Writing an eBook: 7-Step Process for B2B SaaS Marketers

Uplift Content shares 7 tips to help you nail the process of writing an ebook and create a strong ebook that lands sales. Finish your entire draft before editing, write a compelling introduction, craft clear chapters and end with a strong conclusion.

Updated November 2020: As a savvy SaaS marketer, you know you need an ebook in your toolkit to deliver value to your prospects and convert them into leads. eBooks are popular among B2B audiences and receive 3 times as many downloads as white papers, which is why writing an ebook should be on your priority list.

Once you’ve reviewed B2B ebook examples, brainstormed your own ebook ideas and narrowed down a specific topic, you’re ready to begin writing an ebook. But before you do, make sure you have a fully fleshed-out content brief so everyone is on the same page.

In this article, we’ll cover 7 steps to help you nail the process and create a strong ebook that lands sales.

7 steps for writing an ebook

Step 1: Gather your source material

Most projects require some prep work, and writing an ebook is no different. Now that you’ve come up with ebook ideas and decided on a topic, it’s time to comb through your SaaS company’s existing content to see what would make sense to incorporate into your ebook. Options include content from blog posts, webinars and podcasts. You should also find external sources as part of your research process to add a broader industry perspective to your ebook.

Drawing on your existing content as well as credible sources will help speed up the process of writing an ebook significantly. For now, just focus on gathering the content. You’ll organize it later during the outline phase, coming up next.

Step 2: Draft your outline

A crucial beginning step to writing an ebook is creating an outline. This will help ensure that you include all of the topics you planned to cover, as well as help you develop a clear, compelling flow for the content. An outline breaks down the writing process into individual steps that you can tackle easily. And, it identifies your team members’ tasks to keep them on track.

While ebook formats vary, most have specific chapters broken down by headers and subheaders. The best ebooks use design elements like images, illustrations, infographics, charts and lists to make the content more engaging. These items should be noted in your outline. You should also include sources for any statistics you use. Your editor will thank you!

Step 3: Write the entire ebook before you edit it

Writing an ebook takes a significant amount of time and energy. Don’t make the process more complex than necessary by getting caught up in editing before you’re finished writing. This will only slow you down. Write a complete draft first, then go back and edit it. Also make sure you get a second set of eyes on your ebook draft.

Step 4: Write an engaging introduction

Your ebook introduction should be compelling and deliver value to your reader right away. It should also give your reader a preview of the ebook’s contents and explain what they’ll gain from reading it. 

Consider these tips for writing a killer introduction:

  • include a statistic to drive home the importance of your ebook topic 
  • write the introduction after you’ve finished writing the rest of the ebook 

Step 5: Write clear chapters (in clear language)

When writing an ebook, each chapter should address a specific topic and conclude with a review of the most important points covered. Offering actionable takeaways at the end of every chapter is a great way to provide continuous value to your reader.

Your chapters should not only flow clearly from one defined topic to the next, but they should also be written clearly. Avoid using jargon that your readers will have to muddle through. Stop run-on sentences in their tracks. Explain technical concepts. Your ebook should read conversationally to keep your audience engaged until the CTA (call to action).

Step 6: Write a strong conclusion

If your reader has stuck with you until the end of your ebook, you’ve got a solid lead on your hands. Finish strong with a conclusion that briefly revisits all the valuable, actionable information you’ve shared, then guides your reader where you want them to go next with a powerful CTA.

Some CTA examples you could try include:

  • booking a call to discuss your products
  • booking a product demo
  • registering for an on-demand webinar
  • signing up for a free trial of your service

Step 7: Edit your first draft

As we mentioned in Step 1, now that you’ve finished writing an ebook draft, you’re ready to complete an initial round of edits. Even if you’re working with an editor, you should run through your draft to clean it up before you pass it off to them.

Here are a few things to look for when editing:

  • Style: This can include anything from using numerals instead of spelling out numbers (5 vs. five) to using Oxford commas in your writing. Find out if your company has a style guide and follow it.
  • Capitalization: Does your SaaS company use title case or sentence case for headers and subheaders? Check your style guide to find out. If your organization doesn’t have a style guide, a good rule of thumb is to simply be consistent in your capitalization.
  • Typos and mistakes: Review your draft for any misspelled words or names, incorrectly cited sources and anything else that could detract from the quality of your ebook.

