Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Writer Wednesday: Marketing Highs and Lows

Last week on my Monday Mishmash I mentioned that I've been committing to doing at least one marketing effort per day. I also mentioned that I've seen some positive results from this. So I thought today I'd share a little more about what I'm doing.

I tried something new, which is to use sites to advertise my books. I'm not one to spend a lot of money on advertising though, so I found some sites that are free and others that are under $10. My results were mixed. Some of the promo days wants really well, ranking my book in the 200s on Amazon. One book was ranked there twice in the span of a few weeks and is still going strong. This book is free though. Now you may be thinking, Kelly, why would you pay to advertise a free book? Well, here's why. When you put a book out for free, you're doing it to allow readers to sample your work and hopefully become fans. If you succeed, you'll get readers who then go buy your other books. When you market a free book, you're reaching more potential readers. Will I make that money I spent back with my free book? No. But I hopefully will with the next book in the series.

Now I mentioned mixed results. This happened when I promoted a book that wasn't free. I saw no change in sales. None. Same tactic, different book, very different results. Does that mean I'll never try it again with a paid book? No. I think everything with marketing is hit or miss. It could have been the day of the week, the price of the book, the fact that this followed another promotion that was free and readers didn't have enough time to read my previous book they downloaded, etc. There are so many factors that could have contributed to it.

So what does all this mean? I think the promotions helped get my name out there. Right now it's too soon to tell how many new fans I was able to hook, but hopefully that will become apparent soon. In the meantime, I'll continue with my one marketing effort a day.

16 comments:

  1. I think that's effective, Kelly! Getting your name out there makes a big difference. Are you promoting print books as well or only the ebooks? I put my book on a parenting site and paid a small amount for an ad. I spiked on my ebook sales shortly after. Also, I promo my book there and pay a small ($10) fee to boost that particular post. It actually works quite well. Interesting topic!

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    1. Thanks for sharing what you've tried, Lisa. I'm mostly promoting ebooks right now.

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  2. My husband has played around with Goodreads ads for my books and had fairly good success. They aren't terribly expensive, but they also don't work they way they claim they do. You don't pay for "impressions" -- the number of times your ad is shown -- just for the number of click-throughs. Supposedly, the more click-through you get on one day, the more impressions will be shown the following day. That doesn't happen though. It appears to be random. Still, he does track sales and as you said, even if the sales don't pay for the ad, they create fans and drive readers toward other books in the series.

    I don't have any books that are free, so that's not a factor here.

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    1. I did a Goodreads as once. I didn't get great results though. I kind of forgot about trying again.

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  3. Hopefully it does work for you. Time will tell.

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  4. I've thought about using Goodreads ads. And Twitter and FB ads for marketing but that's it. What sites did you use Kelly?

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    1. I've used Goodreads and FB ads, but I didn't get my money's worth out of them. I'm advertising on book sites that issue newsletters.

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  5. I always appreciate your can-do and willingness to try things. There's CW out there that authors, for the most part, can't do a whole lot to significantly market. We know stories of successful promotions that contradict this, but these are the exception. I think those who feel they can just go and do it. You never know and you live and learn.

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    1. I think all we really can do is try things. lol It's all trial and error.

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  6. It really is hit or miss. I can't figure it all out. Good for you on trying things out.

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    1. It truly is, Claudine. It's frustrating when one thing works for one book and not the next.

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  7. I'm not sure why most people stick with advertising only on Amazon, etc. I think a signature link in an email address is simple, but you could run a campaign to target a specific group. I invited my sister to target Yahoo groups because she has some amazing hand stitched quilts that you cannot find with manufactured ones. There is a niche for everything.

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    1. I sell more books through B&N than Amazon. I do promote Amazon more though, but since that's where I need sales to pick up, I guess that's good.

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  8. I think you're doing the right stuff, looking for different ways to get noticed. One thing I've found is there is not one right way. It's different for every author.

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    1. It definitely is different for everyone, and that makes it harder. lol

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