Is a 25,000 - 30,000 Word Book Too Much for a Bribe?

34 replies
I plan to giveaway a 25,000 - 30,000 word ebook as a bribe for my email list (plus a few more shorter books).

Is this too much to giveaway? I have a few concerns...

1. I wonder if it would be better to present my audience with something smaller and digestible that they are more likely to read.

2. That they won't appreciate it if its free, so won't read it. Whereas something shorter and then a very low price for the book

3. People just don't want a whole book, they want something shorter and more snappy, so the idea of a big book might put them off.

Thoughts?
#book #bribe #ebook #squeeze page #word
  • Profile picture of the author Steven Carl Kelly
    I generally agree with your concerns. I think 25,000 words is way too many for this application, but I have no hard data to back that up.
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    • Profile picture of the author tpw
      Originally Posted by Steven Carl Kelly View Post

      I generally agree with your concerns. I think 25,000 words is way too many for this application, but I have no hard data to back that up.
      I agree... I think a bribe should be a 2-10 page report...

      I just counted words on my ebook, and my ebook is at 25,000 words on 76-pages... You must be talking about a 100-page ebook...

      For a report of that size, I would never consider giving it away, but putting a price on it and selling it... If it is not worth selling, it is not worth giving away either... And even if you sell it cheap, your readers will love the discount price that you gave them...
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      • Profile picture of the author jpaissa27
        Very cool, I got some nice tips right here when giving out a bribe and in return you get a name and email under your list.

        I love this WF. its awesome.
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        • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
          Chris,

          Depends. Who's your target audience, and what expectations do you plan to set - and meet?

          My sign-up incentive is around 35,000 words, on Internet marketing. 112 pages in standard 8.5x11 format, single-spaced and standard type. The subscription page is over 2200 words, in plain black and white text.

          Guess who my market is?

          Figure out who you want to communicate with, what the message is, and what approach works best for achieving both of your goals. Yours and the readers'.


          Paul
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  • Profile picture of the author Michael Oksa
    Hi Chris,

    It depends what it's a "bribe" for. If it's a bribe to get them to purchase a $2000 course, then it's not too much, IMHO.

    Just a thought.

    All the best,
    Michael
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    • Profile picture of the author DrewClement
      I think the very best way is to switch it up and make sure that you can sort of cater to each potential sign up for your list.

      Have the 30,000 word book for those that really want to follow you, delve deeper, and really learn from what you have to say and offer.

      And then have a shorter "synopsis" of sorts or even audio/video that breaks it down a bit for the people that have a shorter attention span or just want to feel you out before they dive in headfirst.

      You can gain trust and provide social proof with the synopsis, and then provide the real meat and potatoes to those that are still intrigued and want more with the larger book.

      The majority of people that do not want to read the entire book, either are way too busy, don't care that much, or would think "why read 30,000 words from this guy and not another proven, popular book"? You can weed those people out and prove how much you have to offer at the same time with a shorter synopsis that leads into the full publication.

      just my two cents..
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  • Profile picture of the author jedediahd
    It really depends on what you are giving away, what you are selling on the back end of it etc. If it's 25k words of information that keeps the reader hooked, then you are going to have a pretty warm lead on your hands. If its presented to the general crowd, I am going to guess the general freebie seeker is not going to read 25k+ words
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  • Profile picture of the author Scott Voss
    Yeah, it all comes down to what you are trying to sell.

    A document that big is likely to be too overwhelming for folks and they may never get around to digesting it. Then they are just not likely to "need" to move on to what you are selling, because they haven't gotten around to finishing your "novel".

    But, with the right market you might find that providing that much free content up front will help convert. Much like what Michael said, with the $2,000 product example

    good luck
    Scott
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  • Profile picture of the author DeborahDera
    Personally? I'd totally jump on a 30,000 word eBook - I'm the kind of person who will read something like that. But for the majority? It's probably a bit much. You might be better off giving away some small eReports and then selling the larger eBook to those on your list who are seriously interested after seeing what you offer in the other versions.
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    • Profile picture of the author DaveHughes
      Give them the first chapter or two as an incentive, with the promise of an additional chapter delivered each week when they sign up for your list.

