Published: Aug 17, 2016 12:00:00 PM

wire-trees.jpgIndependent passion projects require an incentive for your audience to return and return again. The internet affords people the ability to make their work visible to an entire planet. How can you channel that potential audience into a devoted fanbase though?

Whether you're a YouTuber, an artist on Etsy, a musician on Soundcloud, or a writer self-publishing your first novel, you can maintain a loyal following with samples of your work that they can share and you can be proud of.

Digital meets paper.

Here's how free books work as a downloadable...

Free books are a real shareable asset of what your work is really like.

Still nothing realer than a book. They bear staggering legitimacy. This is why free books lend themselves so well toward the generation of disenfranchised and over educated millennials. Grandma might even be proud to stack it on her shelf next to her hollowed-out copy of The Sun Also Rises (the one with the flask embedded into it). Ever hear of the phrase, "the book was better?" It's because it usually is.

Why is that? Because it's a different format. It's often a truer, less-edited format. Because written language is one of the least-difficult to interpret mediums.

From deep within your mind, whether writing is your craft of choice, or if it's just an outlet while the paint dries on a different canvas or your video edit renders, writing a book is a true form of personal creation. Write it, pack it up, and sell it. If it's an autobiographical story of your creative process, your audience will be happy to find you so honest. You can include your true feelings about notorious pieces you've created in the past.

If the book is an extension of your personal creative endeavor, more writing atop writing, it can either be a gift to current fans, or an invitation to a newer audience. Think of how many books, digital or physical, Amazon still sells? Think of how many people read as their primary mode of entertainment? You need to consider a bluer ocean of an audience beyond what's nearby and what's on the internet.

Featuring downloadable free books meet those readers where they are to establish a community of readers.

Write a book. How do you promote it though? The same way you would share anything else: with small samples to get word of mouth going.

Ghost Little has covered how to put together the asset for download. It's not a terribly difficult process.

digital-meets-paper.jpg

Digital meets paper.

How powerful are promotional free books as an engagement tool?

Everyone reads. Everyone always says, "Man, I wish I did more reading." Everyone understands it's something they ought to do more. Give them something to read. Give them a view into your work.

Be aware: this is a slightly more advanced social media sharing opportunity than flopping a video onto a Facebook newsfeed. Nevertheless, it is shareable. How often do you have a deep conversation with a friend or co-worker about a YouTube video you glossed over on a social feed?

Maybe, but not often.

How often are you excited to tell a friend about a cool book you discovered? And you can share it with them right then and there. Everyone wants to read more and free books are the perfect price to entice new fans.

Everyone wants to support you. Everyone wants intimacy with your true thoughts: thoughts a book affords.

The familiarity created in free books welcome a loyal audience. Then, keep writing, and produce the final product.

-- Alex Crumb
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Tagged topics in this post: self-promotion, Download free ebook, free books

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The Ghost Little blog publishes EVERY WEEKDAY. It's sometimes immediately relevant to the books' development process. Other times, it's only thematically-relevant. Thoughts and ideas influence the creative process in ways that you wouldn't initially anticipate. They're all worth detailing and discussing!

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