One day, I wondered about the design and layout of our eBooks. I wondered if there were things we could change here at Haley Marketing Group to make them better for our customers. So for the past couple of months, I have been downloading eBooks. I downloaded any eBook offering that passed my computer. I searched for eBooks on random topics.

Many, if not all free eBook offerings request that you signup in order to download the eBook. I quickly became a fan of the sites that gave me options – to signup to receive everything, or to sign up for just occasional updates or offers from before downloading the eBook.

Now, my findings are based purely on my personal experience and not on scientific measuring, but here’s what I came up with. Here’s what I think makes a great eBook!

By the time I downloaded the fifth or so eBook, I could almost immediately see what made some great and others not so great. No surprise here – it was the content. It was incredible how many eBooks did not actually offer the information they claimed they did; they didn’t even really address the topic of the eBook itself. Some spoke about how important the issue or topic was – but never actually provided any real solutions. They never even spoke to how coming back to them would help me solve their problem. Some were akin to reading a phone book. Others were so long, I couldn’t even read them. They really should have been offered as industry-specific white papers and not eBooks.

As a graphic designer, I did walk away with some new ideas about use of color, imagery, fonts and layout, but even those matters begin and end with good solid content. Always provide your customers with good content. Have the content of your eBook actually match the title and subject provided.

Make sure your reader knows how you relate to the content and how you can assist them with whatever the topic is. Be sure to keep in mind this simple three-point rule:

  1. Educate
  2. Inform
  3. Sell Solutions

The eBooks that really stood out for me not only followed that three-point rule, but offered me a different or unique way to look at the problem or solution. I usually considered them to be genius and went immediately to their site for more information. The others that stood out, spoke to me in a unique voice that gave me a good feeling about the vibe of their company.

I’m sure the news that content made all the difference is not news. We here at Haley Marketing have been helping create targeted content that delivers the results you expect, not only in eBooks, but in all other online media and print. If you need help with developing a content marketing strategy, developing an eBook or printed brochure, contact Haley Marketing today.

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