Last week, I talked about the minimum tools you needed. I’m going to start naming a few other tools I make use of and the various main promotional options. I’ll cover each briefly, but realise that most of these require significant amount of time to get right. Again, remember, each promotional center below will touch people at different areas in the sales funnel, so figuring out where and when would be good.
Let’s start with some of the most common.
Amazon Marketing Services (AMS)
AMS ads sponsored search results of your book / series into the searches when people are browsing on Amazon itself. This means you’re touching people at the lowest level of the funnel possible (before they hit ‘buy’ on your product); so it can be very, very effective.
For those who have used Google Adwords, the basic set-up is similar for their sponsored search. You have 2 options when you create a sponsored search result. You can use an automated advertisement, where Amazon will fill in keywords and searches for you and you can do it with a generic ad or a new one, or you can enter keywords manually.
Generally, I’d recommend running a recommended advertisement (the automated one) as well as a manual one. Use the recommended advertisement to pull out good keywords to add to your manual advertisement, splitting the manual advertisement further as you find ‘categories’ of keywords.
Places to find keywords include your own market research, also-boughts (from your product and also competitors) and some of the automated services out there. You’ll need to keep a close eye on your budget and your spend, at least in the beginning.
Things to note about AMS:
– it works best if you are already selling (in my experience)
– you need a good cover and hopefully, a decent blurb to get the most out of it.
– AMS will relate sales that happen up to 14 days after your advertisement is clicked. That is, if someone buys your book 14 days after they clicked on your ad, it will still count towards your sales data.
– ACOS is based off Amazon top-line revenue. That is $4.99 not the 70% of $4.99 that you get.
– Lastly, it does NOT track Kindle Unlimited downloads and reads.
I’m not going to go into AMS much more since I am not an expert on it. I do okay, but I have the hardest time making Amazon take my money (i.e. my ROI is positive, but I can’t spend as much as I want. Which might be a testament to how narrow my keywords have become as I found the ones that work for me).
Facebook advertising is really, really useful for a vast majority of writers. It can also eat your capital without blinking and return nothing. To do Facebook Advertising right, you need to make sure your targeting is very, very good. However, many six figure and more authors have found great success on Facebook.
Some ways to help make your targeting better:
– put a pixel on your Website. That will track people who are coming to your website and add them to a list of potential targets. You don’t have access to individual names / etc. but the data is stored as a sample that you can target directly.
– create a Facebook Fan Page (for yourself as an Author). Those who ‘like’ your fan page can be targeted directly.
– your newsletter e-mail addresses can also be used to create another set of audience members.
Now, in most cases, what you’ll want to do is create what Facebook calls a ‘lookalike’ audience. That is, you take any of the above audiences (or more, there are a lot more ways of getting audiences not listed here) and have Facebook create a lookalike audience. This will expand the audience to a million or two, if you have the right numbers.
After that, it’s all about testing. What do you test?
– which lookalike audience interacts the most with your ads
– which ad copy and ad design works best
– which landing page will get you the most sales
– which landing page / book will get you the most read-through (not necessarily the same thing as above)
and more. You can test and develop a ton of things, with Facebook.
Obviously, this works if your audience is on FB; but it’s large enough that it likely is.
Last one for today;
I mentioned you can get new newsletter subscribers via newsletter services like Bookfunnel and StoryOrigin.
There are also dedicated websites that send out newsletters to readers who are looking for a deal. Bookbub is by the most famous, though other sites include Book Barbarian, FreeBooksy, eReader News Today, etc.
Which one is most effective would depend on your genre and if you are doing full price, promotional pricing or free. Also, which one is most effective at this time will change, so do your research and be willing to test them out over a period of time.
However, all that said, these can definitely provide a boost in sales that will, hopefully, also generate a boost in readthrough (and thus profits).
Like the business blog post? Want to support me writing more of them? Want to read ahead (2 weeks) of others? Become a Patron and choose the $2-tier to be able to read the business posts only and ask questions about the business side of writing.