It’s no secret e-book launches are usually boring, and oftentimes dreadfully so.
This is because, well, it’s hard to be creative with yet another PDF launch — especially if you’re in a saturated market.
How can you create an e-book launch that generates some real attention?
The Be Everywhere Day concept might be worth a shot — but know that you will need plenty of planning and prep time to execute it successfully.
The idea behind a Be Everywhere Day is pretty simple: Contribute relevant guest posts on as many leading blogs in your target market as possible, simultaneously, so that your e-book and brand appear to be the hot topic.
Ideally each post goes live on the same day; you can spread them out over a week if necessary, but any timeframe larger than that would miss the point. If you do pull it off, anywhere your potential customers look that day or week, they will come across great content authored by you that is thematically tied to your e-book, and when they think to themselves, “I want more of this,” they will quickly find their way to your e-book download page.
Of course you ask, “But wait, aren’t guest posts dead and risky?” They are still a viable way to get in front of new audiences, but guest posts for the sake of spammy and/or scammy link building were never a good idea in the first place.
Guest posts always posed a potential risk of Google penalties, so our advice has been for some time to be very careful with how you link back to your site. Preferably, link to relevant supporting content on your site, and especially link to other sources, too. Occasionally, try to guest post without any links at all (gasp!).
A Be Everywhere Day, and guest posting in general, can do much more than ‘build links’. It can:
- Reach a new audience
- Reconnect with audiences that already know you
- Generate new leads
- Generate social shares
- Increase brand awareness and top-of-mind
- Drive PDF downloads
Consider these questions and concrete KPIs to build a framework for your Be Everywhere Day:
- Audience: Describe your target market.
- Media outlets: What blogs is your market reading?
- Posts: How many posts will be a part of your Be Everywhere Day?
- Total reach: How many eyeballs do you want to reach?
- Traffic: How much referral traffic do you want to generate?
- Social shares: How many shares to you want to generate?
Below are a few more pointers we’ve collected to create an effective Be Every Day promotion.
Why E-Books & Be Everywhere Days?
Guest posts have become increasingly difficult to secure, even if your motives are “pure”’ in Google’s eyes. Blog editors are simply inundated with requests, and most of them are from poor-quality sites.
However, if you have a PDF to tease them with that is packed with quality content, your odds just got a little better. And the relative excitement of a Be Everywhere Day is sometimes enough to pique the interest of an otherwise disinterested editor — at least, that has been our experience.
Timing Is Everything
A typical Be Everywhere Day takes 2-4 months to plan and execute. If your target is 10 mid- to high-level blogs, you might need to reach out to 100+ influencers, depending on the size of your current network of friends.
And of course you and your content team will need to write each post, after each site agrees to participate and chooses the topic most appropriate to them. Before you start, pull out a calendar or spreadsheet. At minimum you will want to plan on:
- 4-6 weeks for initial outreach.
- 2-4 weeks to draft all guest posts.
- 2 week safety buffer for unexpected contingencies.
Who To Target
First, you must identify websites that your potential clients frequent and will be likely to accept your guest blog posts. My favorite influencer research tool lately has been Little Bird (a smarter and more intuitive tool than Followerwonk, IMHO).
Consider also targeting the companies and influencers mentioned in your e-book. Our easiest results typically came from companies that were mentioned in the e-book itself in one way or another, giving them more incentive to work with you. (Humorously, some sites have participated in a Be Everywhere Day push even when they were included as a “what not to do” example.)
Did you forget to reference or quote anybody else in the PDF? Take a second look at the content again and consider adding some outside sources.
Hopefully, you have a few contacts for the Be Everywhere Day in your personal Rolodex already, but just in case you need to reach out to a few new people…
Focus your first email on answering the four key questions that the recipient will ask as they ready it:
- “What are you pitching me to do for you?”
- “What can I get out of it?”
- “Who are you, and what is your brand/product?”
- “Why would I want to associate with your brand?”
A/B testing subject lines for influencer outreach can make a noteworthy difference, as well. Although the sample sizes are quite small (typically only a couple dozen), the response rates of some real-world tests we ran have been dramatic.
In some cases we have used subject lines that prompted zero responses while others resulted in 80-90% reply emails (with the exact same email content). Outreach not working? It might just be your subject lines!
In addition, be persistent. Send at least two emails before giving up on someone; at most three. And these basic tips go without saying: Carefully personalize every email. Keep it reasonably brief: two to four short paragraphs, give or take. Keep things clear and simple, and avoid anything that might confuse or bore your target.
Once you’ve found blog editors and influencers who are interested in participating, the next challenge is to identify a headline or post topic that each are excited about. Let’s be clear: Do not write the post until they are sold on the topic. Your goal is to find compelling subject matter that both connects with their audience and relates to your e-book.
This discussion often works best when you take the lead by suggesting two or three possible concepts, and it doesn’t hurt to have additional ideas ready if they dislike your initial offerings. You should be willing to work with them to massage the concepts to better fit their preferences, and, of course, be sure that any ideas you bring up are highly relevant to their audience! Suggesting a title that is unrelated to their market could demonstrate your lack of knowledge or caring and even burn the entire relationship.
Riding The Bull: Your Be Everywhere Day
Executing a Be Everywhere Day or Be Everywhere Week is a lot like bull riding: Lots of flailing around, constant on-the-fly adjustments, tons of pressure, and the high risk of falling flat on your face.
Frantic editors will have last minute changes to make. Communication may prove difficult. The e-book itself will need to go up without a hitch. And social media will be a mad frenzy of activity.
The payoff can be worth it, so plan ahead, especially when it comes to social activity. You will want to promote each guest post on one if not multiple social channels of your own as well as encourage partner sites to do their own social pushes. The more you can have locked down ahead of time, the better.
Then sit back and count the visits, shares, downloads and new leads!
(Stock images via Shutterstock.com. Used under license.)
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.