      If they like it, they'll be less likely to unsubscribe so they won't miss the next chapter.

      You may want to rework the end of the "initial incentive" chapter(s) to leave them wanting more, or at the very least choose a good "cliffhanger" stopping point.

      After that...hey, you've got free content you can load into your autoresponder for a few weeks already done!
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      • Profile picture of the author thescribe
        Originally Posted by DaveHughes View Post

        Give them the first chapter or two as an incentive, with the promise of an additional chapter delivered each week when they sign up for your list.

        If they like it, they'll be less likely to unsubscribe so they won't miss the next chapter.

        You may want to rework the end of the "initial incentive" chapter(s) to leave them wanting more, or at the very least choose a good "cliffhanger" stopping point.

        After that...hey, you've got free content you can load into your autoresponder for a few weeks already done!
        I like the chapter idea. I am toying with the concept with a fiction blog that I am testing. It seems to be getting a pretty good response thus far...
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Munch
    Thanks for the insights guys, really helpful.

    Here's what the book/list purpose of this is...

    - Obviously its a bribe, so I want sign-ups to my list (lots of them). I'm not just providing a book, so I have a few angles I can go with (split testing as we speak). But I think the book is valuable (I hope) and I really want to encourage it to be read as I think it can really help my target audience (which also includes Warriors incidentally).

    - My list is really aimed at online entrepreneurs aiming to build a real business, not get rich quick schemes. It will cover the nitty gritty of online marketing, business models etc. as well as developing yourself as a hot online entrepreneur. Essentially it is just a place to share what I have learned in this business and pass it onto others.

    - Eventually I'll sell something, but my real focus here is just to give value and provide my target audience with what they want (while being realistic). So quality information. I also want to be distinct to the average 'make money online' blog so after analyzing the competition I have put together something I think is vital to online entrepreneurs, but not covered so much by others.

    - Building a relationship is key, and I think getting my subscribers to read an entire book from me is a great way to do that (assuming they like my book).

    - Also getting lots of feedback and a better understanding of my audience is what I am after here too.

    Main Issues...

    1. Is an angle of an entire book to weak for a squeeze page? What might work better?

    2. Getting people to read the book.


    ----------------

    The suggestion about splitting it up into chapters is a good one. However, past experience has shown that subscribers get pissed off if they don't have the option of getting it all at once, and I would like to give them the option to read it all without having to wait or make the process cumbersome.

    The idea I had as a compromise would be to identify chapters in the follow-up series over a few weeks, pointing out hot points from each chapter and encouraging them to read that chapter.
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  • Profile picture of the author samjesop
    It doesn't matter if its a million words. It just depends how bad people want it and if its quality. Sometimes people just want quick solutions rather than a novel.
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  • Profile picture of the author Matt MacPherson
    I don't give away large chunks of information because it lowers conversion. Let me explain...

    When a prospect takes you up on your lead magnet, their line of thinking is this: "If this report is good, I'm going to buy his widget". The problem is, they never get around to reading the report, or they start and never finish IF it's huge. This interrupts the sales process. There is no later in marketing.

    Moving the free line isn't about content for the sake of content. It's about quality content.

    Instead, give away your #1 best secret in a short video or a short report. Make sure they are immediately sent to the video upon entering their email address. If the tip you give is good, they will think to themselves "man, that was awesome, if he's giving that away for free, what he's selling must be five times as good".

    That's what works.

    Cheers,
    Matt
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  • Profile picture of the author GarrieWilson
    To big. Break it up into an ecourse so you can sell with each part.

