At what point does a report become an eBook?

42 replies
Hi everyone,

I'm in the process of creating my first report/ebook as a give away on my blog.

What I'd like to know is at what point does a report turn into an ebook?

(Is it page factor, overall layout or the way that the content is presented).

I've seen ebooks with 400+ pages and some as low as 25 pages.

I've also seen reports with 30+ pages???

Would really appreciate some advice on this one.
#ebook #point #report
  • Profile picture of the author IvinViljoen
    I guess report is something you give away for free. An ebook would be a published book you sell. It has a lot more information and weight in the content. Remember that a report is only there to entice people to more action.

    I don't want to spam, but I think this blog is relevant and will be helpful:

    A Self Publishing Blog From Johannesburg, South Africa.

    It has a lot of info on both.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by IvinViljoen View Post

      I guess report is something you give away for free. An ebook would be a published book you sell. It has a lot more information and weight in the content. Remember that a report is only there to entice people to more action.

      I don't want to spam, but I think this blog is relevant and will be helpful:

      A Self Publishing Blog From Johannesburg, South Africa.

      It has a lot of info on both.
      Thanks Ivin for this.

      I think from the research I've done a lot of people get confused with this OR try and confuse other people into thinking they're getting a whole host of content from an ebook when in fact it's a few pages in a report.
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  • Profile picture of the author Andy Fletcher
    At what point does a report become an eBook?
    When the marketing department gets involved.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by Andy Fletcher View Post

      When the marketing department gets involved.
      I'd better stick to reports then!

      Thanks Andy.
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    • Profile picture of the author dmister
      Originally Posted by Andy Fletcher View Post

      When the marketing department gets involved.
      This. It is simply a matter of branding/wording. However, I would tend to associate a report as being smaller and have a lower word count but there are no real rules.
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      • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
        Originally Posted by dmister View Post

        This. It is simply a matter of branding/wording. However, I would tend to associate a report as being smaller and have a lower word count but there are no real rules.
        I think the word count would have to sway it. People expect reports to be shorter than a book.

        Although some descriptions of so called ebooks that I've seen, wouldn't make a very good report!!
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Stone
    A report is usually just part of the solution, or a brief overview. A book is more detailed and complete.

    Size of content doesn't matter as much as the amount of value given.

    It also depends on the status of the marketer; if selling higher ticket items (e.g. mentoring), they may give away pretty good ebooks as "reports" (some as high as 100+ pages), in order to entice people (earn their trust).
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by Paul Stone View Post

      A report is usually just part of the solution, or a brief overview. A book is more detailed and complete.

      Size of content doesn't matter as much as the amount of value given.

      It also depends on the status of the marketer; if selling higher ticket items (e.g. mentoring), they may give away pretty good ebooks as "reports" (some as high as 100+ pages), in order to entice people (earn their trust).
      I would expect more quality to be given in an ebook than a report.

      That's not to say that quality shouldn't be given in a report, but as mentioned previously I think people expect a report to be shorter.
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  • Profile picture of the author larry1113
    Your report becomes an ebook when you say it does.

    That's really it. In general, people think reports are shorter (but I've seen huge reports too.)

    That's why for an opt-in page, people usually say Free Report instead of Free ebook.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by larry1113 View Post

      Your report becomes an ebook when you say it does.

      That's really it. In general, people think reports are shorter (but I've seen huge reports too.)

      That's why for an opt-in page, people usually say Free Report instead of Free ebook.
      I suppose though if you are offering a free ebook on an opt-in page, as opposed to a report, it maybe perceived as giving better value?
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  • Profile picture of the author contentwriting360
    Banned
    As a provider of content writing services, my take to this is that the main difference would fall on the number of pages.

    Ideally, an e-book has the most number of pages than a report. Let me give a practical example. Visit a public library. Have you ever seen a book that's 2 pages long? (unless, of course, somebody tore the other 98 pages).

