Today, E-books have become all the rage. Virtually every website now has a magazine e-book that they release weekly, monthly, etc. Interestingly enough, certain websites are not about writing of any sort, and yet release useful and interesting e-books for free, for the general public. Why do they go through the trouble of making these apparently useless (financially speaking) e-books?
As a specific example, one need only examine a number of weight training books. One book, named Bulletproof Abs, was offered for (at a certain time) free from a certain service. It contained actual, accurate information on how to attain said abs. And integral to the most efficient method was an ad for an abdominal muscle building machine. And this e-book was downloaded many times more than even the cheapest commercial/free books on the same subject, despite having said ads. In fact, if one were to pause and consider this article- it could be a viral article for Bulletproof Abs. Word of mouth caused it do be downloaded more since an actual recommendation from a person made the ads negligible compared to the apparent gain one would make with a personal endorsement. This was a very successful viral advertising method.
Instead of advertising a specific item, one could advertise anything with an appropriate e-book. And this viral e-book could be written by the businessman interested in advertising, or put together from a number of articles that the businessman utilizes. In fact, a large number of e-books are available on the Internet for free re-use, and re-naming. Thus, the creation of viral e-book costs next to nothing, making them one of the most cost-effective methods of advertisement. Finding these e-books is only a Google search away from directories that list them by subject.
In fact, the only limitation that viral e-books face is the perceived value by the reader- the more excited the readers become, the more effective the advertisement that the e-book carries. The larger the number of people that are exposed to the e-book, the larger the following and the higher the likelihood of finding a person genuinely interested in it, and willing to spread it among friends and family. One must offer the e-books in as many ways as possible- through newsletters, main page notices on one’s website, packaged with certain products as a bonus item. Whatever it takes to grab the attention of the reader and begin the road to a large following audience- and thus a large group of people viewing your advertising.