Ebooks are fantastic resources for your target audience: Not only does an Ebook allow your customer to take their time with your material, but it also shows the confidence you have in your services.
Allowing customers to learn from you without a monetary commitment builds a relationship with that person, making them want to come back for more when they have questions. With inbound marketing, you’re not just looking for customers—in many ways, you're building a fan base or a set of supporters who will come to you when they need your services and recommend your business to others.
So, how can you best incorporate Ebooks into your business? What even goes into a good Ebook? This guide will help you understand how these free items can be used, as well as the best ways to create them from scratch—or even recycled content!
What Exactly Is an Ebook?
An Ebook is just how it sounds: an electronic “book” that allows you to get meticulous about any topic that helps your customers understand your business, specific services, or experiences in your field. A marketing Ebook is all about sharing long-form information with your customers and is also excellent for lead generation.
Wait, Lead Generation?
Most marketing Ebooks are shared for free to your customers—or almost free. The only “price” a customer “pays” is inputting an email address. So, as your audience unlocks the secrets to your success, you’re getting your foot in the door with each download.
Okay, but Why Is an Ebook an Essential Marketing Tool?
With inbound marketing, as we mentioned, you’re not building a customer base but attracting a support base. An Ebook is a great way to stretch your wings on a topic and show that you know your stuff when it comes to your field. For every niche, there is someone willing—nay, wanting—to “geek out" on those juicy details.
Marketing Ebook Essentials
Ebooks are incredibly versatile—especially when it comes to marketing—but there are a few key elements and formatting tips you’ll want to include and consider as you get started.
1. Table of Contents
Like a regular book, your marketing Ebook will benefit from a breakdown of chapters. This is supposed to be a long-form, somewhat intensive study on your area of expertise—so give your readers (and yourself) a way to break the topic down. Chapters also make it easy for your customers to go back and reference the material at a later time.
2. Engaging Design
Your team is likely to produce several Ebooks that pertain to different services and topics that your business deals with, so having an appealing (as well as appropriately themed) design is helpful to tie them together. Take the time to design:
- Thoughtful cover pages
- Page markers
- Social sharing buttons
- Author pages, and chapter pages
Any of these can be modified with unique colors or photos while still sticking to a similar format. This will help you in the creation of new Ebooks down the road and help your customers learn how to read your style of writing.
3. Use of Visuals and White Space
With any instructional or informative text, you want to give your readers space to breathe and engage their brain outside of just words. While there’s no set format for structuring an Ebook, putting in page breaks and white space as you might in a blog post is still ideal.
Diagrams and photos are always a great way to engage your readers, especially those who want to learn more but do better with visuals. You don’t have to worry about printing costs with an Ebook, so feel free to pick relevant, beautiful photos and tables that illustrate your point—but of course, don’t overcrowd or get too far from "readable!"
Something you can’t do in a physical book is add links! Allow your Ebook not only to be a guide on a specific topic but an interactive gateway to exploration for your property management company's:
Be sure to highlight where you found your research: credibility is highly valued across any audience. Forbes found that marketers who use statistics in their offerings are more likely to be seen as trustworthy.
5. Share Buttons
Just like adding links behave as a launching point on the information highway, social sharing buttons add a portal to bring others into the adventure! You’ll know you’ve turned that sales lead into a free lead generator with each share click if even one person downloads your Ebook from a shared link.
Recycling Previous Content for Your Ebook
Is there a blog post that you want to flesh out? Did you do a video on a specific practice but know that your customer could benefit from a deeper dive? You have an opportunity to recycle content and dig deep with an Ebook: content creation is all about working smart after you’ve done the hard research and implementation. Blogs, videos, and even podcasts can suffer under the weight of all the points you may want to make on a particular topic. With an Ebook, you can funnel those points and experiences into a downloadable guide that allows your customers to engage with you and read through at their leisure outside of your website or away from internet access.
Your Property Management Marketing Efforts Don't Stop Here!
Inbound marketing is all about creating content that will engage customers in a way that makes them feel that they belong: Ebooks are a great way to build on that relationship with your customers and also an awesome way to generate sales leads! As a HubSpot Platinum Agency, RentBridge knows that it's not always easy to know how to develop and market your property management company—that's why we put together a blog series specifically to address the key components of marketing! Are you familiar with all the components of a marketing campaign? If not, take a look at part two, "Property Management Marketing Campaigns: Crafting Your Plan!"