As a shameless self-promoter myself, I’m quite familiar with the path of sharing a free Kindle book in order to create buzz, land new clients, and build my brand. It’s a relatively new concept – publish some really great content for free, and then give it away in order to entice people to learn more about you and your work. There’s certainly nothing wrong with the concept – I have seen it employed dozens of times to great effect – but I question whether free Kindle books are the best way to offer free content. A far superior alternative, in my opinion, is to teach a free Udemy video course.
The Ebook Is On Life Support
Let me explain. I’m sure you’ve downloaded some free report or ebook at one time or another on the internet – they are fairly ubiquitous. But ubiquitous does not necessarily translate into action. Let’s face it – there are far more people that download ebooks than actually read them.
You really need to consider your goals in releasing free content. Do you just want to just say that you’re published on Amazon? Or do you want actual engagement, with real people interacting with your material? If you want to have the ability to tell friends and colleagues that you have an ebook online, then go for it. But think for a moment… what are your goals in releasing your free content?
Most people that download ebooks never read them, so if you want to share high quality information that gets interacted with, a free Kindle book might not be the right choice for you. Now, you may want to create free content that leads in to you offering your services. That’s a high quality marketing idea – but I must reiterate that you need to publish your content at a location where people will interact with it. It’s not just the content that matters, but the channel where you put it so people can interact with it.
Free Kindle Books: The Needle In The Haystack
If you publish a book on Amazon, and particularly if you make it free, then it’s highly unlikely that your ebook will gain any sort of traction. Unless you already have a significant email list or followers on some social media channel, your free Kindle book will likely get lost in the clutter. In the last 90 days alone, over 213,000 free Kindle books were released on Amazon (source: http://www.amazon.com/Kindle-eBooks/b?ie=UTF8&node=154606011). How many of those books get featured on the front page of Amazon? Perhaps a dozen. If you resort to publishing your free content as a Kindle book, it may just be the needle that stays lost in the haystack.
Fortunately, there are far superior alternatives for sharing free content – especially if you want people to actually interact with your content.
The Drive Towards Multimedia
Contrast the deluge of ebooks with other alternatives that can both provide more information to your students and have higher rates of engagement with your material. Multimedia content is becoming increasingly popular, and video courses are proving to be very powerful tools for gaining new followers and educating your existing students.
You may not be aware, but companies like Udemy offer free learning platforms for students and instructors. You can create a video course and give it away absolutely free, and what’s exciting is that there are millions of students on Udemy already searching for courses just like yours.
So with Udemy you actually get people looking to engage with your material. That’s already a win. The other benefit is that you get to reach people more deeply – not just with reading text, but also with visual aids and your voice narrating your video course. In other words, the student gets to interact with your material in a variety of formats. And that assists them in retaining the material they learn from you with greater accuracy and capability.
If you want to share valuable information with students and have them actually interact with your material, you should really consider instructing a video course.
Building Your Brand With Free Content
So why release free content in the first place? For many, the answer has to do with building their brand. Building your brand means that you are enhancing your reputation in the eyes of students and other potential clients. Having a free Kindle book isn’t a bad idea, but it’s a far better idea to offer a free video course to those students and potential clients.
When you teach something to your students and prospective clients, you come off as a leader and an expert on your subject. As you assume the teaching role, your students will actively assume the learning role. Think about how you’ve read ebooks. If you’re like me, you scroll through them quickly, barely reading as you search for one nugget or two of wisdom to take with you.
Now contrast that with a video course. When you take a video course, you are engaged with the material. Your conscious attention is focused on the material at hand. What’s more, you may even have a notepad and pen in order to collect your thoughts for further understanding.
I can’t say firmly enough how when you teach, you demonstrate your expertise as an authority in your field. That is going to build your brand far more powerfully than a simple free Kindle book.
Become An Instructor With Udemy
Your next step is to become an instructor on Udemy! When you create a free video course on Udemy, you are able to build your brand and offer free material that people are already waiting to interact with. You get to demonstrate authority and expertise while you educate your students and potential clients. You may just find yourself with more business than you know what to do with. Don’t wait another second. Share the knowledge and sign up to become an instructor to your very own free video course on Udemy.