    When it comes to quality. I don't think we can say that an e-book is more informative than a report, or vice-versa. Quality, per se, isn't based, and will never be based, on is-it-an-ebook-or-a-report type of thinking. Quality is based on how it was written, how it is written, and how it will be written (and a little bit of 'who wrote it').

    I did a research on Google and I think these resources agree on that (somehow? )



    I hope this helps.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by contentwriting360 View Post

      As a provider of content writing services, my take to this is that the main difference would fall on the number of pages.

      Ideally, an e-book has the most number of pages than a report. Let me give a practical example. Visit a public library. Have you ever seen a book that's 2 pages long? (unless, of course, somebody tore the other 98 pages).

      When it comes to quality. I don't think we can say that an e-book is more informative than a report, or vice-versa. Quality, per se, isn't based, and will never be based, on is-it-an-ebook-or-a-report type of thinking. Quality is based on how it was written, how it is written, and how it will be written (and a little bit of 'who wrote it').

      I did a research on Google and I think these resources agree on that (somehow? )



      I hope this helps.
      Thanks for this.

      I think overall this is the key. People expect more quantity in an ebook over a report.

      I suppose the authors themselves can soon decide which way to go, with the amount of pages they've produced, all things been fair.
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  • Profile picture of the author Chri5123
    Originally Posted by Dean Thompson View Post

    Hi everyone,

    I'm in the process of creating my first report/ebook as a give away on my blog.

    What I'd like to know is at what point does a report turn into an ebook?

    (Is it page factor, overall layout or the way that the content is presented).

    I've seen ebooks with 400+ pages and some as low as 25 pages.

    I've also seen reports with 30+ pages???

    Would really appreciate some advice on this one.
    Nice post and difficult question!

    I suppose it is down to personal opinion but I see the two like this:

    A report: More geared toward one aspect of whatever subject you are covering. Normally a "case study" or "secret of" style of writing that will introduce one aspect of the niche.

    An ebook: This is more like a complete guide to whatever niche - so whereas a report will cover a chapter focused in to one part, an ebook will cover the niche from start to finish.

    Hope that makes sense?

    Or you could just say a report "reports" something whereas an ebook is an extensive source of knowledge on the niche or sub niche.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by Chri5123 View Post

      Nice post and difficult question!

      I suppose it is down to personal opinion but I see the two like this:

      A report: More geared toward one aspect of whatever subject you are covering. Normally a "case study" or "secret of" style of writing that will introduce one aspect of the niche.

      An ebook: This is more like a complete guide to whatever niche - so whereas a report will cover a chapter focused in to one part, an ebook will cover the niche from start to finish.

      Hope that makes sense?

      Or you could just say a report "reports" something whereas an ebook is an extensive source of knowledge on the niche or sub niche.
      Hi Chris,

      I think a report can cover more than one aspect but should do this more briefly than say an ebook would.

      Like you say, I think the ebook should be more extensive with a START to FINISH feel.
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  • Profile picture of the author nasuryono
    I would answer the "What" in the report and give the full, detailed, step by step "How" on the eBook.

    Hope this helps differentiate a free report from an eBook.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by nasuryono View Post

      I would answer the "What" in the report and give the full, detailed, step by step "How" on the eBook.

      Hope this helps differentiate a free report from an eBook.

      Hi nasuryono,

      Again, the WHAT as you mention would be much shorter and briefer than the HOW of an ebook.

      Thanks.
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    • Profile picture of the author Raydal
      Originally Posted by nasuryono View Post

      I would answer the "What" in the report and give the full, detailed, step by step "How" on the eBook.

      Hope this helps differentiate a free report from an eBook.
      I think this is a great CONTENT definition of a report vs. an
      ebook. From a marketing perspective a report and an ebook
      are different only in content and not length.

      Reports may be thousands of pages long, but it doesn't tell
      you "who" only the "what".

      -Ray Edwards
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      • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
        Originally Posted by Raydal View Post

        I think this is a great CONTENT definition of a report vs. an
        ebook. From a marketing perspective a report and an ebook
        are different only in content and not length.

