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Basic E-book Distribution Strategies

Posted by Tim Whiston on: 2006-10-05 19:35:22

Self SEO > E-books Articles

There are many ways to distribute information for personal gain, but there are two primary strategies you should be aware of. Either approach is worthwhile, and I recommend a mixture of both strategies within your overall info marketing campaign.

1. Selling E-books for Direct Profit

The first strategy is to simply sell a digital info product for front-end profit. Most people can readily identify with this concept.

Most likely, you are already trying to sell something on the web, whether it’s an affiliate service, a business opportunity, or a physical product of some sort. So the idea of selling an electronic information package is simple enough to grasp.

As a product owner, you can also leverage the power of an affiliate sales force to drive more traffic to your website. Even a small group of active affiliates can result in far more exposure for your product than you could generate by yourself.

2. Distributing Free E-books for Viral Exposure or Back-End Profits

This may sound strange, but it is just as easy (and maybe even easier) to profit from e-books by giving them away as free gifts.

How is this possible? By using free info products to leverage the power of viral marketing and open the door for back-end sales.

Viral Marketing:

Viral marketing is an advertising strategy that uses ‘word-of-mouth’ type promotion to spread a marketing message very quickly to a large number of people. In essence, this method of promotion allows you to create an army of marketers who are advertising your website for you.

Distributing free info products is one of the easiest ways to create this effect.

For instance, let’s say you have an e-book that contains the links to your website and favorite affiliate programs. You could give this book away to your existing contacts, or as a bonus for joining your mailing list. Naturally, the people you give the book to are likely to follow some of the links, and if they buy, sign-up, etc. from these links you’ll benefit.

That’s pretty cool, but considers this: What if you encouraged the people who got the book from you to turn around and give it away to their own contacts as a free gift? They could offer it as a thank you to their customers, or use it as an incentive in their offers. In this scenario, you could have several hundred people handing out an e-book that is full of your links! You could even place a statement on the first page declaring that anyone in possession of the book has the right to give it away freely. So people you have never even spoken to might end up distributing a product that contains your personal business links. There is no end to the amount of exposure this technique can generate when applied correctly.

Back-end Sales:

A back-end sale is a transaction that is made after an initial relationship has been formed. In many cases, this type of sale is made once someone has accepted a free offer or subscribed to a free mailing list of some sort.

In the above example of Viral Marketing, back-end sales would be made when recipients of the free e-book purchase products and services through the business links inside the book. This is a beautiful example of how you can do a little set-up work and get paid for it on an ongoing basis.

Another great way to set up back-end sales is to offer a free info product as a bonus for joining your opt-in mailing list. You might give your subscribers a free e-book for joining to your newsletter, for instance.

And of course, once you have an individual on your personal mailing list you can offer them any number of valuable products and services. Opt-in marketing is the bread and butter of most Internet entrepreneurs, and using a free gift like a quality info product to build your list is a tested and proven method.

Regardless of whether you choose to sell your e-book up front or give it away for free and then leverage multiple back-end opportunities, there is plenty of profit to be made. And a well-written e-book is the perfect compliment to any web business.


Tim Whiston is a full-time entrepreneur and internet marketer. He assists small businesses in his local area and Internet entrepreneurs with the development of a profitable web presence. Check out Tim's Internet Marketing Blog for more great info.


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