If you like producing content in new ways or want to spice up content you already have, Beacon may be worth considering.
I wanted to produce a lead magnet that would help me connect with interested people. But I didn’t want to create a bunch of new content.
Beacon provided a simple and free way to package content I already had and turn into a nice looking lead magnet.
Setting things up
Getting started was a simple five-minute process. The free account provides a lot of built-in features. The tradeoff is that Beacon includes their logo on the .pdf. However, on the .pdf I created the logo was small on the first and last page.
This part was as simple as plugging in the URL of the blog post. Beacon pulls the text from each post (you can do more than one) into separate sections. You can also pull more posts after you get started.
The sources do not need to come from the same website. If you have more than one website, you could pull from any. They do warn that you are only allowed to pull content that you own. You need to be aware of copyright infringement.
After testing different sources, I noticed some websites would only pull in headlines. The body of the page was blank. I am not sure why this happens to be sure to test your page to make sure it works.
For my ebook, I pulled three related posts for teams that want to improve their travel. I entered each post URL and Beacon pulled all three instantly.
Beacon provides several templates with different layouts. You can customize each page including layout, fonts and color schemes.
It is also pretty easy to add content after you have started. This is important as new ideas or related posts come to mind.
One thing that is missing is the ability to apply customized changes to the entire document at once. From what I can tell, if you want to make a change to layout or colors, you must change each page separately. If you are going for a consistent look and feel, this can become tedious.
For my ebook, the changes were minimal and there were only a few sections to worry about.
Cleaning things up
Before publishing, you will want to look over all your pages. While Beacon is pretty accurate with what it pulls in, you may need to tighten up a few things. It also does not pull images so if want them, you will need to insert them yourself.
From here, I proofread everything. The main posts were good to go as I had proofed them before I originally published. I checked the introduction and other pieces in the Hemingway App.
The last step was creating the actual .pdf and then looking it over.
Using the ebook as a lead magnet
For my needs, I created the ebook as a .pdf and made it available as a download through a service I use called Leadpages. You can check out the ebook through the button below.
If you don’t use Leadpages or a similar service, Beacon appears to offer an option that is similar. This is something that I did not test.
Is Beacon worth it?
It is too early to gauge how successful this format will be. But the process was very simple and the basic ebook looks good enough. Especially since the service is free for what I used it for.
If you are looking for a new way to get your information out there, I say Beacon is worth a try.