        Reports may be thousands of pages long, but it doesn't tell
        you "who" only the "what".

        -Ray Edwards
        Another good point.

        I can see where you're coming from with this Ray.

        Thanks.
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  • Profile picture of the author Paul Stone
    True. You need to understand your niche and goals well enough to know what class your content falls under.

    Only a newbie would think that their 7 page vague report is an ebook
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by Paul Stone View Post

      True. You need to understand your niche and goals well enough to know what class your content falls under.

      Only a newbie would think that their 7 page vague report is an ebook
      Either a newbie or someone who is trying cheaply to get sign ups by offering more than what they actually have.
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  • Profile picture of the author hostwindsEvanM
    In my opinion, it depends on how you look at it. I generally view it as a report is more of a case study - figures type of content. An ebook may include this, but is meant to be more instructional in a sense.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by hostwindsEvanM View Post

      In my opinion, it depends on how you look at it. I generally view it as a report is more of a case study - figures type of content. An ebook may include this, but is meant to be more instructional in a sense.
      A case study or a briefer outline of what the book is actually offering.
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  • Profile picture of the author jaiganeshv
    When it becomes evergreen and answers all angles related to that topic.. I feel that is when a report becomes an ebook....
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by jaiganeshv View Post

      When it becomes evergreen and answers all angles related to that topic.. I feel that is when a report becomes an ebook....
      I think that's the general feel.

      If you know that you can write much more comprehensive content on the subject in question, then you know that your briefer version is your report.

      Hope that makes sense.
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  • Profile picture of the author Michelle Stevens
    Hmm, I prefer to call all of them reports.

    To me for some reason the word report sounds like someone has taken time and effort to research something and then write a report about it.

    The word eBook screams tacky PLR to me. But like I say that's just me
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  • Profile picture of the author williamk
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    Make the book for your audience and make sure to add your personal experiences. I would recommend reading smartpassiveincome.com to get an Idea. The guy made most of his money from ebooks and still does so.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by williamk View Post

      Make the book for your audience and make sure to add your personal experiences. I would recommend reading smartpassiveincome.com to get an Idea. The guy made most of his money from ebooks and still does so.
      Thanks for that William.

      I'll check it out.
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  • Profile picture of the author Randall Magwood
    My answer is when you pass a certain threshold in the length of your report. 30 to 40 pages or less, a report. 50 and above pages, an ebook.
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  • Profile picture of the author VHSEOMike
    If someone says it is a report, then we expect it to be SHORT, but if it is an ebook, then it is expected to have more pages than the report. But, it also depends on your branding method.
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  • Profile picture of the author rosetrees
    For me, "report" is often misused to mean ebook. A report should be what it says. A "report" on something you've read, seen, done, attended. In fact almost a review. If you attend a conference you can "report" on what happened, who attended, who spoke. If you buy an IM product you can "report" on how it performed, how it was written. If you try a new social media website you can "report" on its usability, it's user base.

    An ebook is pretty much everything else and most "reports" I've read aren't reports at all.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by Randall Magwood View Post

      My answer is when you pass a certain threshold in the length of your report. 30 to 40 pages or less, a report. 50 and above pages, an ebook.
      Originally Posted by VHSEOMike View Post

      If someone says it is a report, then we expect it to be SHORT, but if it is an ebook, then it is expected to have more pages than the report. But, it also depends on your branding method.

      It's a hard one to call in this respect as I think you have to take into account the quality of what you're reading.

      In general though I agree, the length will dictate to most people whether it's a report or ebook.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by rosetrees View Post

      For me, "report" is often misused to mean ebook. A report should be what it says. A "report" on something you've read, seen, done, attended. In fact almost a review. If you attend a conference you can "report" on what happened, who attended, who spoke. If you buy an IM product you can "report" on how it performed, how it was written. If you try a new social media website you can "report" on its usability, it's user base.

      An ebook is pretty much everything else and most "reports" I've read aren't reports at all.

