How to Market Books

It’s been a busy week!

I had prepared a solid plan for launch week of Book 2, but really it’s the first book launch I’d ever planned, so it’s really interesting to see what worked and what didn’t.

I learned new things, and gained a better appreciation of some key principles.

Let’s get to the data:

First off, the form of advertising that works for your book is highly dependent on its genre. It’s actually very hard to make assumptions about marketing ahead of time – a lot of your preconceptions will turn out not to be true.

For example, on Twitter, I was able to consistently gain new followers, but this did not create any more sales. The days where I focused on improving my twitter presence actually did nothing for my sales.

Amazon ads however has been able to generate some positive steps so far – I’ve not actually been able to make profit on the ads yet, but I am selling about 2 books per day for a cost of $5 USD per day – so I am pretty close to profit. The cost is minimal, and my ranking is steadily improving, so I’m happy. I’m close to achieving a profit making ad campaign – I’ll update here when I do.

Facebook ads I have not yet used – I have a suspicion that FB has seen a big decline amongst the younger demographic, and so my target audience will not be receptive there. I don’t use Facebook for book discussion groups, but maybe I underestimate those who do? Don’t rely on assumptions. I’ve got a nice FB page, we’ll test FB ads in the future.

The other things I can recommend is discount ebook newsletters. Check out Bookbub, Book Barbarian and BargainBooksy, plus a few others, message in the comments if you want my full list. The challenge with these is again profit – I’ve booked a bunch of $30 ads with them, and collectively they’ve produced at least 80 extra sales for me. That’s not profit, but it’s also not much cost, for a decent gain in readership.

In summary – Amazon Ads and ebook newsletters are my two winners so far.

I have a suspicion big success in the marketing game comes in buy-through, e.g. selling people book 1 in a series, and then having them buy all the rest because your writing is just so good.

Guess I need to write a bunch more books then. It’s convenient how that works – having a plan for a high output makes things a little easier to market.

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