Author Topic: AMS Ads Learning  (Read 123722 times)  

Offline NicoleSmith

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1600 on: August 12, 2017, 03:12:41 PM »
Look at your also-boughts.  That will give you an idea of what other authors people who buy your books like.  Also, I tried yasiv.com the other day and it gives an interesting map to other books that you could possibly use.  Just be sure if you have a paperback version that it's capturing your ebook.  For a couple of my titles I had to put in the ASIN to get it to map the ebook instead of the paperback.

Different people do well with different approaches, but I've done well mostly with generic genre keywords and author names.

Unfortunately I almost always end up with the "BBW bear shifter" or "sassy female chosen-one demon slayer" (with extremely glowy cover) in my also boughts, which are nowhere close. :/ I assume it's because that's what most people are buying in the paranormal space of the promo sites I use (most recently ENT and Book Barbarian). Needless to say, once I wrap up the trilogy I'll be getting out of that corner of Dodge.

I do appreciate you taking the time to respond, though, and the work you've put into this thread.

Offline khotisarque

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1601 on: August 12, 2017, 04:14:25 PM »
...there is basically no "look alike" audience or author and they don't even fit in top-tier genre concepts well...

That sounds like original creative writing..what a quaintly old-fashioned concept  :o  Keep up the good work!
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Offline NicoleSmith

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1602 on: August 12, 2017, 04:30:14 PM »
That sounds like original creative writing..what a quaintly old-fashioned concept  :o  Keep up the good work!

Yes, I had no idea that "trope" was the target to aim for. Oops. :/

Offline P.T. Phronk

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1603 on: August 13, 2017, 07:40:27 AM »
As such, there is basically no "look alike" audience or author and they don't even fit in top-tier genre concepts well. (In other words, mashups. I sort of ended up writing quasi-literary-fiction in the paranormal space.) But they get good reviews, and some of the more heartfelt ones are enough for me to want to complete the series.

... and I have a well-paying day job that enables me to blow money on ads, so I can't resist the puzzle of trying to market them. And AMS has the same lure as a slot machine.

I'm right there with you! I have 2 books in a series that is some weird mashup of urban fantasy, horror, and satire. People like it when they read it, but finding its audience is tough, especially when it comes to writing a description and ad copy to grab their attention in a few seconds.

I haven't found anything that works yet, so this post is pretty useless other than saying I feel your pain.

The next thing I may try is using the specific tropes of ONE genre in the mashup, even if they make me cringe, so that at least readers of that genre can get an idea of some of what's in there, and click to learn more. Fingers crossed.

Online weigle1234

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1604 on: August 14, 2017, 10:18:07 PM »
What is the consensus these days on whether kdp paperbacks are counted towards sales on the ams dashboard?

If we are to believe the AMS folks (as directly stated by them in response to my recent inquiry) paperbacks ARE NOT included on the KDP Dashboard.  Some authors believe otherwise.  I have never seen any evidence of any of my paperback sales being included there for any of my 12 books (3 of which are eBooks only).

Someone please correct me if I am wrong, but there seems to be general confusion between the KDP Dashboard and the AMS Advertising Campaign chart - there is no such thing as an AMS Dashboard.

A good example of the difference with stats between the two.  For all my VapoKarb (99-Cent eBook only) test ads (4 Total), the KDP Dashboard shows 14 sales and 190 pages read.

The AMS Advertising Campaign chart shows, for the 4 ads:

Total Clicks - 624
Total Impressions - 1,470,171
CTR - 624 / 1,470,171 = .04%

That CTR has held steady for at least 8 weeks even though the Average Daily Impressions have varied from a low of ~7,00 to a high of ~22,000 - which leads me to conclude that the AMS chart stats are reliable.

However, the most puzzling stat is the fact that the AMS chart shows no Est. Total Sales (as in $0.00) whatsoever for any of the 4 ads.  Assuming that stat is correct, I have to conclude that the puny sales total of 14 eBooks (from the KDP Dashboard) had to have all been organic sales.  Sure makes me question the effectiveness of my VapoKarb test ads.

For the other 2 eBooks only ads, I am showing the same odd ad stats - i.e., the AMS chart shows Est. Total Sales of $0.00 for each of the 2 ads - even though the KDP Dashboard shows 11 sales of one eBook, and 39 sales for the other eBook.