      Hi Carol,

      Another great point.

      I'm going to have to re-think my decision and take a look at my report/ebook.

      The amount of content and style I've used so far is placing me between a report and an ebook. LOL.

      Doh!
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  • Profile picture of the author chykee
    I think this is an ebook
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    • Profile picture of the author Brandon Tanner
      A report is anything up to 17 and a half pages. Anything over 17 and a half pages is an ebook.

      I thought everyone knew that!!
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      • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
        Originally Posted by Brandon Tanner View Post

        A report is anything up to 17 and a half pages. Anything over 17 and a half pages is an ebook.

        I thought everyone knew that!!
        Hey Brandon,

        I must have missed that in all my research! It must be something with being a newbie.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by chykee View Post

      I think this is an ebook

      Nice marketing chykee.
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  • Profile picture of the author WinstonTian
    Just a little curious...

    Why would you want an ebook, or a report?

    That's a little mainstream isn't it?

    If you're selling fried chicken, you're going to sell
    the crunch, not the fact that it's chicken meat.

    You're going to sell the experience of sitting in the
    KFC restaurant, and having all of those other add
    on food, and having a big bargain etc...

    Well, just trying to turn on the marketing lightbulb
    here...

    Winston Tian
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    The Beginner's Doctor

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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by WinstonTian View Post

      Just a little curious...

      Why would you want an ebook, or a report?

      That's a little mainstream isn't it?

      If you're selling fried chicken, you're going to sell
      the crunch, not the fact that it's chicken meat.

      You're going to sell the experience of sitting in the
      KFC restaurant, and having all of those other add
      on food, and having a big bargain etc...

      Well, just trying to turn on the marketing lightbulb
      here...

      Winston Tian

      Hey Winston,

      I think I can see where you're coming from with this.

      Being a newbie I suppose I wasn't looking past the end of my nose and just going with the flow regarding the report/ebook offer.

      After all though the report isn't a literary masterpiece. It's more of a short burst of info to ask the visitor a certain question and to prick their conscience into taking the right attitude to progress with IM.
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  • Profile picture of the author Brian Tayler
    16.5 pages.

    Joking... but it all has to do with how its marketed. I also think though it has to do with making an eBook a "book" like product (Table of contents, formatted pages, footers/headers, etc). Whereas a report is a simple "white-paper" (in tech terms) and not formatted as a book would be.
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by Brian Tayler View Post

      16.5 pages.

      Joking... but it all has to do with how its marketed. I also think though it has to do with making an eBook a "book" like product (Table of contents, formatted pages, footers/headers, etc). Whereas a report is a simple "white-paper" (in tech terms) and not formatted as a book would be.
      Hi Brian,

      There are many different responses to this question, far more than I envisaged.

      Do you not think though it's more to do with the depth of content and length of this content rather than formatting and marketing?
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  • Profile picture of the author carlpicot
    I agree with the definition of a report as being shorter (Yes 17 1/2 pages sounds kool)

    and maybe a little less in depth than an eBook. I always imagined the paper based reports and physical books that were around in the days before electronic information was as abundant as it is these days and just imagine the items if the were printed out.

    There's always going to be some difference of opinion but if we go by the number of pages and depth of content rule I guess we can't go wrong

    Hope this helps

    xxxxcarlxxxx
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    • Profile picture of the author Dean Thompson
      Originally Posted by carlpicot View Post

      I agree with the definition of a report as being shorter (Yes 17 1/2 pages sounds kool)

      and maybe a little less in depth than an eBook. I always imagined the paper based reports and physical books that were around in the days before electronic information was as abundant as it is these days and just imagine the items if the were printed out.

      There's always going to be some difference of opinion but if we go by the number of pages and depth of content rule I guess we can't go wrong

      Hope this helps

      xxxxcarlxxxx
      Hey Carl,

      I think you're spot on with that and that seems to be the general way of thinking.

      Imagining the report/ebook as a physical product is also a good way to picture it.

      Thanks.
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