In the interest of time, a tempting corner to cut may be the Intro. No one reads them anyway, right? With traditional books that may be true, but with ebooks don’t be so hasty to omit. Alas, the Intro can provide yet another marketing opportunity. It’s your chance to have a direct relationship with your reader. It’s the “infomercial” of your book.
Drawing the parallel, an infomercial typically begins with a simple problem/solution format:
“Oh no! Did Junior make another mess?”
“Now there’s EZ-Mess, the revolutionary cleaner that cleans any mess instantly!”
Similarly, the ebook Introduction can call out the reader’s problem and then explain how the book will address that problem and provide a feasible solution. In essence, it’s telling the reader why he or she should buy the book.
Some infomercials provide a spokesperson as a host. She opens up to the audience and shares her story, offering a reason as to why she stands behind this product. Sometimes, the spokesperson may even be the inventor herself:
“Hi, I’m Jenny Jones. You know, being an at-home mom with three active children, I’ve seen my share of messes and some are impossible to get out! That’s why I created EZ-Mess. Like you, I was tired of scrubbing and scrubbing only to be left with an ugly stain that wouldn’t go away!”
Embrace your Jenny Jones and tell the reader why you wrote this book, this story, this tale. But be swift! If you drone on, it can come off as arrogance or a sense of self-importance, which is a turn off.
But Wait! There’s More!
In the value proposition of an infomercial, the spot tries to add perceived value. This can be achieved in a variety of ways, such as a risk-free offer:
“We’re so sure you’ll love EZ-Mess, we invite you to try it 30 days risk free. If you don’t notice a difference with your messes, send it back. No questions asked.”
Just like the infomercial, invite the reader to keep reading. Introduce them to Chapter One. “Join me in Chapter One as we…”
Finally, every infomercial ends with a call to action:
End your Introduction with a call to action. “Let’s begin!” …And begin you shall. Write On, Widbook writers….
This post was originally featured at the Widbook blog and written by Mary Ann Lombardo. Widbook is a global community for people who love to share stories. Writers can publish their work in an ebook format and readers meet content and everyone get connected!