While editing isn’t the most thrilling part of writing an ebook, it’s essential to a final product that looks professional and makes an impact free from distracting copy errors.

Next step?

Now that you’re well versed in the steps of writing an ebook, it’s time to learn how to develop a visually striking ebook design that will keep readers engaged. This is the fifth post in a 6-part series on how to write a SaaS ebook that gets downloads

Get help from ebook experts

Uplift Content’s ebook writing service can help take the work of producing this crucial SaaS marketing tool off your plate. The best part? You’ll still get to enjoy the results.

Guide to Writing a SaaS eBook That Gets Downloads

eBooks take a lot of time and effort to create. Follow Uplift Content’s proven 6-step system to stay organized on your journey as you research, plan and create your ebook. Destination: new B2B SaaS leads.

Updated November 2020: As a SaaS marketer, you need ebooks in your toolkit to attract prospects in both the awareness and consideration stages of the B2B buyer’s journey. Over 60% of people are willing to give a company their email address to download an ebook, which makes this type of content a solid lead generation play. Before you get started, though, you need to understand how to write a SaaS ebook so you can make the most of your efforts.

How to write a SaaS ebook that gets noticed

SaaS ebooks take a lot of time and effort to create. In this post, we outline the process you should follow to stay organized, and ensure that your energy and resources are well spent:

  1. Review other B2B SaaS ebook examples to get inspiration
  2. Plan the project and brainstorm SaaS ebook ideas
  3. Dig into the process of writing an ebook
  4. Understand what visual elements create a strong SaaS ebook design
  5. Find out how to promote your ebook online to attract leads

1. Review other B2B SaaS ebook examples to get inspiration

It’s helpful to research a few B2B SaaS ebook examples to get some pointers (and learn what not to do) before you create your own. For example, you should always pair your ebook with a landing page that persuades readers to download the content. You should also ensure your ebook offers actionable insights that readers can try out in their own business right away.

Reviewing B2B SaaS ebook examples is a great way to put yourself in your readers’ shoes and discover what tactics resonate best.

Read our critique of 3 B2B SaaS ebooks

2. Plan your project and brainstorm SaaS ebook ideas

It’s important to give the planning phase your full attention. This will help you stay organized as you create your SaaS ebook.

Brainstorming ebook ideas is an essential part of the planning process. Give yourself and your teammates time to get creative, and have fun with this step. Before you start researching ebook ideas, narrow down the audience for your ebook and identify what you want to achieve with the content. This will help you generate ideas that move you toward your goals.

Get ebook ideas

3. Dig into the process of writing an ebook

Now that you’ve done the prep work, you’re ready to dig into the most crucial part—the actual writing phase! Always begin writing your B2B SaaS ebook by creating an outline to capture each topic you want to cover in your ebook and establish a solid flow for the content.

We recommend writing the whole ebook before you edit the text to help the process move faster. The introduction is critical—this is your chance to pull your reader in and let them know what they’ll get out of reading the content. 

Explore more expert tips for writing your ebook

4. Understand what visual elements create a strong SaaS ebook design

When writing an ebook, design is crucial to consider. Without strong design, your copy could fall flat. Powerful design ensures the content in your SaaS ebook flows in an engaging, digestible way.

Focus on your ebook cover to draw readers in, and the style throughout to break up text and present information in a compelling manner. Using your brand colours and sticking to a consistent format is important.

Learn 7 design elements that will make your ebook shine

5. Find out how to promote your ebook online to attract leads

eBooks make great B2B SaaS lead magnets—but only if you promote them widely and consistently. Sharing your ebook with the world is one of the often-overlooked steps to writing an ebook, so make sure you don’t skip this stage.

First, you need to create a landing page so that you have a place to send people to download your ebook. Once your landing page is ready, promote your ebook across multiple marketing channels to reach as many prospects in your target audience as possible.

Uncover 6 tips for promoting your SaaS ebook online

Next step?

Now that you’re clear on the steps involved in writing an ebook, it’s time to review other B2B SaaS ebook examples to get inspiration for your ebook.

This is the first post in a 6-part series on how to write B2B SaaS ebooks.

Get done-for-you SaaS ebooks

Do you need an extra set of hands with your content marketing? Uplift Content’s ebook writing service creates compelling ebooks that you can use across various marketing channels, attracting leads and converting them into customers.

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