1. Welcome to the Fantasy Writing Forums. Register Now to join us.

Marketing in todays world

Discussion in 'Marketing' started by JGCully, Oct 23, 2021.

  1. JGCully

    JGCully Scribe

    Hello all,

    Below is what I recently posted up on my blog.

    basically, I've been pitching my newly released book for the last 2 months and I've seen some good interest. however, I'm at a loss as to where to go from here.

    any suggestions?



    In this blog, I thought I'd talk about what worked and what didn’t in my efforts to get the word out about my book.

    First to purchase were my wonderful friends and family, who bought a whole raft of electronic and paper copies. And also told people about it on Social media!

    I then gave ‘Facebook advertising' a go with a few test posts that were promoted for short periods. The posts had a ‘buy it now' option which according to analytics was clicked a good few times. However, as to just how effective this was I won’t know until December when the first sales report comes through.

    I also became highly active on Twitter and a few book advertising sites. I’ve now around 3700 followers on Twitter but I’ve found that particularly social media avenue better for ‘writers encouragement' as opposed to selling books; the majority of my followers are other writers!

    Finally, throughout the month of October, I ran a series of ‘Free’ ebook promotions for my original books. The idea was to generate some renewed interest in the series. Certainly, this seems to have worked as my Amazon ranking for all 4 books have improved a lot.

    The question now is what to do next. I really want to have an official ‘book launch' but I’m also hoping to contact a few newspapers with press releases. I have a nice big list of additional advertising ideas, but the issue will be getting the time and resources to implement them!

    Overall, I’m happy with how things have started off. The book is out, people are buying it and most importantly, people like it!

    On to the next phase!
    Tolkien likes this.
  2. ButlerianHeretic

    ButlerianHeretic Minstrel

    I'll be watching this one. :)
  3. Demesnedenoir

    Demesnedenoir Istar

    Where to go from here… I’ve only got a loose grasp on where you are at. You’ve got a book out. Got some sales. Got a few reviews I presume.

    Your Amazon sales should show up pretty quick on your reports. FB ads are best judged by the cost per click. Then, it’s up to your sales page to do the work, whether it’s your own website or Amazon or whatever.

    What are your goals?

    Bargain Booksy, Fussy Librarian and similar promo sites might be a good next step. Best advice might be: play around and find what works and what doesn’t work for you.
    ButlerianHeretic likes this.
  4. Big question also is if you are self-published or traditionally published, and if you're wide or Amazon exclusive. Though you have to do marketing in both situations it might impact you choice. If you're indy-published then as DemesnedenoirDemesnedenoir mentiones, you should see sales pretty much within 1 or 2 days on the dashboard of whatever platform you're selling through.

    First off, write the next book. Having more than one book out helps sell books.

    Then, for marketing there are a few options. It's most advisable to pick one or two and really try them to see if they work for you. Don't try everything at once.
    Advertising: There are 3 big platforms for paid advertising: facebook, amazon and Bookbub. Amazon tends to have the best conversion rate if you get it right (since people there are looking for books), but it's hard to make Amazon spend your money without paying an awful lot for the clicks. Facebook is very easy to get them to spend your money, but it takes some practise to get the add targeted at the right people and looking great. Bookbub I have no experience with, but from what I've heard they're the hardest to get right and take the most experimentation.

    Newsletter lists: start your own newsletter (get people to sign up). Once you do that, you can do newsletter swaps with other authors (they mention your book in their newsletter and you mention theirs), or take part in group promo's etc. Main place to go for those is either Bookfunnel or StoryOrigin (mind, both are paid services...).

    Paid newsletters: there are services who send out newsletters to subscribers with books. Some are great some not so much, some are (very) expensive, some are cheap. Bookbub is the grand-daddy of these services. They have a huge reach and can really help spike your sales. But they're also very expensive and very hard to get them to accept your book. DemesnedenoirDemesnedenoir mentioned several out there.

    Book bloggers: there's plenty of people who have book review blogs, Youtube channels, Tiktok channels, Instagram channels and whatever other channels you can think of where they review books. Contact them and see if they'll do yours. Depends on the channel of course, but they might be hard to get. There are loads of authors out there and there are only so many books you can read and review...

