Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Word Witch Wednesday - the first ad's results


I ventured into the world of book ads recently. My first one came out last week for my Of Blood and Sorrow sale. The novel is usually $2.99, and I put it on sale for 99c. It's highly rated. It has a professionally done cover. And it has vampires.

The sale was five days (12th-16th). I bought an ad with Ereader News Today (ENT) which went out on the 13th. Here's the link to that day's books. It was in the Paranormal section on the site. It cost $35.

I shouted out about the sale on all my social media, and some wonderful friends shared it too. It was easy to keep track of the sales because I've had zero sales with the book in the past two months. I did not make enough to pay the cost of the ad. Perhaps if I get some reviews, it will make it worthwhile.

Here are the numbers:
Amazon - 57
B&N - 4
Smashwords - 2
Kobo - 1

The great majority of the sales came the night of the 13th after the ad went out. Very few came after that.

Would I use ENT again? Perhaps if I had a book that was part of a series and it was free.

And yes, I do think if Of Blood and Sorrow were part of a series, it would have gotten more sales.

Next year (or the year after!) when the next two books in the trilogy come out, I will put the novel on sale again. Oh, yes! There are two more books in the works. Don't worry, Abdiel fans. He will be back!

Next week, I have an ad on the 25th with The Fussy Librarian for Dark Dawning. And a second one with Bargain Booksy on the 31st. This book is part of a series. So we'll see if that makes a difference.

Have you ever used book ads? If yes, what has your experience been like?

26 comments:

  1. It's really interesting to read about your experience with ads. I placed an ad with a writing magazine I subscribe to - no sales, no impact. Hmmm. I'd love to learn more about your marketing strategies. Have a super week, Christine.

    ReplyDelete
  2. It's a shame you didn't make the money back, but like you say, if reviews start coming in that'll help a lot. The numbers are interesting though, thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  3. My publisher has used a few. I think only BookBub was really effective. Sorry you didn't make back your money.

    ReplyDelete
  4. It's interesting to hear how you're getting on with them. I haven't used an ad but it sounds like there's quite a few variables that come into play - timing, price, reviews...

    ReplyDelete
  5. My experience is much like yours...doesn't really pay back. But there is an important long game. There are two ways to become successful. Get mentioned by Oprah...ore slowly build readership. I'd rather be on Oprah.

    I try to repost authors I know. If I missed your shoutout, I'm sorry. There is just so much noise on social media.

    We should create a syndicate of authors who work to cross-promote. Need a list of shoutouts that we can cross off once we've re-shouted...or something.

    (BTW...it has vampires? That's all you had to say for me)

    ReplyDelete
  6. ha! I went over and read the Look Inside...took me a few pages to realize I'd already read your book. ha ha. I love having no memory. I read a whole Katherine Kurtz novel once before I decided it was my second time through. I guess her dierny books were all alike.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I've never done book ads, so I definitely appreciate you sharing your info and results. :)

    ReplyDelete
  8. I've used Fussy Librarian and got a few sales. At the end of the month I bought a few ads for a book I'm putting for free for my Trick-or-Treat Reads event. I've done it before and always get a good number of downloads that does lead to reads and sales on the other books in the series.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Christine - brave of you to try the ads ... some extra thoughts here from the others ... but so glad you're telling us ... cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  10. I appreciate you sharing your results so much. It's hard to know where to go for good advertising.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Interesting. I keep being told I must get my books on ENT to get sales, but it sounds like your experience was moderate rather than a blow out. (So far ENT has not accepted anything I've submitted.) Curious to hear how Fussy Librarian goes since that's another I keep being told is great. I've had a fair response when using Bargain Booksy in the past. Good luck!

    ReplyDelete
  12. That's a shame you weren't able to recoup the cost of the ad. Glad it helped you earn some sales, at the very least! I'm tempted to do ads through Project Wonderful sometimes--a common route for webcomic artists--but always chicken out. (Maybe I'll be brave enough for my next series, LOL.) And how exciting that there will be two more OBAS books! Am loving the first one so far, so I'm definitely looking forward to that... :)

    ReplyDelete
  13. I hope you get some reviews out of it at least! I didn't have ENT on my radar, so it's good to hear about them and get your experience. I don't write series, so I'm wondering if things like this would be beneficial to me at all.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I do think ads can be helpful. Of course, no ads are created equal. Plus, there are so many factors involved too. But if a portion of the people who bought your book read it and love it, then they are more likely to read other books by you. I think that's where ads are key. You get noticed by people who may have never found your book otherwise.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Thanks for your honest review! I think book reviews are worth gold, so maybe you did get your money back . . . or will in the long run?
    I've used Fussy Librarian and it helped a little. I think it works best with a series, or with a book that's just getting released.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Series seem to benefit better. I've run ads with just about all of them and at least half aren't worth the cost. Plus they have all gone up in price - by a lot.

    ReplyDelete
  17. Thank you for your comments, everyone. It seems hit or miss, book ad or no ad. I would use Bookbub if I could afford it. That is the only one I know ever author can say they've had huge sales with.

    And Mac, if only I could get an endorsement from Oprah! Does she still do her book club?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thanks so much for sharing! I've tried a few ads over the years, but haven't ever recouped my costs. I'd love to land a BookBub (as my publisher says they share the cost), but that's quite the elusive feat :)

    ReplyDelete
  19. I personally have never used book ads before. Part of what I've realized is that the best thing you can do is have strong amazon reviews to get the ball rolling along with strategically placed "Free Days" to up your visibility.

    ReplyDelete
  20. I've never had luck with an ad, especially ones on a website or in a newsletter. Seems like they get buried and no one knows about the but other authors who want to promote.

    The problem with a series is that it's harder to promote the next books and get sales for them. For me, Hurricane Crimes gets good sales but Seismic Crimes (when promoted alone) doesn't. Having the entire series 99 cents at once might work, though.

    ReplyDelete
  21. My sale numbers are extremely embarrassing, so I don't suppose paying for an ad would do much to help me. A lot of it really seems to boil down to luck and knowing the right people.

    ReplyDelete
  22. A sale's a sale and it looks like you did great to me:) I wish I could adjust the price of my book though, unfortunately the publisher keeps it a bit higher than I prefer.

    ReplyDelete
  23. I'm sorry it didn't go better. I've heard mixed reviews, with people mostly saying they don't make back what they spent, but it's hard to tell if there was positive gain in some other way. It really helps when people share their experience like you did.

    ReplyDelete
  24. That's really cool of you to share the numbers and results like that. We're of the general belief that when you buy any kind of ad, you're never going to recoup your money. You just have to try to find the ad that will get you as many new sales (and hopefully loyal fans) as possible, with the most cost effective ad that won't break the bank.

    I mean, if you could spend $100 on an ad and get $200 worth of sales, I bet most authors would just dump money into that until they were bestsellers.

    ReplyDelete
  25. Thanks for sharing the info. I wonder it there is a "best time" for ads.

    ReplyDelete
  26. I did some ads with my early books but none lately. I'm thinking of giving them a try.

    ReplyDelete