    -
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  • Profile picture of the author DianeBrandt
    I think that is way too much no matter what you're trying to sell.
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  • Profile picture of the author ThomKenton
    I would offer a few chapters of the book at first, rather than the whole book (nice job btw, that's a lot of writing, I just finished a 10k word ebook, and it was a lot of writing).

    I recently heard some of audio (can't remember from what video he put out) of Frank Kern speaking about information overload and the problem of "too much." Basically, he found that Mass Control Monthly overloaded/scared the customers.

    He offered a trial where he gave them a big box of quality materials, but his stick rates were much lower than he expected. On second thought, he found out that the initial packaged overwhelmed the consumer into thinking "how can I do this much stuff each month?"

    Where he thought that he was providing a ton of value (which he was), the consumer saw it as more homework.
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  • Profile picture of the author Rob Thayer
    Here's an idea... break the book up into two parts. Give away the first part to anyone, without them having to opt-in to your list. Then send them the second part after they opt-in. That way, they can evaluate the worth of your information and your writing style before committing to the opt-in.

    Personally, I don't like subscribing to newsletters and I find the conventional model of "subscriber baiting" a bit overdone. If I know someone puts out great content and isn't going to be marketing to me every single day, I'm happy to subscribe to their list. But I won't subscribe just to get some freebie.
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  • Profile picture of the author paulie888
    I think that's a little too hefty for a freebie. My guess is that people are not going to appreciate it, perhaps you could break it down into several short, tightly focused reports that you give your list from time to time? They'd be able to digest the information better and also truly appreciate what you're providing for them.
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  • Profile picture of the author jazbo
    Give them some of it as an incentive to buy the rest. Or perhaps make it into an autoresponder series of emails, you could hook people in for months with that much content to deliver.
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  • Profile picture of the author mikkosant
    I say, break it up into smaller chunks and maybe develop another aspect into it, like a video course as an upsell later or "the more complete course"...But yes, I think an e-course would be a good route to go with.

    Cheers
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  • Profile picture of the author Chris Munch
    I guess the best way to answer this would be to split test it. I'll run two lists side by side and split test against giving away the whole lot, vs. giving away just some of it and sending a new chapter each week.

    @ThomKenton - thanks for the insights from Frank Kern, good to have something more solid and conclusive from someone's past experience.
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    • Profile picture of the author JohnMcCabe
      Here's a third option for testing...

      Give them a "Reader's Digest" version on the opt-in with a link to the full version. Might be interesting to see how many people go for the whole enchilada...
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  • Profile picture of the author Loren Woirhaye
    Most people won't read your book beyond a few pages. The
    problem stems from widespread borderline-illiteracy and
    conditions like ADD.

    You're better off breaking up your content into complimentary
    reports and 1 page gimmicks like "checklists" and short gimmicks
    like "fast action guides".

    By doing so I'll wager (unless you are an exceptionally talented
    and engaging writer) you get greater compliance in terms of your
    subscribers actually absorbing your ideas - which is an
    appropriate goal.
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    • Profile picture of the author Chris Munch
      Originally Posted by Loren Woirhaye View Post

      Most people won't read your book beyond a few pages. The
      problem stems from widespread borderline-illiteracy and
      conditions like ADD.

      You're better off breaking up your content into complimentary
      reports and 1 page gimmicks like "checklists" and short gimmicks
      like "fast action guides".

      By doing so I'll wager (unless you are an exceptionally talented
      and engaging writer) you get greater compliance in terms of your
      subscribers actually absorbing your ideas - which is an
      appropriate goal.
      Yeah it is pretty unanimous that one whole book is too much. Is pretty obvious after thinking about it, but my focus was on trying to give lots of value and lots of information, so I'll just need to adjust how that information is provided to boost how many people read and absorb my ideas.

      I have had the problem on other lists of people complaining that they don't get everything at once, so I may do a very cheap upsell where they can get the entire book straight away with a couple of small bonuses.

      Does that sound feasible?
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  • Profile picture of the author Jack Duncan
    ChrisTew,
    Quick question for you...