For the remaining 9 books (offered as both eBooks and paperbacks) accurate stats are reflected - i.e., eBook sales on the KDP Dashboard reflect the same Est. Total Sales as those given in the AMS Advertising Campaign charts. 

Anybody else show the same strange results for eBook offers only stats vs. combined eBook, paperback offer stats?

Offline Accord64

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1605 on: August 15, 2017, 03:56:43 AM »
If we are to believe the AMS folks (as directly stated by them in response to my recent inquiry) paperbacks ARE NOT included on the KDP Dashboard.  Some authors believe otherwise.  I have never seen any evidence of any of my paperback sales being included there for any of my 12 books (3 of which are eBooks only).

I don't think the question was asking if paperback sales (in general) are counted, but specifically if KDP Paperbacks are counted.

I've seen my Createspace paperback sales reported on AMS campaigns. Many others have reported that they've seen their CS sales on AMS as well. However, since KDP paperbacks are a relatively new production avenue being pushed by Amazon, I don't think it's been confirmed that they've been linked to AMS reporting.
 
 

Offline Decon

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1606 on: August 15, 2017, 05:26:45 AM »
Am I missing something in the bidding process for placement?

I've just sent this off to Amazon Sponsored ads


I received an email to say that Lethal Trade was close to my daily limit which I don't wish to alter. This prompted me to go and look at my dashboard. What I found was that if I went to the sales page of Gone Girl, I found Lethal Trade was on the first page of the sponsored ads carousel. I checked other books and found this was also the case and that it explained the sudden increase in clicks.

At the same time, I knew that I had the same book title as a keyword title of Gone Girl.(Assin 4267311691) for my book, In Search of Jessica at a higher bid. but was not on the first page of Gone Girl, and when I scrolled through the sponsored ads, it was on page 12.

This is still the case, only today, Lethal trade is on the 2nd page with a bid of 51c and In Search of Jessica at a higher bid of 53 cents is still on page 12. There are other instances where this is the case, but I am quoting this example to keep it simple for you to look at.

Though both books are a match for the genre, In Search of Jessica, is nearer in tone, and that is why I bid higher.

Don't get me wrong, I am pleased that Lethal Trade is in a good position for visibility, but what I want to know is why In Search of Jessica is lower down the pecking order with a higher bid. It sort of defeats what is said about the bidding process if other books with more visibility are bidding less.

I would appreciate an explanation.
« Last Edit: August 15, 2017, 05:29:13 AM by Decon »


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Offline khotisarque

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1607 on: August 15, 2017, 07:25:40 AM »
Decon, there are at least two partial explanations for your experience.  First is the 'garbage' theory - the famed Algos are defective and producing erratic results.  The second is the 'Other Factors' which contaminate, perhaps dominate, the bidding process.  Amazon does not run a straightforward auction based solely on bids.  It is up-front about this.  It does run a process in which bidders are allowed to underwrite Amazon's opinion on which books merit exposure and publicity.

This process is vastly different both from established media advertizing norms and from established auction procedures.  Whether or not it is to the ultimate benefit of the advertizer, the buyer, or even Amazon is unclear; it might be.  Someone will write a PhD thesis on the experiment one day. 

My opinion FWIW is that it somewhat benefits me as an author.  I consider AMS as a fellow-traveler who is friendly enough, but not to be trusted too much.
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Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1608 on: August 15, 2017, 07:29:01 AM »
I've seen my Createspace paperback sales reported on AMS campaigns.

So have I.


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Offline Eugene Kirk

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1609 on: August 15, 2017, 08:47:11 AM »
Ok AMS Gurus, I have a question.

I have an ad running right now which has 200 keywords, mostly targeting Sci-fi authors. I think my ad copy is not bad. I tend to be getting a click every 200 impressions for the very targeted keywords.

I've only had 1 sale. This was on a very first click of a keyword. Since then I haven't gotten more then 3 clicks per keyword. Impressions still coming however, as I have my bid rates set at somewhat low rates as to not go broke.

I'm still getting sales however. But they dont 'appear' to be from the AMS ads. (note I'm not in KU so i'm not including borrows)

I have two possibilities for this.

