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E-Books and Web-Pubs for Businesses
Posted on April 11th 2014
No one can deny the rise of the e-book, online pamphlet, Web-based brochure, or other publication medium on the Internet. Not only do these formats allow businesses and personalities to have high-quality publications that sell cheap (or are given away), they are long-lasting and act as a cornerstone for the content you’ve already created.
Interactive e-publications can be used for marketing, showcasing services, and delivering large amounts of information. Due to the evergreen (long-lasting) nature of e-pubs, they have a better chance to gain online exposure. If sold, for instance, Amazon quickly becomes a high-ranking link to your business’ e-book.
Before getting into content and e-booking, let’s discuss the promotional potential behind a business-sponsored book or Web publication. For starters, creating an e-book of any scale is exciting. This gives you ammo for social media posts, blogs, and press releases. Businesses can share preview pages, gather quotes from notable authorities (pre-networking), and generate hype through blogs.
E-pubs are substantial and worth sharing, especially when the content is published with an emphasis on information funneled through a business’ persona. When published through an online retailer, there are also opportunities for free sales periods and promotions to increase downloads and reviews.
The Content Question
So what goes into a business e-book, Web pamphlet, or interactive brochure? This is a tricky question, though answerable by looking at the content a business already publishes. Prolific blogs have one thing in common: They answer questions. People use the Web to find out how to perform an action, fix a problem, use a company, or why a business is worthwhile. These questions can be formed into an e-book that later becomes a permanent tome of answers.
Once written and published, an e-book should do the following:
- Provide an inclusive source of information that potential clients/customers want to read.
- Promote a business through a substantial product that can be read anywhere and showcased (or even printed).
- Become a collection of facts, studies, business history, reformatted blog posts, and other content.
- Link the everyday reader back to a company and ultimately satisfy the “question” the reader sought an answer for.
E-books are incredibly adaptive and somewhat difficult to produce depending on the format. The Amazon Kindle “e-book,” for instance, has to meet specific guidelines to be published in the KDP library. This includes length, format, and quality. Fortunately, e-pubs do not have to be pushed through Amazon.
I worked on an interactive Flipbook, or booklet, that explores the services provided by Grammar Chic, Inc. These are popular for businesses that focus on online interactions with customers and need to share something design-heavy and accessible at a moment’s notice.
Other than flipbook-style pamphlets, businesses can create interactive PDFs. Using Microsoft Word or Adobe InDesign, these click-books can contain anything a business wants. People can download them off a site, view them in Web browsers, or upload them to e-readers.
Some are simple; others are 50 pages long. The big question is what to include in an e-publication. Below are a few tips for finding that answer:
- Compile and rewrite popular blog posts that answer questions related to your industry. Structure the e-pub as a guide, how-to, or manual.
- Write a company history and utilize images for filling pages. In addition, subtly share your business’ services and products.
- Or create a pamphlet or brochure that is dedicated to exploring your company’s services and products.
These are just a few ideas to get you started. The key, of course, is turning a group of ideas into a readable narrative with flow. People expect certain things from e-books, such as an introduction, table of contents, multimedia, and links. The first step is finding a theme and a team willing to spend the time writing, formatting, and publishing the booklet.
(ebooks / shutterstock)