You’ve been looking for money making ideas and doing your research. You have thought of several different options but finally decided you’d like to try your hand at writing and selling eBooks. There’s only one problem. You can’t think of what you can write about that people would want to pay for. Don’t throw in your pencil–er, keyboard–just yet! Ideas are everywhere; you just need to know where to look.
1. Your Interests
New writers are always tempted to see what the best sellers are, so they can write something “just like X.” Unless you like “X,” however, this is a mistake. When you try to write something you care little about, your reader will know. It shows up in your tone, your craftsmanship, a hackneyed premise, and myriad little ways that all add up to a lousy book. That is, if you finish it at all. So list topics that interest you. What would you like to tell others about them? What would you like to know more about? What needs elaboration? What do you know that no one else does? Spend some time brainstorming about your favorite topics and you’re bound to come up with a long list of ideas suitable for an eBook.
2. Your Questions
If you run a website or write much web content at all, then you know: inspite of the copious amount of information available, you can’t find everything on the Internet. What you do find are hundreds of articles skimming on different topics, but when you look for depth, a lot of the time you usually find gaping holes, leaving you with unanswered questions. If you’ve noticed this, then there are probably others that did too, and would probably welcome an eBook that gave the topic a thorough, accurate treatment. After all, they typed in those particular keywords because there was something they needed to know. Wouldn’t it be nice (and potentially profitable) to be able to provide that information?
3. Current Trends
It’s normal as we get older, work harder, and become more responsible to others, we lose track of the world around us. As a writer, however, you can’t afford (literally) to let that happen. Carve out some time to look around–to notice what’s hot, what’s not, what people are concerned about, and what gets them talking. You may be lucky enough to find that one of those topics is something you can write about. And, since you’re planning an eBook that won’t take years to get through the publication maze, you’ll be able to market your work while it’s still relevant.
4. Your Experience
If you’re an affiliate marketer who’s making adequate money at your business, you have something lots of people want: experience. Likewise, if you’re a blogger with an all-consuming passion, you can rest assured that you have knowledge to which newbies would love to have access. And if you love growing your own vegetables in your backyard and generally have the best crop of tomatoes within a hundred mile radius – you can bet there are tonnes of people out there eager to pick your brain. You get the idea – no matter what your chosen field, if you have experience, then you can find people interested in it.
Tap into that desire by sharing what you’ve learned–and make it easily accessible, so that as soon as your reader’s interest is piqued, he can have that eBook in his hot little hands. Think the market is already saturated with books about your topic? It may seem that way, at first. But chances are, you may have an original angle, a better presentation method, or just simply a better quality product. Remember back to your own novice days. Didn’t you devour every scrap of information on your topic? If your book is reasonably priced and promises to fill a need for your reader, he is going to buy it, even if he already has five books on the subject.
5. Your Target Audience
The most important source of ideas, however, is your audience. What does your target audience want to learn, and need to know? If you have a blog, search through your blog comments, and those of your close competitors. What questions continue to appear? What topics garner the most comments, or are tweeted, “shared,” and e-mailed? If not, look through forums on that topic. And search through keyword analysis tools (free ones like the Google keyword tool, or paid ones like Market Samurai). What are your target audience looking for? Those are the topics you need to consider. Don’t think that a simple FAQ answer, a blog entry, or Wikipedia article makes an eBook redundant. The fact is, even if a reader could easily answer her question with just a few hours of research, she doesn’t usually have time or the inclination. She’s much more likely to pay a reasonable price for an eBook that has the information she wants in one place, presented in a manner easy to read and understand and to which she can refer repeatedly.
So spend some time in a quiet place with a pad and pencil, and let your mind roam. It won’t be long before you come up with dozens of ideas, some of them very solid eBook prospects. Pick one and do the necessary research. If it pans out, great, start writing. If not pick the next idea on your list and keep going down that list – trust me, you will find more than one that will click. As you start writing, you’ll find out one of writing’s best kept secrets: the more you write, the more ideas you generate. Keep a file of these, and don’t let them lie fallow for long. When your first eBook is done and selling, write another, then another. If you take the time to produce a quality product that addresses your readers’ needs, you’ll find that eBooks will add to your credibility, and to your profits.