1) The sales are coming from an instafreebie sample i have and people are reading the sample and then buying the book.

2) People are viewing the Ad, buying it, but the purchase is not showing up. (or perhaps they view but don't buy right away)

3) People are just finding it organically.


No 1 is probable, No. 3 less so, but my question is, is #2 even possible?

I'm not spending a whole lot of money on the add as the impressions are slow going, but it'd be nice to know if it's actually doing anything or not.

Thanks!

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Online weigle1234

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1610 on: August 15, 2017, 09:15:31 AM »
I don't think the question was asking if paperback sales (in general) are counted, but specifically if KDP Paperbacks are counted.

I've seen my Createspace paperback sales reported on AMS campaigns. Many others have reported that they've seen their CS sales on AMS as well. However, since KDP paperbacks are a relatively new production avenue being pushed by Amazon, I don't think it's been confirmed that they've been linked to AMS reporting.
 

All my paperbacks are KDP sales.  Thanks for your reply - that explains why I have never seen any evidence of paperback sales appearing on my AMS Advertising Campaigns chart.

My very first paperback sale was on April 28, 2016.  Obviously I am relatively new to Amazon, and have no idea when they started KDP paperback sales.

 I also have no idea how the pricing structure works for CS paperbacks, but here is what I am looking at with my KDP sales:

All my paperbacks are priced the same, $9.49.  Amazon also charges my buyers $3.99 shipping - so, they pay Amazon $13.48.

Amazon pays me $9.72 - so they gross $3.76.

For my $9.72 gross sale, I net $5.97.

Here is the breakdown of my direct costs:

Shipping - $2.63 (Media Mail)
Shipping Envelope - $0.12
Paperback - ~$1.00

Total - $3.75

Thus, for a typical order, my Net (Profit) is $5.97.  Which translate into 63% of sale price - not the 70% we usually consider as Breakeven.

Actually, my profit is slightly less than $5.97 (closer to $5.87) since I always include at least two Freebies with each order; a Special Report and copy of a DIY booklet that I sell for 99-Cents (something I always do in mail order - keeps buyers happy, and reduces refunds to practically zero).

Also, my paperbacks were all printed at least 3 years ago, when I was paying 99-Cents per copy.  I always had them printed, bound, and trimmed in lots of 5,000 to 6,000.  I shudder to think what I will be paying now, when my inventory is deleted (if ever, considering my puny sales volume).

I love multiple orders.  I can ship 3 paperbacks via Media Mail for the same price ($2.63) as a single paperback.  That is an extra $5.26 to take to the bank compared to single orders.  I have even had a few orders for 6  paperbacks.  I believe Media Mail cost for those is $3.12  - which pays an extra $12.66 compared to single orders ($2.63 x 6 - $3.12).

I sold these same paperbacks via mail order for $39.98.  Breakeven was a response rate of 1.3% (13 orders per 1,000 envelopes mailed).  Above 1.3%, my profit was slightly over $36 per sale, compared to ~$6 via Amazon.  My best selling book in mail order (also via Amazon) has sold well over 30,000 copies - not exactly a fortune, but a good start for just one book.  But, that is all history - mail order started a steady decline about 10 years ago.  Today, even the best mailing lists are basically garbage - not even worth the high risk of testing for a small operator such as myself.

As with any business, high volume sales is where the real (and most efficient) profits are made.  Obviously, some Amazon folks are making the BIG bucks - it sure is not me!

Offline Accord64

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1611 on: August 15, 2017, 11:53:23 AM »
Also, my paperbacks were all printed at least 3 years ago, when I was paying 99-Cents per copy.  I always had them printed, bound, and trimmed in lots of 5,000 to 6,000.  I shudder to think what I will be paying now, when my inventory is deleted (if ever, considering my puny sales volume).

I think you're in a whole different category. KDP and CS paperbacks are a POD (Print On Demand) service. Once someone purchases a paperback, let's say one of mine, Amazon will notify CS. CS will then print the book and send it to the customer, using whatever shipping method Amazon requests. I then get a royalty from CS based on a preset rate through the Amazon retail channel (CS has several retail channels, and royalties vary depending on which channel).

