One of the most successful ways to bring in new subscribers to your blog is to give away a bonus when people sign up.
In this post Brian Armstrong from StartBreakingFree.com shares some tips on getting free books to give away on your blog.
If you’re like most people, you haven’t had time to write a great book to give away as a sign-up bonus. Well, today I’m going to show you two very easy ways to get such a book:
- Create your own with an e-book template
- Use someone else’s book that is in the public domain (you’d be amazed how many great books are out there for free!)
Create Your Own eBook In 48 Hours With An E-book Template
About a year ago I stumbled across these excellent e-book templates which were being given away by Eben Pagan (he is a successful internet marketer and deserves all the credit for these, I didn’t create them!)
They have a professional design in nine different colors, come with instructions, and make it super easy to get a book done quickly.
Here are the steps which I’ve personally used to create an eBook in less than 48 hours:
- Use a “top 10” formula. Writing a book from scratch sounds hard but anybody can come up with 10 tips in their niche. Even if it ends up being only 20 or 30 pages that’s ok for an eBook.
- Create a catchy title based on the top 10 theme, such as “10 Ways To Raise Your Grades By Studying Smarter, Not Harder” or “10 Secrets To Making Money Online”
- Come up with the 10 tips by brainstorming and looking at the best posts on your blog.
- Put the tips in a logical order and include several sub-points under each one.
- Now plug your tips and sub-points into the template and write a paragraph or two under each one (copy and paste text from blog posts you’ve already written when appropriate).
- Summarize your main points in an introduction and conclusion and you’ve got a book!
- Use Adobe Reader to convert it to a PDF for distrbution.
You should also familiarize yourself with Microsoft Word’s “styles” to keep your formatting consistent. If you want to change how a subheading looks, for example, you shouldn’t change it manually. Instead, you should edit the “subheading style” and it will apply your changes to all the subheadings. This will save you a lot of time down the road.
Finally, upload your PDF to your server and find a way to automatically send your eBook to new subscribers. In Feedburner you can include this link in the confirmation email (login to Feedburner and go to Publicize -> Email Subscriptions -> Communication Preferences). Similar options exist for Aweber and other newsletter providers. Some people also include the link in the bottom of every RSS post.
Second Option: Get Free Books To Give Away!
The second, and perhaps easier, method is to use a book that someone else has already written.
There are an amazing number of books in the public domain (and also under the creative commons license, more on this later) which you can give away on your site. For example, in my niche of entrepreneurship, I paid good money for three books years ago that I heard were excellent: Think and Grow Rich, The Richest Man In Babylon, and The Way To Wealth.
Imagine how surprised I was to discover that all three of these books were now available online for free! I found PDF copies using the method I describe below and started giving them away on my website. My subscribers started going up immediately!
So how do you find these books? Well, according to Wikipedia…
In the United States, all books and other works published before 1923 have expired copyrights and are in the public domain. In addition, works published before 1964 that did not have their copyrights renewed 28 years after first publication year also are in the public domain…
Many books which are not in the public domain can still be found under the creative commons license. The Creative Commons license is somewhere in between a full copyright and a public domain work. Many times, the work can still be given away for free, but you are not allowed to sell it and you must pay attribution to the original author. This still works fine for our sign-up bonus however.
I’ve had the most success finding public domain and creative commons works at a site called Scribd.com.
They have tons of PDF’s of various works. And it’s easy to see the the copyright at the bottom of each page. Many of them use the creative commons terms like “attribution” (meaning you must keep the original author’s name in there) or “non-commercial” (meaning you can’t sell it). It’s probably a good idea to familiarize yourself with these terms by visiting the creative commons definitions page.
Once you’d found a PDF you like, you can download it directly from Scribd.com and use it in the same way described above.
Now you have no excuse NOT to give away a great sign-up bonus for your new subscribers! Set aside some time this week to get this together, and start watching your subscriber numbers climb!
To get more tips like these, check out Brian Armstrong’s blog at StartBreakingFree.com. It’s full of great advice on how to quit your 9-to-5, start your own business, and achieve financial freedom. He’ll even send you 3 of the top 10 books ever written on building wealth for FREE when you subscribe, instantly delivered to your inbox!