Posted Tuesday, January 4, 2005
The ebook revolution is here! The Internet now makes it possible to come up with an idea, turn it into an ebook, distribute it over the Internet, and start making money - all in 30 days or less.
In the offline world, 30 days wouldn't typically even be long enough to start getting rejection letters back from publishers.
We say this with confidence because we have both gone from book idea to book sales in a matter of weeks - not once, but many times. Between us, we have 10 ebooks currently selling on the Net. Several of our books have brought us five figures in income. Jim holds the record between us with one release that made an astounding $43,000 in 30 days.
Here are two discouraging myths you should be aware of:
Myth #1 - It takes a lot of money to promote an ebook.
Fact: It doesn't. Despite what anyone says to the contrary, online information publishing is still the fastest, cheapest and easiest way for the "little" guy to earn a nice living online with virtually no risk and very little money (less than $100).
Myth #2: You have to be a writer to make money with ebooks.
Fact: You don't have to be a "writer" in order to create a best selling ebook - and it often helps if you're not!
Maybe you've heard that ebooks don't sell. That's not entirely a myth; in a way, that's true. What sells in bookstores will generally not sell well on the Internet. Although author J.K. Rowling has sold more than 100 million copies of her "Harry Potter" books worldwide, it's unlikely she would do well selling her stories in ebook form.
But ebooks sell like hotcakes when they contain PRACTICAL information in ready-to-use form. Not pages of pages of long, flowing prose like you find at Borders and Barnes and Noble. On the Net, people buy step-by-step, cut-to-the-chase information they can use to solve problems in their everyday lives.
eBooks on how to negotiate the best price on a car, how to sell your home without paying a real estate agent, how to build muscle mass quickly, and other narrowly focused topics that solve a problem, are selling VERY well - at this very moment!
Why is this so? Because the main reason people are online in the first place is to find information - 9 times out of 10, according to a landmark survey.
So if you can interest people in extending their search past looking for free information into purchasing an information-rich, well-organized, ready-made SOLUTION to a pressing problem, you can sell ebooks... You can sell a LOT of them.
Jim has sold more than 5,000 ebooks in the last 10 months. David's publishers have asked him not to reveal how many ebooks he's sold, but just type his first and last name into Google and you'll find more than 20,000 Web pages where his name appears. The vast majority of those pages have something to do with one of his ebooks.
One more thing: It doesn't need to take very long to write an ebook. Why? Because many "book books" are like encyclopedias in prose form - they cover everything imaginable about the topic.
eBooks aren't like that. They go right to the meat of what people need to know to solve a problem. They have information about everything necessary to solve a problem, but no "filler" information that takes so long to write - and takes readers so long to sift through.
Here are four mistakes ebook authors make that typically reduce or prevent sales:
1. They don't write to a specific, target audience. The biggest mistake most ebook authors make is they don't clearly define, identify and visualize who they are selling their ebook to. On the Web, to be successful, you must write to a specific group of people who have specific interests. Make sure that you know exactly who is going to buy your ebook, and where you can find them online.
2. They don't automate as many of their business activities as possible. Selling ebooks, though it is highly profitable, is not a business where you make hundreds of dollars per sale.
Automate everything you can - credit card processing, ebook delivery, as much technical support as possible.
3. They don't have a compelling title for their ebook. Use words that convey the benefit of what's in the ebook, as well as words your audience is familiar with.
A bad title for an ebook: "Online Marketing for Newbies." A good title for the same ebook: "97 Ways to Promote Your Website - No Experience Required."
4. They try to cover too much ground. Many ebook authors convey a lot of information but don't cover anything in-depth. As a result, they never fully explain anything in enough detail to provide any useful value to their readers.
As long as you are aware of these mistakes and put in a little effort to avoid them, your chances of success are VERY high.
So, if you know a lot about something - or even if you don't - you can put together and market an ebook quickly, and make a lot of money quickly as well. The large traditional publishers may never understand or agree with this, but that's actually to your benefit. It keeps the playing field level and offers you, the entrepreneurial author, unlimited opportunities for many years to come.
About the Author
Jim Edwards and David Garfinkel are co-authors of "eBook Secrets Exposed - How to Make Massive Amounts of Money in Record Time With Your Own eBook (whether you wrote it or not!)," the authoritative guide to publishing ebooks on the Internet. Visit (http://www.ebooksecretsexposed.com)