    For each topic you can write an entire book on how it works (and people have). I'd say research and pick an option which you like. Some places where you can go are the 20booksto50k and WideForTheWin facebook groups. They have pretty decent advise on lots of these topics. There's also the book Newsletter Ninja if you want to dig into newsletters, there is "Help! my facebook ads suck" if you want to dig into ads, and Craig Martelle has written a bunch of non-fiction books on being an indie author. There's also courses which can help, though they tend to run very expensive. But if you want to put up the money I've heard good things about Mark Dawson's courses (especially the Ads for authors course).
    ButlerianHeretic likes this.
  5. Demesnedenoir

    Demesnedenoir Istar

    I’m not a fan of Dawson, I did the trial version and got my refund just to see what it’s about. IF you know nothing and have the money to blow, you can learn a lot of fundamentals. He also had something in there on FB ads I totally disagreed with and it blew his credibility, LOL. But anyhow… those things tend to give you fundamentals on how things work and maybe a few strategies, IMO. I’d stick to cheap books and experimentation to learn it yourself. If you have money to blow, might as well hire someone, heh heh.

    There is a recent book released about Amazon Ads, and again, what is does best is teach the basics and some advanced stuff on how it works (she used to work for Amazon in the books area, so she has some insight) but in the end, it’s on YOU to succeed, which is something someone probably won’t teach you… because they can’t. Every book needs customized. The author also has a class on Dawson’s platform, but I suspect it’s a video form of this book. Book is: Amazon Ads for Indie Authors. It’s worth a perusal, I’ll be utilizing some ideas from the book unless I go Trad at some point and can’t control that sort of advertising. Takeaway #1 for Amazon ads is it takes minimum $300 per month and likely 2-3 months to really start getting your ad into shape and learning what works.

    Another tactic she talks about is “defending your book” by advertising your own keyword to keep other author’s off your book page, which is something I have done in the past. But what I didn’t know at the time, was that those ads will run cheaper due to an internal relevance rating, so it makes even a little more sense to defend your turf.

    ButlerianHeretic likes this.
  6. Ned Marcus

    Ned Marcus Inkling


    Robin Reads is not bad, too.
    Demesnedenoir likes this.
  7. Demesnedenoir

    Demesnedenoir Istar

    An addendum: While chatting with a publicist/marketer quite a while back, she also said $300/month in an Amazon ad is kind of a minimum for tailoring ads for your book. i’d totally forgotten that until looking back through emails today.

    The basic idea is that you need to get 1k impressions (minimum) on a keyword to judge it’s usefulness. $10 per day for 2 weeks to 1 month can both give you an idea of what keywords are working/not working, as well as which keywords you aren’t getting enough impressions on, so you can adjust bidding, etc etc forever and forever, heh heh.

    Which brings me to a point: Keyword “the well of ascension” is killer for me, Click through is high and sales are good! But hey, it’s only 54 impressions, so no idea if that will hold, LOL.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2021
    Ned Marcus likes this.
  8. I've got no personal experience with Mark Dawson, it was just a "I've heard people say good things about him" sort of guy to me. DemesnedenoirDemesnedenoir, what FB adds stuff did you disagree with? (just curious)

    The $300 per month minimum doesn't surprise me at all. Even cheap keywords go for 30ct / click, and then $300 doesn't get you all that far. Even more so because you generally don't run just 1 keyword in an add. It's fairly common to see people testing adds to use between 50-100 keywords. That's then just $3-$6 per keyword per month, or 3 - 20 clicks per keyword (less even if you're going for expensive clicks...). That's not a lot of data to go on. Of course, some will not get any impressions at all and others will get lots of impressions, but no clicks, both of which tells you something. But if you go lower then you'll be guessing and waiting for a long time to see any results to work with.

    Of course, I can't get Amazon to actually spend my money (at least not in a way that would be anywhere near profitability), so throwing money at them doesn't do all that much for me at the moment...
  9. Jac Buchanan

    Jac Buchanan Dreamer

    Being an author is essentially running a business. You have to keep releasing books in order to benefit from the momentum.

    If you only have 1 product/service (i.e. 1 book) you gain whatever x% of market likes that book cover, title, blub, and sample read (diminishing returns through that cycle). But if you have a another product/service (i.e. another book) you will attract a different (albeit usually overlapping) market, who then also see your first product/service - thus gaining crossover.

    They don't all have to be novels, but you'll usually benefit from targeting the same or a cross-over market.

Share This Page