1. THE BIG QUESTION: WHO ARE YOU WRITING FOR?
It sounds obvious, but before you start to write your fitness eBook, you need to know who you are writing it for. Not just whether it’s for men or women, but focusing in on a specific target audience; their specific needs, fitness levels, and goals; and the one problem you are solving for them.
Mum's who have limited time, but still want to have an effective workout that will make them feel better and look better. Or, experienced gym users looking to get back after returning from injury.
Answering this question will also tell you the type of eBook you are going to write. Should it be packed with information, or quick and to the point. If it is going to be longer form, how much information do people want for the price they are paying? Is it the kind of guide people will have open on their phone in the gym so they can follow along, in which case what information will they need?
2. INCLUDE AN INTRODUCTION
Now you know who you are writing for, start your eBook with some kind of introduction. This is where you set the scene for the reader and let them know what they are in for.
Begin with a quick hello/welcome to the guide, and then clearly state it’s purpose i.e. what is it going to cover, and what the reader can expect to gain from reading it. This could include information about the guide's content, structure, or the specific goals it will help readers achieve. Also try and give a brief explanation of how it is tailored to them – make them feel as though it has been written specially for them.
If it is appropriate, include a quick bio about your background and experience. Not your whole life story, just the relevant bits to establish your credibility and expertise in your field so the reader knows why they should listen to the advice you are giving. (If this is covered in other parts of your brand's messaging this isn't always necessary.)
To conclude the intro, finish with some kind of call to action that encourages the reader to dive into the guide and start their journey. This could be a simple instruction to start reading, or a more detailed invitation to follow specific steps outlined in the guide.
3. FOLLOW A STRUCTURE
Following a structure will help organise your content so it is logical and easy to follow. The more it makes sense to those reading it, the more they can focus on the information rather than where to find it.
So, what does this mean in practice? Break the information down into manageable chunks and use clear subheadings so it is easy for people to digest. If it needs it, spread the information over multiple pages, and split the eBook into chapters. People don’t want it to feel like they are confronted with an excerpt from ‘War and Peace’, so make it easy for them.
If you are including workouts, then each one needs to follow the same structure, so people can follow it easily from day to day, week to week. I would recommend:
Description of the exercise (optional)
Pictures showing the start and end positions for each exercise
Use this same structure day to day, week to week to keep the experience for the reader consistent.
4. WRITE AS YOURSELF
Most of the people who will buy your eBook will do so because they feel a connection with you, and that you specifically have something to offer them that others don’t, If it reads as generic prose, or as though it was written by A.I., then they will just switch off. Now, I’m not against using apps like ChatGPT to help with writing eBooks, were not all the next Jeffrey Archer, but it is important that whatever you write, sounds like you.
So, write as you would speak - add in your own phrases, as if you were sitting with the reader having a chat. It will make the guide more engaging, and make your content clearer and easier to understand. Writing in a conversational tone will help convey your personality, creating a more authentic and relatable experience for your readers. All this helps build a connection we want, along with creating a sense of trust and empathy.
This can be especially important in a fitness guide, where readers are looking for guidance and support. Remember, investing in your guide is the next best alternative to singing up for coaching, so readers want to experience the same guidance and support you offer in person or online.
5. SHARE & SHARE A LIKE
Encouraging readers to share the guide on social media can increase its exposure to a wider audience, potentially leading to more downloads and increased brand awareness. It is also a form of social proof - when people see others sharing or promoting it on social media, it reinforces the idea that the guide is worth reading and following. It also builds a feeling of community around you and your brand - creating a space for readers to connect, share their experiences, and support each other in their fitness journeys.
So how to do it. First, include a line in your introduction telling the reader to share the guide on social media using a specific hashtag. Next, include call to actions throughout the guide at designated points, encouraging the reader to share their progress on social media. A good place to do this is after they have hit a training milestone, or completed a set number of weeks. The call to action can be just one line, or a full page.
6. GET IT TESTED
The only way you’ll know if your eBook works is to test. This doesn’t just mean checking for spelling mistakes, but reading it from your point of view as a coach/trainer, and from the point of view of the reader. Make sure the information presented is accurate and reliable. Make sure that the advice and strategies presented are realistic and achievable – all of which helps to maintain the credibility and trustworthiness of the guide. Does it make sense as a whole guide, rather than just in sections? Does what you’ve written stick to the specific target audience you picked out before you started writing, or have you gone off topic?
Then give it to people you trust and get their feedback. This isn’t a time for arrogance - listen to what they have to say and tweak what needs tweaking. If you can, get it tested by a group of your target audience. Ask them, how is the usability of the guide - is it easy to follow, does it make sense? does it solve the problem it sets out to? This feedback will allow you to tweak, revise, and improve before publishing.
7. COVER YOURSELF
No matter how good you are as a coach, or how sensible your advice is, there is always the possibility that someone will injure themselves, so it is best to cover yourself by including a disclaimer. If you are not a qualified personal trainer, it is best to make that clear. Now, you can put it anywhere in the eBook, but as reading the disclaimer isn’t really why people bought the guide, I would suggest putting it on the last page and getting it out of the way.
Here is an example:
Disclaimer: The information presented in this fitness guide is for educational and informational purposes only and should not be interpreted as medical advice. Before starting any new exercise program or making changes to your diet, it is important to consult with your healthcare provider. The author of this guide is not a licensed healthcare provider and assumes no liability for any injuries or damages that may occur as a result of following the advice presented in this guide. The reader assumes full responsibility for their own health and wellbeing.