Your eBook, Your Viral Salesman

Oct 9 21:00 2003 Albin Dittli Print This Article

Ebooks are the wave of the future, and the wave is here now. It used to be that paper books were king. They were real. You could hold them in your hands, take them anywhere with you, and put them on b

Ebooks are the wave of the future,Guest Posting and the wave is here now.

It used to be that paper books were king. They were real. You could hold them in your hands, take them anywhere with you, and put them on bookshelves. They have nice covers that (Sometimes) tell you about the books in exciting terms.

When Gutenberg invented printing he brought an entire civilization out of the dark ages.

I love paper books and use them all the time. My wife is a teacher and paper books help her tremendously. Especially useful are picture books with big beautiful informative pictures. I hope these paper books never go away.

Ray Bradbury’s futuristic novel “Fahrenheit 451” is spooky. In the story the government hires firefighters to burn books. That is scary, burning books so that people cannot have access to them.

Yet burning books has happened historically. An invader burned the great library in Alexandria. And there have been others. They have all been great losses.

In recent years we have been seeing a new form of book, the ebook.

My introduction to the ebook was a few years ago when a discovered the Project Gutenberg web site. Here I found stories that I had read and loved years ago as a boy. Many have been out of print for years.

I also found books by some of my favorite authors that I had not read or even known of. It was a “treasure” web site for me.

And the ebooks could be copied and pasted into Microsoft Word and then printed out. I printed out many of my favorites and read them. I still visit the Project Gutenberg site, and others like it, regularly looking for new treasures.

Here are the web address for Project Gutenberg and five other sites that I like from which you can read or download stories, fiction, and non-fiction.

The Marketing ebook

A couple of years ago I started marketing on the Internet. It wasn’t soon before I discovered the marketing ebook.

The marketing ebooks differed considerably from the Project Gutenberg ebooks.

The Project Gutenberg books were generally all text with not pictures, images, or links. You could read them on the screen or copy them to an edit for reading there or for printing.

The marketing ebooks contained text, images, links to web pages, and navigation controls. And all of the marketing ebooks were new to me.

At first most of the marketing ebooks came in an EXE format. This format delivers the ebook to the reader in one EXE file, which can be opened from windows like a program.

Lately more and more Ebooks are being published in PDF format. To read the PDF format you must have an Adobe reader. Adobe readers can be downloaded free.

The advantages of the EXE format are that you can take HTML code and compile it into an EXE format ebook. It can an offline website. Just about any feature that you can put into a web site can be put into an EXE format ebook. This includes sounds, animated graphics, hyperlinks to other parts of the eBook, and hyperlinks to web pages. There is a tremendous amount of flexibility here.

The advantage of the PDF format is that you can take a text document and very speedily convert it to PDF format. You do not have to create the document in HTML format first. You can have images and hyperlinks to web pages in your PDF ebook. One of the biggest advantages is that PDF format can be read by both windows users and MAC users.

One disadvantage of the EXE format is that MAC users cannot read them. Another disadvantage is that if you want to make your ebook from a Microsoft Word (or other windows editor) you must take the time to add the HTML code to the document. This is not hard, but it can be time consuming. I did this on my first ebook and it took most of a day. Of course, I learnt a lot and the next one would go faster.

A disadvantage of the PDF format is that you cannot put in a lot of the fancy stuff that you can use in the EXE format. This is because you are not using HTML. Thus most PDF format ebooks read more like a traditional book.

With both formats you can have a faire amount of security in your ebook. You can usually disable copy and paste functions if necessary to protect your works. Also, many ebook creation programs allow for registration keys and time limit restrictions.

The marketing ebook has become a very important part of marketing on the Internet.

With the marketing ebook you can present your story in a very effective format and include links to your web sales pages. You can use the traditional “chapter” format that all book readers are used to.

But it doesn’t stop there. In fact, creating a marketing ebook is just the beginning. Your new, humble ebook can become your best salesman.

Ok. You just created your first ebook. It is interesting and informative. Perhaps it has a good story or two in it. And most definitely it has several links back to your web site and to your sales page.

Be sure you have a prominent section in your book telling readers that they are free to give your eBook away. Let them know that they can post it on their site as a free download, that they can use it as a bonus, and that they can bundle it with other products.

Before you send your new creation out to the world, double-check it. Be sure that you have run a spell check and grammar check on it. And be sure that you have tested every link to verify that it goes where it is supposed to go to. If you have obvious errors in your ebook it will reflect on you and the book will be much less valuable to you.

Now post it on your web site and a free download. If you have a list let each of them know about your new ebook.

Your next step will be to post your new ebook to some of the many ebook directories. Many will let you post it for free, or will let you post a link on their site to your ebook. To find eBook directories do a search on “ebook directories”.

Your goal is to get it to as many different places as possible. Some of your readers will help get it to different places. And each place it goes it becomes a new salesman for you. This is now your personal viral marketing system. Once it starts going, you can’t stop it.

While it is not a requirement, it is good if you can create a cover for your ebook. Some sites offer free ebook cover templates. You choose a pattern and add the text. You can also buy cover templates. There are also sites that will, for a fee, create a cover just for you. Statistics have shown that an ebook will be downloaded more when a nice cover is displayed. To find places where you can get covers do a search for “ebook covers” or “free ebook covers”.

The eBook, like the traditional paper book, is here to stay. Paper advertising is here to stay. And the marketing eBook as a viral salesman is here to stay. Don’t overlook or underestimate its worth to you in your online marketing. It can be one of your best marketing tools.

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Albin Dittli
Albin Dittli

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