CS is owned by Amazon. KDP paperbacks is also owned Amazon, but it's a much newer offering. Many think it's going to eventually replace CS as Amazon consolidates their POD business.

Because you've already had your paperbacks printed, you're essentially the publisher and thus under a whole different type of agreement. I have no idea if AMS would pick up this type of sales activity, and I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't.

AMS picks up CS orders because it's all Amazon. The unanswered question is if the KDP printed product sales are hooked into the AMS reporting system. 

 
 

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1612 on: August 15, 2017, 01:15:35 PM »
I'm still getting sales however. But they dont 'appear' to be from the AMS ads. (note I'm not in KU so i'm not including borrows)

I have two possibilities for this.

1) The sales are coming from an instafreebie sample i have and people are reading the sample and then buying the book.

2) People are viewing the Ad, buying it, but the purchase is not showing up. (or perhaps they view but don't buy right away)

3) People are just finding it organically.


No 1 is probable, No. 3 less so, but my question is, is #2 even possible?


How long ago did the sales occur? There is some delay in reporting sales.  At least 3 days if not more.

At least for me, I attribute sales to AMS ads because I was flatlined before I started using them and don't have any other ads running that could be driving those sales.


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Online weigle1234

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1613 on: August 15, 2017, 01:29:37 PM »
I think you're in a whole different category. KDP and CS paperbacks are a POD (Print On Demand) service. Once someone purchases a paperback, let's say one of mine, Amazon will notify CS. CS will then print the book and send it to the customer, using whatever shipping method Amazon requests. I then get a royalty from CS based on a preset rate through the Amazon retail channel (CS has several retail channels, and royalties vary depending on which channel).

CS is owned by Amazon. KDP paperbacks is also owned Amazon, but it's a much newer offering. Many think it's going to eventually replace CS as Amazon consolidates their POD business.

Because you've already had your paperbacks printed, you're essentially the publisher and thus under a whole different type of agreement. I have no idea if AMS would pick up this type of sales activity, and I wouldn't be surprised if they didn't.

AMS picks up CS orders because it's all Amazon. The unanswered question is if the KDP printed product sales are hooked into the AMS reporting system. 

 

Things were a bit confusing when I first got involved with Amazon (mail order is about as uncomplicated as anything can possibly be).  I do remember finally deciding that being a self-publisher was the way to go.

In fact, I keep detailed records of each and every Amazon paperback purchase, a habit from my mail order days - I always know where and why each and every penny is spent.

When I first started selling on Amazon I had visions of grandeur - thought I would be selling books by the thousands.  My plan was to make follow-up mail order offers of other books to my Amazon customers. But my Amazon list is so small that it would be more trouble than it is worth.  Anyone who has been in the mail order business knows the best earnings, by far, come from in-house follow-up offers of other products - the profits can be insane.

Which reminds me, because I am a self-publisher, I can send emails to my customers (via Amazon, since they do not provide actual email addresses).  What I have in mind is to remind my customers that since I am involved in the Matchbook program for each book, they can download the equivalent eBook version for FREE (I set my Matchbook prices at $0.00).

My feeling is that very few folks are aware of the Matchbook program, much less how to take advantage of it,  Amazon gives very little detail about using Matchbook.  I contacted them for explicit details, and got their typically foggy response (what else is new?).  So, I hope I can clarify things with my customers - I am still trying to come up with the best way to compose a fathomable email.  Anyone with a brainstorm as to how best to do that - I would love to hear from you (even a sample copy of an email you would compose).

AMS definitely does not pick up any of my self-publisher sales - but, knowing Amazon, there is always a first time!

Thanks for your reply.

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1614 on: August 15, 2017, 01:51:38 PM »
A bit of good news.  Data in the Historical area of the KDP Sales Dashboard is now available for the month of July.  I have found that data to be very useful - especially since it is at least 15 days old - thus, likely to be accurate.

I was hoping it would pop up about mid-month, and so it has.  It breaks down monthly Sales data and Pages Read (KU/KOLL) for each eBook - into 4 categories:

- Life to Date
- Year to Date
- Last 12 Months
- Last Year

Get yours while it's hot - the price is right!

Offline Eugene Kirk

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1615 on: August 15, 2017, 02:15:38 PM »
How long ago did the sales occur? There is some delay in reporting sales.  At least 3 days if not more.

