Knowledge is priceless, and there is nothing more attractive than a free opportunity to gain knowledge. Marketers know this, and they use it to attract new leads to join their email subscription list.
An eBook is the most common thing that e-commerce businesses, affiliate marketers, and dropshipping experts give away for free. They know that a customer is not likely to buy a product the first time the customer visits their website. The goal of giving away an eBook is to capture the lead’s email address.
But for what?
In this marketing tutorial, we will discuss:
- The sales funnel
- The power of free eBooks
- Where to get eBooks to give for free
- How to run a successful campaign with free eBooks
You will learn how to create free eBooks, and what tools to use to automate email marketing campaign. Let’s get started!
The Sales Funnel
A sales funnel is a strategy that leads a person into the final stage of marketing, which is to buy the product. There is no one single most effective funnel, as different industries have different audiences and customers.
As far as e-commerce is concerned, what you want is to ensure that your potential sales lead stays in your record. And you can do this if you successfully get the person’s email address.
Here is a typical sales funnel that marketers use where giving away an eBook is necessary.
The most common formula that people use is called AIDA, which stands for:
- A – Attract
- I – Interest
- D – Desire
- A – Action
There are many ways to attract a potential customer. You can do this with paid ads, or you can do it by posting videos and blogs. The attraction part is usually implemented in the headline of the copy, so it should not be a wonder to you that marketers use attractive titles for their blog or video posts.
Once the potential customer is attracted, he will either watch the video or read your blog. Clicking on your link is vital, as it takes the lead to the next step of the funnel, which is building interest.
The content of your blog or video is where you make the Interest part happen. You have to provide valuable content, not a salesy one. This is why clickbait titles and headlines never work, and I strongly recommend that you stay away from using them.
The content of your video or blog post must deliver what you promised in your headline. If the title of the blog is How to Build a WordPress Website, then the content of the article must show step by step instruction on how to build it.
Now that the lead is on your page, it is time to build that desire. And as I mentioned earlier, there is nothing more powerful in driving desire than giving away free knowledge, which you can do with eBooks.
I am not saying that eBooks are the only way, as many companies offer free trials and free webinars. The eBook, however, is the easiest bait to use. If you ask a lead to sign up for a trial, there are those who do not want to make a commitment. For a free webinar, many people are simply not ready to participate in a class.
The eBook, however, is something they can download, and it will be at their disposal. They can access it anytime. They can read it in the morning, at night, or while on a train.
The final step in this funnel is action, where the lead will supply his email address in your email subscription form. Then he can download the eBook.
This is a simple funnel, to say the least. The sales process does not end here. After getting the email address of the lead, you can now build your own email list. What you do with this is you send them email marketing campaigns, and it is best done in two ways:
- Send emails with valuable content that will enrich their knowledge
- Send emails that have marketing materials like discounts and promotions
If you are in the dropshipping business model, it will help if you send emails that contain tips, or notifications about a new blog post. For example, your dropshipping store may be in the make-up or beauty niche. What you can do is to send emails about how to apply make-up or the ten best lipsticks in the market.
And as you build credibility with this email drip campaign, you r lead is likely to go back to your online store and buy your products.
The power of free eBooks
Why are free eBooks powerful?
eBooks are costly. There was a time when eBooks cost just a dollar, but they are now mostly priced the same way as paperback copies.
Books have psychological value. Owning one empowers a person. eBooks do the same. For one, it is not easy to write a book. A book has an authority that other channels do not have. It is the authority of being a credible source of knowledge.
And because it is free, the person has nothing to invest but his time to read. Many entrepreneurs think that giving away eBooks is counterintuitive. This mindset is wrong.
If you are into e-commerce, free knowledge and free resources improve your credibility. eBooks are an excellent marketing strategy, as you can add your brand name on each page of the book. If your readers like the information you provide, then they are more likely to buy the actual products you sell.
A good example of a company that uses the power of eBooks is Spocket. It is a dropshipping directory, and people who subscribe to their email list can get several eBooks that would teach them how to start a dropshipping store, how to grow their business, how to find winning products, and so much more.
