If you blog, you most likely have all the content you need to self-publish an ebook – in as little as a weekend. Really!
Famous Blogger Who Wrote an Ebook from His Existing Blog
Know Darren Rowse? He’s the “pro” blogger behind the uber-popular blog, ProBlogger. And guess what? The ebook he co-authored with Chris Garret (another popular blogger), ProBlogger: Secrets for Blogging Your Way to a Six-Figure Income, has sold thousands of copies and was written using a lot of the content right from his existing blog.
Explaining in party why he repurposed existing content into a book that has sold thousands of copies, Darren has said:
Depending on your topic, a post you wrote six month or a year ago may provide an interesting counterpoint or reminder for readers.”
This is so true. Following are three more reasons to mine your blog for content that would make a best-selling ebook.
3 Reasons to Repurpose Blog Content into a Self-Published Ebook
1. Content Gets Buried: The more you blog, the more great, useful content can get submerged under the newer stuff. For example, I’ve been blogging since 2005. I added them up and to date, that’s over 1,000 blog posts. See?
I also tend to be a wordy writer; many of my posts are over 1,000 words. This means a lot – a lot! – of advice is dispensed in one post.
How many of these do you think could be turned into useful ebooklets, by, as Darren pointed out above, by providing “an interesting counterpoint or reminder for readers?”
2. Update a Topic: If you blog within a specific niche regularly (as most bloggers do), you’ve probably held positions that you’ve changed your mind about. Or, new rules have come down the pike that made what you said earlier irrelevant (eg, like in SEO writing).
These are ideal reasons to take an old blog post and update it. And it further solidifies your reputation as an expert because if you’ve been blogging about the same subject for years, you can show readers a trajectory in how and why “x” happened and “y” is no longer relevant.
3. Dig Deeper: Turning an existing blog post into an ebook allows you to expand upon a point you may have skimmed over in your post.
For example, one of Inkwell Editorial’s most recent publications is the repurposed post, How to Start a Freelance Writing Career in Less than 24 Hours for $0. I remember sitting down to write that post because I was frustrated that so many seemed to get stuck at the starting gate – putting roadblocks in the way that didn’t need to be there. I started the post by writing:
… many wannabe freelance writers hold themselves back by simply not starting. They put roadblocks in the way that just astound me. Eg, I need a website, I don’t have samples, I don’t have any clients yet, etc. If you want to be a freelance writer, it’s time to start being a doer – not a planner, a talker, or a dreamer – a doer!
Following is plan of action you can take to start a freelance writing career in 24 hours, or less. Stop over thinking it and just do it!
That post is 788 words long. The ebook that post is based on is over five times as long — 4,448 words.
So it’s not just a matter of regurgitating content from your blog, slapping a cover on it and putting it up for sale. You have to give real value.
How to Select a Post, Repurpose It & Turn It into a Highly Profitable Ebook
Now that you some good “whys” of repurposing and self-publishing content from your blog, let’s look at exactly how to do it.
1. Select a Blog Post to Repurpose: How? Look at posts that get a lot of comments, or those based on questions you receive over and over again from your target audience. Or, if it’s relevant, a post that’s “hot in the news right now that you can add some insight to.”
All of these are key indicators that it’s a subject your readership wants to know more about.
2. Expand Upon Points Fully: Use quotes, stats and statistics from authority sources to support your claims. Also, make sure that you use the most updated info to back up your assertions, especially if you select a post you wrote a few years ago.
3. Get Personal: As in, where possible, use your personal experience to give readers a “real person” point of view. For example, in the ebook, How to Start a Freelance Writing Career in Less than 24 Hours for $0, I explain my “Should I get a blog or website?” story.
I also give an example of what a professional profile should look like – it’s mine; what it consisted of and how I set it up. It’s a template, if you will, based on my own experience.
This type of first-hand information is what makes expanding upon a blog post so valuable – and so profitable if marketed properly.
4. Create Cover: After you’ve done all of this, create your ebook cover. Do this before you …
5. Proofread/Edit: The reason you want to create your ebook cover before you proofread and edit your copy is because you want to give yourself a breather from it.
Remember, you’re trying to get this done in two days; over a weekend. So I suggest writing the copy one day, then creating the cover. Keep your ebook cover simple if you create it yourself. If you outsource it, do this a few days or a week or so in advance so you can have it in time to upload on Sunday (if you’re doing this on a weekend, as the title of this post suggests).
Then on the second day, proofread and edit your copy, then upload it.
6. Publish: It can take as little as 10 minutes to upload an ebook to Amazon. But realistically, it will probably take an hour or two – especially if you’ve never done it before.
How Long Does It Take to Upload an Ebook?
These days, it takes me anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour to upload an ebook to Amazon, depending on how long it is and if there are formatting changes that need to be made (yeah, while platforms like Amazon are easy to upload to, the formatting can still be wonky sometimes for no apparent reason).
It goes quicker with Barnes & Noble. For example, if it takes half an hour on Amazon, I can cut that in half on Barnes & Noble (their platform is just better; I just wish I had better sales via this site).
It takes me about 10 minutes to upload an ebook to this site.
It takes approximately 15-20 minutes to upload one to Inkwell Editorial’s store on e-Junkie.
Which Self-Publishing Platform Earns You More Money: Amazon or Barnes & Noble?
FYI, I find it easier to upload to Barnes & Noble than Amazon, but I make much more money with Amazon than Barnes & Noble (much more), so I always upload there first.
Yes, these are going to be a long couple of days, especially if self-publishing is new to you. But if you want to start making money writing and selling ebooks online, repurposing old blog posts is an excellent way to get the ball rolling – quickly.
Share Your Thoughts
Do you have blog posts you think you can turn into profitable ebooklets? Have you ever thought about this form of self-publishing before? Is this something you think you can do in a weekend? Please share in the comments section below.