At least for me, I attribute sales to AMS ads because I was flatlined before I started using them and don't have any other ads running that could be driving those sales.

It's been at least 3 days now. Still no sales showing up on the AMS report but I have gotten more sales.

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Online weigle1234

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1616 on: August 15, 2017, 03:26:03 PM »
In line with my last posting, here is the blurb I just started adding to my typical cover letter which letter has always been included with each paperback order:

"P.S.  Dont forget to download your FREE Kindle eBook - (For every Paperback purchased from Kustom Power you are qualified to receive the equivalent eBook copy Absolutely Free!)

Check it out on the Product Page: "Matchbook Price: $0.00" - That's $0.00
.......... as in FREE!

Just Click on the eBook order window NOW - your Free eBook Copy will be downloaded immediately - It's easy!"

Anywho, I put a lot of time and thought into this, but still feel it is somewhat clumsy (maybe a whole lot clumsy).  Any ideas, or edits, will be appreciated.

I intend to start emailing the equivalent blurb to all my customers via Amazon - with hope, of course, that not only will they take advantage of my Matchbook offers - but will also feel that I'm the most thoughtful guy on the plant, and may even consider sending more orders my way.

Been a long day as usual - and also, as usual, time to meet friends to quaff a beer, or two, in hope of coming up with a brainstorm, or two.

Happy writing, and selling!

Offline novelist11

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1617 on: August 16, 2017, 10:44:38 AM »
Is it just me or has anyone else noticed that cpc's are going up? I'm in mystery I used to be able to only set my cpc to 20 cents now I don't even get a bite if I set it to 25 cents. Maybe it's all these people getting that $100 in free clicks that amazon is still running. I wish I would have gotten it oh well.

Offline Accord64

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1618 on: August 16, 2017, 01:45:59 PM »
Is it just me or has anyone else noticed that cpc's are going up? I'm in mystery I used to be able to only set my cpc to 20 cents now I don't even get a bite if I set it to 25 cents. Maybe it's all these people getting that $100 in free clicks that amazon is still running. I wish I would have gotten it oh well.

I missed out the on $100 in free clicks, too.   ::)

I have a mystery novel that I've run a few campaigns for.  Every campaign had the same pattern (regardless of CPC) - lots of impressions/clicks and a few sales in the first 48 hours, and then the whole thing falls off a cliff. Mystery seems to be a highly competitive genre. I haven't been able to gauge nearly as well as the other genres I advertise in.
 

Offline Rising Sun

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1619 on: August 16, 2017, 07:45:51 PM »
So have I.

I have also seen our books printed at both CreateSpace and Lightning Source (Ingrahm) and sold through third party vendors, credited as sales due to AMS ads.  Some months ago our title movement through Ingrahm to other store vendors on Amazon made it also clear that the ads were cross-selling titles. On the AMS reports a sale is ..."A sale is attributed to a campaign whenever a shopper that clicked on an ad purchases your brands products at Amazon. The Total Sales metric is the total dollar value of your brands products sold to shoppers within 14 days of them clicking on your ad." A "Brand" is a big word relating to all the goods linked to you, book titles, new or used, t-shirts, etc. and it pertains to all stores on Amazon...ie KDP, Amazon and all the bunches of booksellers of new and used books. Sales attributed to an ad could be for another of your titles sold at a used or discounted book store on Amazon. 


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Offline Rising Sun

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1620 on: August 16, 2017, 07:56:10 PM »
Things were a bit confusing when I first got involved with Amazon (mail order is about as uncomplicated as anything can possibly be).  I do remember finally deciding that being a self-publisher was the way to go.

In fact, I keep detailed records of each and every Amazon paperback purchase, a habit from my mail order days - I always know where and why each and every penny is spent.

When I first started selling on Amazon I had visions of grandeur - thought I would be selling books by the thousands.  My plan was to make follow-up mail order offers of other books to my Amazon customers. But my Amazon list is so small that it would be more trouble than it is worth.  Anyone who has been in the mail order business knows the best earnings, by far, come from in-house follow-up offers of other products - the profits can be insane.