As a result of these free eBooks, anybody who decides to put up a dropshipping store is likely to use Spocket and Spocket would charge that drop shipper a fee.
Spocket is a very powerful tool that there was a guy who made $178,492 in three months by using it.
Where to get eBooks to give for free?
Your first option is to write it yourself. Now, this is a tad difficult, as you are better off doing serious analysis for your business, and other meaningful activities like marketing, completing purchases, answering customer inquiries, addressing complaints, and shipping the products, than writing books.
If you cannot write the eBooks yourself, there are two alternatives to it.
The first one is by using copywriters. These are ghostwriters who will write an eBook for you. Prices vary per ghostwriter but expect to pay at least $0.03 per word.
In many cases, the eBooks are not formatted, and these writers will submit the book to you in MS Word format. To turn it into an eBook file, you need to pay for another service of a freelancer who specializes in this technical stuff.
Converting the MS Word file into an ebook can cost as little as $5. You can also explore online software that automatically converts text into an eBook format.
On top of these expenses, you will also have to pay another artist for your eBook cover. This can cost at least $15.
The other alternative is to buy an eBook software. An example of this is Sqribble, an eBook software that allows you to write eBooks without actually writing.
With software like Sqribble, you get the following benefits:
- Automatic content – choose a niche or topic, and the software will write the eBook for you.
- Book Cover – the software will also generate many kinds of eBook cover, and you just have to choose one that you like.
- Create flipbooks – you can create books that actually flip pages digitally, instead of just giving away PDFs.
The software automatically creates a table of contents, assign pages, margins, and add headers and footers. There are more than 300 fonts you can choose from, and you can also add your own media.
For a small fee, you can generate as many eBooks as you want, and it will save you a huge sum of money over time compared to buying eBooks from copywriters.
How to run a successful campaign with free eBooks
Before you start giving away something for free, you need a plan. You also need a goal. You can use free eBooks to generate a buzz about your website, capture leads, and increase audience engagement.
Below, you will find some of the tools and procedures I recommend to help you create a successful email subscription campaign with a free eBook.
Remember, this is part of your sales funnel, and it is important that you give free eBooks in exchange for an email address.
Email Subscription Form
That means that you need an email subscription form, which you can integrate to your website. The email subscription form must also be equipped with email automation and marketing software, like the one offered by GetResponse.
With GetResponse, you can create an email subscription form that you can put on your website, and if a lead types his email address, you will capture that email address, and he will be able to download your free eBook.
This will be put in an email list, in your GetResponse dashboard. From there, you can create automated emails that will be sent daily, after two days, or whatever your choice is. The software has a powerful drag and drop feature, which allows you to set actions that depend on what a customer did.
Here is a video of how you can use GetResponse to generate more sales from your email campaign sale funnel.
Craft Your Messaging
No one will know that something is free unless you tell them. The thing is, not all free things are interesting. In your email subscription form, you must craft a message that your lead will find exciting.
Here are some tips:
- Interest – use phrases like FREE and Exclusive eBook!
- Benefit – besides the interest phrase, you must tell the lead what value the eBook gives, such as “learn 100 ways to improve your sales!”
- Call to action – this is usually found on the button. You must also use creative text here, not just the common run-of-the-mill phrases like “Join Now!” or “Download. No!” Use phrases like “Discover the Secrets Now!” or “Sign Up Now and Grow Your Business!”
Once the customer has taken an action you want, you must not forget to follow up and praise the customer. You can do this with an automation campaign in GetResponse, and send them a Thank You message, or a motivational email.
A free eBook is a powerful lead magnet. No one can resist an eBook that is free. It is your first step in building our email list, and then slowly leading your customer’s hand to make a purchase from your website.
You can do this for free, but I would recommend paid services.
Despite many software companies offering free eBook generators, or email subscription software, these free versions cannot deliver the same services you get from the paid versions. The investment is totally worth it, and will eventually pay itself off from your marketing efforts.