Spending a little money on book marketing can go a long way.
Every business, whether large, small, tiny or sideline has expenses, and one of the essential expenses for authors is book marketing and advertising. The only problem is in deciding how to spend your money wisely.
It doesn’t need to be a large sum, but relying on success coming to you for free is not realistically ever going to happen, as there are millions of people trying to sell books, so you need to give your product or service, author name and books, a little nudge to get your word out above the crowd. Spending a little money on book marketing helps.
Half the money I spend on advertising is wasted; the trouble is I don’t know which half.John Wanamaker
This above quote is a good reason many authors are reluctant to spend money on book marketing and author promotion. Much of what is spent seems wasted; as book sales don’t necessarily give you a quick return on your advertising investment.
If you expect book marketing, advertising and promotion to work within a week, or a month, stop here and don’t spend a cent because you will be spending your money for all the wrong reasons.
Book marketing is for the long term
Book marketing, advertising and promotion should have long-term goals and expectations; because from the time you decide to invest money in promotion, it is going to take some time for any sales momentum to build.
The other difficult decision to make comes a little later when you need to decide whether to continue spending your money, even though you haven’t seen any reasonable sales increase during the first stages or cycles of your promotion. ‘Am I throwing good money after bad?’
The key to successful book marketing is not to be seen once, but to be seen often, and if possible, regularly.
Even given that people are to some degree advertising resistant, especially nowadays when it comes to ‘click’ advertising, they still notice advertisements on Facebook, Twitter, Google, websites and blogs.
This is why a lot of advertisers pay per 1,000 views and not per individual click.
There is great value in simply being seen, again and again, even if the consumer doesn’t click through to an advertiser’s site immediately.
Brand or name recognition is being built, which will hopefully reap rewards when the consumer has a buying decision to make. From the perspective of self-publishing, this could be when a consumer picks up their Kindle and wonders what book to buy next.
Book marketing is not only about advertising
Expenditure on promotion doesn’t necessarily only mean buying dedicated advertising. While Google Adwords, Facebook Ads and Goodreads and Twitter advertising are all well known and easily purchased, sometimes it is better to consider making an investment in a professionally developed blog or website, and in better targeted and managed online distribution of blog posts, articles and news stories about your books and writing.
This is my preferred means, but it is much more expensive upfront than simply buying two weeks worth of pay per click or pay per view ads. It is a lot of work and a substantial financial investment that has to be made upfront, but it works over a much, much longer period.
A well-designed blog can last for years after the initial investment, and only requires minor maintenance costs over its life. In the end, the cost per view of your blog or website is negligible when compared to gaining the same exposure from paid ads.
If this road is too expensive for your budget or would take more time than you have to commit to writing content for your blog, then paid promotion and advertising is much more time efficient. Once you order, it will run without you needing to do anything.
Which advertising works best?
I have tried a number of services over the years to not only promote books but for other businesses, I have now and have had in the past.
While the main online advertising service providers do pretty much as they promise, I have found that Facebook Likes are well worth the cost when launching a new Facebook Page.
Trying to gain Likes organically is painfully slow, so a kick-start to say 500 Likes is money very well spent. However, paying for Twitter followers is absolutely worthless, as they are only robot accounts and will not deliver you a single page view.
Google Adwords works efficiently, although I have to say that creating ads on Google that point directly to an Amazon book page do not work well at all. They are much more efficient at gaining web traffic to your site or blog, particularly if you use it in combination with something enticing such as a competition or giveaway.
Facebook ads work similarly, but from my experience, the click through rate was quite a bit less than Google and was slightly more expensive. However, Facebook ads can be targeted much better, so by narrowing down your target market, it can be quite economical.
Whichever avenue you choose, it depends on the target market you are looking to reach, what you want to achieve and the budget you have set for your promotion. Even $5 per day, limited to a short one month campaign can gain a lot of exposure. Just know that John Wanamaker’s quote will probably be true for you too. 50% will be wasted, but which 50%?
Even $5 per day, limited to a short one month campaign can gain a lot of exposure. Just know that John Wanamaker’s quote will probably be true for you too. 50% will be wasted, but which 50%?
Will book marketing increase your book sales?
If you have a good book to market, the answer is usually yes. However, be aware that no amount of money spent on advertising and promotion will help sell a poor or sub-standard book.
By far the best means is to have a popular blog to leverage to aid your book marketing. Work on building your blog traffic using basic SEO techniques, and compliment it with the occasion advertising campaign.
You can also consider using dedicated book promotion services that will help you reduce the amount of time you spend promoting your books on social media.