Welcome to the brave new world of clickable, interactive reading.
Since 2020 began, many parallels have been drawn between the last decade and the new one in almost every industry. Digital technology has empowered some stunning transformations over the previous ten years. Naturally, hopes are high for the next ten, as per the forecasts.
A similar approach can be seen in the world of eBooks for kids & adults. We are moving away from the ‘paper versus pixel’ debate. Sure, most eBooks so far have turned out to be similar to their paper versions, albeit with some added perks. But, a major shift to truly interactive content is underway.
In this article, we’ll discuss what the concept of an interactive eBook for kids truly means. Then, we’ll move forward to 4 factors that should be kept in mind when creating kids’ eBooks.
Interactive eBooks & eLearning- A Brief Introduction
Technology and mobility have reshaped the way we perceive books and the act of reading itself. An eBook, unlike paper books, offers a non-linear reading experience. It allows the reader to get involved with more aspects of the story than just the printed letters.
An interactive book is even better!
It’s about more than text and images on a screen; you’re looking at a rich reading experience brimming with audio, video, and touch-based content. Think of animated images, ambient music, read-aloud narration. With so many elements to facilitate immersive reading, this domain can be aptly defined as transmedia, i.e., books we watch or television we read.
Interactive eBooks facilitate learning, not just for children but for college students as well as employed adults. Plus, it positively impacts businesses and the environment.
However, we’ve only just scratched the surface of interactive eBooks creation services & technologies. The possibilities are endless.
4 Tips for Creating an Interactive eBook for Kids
1. Target Device+Platform+Demographic
When you’re creating an eBook for kids, the first and foremost concern should be well-developed content. However, the immediate next things you jump to should be the platform, devices, and audience you’re targeting.
For instance, there are currently 3.5 billion mobile users in the world and about 4.54 billion active internet users. Children are a subset of that demographic. This audience has access to different screens, browsers, operating systems, languages, etc.
So, when you publish an eBook, it should be-
- Available to your target market (study the audience demographic your product is aimed at)
- Function appropriately on their devices (make your eBook optimized for and responsive to different devices)
- Impart an impressive reading experience (pick a content publishing platform that can deliver your content well)
Let’s try to demonstrate what we just put down in words.
A content publishing platform has three main jobs. It should give your book the right exposition, your readers the right experience, and your revenue a positive boost. So, when picking a platform, you have to act on those requirements. Of course, you’ll have many choices-
- Publish the book on a popular platform like Amazon or use another content publishing platform
- Create an independent file(in ePUB or another format)
- In the form of a web app published on your website
- An eBook-as-an-app, available for download on different app stores
- Publish eBook on a particular learning management system(LMS)
And, you can pick more than one medium to publish eBooks. But, if you have a thorough analysis of the target audience, making that decision will be easier.
2. eBook Layout & Assets
So far, we’ve established one point- your eBook should be optimized for different devices, browsers, and operating systems.
That means you will need to optimize your eBooks’ assets, i.e., the audio, video, ambient soundtrack, animations, links, etc. At the same time, you need to take stock of the layout that will best serve your customers.
Chiefly, there are two options- a fixed layout or a reflowable one.
|Reflowable Layout||Fixed Layout|
|It offers automatic page orientation by screen size.||The content stays static and doesn’t change, regardless of the device.|
|Readers have the freedom to change the font size and type. The lines expand/contract and rearrange themselves accordingly.||Regardless of the screen size, text and images can’t be changed. Readers must zoom in or out to set the page in a convenient readable position.|
|It’s supported by most leading present-day eReaders like Amazon Kindle, Kobo, Apple iBooks, etc.||Very few readers at present accept a fixed content layout.|
Now, if we were talking about plain old eBooks for kids, choosing between these two would be a simple matter-
- The reflowable layout is excellent for text-heavy books as there is no fear of ruining the text when realigning it
- The fixed layout works fine for documents with images, graphs, etc. since realigning text around images can destroy the arrangement and change the contextual meaning as well
However, keep in mind that we are talking about interactive eBooks for kids. They can fall in many categories, like a funny bedtime story or a Coding-for-10-year-olds guide. They are, however, sure to include not only images but also, video snippets, a voiceover, graphics, or additional interactivities. Only, the amount of text will vary.
Therefore, you need to create a combination of the layout, content, and multimedia elements, which-
- Doesn’t lag down in performance
- Ensures a smooth flow of the eBook
- Gets optimized by the device
Simple? Not by a long shot! But that’s where professionals can help you. Look for eBooks creation Services that can make this task easy.
3. Interactive Content
We’ve already discussed how there can be a variety of content elements in an interactive eBook for kids. Before publishing, you need to tackle all of them in a systematic matter.
For instance, the book will need a digital cover. Not only are eBook covers a critical tool for marketing, but they are also usually the first things that attract a prospective buyer. So, have them designed professionally, with creative and eye-catching graphics, colors, themes, and fonts.
The eBook will also need to be formatted as per the publishing platform. If you are publishing it on Amazon Kindle, you’d need to convert the eBook file into the AZW format. If you’re going for another publishing platform, you’ll need to turn the eBook into ePUB, PDF, or another required content format. The choice of a format can vary, depending on a device or a platform. So, do your research before moving ahead on this front.
You can add 3D interactive elements to the kids’ eBook or use widgets to add puzzles or mini-games in the book. The eBook can also be modified to include an interactive behavior or specialized animation into it.
Also, you will need images, audio, and video that fits the context. Avoid stock photos if they feel too generic. Keep in mind that several royalty-free images need a license to be used in a commercial product. Use eBooks creation services to get the right illustrations and related videos. If you plan to add narration to the eBook, you can also hire voice artists for that purpose.
4. Editing, Publishing, & Distribution
Often, eBook authors make a common yet devastating mistake- assuming that formatting is an error-less process. It is not! The more interactive content your eBook has, the tougher it is to format and convert. Usually, the most affected areas are-
Add interactive elements to that mix, and you can imagine the potential mess post-formatting. Therefore, it is wise to conduct a final session of proofreading after the formatting.
As for the marketing and distribution of the final eBook, you need an appropriate strategy to ensure maximum profitability. We say this because the market is filled with vendors who can help you publish a kids’ eBook. However, each of them will charge a royalty, and some only cater to a particular audience segment. You will also find distributor services on the market. They publish an eBook on different sites on your behalf.
You need to figure out what works best for you.
Once you choose the retailer, there will be a few things left to handle before your educational eBook for kids can go online.
- Write a brief description of your eBook. Make it enticing to attract the readers’ attention
- Select categories that your eBook qualifies for
- Conduct keyword research to optimize your eBook listing and increase its visibility
- Choose the territories where you want to publish and market your eBook accordingly
Whichever Way You Go, Be Prepared in Advance
If you’ve made it this far, then you must be clear on two things-
- Interactive eBooks are the future of online reading
- Creating interactive eBooks for kids involves a lot of hard work and understanding
The market is filled with eBooks creation services. The online publishing industry is slowly moving towards innovative solutions that will make publishing eBooks faster and easier. Overall, a lot of development is underway. And, if you are indeed planning to create an interactive educational eBook for kids, the right time is now.
Get Your eBooks Published with the Help of Professionals
With intuitive and powerful solutions from SunTec Digital, give your eBooks the launchpad they deserve. From multi-purpose publishing to content transformation, we handle every possible requirement you could have. Deliver an incredible eBook for kids with the help of our cross-industry experience and expertise. Get in touch with us at firstname.lastname@example.org.