    Do you already have an autoresponder in place for a "slow drip" after the person gets the report?

    What I would probably try, is to cut out some of the best advice in the report, repackage it as a smaller report...then take the rest of the content and turn it into 30 or so autoresponder messages spaced over a year or so.

    That way, you essentially give them the same info, but spread it out over time to maximize the opportunities you have to offer them your other info.

    Hope this helps,
    Jack Duncan
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  • Profile picture of the author Sammy McClane
    In my experience, the higher the perceived value, the more reciprocity you garner and the more likely people are to then buy. But the key is to make your ebook appear to have real value rather than just some junk pdf.

    IMHO, the fact that it's very long lends it some credibility: it's not just 9 pages of crap, it's a "full-length book".

    - Sammy
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    • Profile picture of the author Chris Munch
      Originally Posted by Sammy McClane View Post

      In my experience, the higher the perceived value, the more reciprocity you garner and the more likely people are to then buy. But the key is to make your ebook appear to have real value rather than just some junk pdf.

      IMHO, the fact that it's very long lends it some credibility: it's not just 9 pages of crap, it's a "full-length book".

      - Sammy
      That's what I was originally going for. Although like others have said people want bite size info.

      But the perceived value is a good point, I need to work on that aspect in my squeeze page.
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      • Profile picture of the author Sammy McClane
        Originally Posted by ChrisTew View Post

        That's what I was originally going for. Although like others have said people want bite size info.

        But the perceived value is a good point, I need to work on that aspect in my squeeze page.
        In that case, there's a way for you to get the best of all worlds: if you want a big "wow, that's a lot of value" effect, just split the 25,000 ebook into 50x 500-word reports and deliver them all in a big bundle. This has a couple of advantages:

        1. More individual components = more perceived value. So I'm guessing a bundle of 50 reports @ 500 words each could have a higher perceived value that one 25,000 book.

        2. 500-word reports are bite-size. Does that mean people will definitely consume them? Probably not, but the same goes for any information delivered in any format.

        That way, you still shower them with plenty of perceived value but you do so in an easy-to-digest way.

        - Sammy
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  • Profile picture of the author Tymarkinc
    Originally Posted by ChrisTew View Post

    I plan to giveaway a 25,000 - 30,000 word ebook as a bribe for my email list (plus a few more shorter books).

    Is this too much to giveaway? I have a few concerns...

    1. I wonder if it would be better to present my audience with something smaller and digestible that they are more likely to read.

    2. That they won't appreciate it if its free, so won't read it. Whereas something shorter and then a very low price for the book

    3. People just don't want a whole book, they want something shorter and more snappy, so the idea of a big book might put them off.

    Thoughts?
    A bribe that long is going to delay the sales process. We want to hit the iron while it's still hot. Most people will start to read it and never finish. Thus you will not build the value you wanted even if you are given away the farm with all that great content.

    Give them your best info in a concise format that they can consume quickly and send them to a sales page immediately.

    That way you have fulfilled your promise, built value and have a higher chance of turning that lead into a buyer.

    WE LIKE BUYERS
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  • Profile picture of the author Mcrofts
    Too Long Could be "Overwhelming" & then may just not bother reading, or may just start but feel urgh too long.

    lol THat's what im usually like anyone Iv'e got lots of eBooks i'd like to read but there all 300pages around

    Short one's under 27/30page's that are Full of Good Information & really Condensed, those are Great
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  • Profile picture of the author onlinemoney00
    I think it doesn't matter how long or short it is as long as people are interested in your topic and the information is useful. Recently Anik Singal gave away if I can remember correctly at least 200 pages of information on how he built his multi-million empires and I read every single word of it. I am sure many other people who are commited to doing well read their copies as well
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  • Profile picture of the author Randy Daugherty
    I think 25,000 - 30,000 is too much...and not all your target customer will have time to read that ebook...Give something that is very useful and digestible for your target customers. Good luck...=)
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