How to Market an eBook Online

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You've written your eBook, now you must market it. No one can buy something if they don't know it exists! They key to successful marketing is putting your eBook in front of the right audience in order to make sales. The internet is full of opportunities for promoting your eBook. Don't waste your time, or money, advertising your eBook to the wrong audience.

  • People buy an eBook for one of four reasons:

    1) To solve a problem.
    2) To find an answer to a question.
    3) To learn something new.
    4) A combination of these three reasons.

  • Decide which of these categories describes your eBook. Then think about who your target market is. For example, I write eBooks about eBay selling. My eBooks explain how to make more money on eBay, how to use eBay features, what kinds of things to sell, and how to run an eBay business. My target market is eBay sellers.

  • Before naming the URL for your eBook, use some tools to maximize search engine optimization for the key words. Check the Google Ad Words Key Word Tool (at https://adwords.google.com/select/KeywordToolExternal ) to find the best key words to use for your site. This will help Google searchers find your eBook and it will help your site get more traffic.

  • Think about how you can reach your target market and where they might congregate online. You don't want to waste your time advertising to an audience who isn't interested in your product. A fine-tuned, targeted approach is much more efficient and effective than a massive campaign to put your eBook advertisement in front of everyone everywhere on the internet.

  • Once you have set up a URL for your eBook, start promoting it. Enter it on StumbleUpon.com and ask all your friends and contacts to give it "a thumbs up" on StumbleUpon. Also, enter the URL on other sites such as Digg, Kirtsy, and Reddit. Join Stumble groups and have more people stumble your link.

  • Search the internet for groups, forums, and discussion boards that relate to your topic. For example, let's say you have written an eBook about dog grooming. You will want to join groups and forums that discuss pet care, dog breeds, dog obedience training, assistance dogs, pet health, pet products, and so on. Once you join these groups, be present and active, but not pushy. (Nobody buys from a pushy spammer.) Answer any questions that you can and regularly participate in discussions. Put the link to your eBook in your signature. Represent yourself as a helpful, knowledgeable, genuine person and members will check you out and find your link.

  • If you have a lot of expertise in the same subject area as your eBook, volunteer to be an expert on AllExperts.com. You will answer the questions for free, but you can put your eBook or website link in your profile. Users will check out your profile, see the link to your eBook, and hopefully visit your site.

  • Use Facebook for marketing. This is a huge topic. See my eHow article titled, "How to Use Facebook for Business Networking."

  • Barter with bloggers. Using Google, Technorati, Digg, Stumble Upon, Facebook, etc., find blogs that relate with the topic of your eBook. For example, let's say your eBook is about "How to Save Money on Groceries." Find blogs whose target audience is frugal shoppers, coupon clippers, moms, college students on a budget, etc. Contact the blogger and ask if you can send her a free copy of your eBook. If she likes it, ask if she can write a blog post about it with a link to the eBook URL. You will have to give a few eBooks away to people with an audience if you want them to expose their audience to your product. (Consider it a free sample.)

  • Comment on blogs that relate to your subject matter. Leave a respectful, thoughtful comment and use your eBook URL as your website link. Comments like, "Great post" or "I agree" usually don't get posted since they just look like spam. You don't want to leave a comment that says, "Great, but let's talk about me!" Be sure to actually read the blog post and leave an intelligent comment showing your genuine interest.

  • Find podcasters whose topic relate to the topic of your eBook. Contact the host and volunteer to be a guest. Usually, this is just done over the phone and you may either chat with the host, or answer a few questions from callers. With podcasts, you won't be paid, however, you are extending your reach to a new audience - thousands of new people who may never have heard of you and your eBook. Some people won't find your eBook online because they just aren't on the computer very often. Podcasts are an efficient way to reach consumers - creating a podcast takes about 20 minutes, but it is played thousands of times over again by different users. Many of my podcast listeners find my podcasts on iTunes, where they are downloaded for free.

  • Submit a video to YouTube. You don't have to be on camera. Make a short video explaining how your eBook can help the viewer. Focus on what your book can do for them - save them money, help them make money, save them time, teach them something, solve a problem, etc. Consumers want to know what the product can do for them and how it will help them before they part with their money to buy it.

  • Get active on Twitter, located at twitter.com. Twitter is a free social networking and micro-blogging service that enables users to post and read other users' updates. What you do here is follow people in the hope that they will follow you. For example, let's say your eBook is about how to make money online writing articles. You can follow freelance writers, bloggers, or authors on Twitter, and many of them will follow you. They may see your success and check out your book. Again, exposure to the right audience is the key.

  • Offer discounts and promotions. For example, on a You Tube video or podcast, you can say, "Mention this ad and get a 20% discount." Tap into the segment of the market who likes to get a deal. Some people will never pay full price for anything.

  • Submit your eBook to Amazon's Kindle. You can reach Kindle users thru this avenue.

  • Keep putting your link out there in the appropriate places at least several times a week. It may take 3-6 months for your marketing efforts to pay off, but patience is a virtue and you will reap what you sow.

  • Check the resources section below for more tips and tools for marketing your eBook online.

Tips & Warnings

  • Allow time for your internet marketing efforts to pay off. It takes a while for all the links to be indexed through the search engines.
  • Don't spam members of your groups with solicitations to buy your book or visit your site. These tactics don't pay off.
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