Marketing professional services constantly requires content generation. We are always responding to requests for qualifications and requests for proposals. Once we are done, these responses are filed away and referenced for yet another response. Why not take a fresh approach with your writing skills? Try repurposing proposal content to create eBooks that highlight your firm’s expertise in the markets it serves. If you can write great proposals, you can write an eBook that generates leads.
Let’s spark some ideas about your first eBook together.
I am pretty sure you have a good idea about what prospective clients need to know. A lot of the requests for qualifications and requests for proposals typically have a set of frequently asked questions. These requests also ask for answers on how to approach a project or how to solve a prospective client’s specific challenges. If you have a blog, you also know some of the burning topics that provoke a comment. Once you get a clear picture on what fires up a comment, then you’ve clearly identified the topic that needs to be further explored in an eBook.
You have a topic that get’s some action; now what?
With a great topic in mind, you have to ask yourself, what expertise does my firm have to offer about this subject? Does your firm have a unique perspective on this topic? Can your firm illustrate or tell a story in a way that is unlike any other digital or traditional hard-copy publication put out by your competitors? If you have a great story to tell, then it is worth your while to invest your time in developing an eBook that can withstand outside attempts to hijack your content.
EBook details to consider.
Your compelling topic must cover a range of subjects. Unlike a 600-word blog post, an eBook is around 20 to 30 pages. I know you are used to lengthy qualifications and proposals responses so you should not even break a sweat – I just thought I’d let you know before you say, “forget it!” Whatever the case, you need to determine whether your topic will go the distance. Like any other writing endeavor, you must begin with an outline.
The EBook Outline is Your Guide
Whenever you prepare to respond to a request for proposal (RFP), you begin by carefully reviewing the RFP document. Once you have a keen understanding of the requirements, you begin to organize your response with a proposal outline. Take these skills and apply them when creating a content plan for your eBook. The outline should consist of main subjects to cover in your publication and the desired sequence. Like all writing efforts, this outline will serve as a guide as you embark on this literary journey.
An Outline is Your Foundation for Building Your Ebook Content
Each of your topic subjects represents a chapter in your eBook. Begin to build your content one chapter at a time. Work through each chapter to make sure you are providing a complete perspective for your audiences. Create bullet points of key areas to cover within each chapter. Treat each of these bullet points as if you are writing a blog post.
Entice Your Ebook Readers With A Killer Design Layout!
With a solid foundation and well-constructed content, start making the finishing touches that will attract audiences with just a glance. EBook publishing is essential to getting your readers to take a closer look. Once you’ve enticed your readers with a great design and compelling topic, the reader will want to dive into the in-depth material you’ve prepared. Ebooks are a way to continue to build your firm’s brand, educate your audiences, and nurture relationships that are more meaningful.
Deftly Add Links, CTAs, and Social Sharing Links to Your Ebook Content
Like most professional services marketers, I am sure you have A LOT of content at your fingertips. You may come across areas in your content where adding a hyperlink or call to action (CTA) would enhance the subject. Leverage your eBook content to get the reader to reference your other relevant material. In doing so you will be able to get more mileage in your efforts to generate and nurture leads.
Always Proof Your Work Before Publishing
Even as I write this blog post, I know that I will edit my work a number of times. Personally, I like to read the article to outside audiences to see how they respond to the story. While I am reading the post, I always find odd sentence structure, spelling and grammatical errors, and areas that are wordy and unclear. Editing your own work is difficult; it is best to work with someone to edit your copy before you publish.
Once You Are Ready to Publish, It is Time to Get the Word Out
When your eBook is piping hot and ready to be served up to your audiences, it is time to promote your work. Create a banner or sidebar ad on your web site or blog that links to a landing page for download. In addition, place landing page links to all other digital content that directly relates to the eBook’s topic. While you are finalizing the eBook, tease social media audiences with content clips and then notify all your communities once your eBook is finally released. Also, create an email marketing campaign that aims to entice and build anticipation within your existing contact list. Make sure to send press releases to the appropriate industry trade magazines to promote all of your hard work.
Monitor the Response
Once you’ve marketed your eBook, it is important to monitor the response. Have you achieved your goals? Look at the analytics to evaluate the click-through rates of your eBook landing page and identify the sources. You will learn a lot about your audiences as well as what is working and what is not working with your content. In addition, check out your social media responses; are folks sharing and liking your content. Going through this process will sharpen your skills as a marketer and prepare you for the next endeavor.
Good luck and have fun marketing!