Which reminds me, because I am a self-publisher, I can send emails to my customers (via Amazon, since they do not provide actual email addresses).  What I have in mind is to remind my customers that since I am involved in the Matchbook program for each book, they can download the equivalent eBook version for FREE (I set my Matchbook prices at $0.00).

My feeling is that very few folks are aware of the Matchbook program, much less how to take advantage of it,  Amazon gives very little detail about using Matchbook.  I contacted them for explicit details, and got their typically foggy response (what else is new?).  So, I hope I can clarify things with my customers - I am still trying to come up with the best way to compose a fathomable email.  Anyone with a brainstorm as to how best to do that - I would love to hear from you (even a sample copy of an email you would compose).

AMS definitely does not pick up any of my self-publisher sales - but, knowing Amazon, there is always a first time!

Thanks for your reply.

I am very intrigued by your experiments and have started thinking of this whole process of AMS ads as a derivation of direct mail.
Only it is a whole lot cheaper... and incurs cost only if the sales message is opened and viewed.

I have noticed that some of your book descriptions are written in a classic direct mail story-telling format while other deccriptions are written more in a headline grabber format. have you seen any difference in close rates on these?

Have you cross-sold your titles as keywords?

As you seem to be a publisher...Are you in the Advantahge program or are you seen as Amezon as a store and if so...Can you direct advertise print books?

Thanks mucho


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Offline Rising Sun

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1621 on: August 16, 2017, 08:40:01 PM »
For the last two weeks I have been experimenting with kick re-starting some stalled sponsored keyword ads by raising bid prices, pausing unproductive keywords and adding new higher priced keywords. The ads seemed to respond in about 24 hours to 2 days. I monitored the accounts two or more times per day at set times. Seemed to work great! Impressions up 30-40%, clicks up 50%, spend up, cost per click up, sales not up as much (both estimated and royalty paid sales) but still all profitable even though the slaes per click were down and the price per click was up
I modified about 20% of the ads running for each of our 5 titles, over 50 ads were modified, making changes or additions to at least 15% of the keywords in each ad.
 
AND... I was going to have a bunch of conclusions ready soonest until today i realized that daily analysis of clicks and spend is barely even indicative of the real situation. In this last week the weekly summary of total clicks/spend is fully 30% lower than the total of the daily calculated click/spends added together. It is a big difference, probably related to difficulties in accounting and in correcting for bot activity...Which means I have to do a whole lot of different analysis to make any conclusions sufficient to test further.  Maybe in another week


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Online weigle1234

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1622 on: August 17, 2017, 11:35:36 AM »

I have noticed that some of your book descriptions are written in a classic direct mail story-telling format while other deccriptions are written more in a headline grabber format. have you seen any difference in close rates on these?

Have you cross-sold your titles as keywords?

As you seem to be a publisher...Are you in the Advantahge program or are you seen as Amezon as a store and if so...Can you direct advertise print books?

Thanks mucho

The advertising tactics that worked best for me in mail order correlate with the same tactics that work with Amazon - which is what I expected from the very start with Amazon.  All advertising is based on emotional response; whether one is selling hamburgers or airplanes, the same emotional approaches are always the most effective.

A good example, IMHO, is old-time newspaper ads.  I am a western history buff, and amateur collector.  I have a small collection of original copies of the Tombstone Epitaph (published since 1879 - beginning in Tombstone, AZ - and now by the University of AZ).  The Huntington, CA library had hundreds of originals, and decided to convert them to digital about 15 years ago.  A friend owns a museum in Tombstone and bought most (if not all) of those and I, in turn, bought about a dozen from him.

I have spent a lot of time studying the Epitaph ads.  All those ads are at least 130 years old.  The fascinating thing, at least to me, is the similarities to present-day newspaper ads.  The use of hard-hitting bold headlines, even smaller bold sub-headlines, emotional appeals (money, sex, smartest-guy-on-the-block, etc.) - all of it is, basically, a rehash of the same old B.S. - just presented in fancier formats (especially color) today.

My major complaint with AMS ad blurb rules is their restriction on caps and unconventional characters.  Those are the things that capture reader attention (if not used to extreme).  In short, hype works.  IMO, AMS should judge ad blurbs on their individual merits.

