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Free ebook beneficial?

Discussion in 'Copywriting & Sales Persuasion' started by misspiss, Nov 4, 2013.

  1. misspiss

    misspiss Newbie

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    I am not sure if I am posting in the right forum section so forgive me if not. I came across an post on wf about authors who offer their ebook for free and it seemed half of the posts were pro free ebook and the other half said it did not help sales, create awareness, etc. What is your take on this?
     
  2. LakeForest

    LakeForest Supreme Member

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    Totally worth it.

    A lot of master resale content has affiliate links in there and those generate a lot of residual income.

    Free ebooks are a great way to get people to sign up for something.

    And these are only the usual methods of using the free content. Get creative and do something you think provides value, don't follow the crowd.
     
  3. WizGizmo

    WizGizmo Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    For lack of a better place to put it, we will leave this thread here.

    As far as the Free Ebook goes, there are several ways that it can benefit you:

    1) You can offer it in return for the reader joining your email list.

    2) You can use it as a pre-sell, leading to to something bigger/better (which will cost them).

    3) You can use it to establish yourself as an authority in a particular niche.

    I am sure there are many other ways, but these are just a few.

    "Wiz"
     
  4. bartosimpsonio

    bartosimpsonio Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    It depends, really. I've downloaded more than my share of crappy ebooks, I'd never go back to those sites or link to them.

    BUT.

    Seobook.com is one great example of a great business built entirely around one ebook. Aaron Wall wrote an excellent book called seobook.pdf and I bought it early on as it came out. Turns out you can't stop reading it and it was chunk full of excellent SEO tips that used to work.....I still haven't read anything better than that ebook. His ebook went from a single file to a whole community of SEOs, now you hve to pay a hefty monthly price to join their closed community....

    So there you go, an example of sold ebook that worked.
     
  5. AlexGeorge

    AlexGeorge Registered Member

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    It can definitely help. If you have a free dating guide for example, you could post various affiliate links to the main dating networks. You could charge for the eBook AND include affiliate links, but people are much more likely to download it if you give it away as a freebie.
     
  6. uglyquant1001

    uglyquant1001 Newbie

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    Here's the thing -- all of the above is true, but it won't solve your problem. Before you give them something to sign up for something or (as a risk-reversal before a commitment) they have to know to come to your page. If they did, they saw an ad - that ad probably featured part of your content already. If they clicked through, they're ready to commit on some level. At that point it's better to have them spend a dollar with you to get access to 25 articles that retail for $10 each ($250 value!) which is the equivalent of slicing your thin-a** ebook into chapters. You can even give a teaser of each chapter instead of a crappy photo shopped images of a fake book cover. There is little value to having 3000 people on your list who dont know who you are, versus having 100 who demonstrated an eager interest in your offer. Your list will atrophy and die, while these people are ready to become customers. Paypal can help you facilitate such micropayments.

    SEObook is an exception. It's a content-centric site with several professional writers. Their content is fresh, professional and hard to duplicate. You're most likely not going to provide this level of service. My take on the matter today is that unless you're baiting suckers for $10 ebooks like its 2001, you're wasting time. If you have enough for a "book", film the first chapter or have a Fiverr read it for $5. Then invite them to your password protected WP article blogroll through an e-mail capture form.

    The takeaway here is that you shouldn't get bogged down with the form factor. Does it 'work' or does it 'not work' are questions which are the staple of a n00b. In the best way. Real marketers realize that the content is the game, and presenting it is an art. Unless you test - then it becomes a science. Read between the lines. Hope it helped.
     
  7. sags22

    sags22 Junior Member

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    They do have a lot of value and if you use them properly you can even monetize from them. You can get people to sign up for various things through such free contents. Apart from this you can always build a huge list with this method
     
  8. Jason Wolfe

    Jason Wolfe Junior Member

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    A friend of mine offers a free ebook on his website and it's a hit. I'm in the process of creating an ebook for my site too so I can build my email list.
     
  9. JessePinkman

    JessePinkman Junior Member

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    I had an older friend that made some serious cash from list building a few years back. He gave away a number of free products, including e-books, to get sign-ups. I'm not sure how well it works anymore, but free stuff is always appealing to someone.
     
  10. rpmmarketing

    rpmmarketing Registered Member

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    only if it has good content.
     
  11. brittany

    brittany Newbie

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    Couldn't agree more - Free eBooks are big money if you're working with an appropriate advertising strategy.
     
  12. SilvaStream

    SilvaStream Newbie

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    Free ebooks can be extremely beneficial if properly utilized. Releasing them for extremely cheap is also a great idea because it show that these people are interested in your content and if properly persuaded can become valued customers. When offering a freebie you should always try to capture the users email address and first name at minimum, with only a few exceptions.
    If your ebook is full of affiliate links that will in turn create a profit for you then you don't really have to worry about capturing their email (although it would be like icing on the cake). The down side to that is that people want original, unique and engaging content to help them solve their problems and unless your a great copywriter then just throwing up a bunch of links will not work.
    Another exception would be if your building a brand and the freebie book (w/o email capture) serves to help build your brand and raise awareness or create the appearance of authority in your niche.

    Either way you must put something together and test it out. Split test if possible. Test, test, refine and test some more. There is no substitute for experience. Hope that helps
     
  13. jr_sci

    jr_sci Senior Member

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    He pretty much answered your question. I couldnt'add more.
     
  14. MelisaTa

    MelisaTa Registered Member

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    Offer free ebook goes great with getting people to opt in to your email list and then try to sell them later.
     
  15. FingerFlyer

    FingerFlyer Junior Member

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    On Kindle, you might release your new ebook for free for the first week to generate downloads and reviews from real fans. Then raise the price gradually. You won't be able to add affiliate links into your ebook this way but you will eventually earn money. And, you can still advertise your Kindle ebook via forums.
     
  16. timbonitus

    timbonitus Newbie

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    You also have to realize that the eBook needs to target a specific audience that has cash and is willing to spend it. On top of that, when you offer a free report, it doesn't guarantee that everyone on the list has the ability to purchase products from you. They might not have Paypal accounts. I think it's also a good idea to slap a price tag onto a eBook because that's the fastest way to build a list of BUYERS.