finished—there’s always going to be something you can improve. But you can decide when it’s done.
Step 4: Production: eBook Editing, Design and Programming
Then don’t skip these crucial steps: editing, cover design and programming. Unedited eBooks look bad to the reader and give you a not-so-stellar reputation to your potential audience. If your book is hard to read or poorly edited, reviewers won’t be shy to tell the world.
When in doubt, hire a professional editor to look over your work. An eBook will always have a few typos, but the more eyes are on your manuscript, the more polished it will get.
An eBook cover is the first thing people will see and how they will judge your content. Click To Tweet You might have great content, but if the cover isn’t professional you’re just another eBook in the pile.
I’ve seen thousands of horrible eBook covers done by the author or the author’s best friend’s plumber who happens to know Photoshop. Remember the first impression! You don’t go on a first date without brushing your teeth!
You’re courting your potential readers, so entice them to look closer at your book with an outstanding, professional eBook cover. If you can only afford to outsource one service and you’re not a professional graphic designer yourself, outsource your eBook cover design to a professional. Click To Tweet Your increase in sales and the broader reach of your message will be worth it!
Lastly, without proper eBook programming, your eBook can be hard to read and get massive negative reviews. Those negative reviews can’t ever be removed from Amazon and can permanently damage your reputation. I’ve seen quickly published eBooks get massive amounts of one and two-star reviews.
Then the guru (usually a guru will do this) emails their massive list and asks people who read their eBook to post a positive review on Amazon. This may counter-balance the overall rating, but it won’t make those negative reviews disappear.
And fixing the formatting later, after the negative reviews have been posted, won’t make them go away either. Do it right the first time and you won’t have any regrets.
The bottom line
The truth is, as with all industries, there’s no such thing as a “get rich quick” or “make $5,000 per month your first month!” result with eBook publishing.
Now, that being said, eBooks are a great way to generate leads for your business and increase your passive income.
But eBook publishing is not for the faint of heart. Dedicate yourself and your resources, and you’ll see results.
Try it for a quick money-making scheme, and you’ll be sorely disappointed! I’d love to hear what you think about this topic in the comments below…
SIX STEPS TO WRITING A BESTSELLER EBOOK
So you want to write a bestseller eBook, no problem at all, if only you can follow our “Six Steps to Writing a Bestseller eBook”, your dream could become a reality.
Most writers simply begin writing the moment they come up with an eBook idea they feel is worth pursuing. However, it’s best to wait a moment…or a few moments…to focus and evaluate that idea.
This helps your book have a chance of succeeding in the ever-increasing competitive eBook market.
#1. Get Clear About Your Bestseller eBook’s Subject
To accomplish this task, write a pitch for your book—a 50-75 word elevator speech. This helps you hone your subject.
#2. Determine The Benefits Your Bestseller eBook Will Provide
List at least 5-15 benefits your book will provide to readers. These are the reasons why someone would purchase your book—what they are looking for, want to gain, or need.
Also, write a short paragraph about your eBook to go with the benefits list.
Consider this as your back-of-the-book copy (if you were to also produce a printed book) or metadata for your book. What might you say or write about your book that would make someone carry it to the register or hit the “buy” button?
#3. Conduct A Market Analysis
Determine who your reader is and how many of them exist. Where can you find these people? Are there enough potential readers out there to justify writing your eBook? Market research tells you if enough potential buyers exist for your eBook.
This also helps you know for whom you are writing. With this information, you can better target their needs. (You might need to revise what you’ve done in step 1 and 2 after completing this step.)
#4. Study The Competition
Ensure the eBook you want to write will be unique and necessary compared to the other eBooks already published in your niche or category. There are a staggering number of books published each year. Before you write a word—or publish an eBook, study what other authors have already written and published, and then position (or re-position) your eBook so it is different—and fills a need no one else has filled. Click To Tweet
This helps ensure readers purchase your eBook rather than an established title or a book by an established author. (Again, you might need to go back to previous steps and revise after completing this one.)
#5. Evaluate Your Potential Content
Create the structure of your eBook by producing a table of contents. Then look critically at this outline to determine if it makes sense and provides unique and necessary content targeted enough at your audience. Try to also evaluate if you will have enough content. If not, make adjustments.
#6. Flesh Out The Content For Your Bestseller eBook
Write chapter summaries based on your outline. This helps you get a good feel for what you plan to write.
You can then re-evaluate your content and re-angle or add or subtract content as necessary based on any previous steps.
Once you have completed these six steps, you are ready to begin writing. Your table of contents and chapter summaries make a great writing guide – one targeted to your market. Your pitch and list of benefits also help you stay focused on your topic and the promises your books make to readers.
Write the book you have planned out and you will keep those promises, namely to provide the benefits you have described for readers in your target market. This will produce a successful book!
“How to Write, Publish, & Sell Your Own OUTRAGEOUSLY Profitable eBook In As Little As 7 days
– even if you can’t write and can’t type
Do NOT buy any course on how to write your own eBook unless it meets the following criteria:
One: Explains exactly how to choose a subject that has an audience *eager* to purchase it, especially on Amazon’s Kindle!
Two: Shows you not only how to write an ebook for profit, but also to enhance your career and have a lot of fun in the process.
Three: Shows you step-by-step how to publish your ebook so that virtually everyone – regardless if they own a PC or a Mac – can buy, download and read it without problems.
Four: Demonstrates how to create a “passive income” stream by including simple, yet powerful elements in your ebook.
Five: Gives you the big, unbiased picture about marketing and selling your ebook online… then gives you the tools to go do it!
Six: Is written by someone who doesn’t just talk useless theory… but gives you the benefit of over 14 years of online publishing and selling experience straight from the “front lines”.