Concerning my Headline Grabber Format with some descriptions, that definitely ties in with my mail order approach.  All my best selling books, and physical products (fuel savers, vaporizers, oil & gas additives), border on being Gimmicky (some a whole lot Gimmicky).  Folk love Gimmicks, and lots of advertising hype does a great job of selling them.  One never has to be concerned with going to extremes when it comes to Dumbing-Down gimmicky ads - often the craziest ads work the most effectively.

I never use any ad media outside of Amazon - guess I am too lazy - at least for now, Amazon seems to be the best bang for the buck.   Several years ago I cooked up an Internet double-opt-in blog offering a free report on gasoline saving tips (for high MPGs) - in hope of capturing email addresses.  With the same visions of grandeur I once had for Amazon, I even set up an account with MailChimp to forward the report to my thousands of captured addresses.  If I remember correctly, after 3 or 4 months I had captured a grand total of something like 3 or 4 email addresses, along with lots of scathing complaints about how I was trying to peddle Gimmicks (which I was).  As I mentioned in previous posts, Internet folks are fairly sophisticated, while mail order folks, in general, are not exactly Mensa candidates.

Apparently Amazon provides a means for direct advertising of print books.  I intend to investigate that; from what I gather via Amazon gibberish, it is handled by a separate division.  Looks like I will have to do some initial investigating via Google, and then get back with Amazon to get things rolling.

I am not sure what you mean by Cross-Sold Titles as keywords.  I never used titles as keywords, although I did a few tests with author names - none of which attracted but a few Clicks.

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1623 on: August 17, 2017, 01:57:31 PM »
Strange things happen at times.  Just after posting to this forum I went downstairs to throw on some coffee.  Sue had placed an order envelope on my recliner - I recognized it as being from an in-house mailing list customer to whom I had not made any mailings for at least 2 years.  Here is the direct copy of his enclosed note:

Please send me a copy of your up to date info on the Billion Dollar Engine so I can order it.

My first thought was to advise him to go to Amazon.com, where he could buy the same manual for $9.49 (plus $3.99 shipping), instead of $39.98 from me via mail order.  But I soon realized that Amazon lists my Billion Dollar Engine manual as Currently Unavailable.

Being that I am Mr. Wonderful (Sues words), I am just now mailing him a freebie Billion Dollar Engine manual.

Amazon made me take the Billion Dollar Engine manual off market because of possible copyright problems.  The manual contains copies of various newspaper articles pertaining to their subject (the Pogue so-called 200 MPG carburetor).  I have written permission from the newspapers to reproduce their articles - but, they are hidden somewhere in my archives.  Some fine day I will resurrect them in hopes of getting that manual back on Amazon.

In my last post, I addressed my opinion that Gimmicky things sell.  The Billion Dollar Engine manual was the Granddaddy of my Gimmicky stuff in mail order.  Typically, my mail order responses go flat after about the third mailing of the same product to previous customers of different products.  But the Billion Dollar Engine was the exception.  It never came close to being my best seller, but it seemed I could make infinite offers to my customer list, and the goofy thing would always turn a few bucks.

As I often mention, IMHO, when it comes to advertising, just about anything goes (especially Goofy).  You never know what will, or will not, sell unless you test it.

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #1624 on: August 17, 2017, 07:56:20 PM »
I am not sure what you mean by Cross-Sold Titles as keywords.  I never used titles as keywords, although I did a few tests with author names - none of which attracted but a few Clicks.

I use titles of other books as keywords... extensively. They are east to find on Amazon best seller lists, by target genre and sub-genre, by author, by subject, also-boughts and even in sponsored ads that Amazon shows in target book/genres. etc.

I also target my partners author page and all her titles to make a cross-sell possible. ...If the prospect likes or is intrigued by one of her books they might like another. The algo will give some preference to the other ads as the prospect customer has already clicked on a related ad.

Product ads have not been as productive for me as sponsored ads but I do use them to cross-sell my partners books on her own titles. It is not super effective as some folks bid very high and the keyword algorithm is broad so that ads on one of her titles like Dandelion Insurrection will apply to some extent to her book and to other books about dandelions and insurrections in general...so we can end up getting outbid on her own books or risk going too broad and getting a high cost low return ad.

But my sense is that the cross sell ads do help create a follow through sale. 


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