Have you thought about writing an ebook? You probably have just don’t know how and where to start, or can’t find enough time to devote to such a demanding activity. But what if you can do it with the content you’ve already written, and is published on your blog?
Writing an ebook is a great way to bring your blog closer to a wider audience of interested people and present your profile and what your services and blog can do for them. You can give it for free to visitors who subscribe to your emails, or put a price on it for a steady alternative income to your blog as well as attracting new readership.
Instead of writing completely new content, you can repurpose selected blog posts from your archives, bring new life into them, and give your readers new ways they can engage with them, again. These ten steps will show you how to do it:
#1 Define the purpose of your ebook, and select a theme.
What do you want to achieve with your ebook? Do you want to earn money, increase the number of subscribers, or want to discuss the most frequent questions you receive from your blog readers? The ebook theme will be much clearer to you if you fully understand your goal(s).
For example, if you want your book to be sold on Amazon, you may select a topic that’s around tips, guides and how-tos. To attract blog subscribers use the opportunity to present your brand’s message and give the ebook for free in return. If your goal is to bring greater value to readers you can select absolutely any topic related to your blog, just do a research to make sure it’s what they would want to know more about.
#2 Search your old blog posts for theme-relevant content.
Start with your own posts and browse your blog for content that relates to the key topic of your ebook. Copy each post and paste them into a Word document, or whatever project management tool you might be using, so you can edit them later.
If you have other bloggers guest posting on your blog you can include their writings too, but with their permission, and with bio and links included so you can help promote their work. If you guest blog on other sites you can include those articles also. If you own the rights you are not required, but to show respect you can contact the host bloggers and inform them, as well as link to the original articles on their blogs and websites.
By including the links and helping promote your fellow bloggers you help your ebook promotion also, garnering the support of industry influencers and their followers early on, before the book is even published.
#3 Group posts in categories and outline your ebook.
Think how your theme can be divided into broader categories forming your ebook’s chapters and add each blog post to the chapter it belongs to. Then go through chapters separately reading the posts and evaluating their content with the main topic in mind.
If you feel a post doesn’t work well with the rest in the category better omit it. Delete repeating information and cut down excessive content, and while editing and proofreading, if you think you need to add something or address another issue, take notes so later you’ll create new content around them to fill in the gaps.
#4 Collect all blog posts into one document and edit.
First, make sure you know what structure you want for your ebook. Do you want an independent collection of blog posts gathered around broader categories which act like sections in the book, or you want a piece with fluid chapters that flows more naturally?
Combine all your posts into one document following the structure you’ve decided, read and re-read carefully, adding transitions and writing new content where needed to support the flow. While proofreading also make sure to edit any text with reference to time so you won’t add an expiration date to your ebook from the very beginning. The tone, tense and writing style should be consistent throughout the whole book.
#5 Write the intro and conclusion to tie-up the ebook.
The introduction is the space to greet your readers and showcase not only your ebook but the brand behind it too –present yourself and what you do, and end with how this book ties in that for them. For the conclusion save lines with clear instructions about what readers should do to apply your approach and products and how they can further engage with your blog and ideas.
#6 Hire a freelance proofreader or ask readers to help with their final feedback.
After few reviews of your own you need another final, third-party feedback before you move on to the next steps. You can get a freelance proofreader if your budget can allow it, or ask your readers to help in. When they feel like part of the creation process they’ll later be much more excited to offer feedback and promote the result. This way you also gain support before the launch of your ebook.
#7 The book cover matters. Consider the design.
As we are all aware from day-to-day life first impressions are important, and the look of your cover can determine the success of your ebook. It’s best to go with the professionals for this and look for ebook cover designers on freelance or bidding sites like 99Designs. If you have designer skills too you can do it yourself, just make sure you update on the latest trends in ebook covers if you haven’t worked in the field in a while.
#8 Convert the document to PDF.
PDF is the best format when selling the ebook online. There are different services to use depending on the market share you target. If you want to reach Kindle users you can use PressBooks or Scrivener; for your blog readers use tools like e-junkie or Gumroad; to sell on Amazon or Apple simply go their websites and follow their helpful guidelines.
#9 Launch and start selling your ebook.
Make sure you plan and organize a launch for your ebook and use the opportunity to create excitement, attract a great deal of attention in your niche and promote your blog’s message. Get your name on other blogs and in front of new people who will read/buy, talk about, share and recommend your book.
#10 Get creative to get noticed.
Once you got your ebook published it’s time to promote it and increase its reach and influence beyond just your blog readers and subscribers. If selling the book, donate the profits to a cause related to your niche or buy gift cards to give as prizes on hosted contests. You can also give a special edition of your ebook to your guest contributors so they can introduce it to their following and expand its reach. Those are just few ideas to brainstorm your own.
Are you ready to try it?
With all the content behind you, particularly if you’ve been blogging for a while, it’s not that hard to create an ebook, right? Think of your most read blog posts, consider the comments you receive from your readers, what questions they ask and what kind of help do they need, and build your book around those themes at the same time showcasing your blog and brand in the best light.
Do you have such previous experience? Got any tips for publishing an ebook with your blog posts? Let us know in the comments!