Author Topic: AMS Ads Learning  (Read 123278 times)  

Offline Gregg Bell

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #175 on: March 14, 2017, 01:11:31 PM »
I don't know what to say. All I know is that I don't chase book page positions (the  carousel) as some call it. Like others have said, every time someone clicks on a book that has ads, it's a new bidding process with the algos. Some pull out as they set up new campaigns, or just get rotated out, and so I must sneak in there at times. The thing is, it took 3 months for me to get any sort of results with the same campaign and I've just sort of stuck with my bids since then, not wanting to play the bidding war. I do think that reading posts over the last 3 months, many expect too much too soon and get hurt by keep stopping campaigns that haven't had a chance to get going and devolop data at Amazon's end and then they've started new ones which doesn't give them a chance to produce, but that helps me.

Also with people constantly looking at their results and cancelling none performing keywords, as opposed to campaigns, on ones where I have bid low, then it ups my chances of a click and a sale by staying constant and those make up for my higher bids.

As for not getting impressions, I listed all Erik Von Danikan's books and similar for The Killers Amongst Us: Chimera Dawn Chronicles, my lowest impression and sales book in AMS. The reason was that my story  is in line with his theory of Ancient God's as aliens, especially Egyptian god's,though his stories are more textbooks. Think X-files for mine;/ mystery crime, so I struggle to slot it into an exact category of books for keywords as it crosses genre, hence I don't have many keywords that are an exact match. I thought I'd do well with his books, but I paused them all when I realized I wasn't getting one impression on them. Obviously, your meta data has to have a match or AMS will ignore your keyword in some instance, though how cook books get on my pages I'll never know, unless they are keyord stuffing out of genre at upload for that purpose. Sometimes it can happen if you are an exact match, but you meta data differs from the choosen book, so you get no impressions.

It really is all a mystery.

Awesome, Decon. In my rush for results I'm ready to bail on a campaign on a daily basis. You have brought sanity back into my approach. Thanks very much!

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Offline Gregg Bell

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #176 on: March 14, 2017, 01:15:00 PM »
Yes to staying the course. I think it took me nearly two months to decide to up the daily spend on one of my ads. It was doing okay, but nothing spectacular. Then I upped the spend and upped it again, and the book is moving a lot faster, plus it's selling the second book in the series and there is a visibly higher number of page reads that more than compensates for the higher ad cost. The book now ranks at 24k, much more visible in the Amazon store--if you believe that anything is visible at all beyond the first 100 in a genre, that is.

Interestingly, when my daily spend limit was $1 or $2, it never got used up. Since I raised it to a whopping $9, the money does sometimes get spent. When that happens I push it up a dollar (big spender!).



You're really at $9/day? Doesn't that get crazy expensive fast? (I felt like I blinked at $2/day and I spent $70.)

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Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #177 on: March 14, 2017, 03:01:08 PM »
You're really at $9/day? Doesn't that get crazy expensive fast? (I felt like I blinked at $2/day and I spent $70.)

I've had ads as high as $25 a day.  They rarely if ever spend the full ad amount in my experience.  I only ever saw mine max out around the $5 mark and then only a couple days here or there, not consistently.


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Offline Harald

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #178 on: March 14, 2017, 05:01:38 PM »
Okay, Philip. Ten days it is. Your average daily click rate is way over mine and I only raised my limit to $5. I'll go raise it to $10 right now. In the interests of science, of course.

Very cool, you guys. I won't be joining the experiment, but I'll add an "index" note at thread top to come to this Page 7 to start on "Scaling Up By Increasing Daily Budget."
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 05:07:18 PM by Harald »
   
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Offline The Bass Bagwhan

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #179 on: March 14, 2017, 05:19:13 PM »
A couple of observations coming from this thread.

Considering that a FB campaign or even services like Freebooksy can cost $30-50 per month that can achieve nothing, AMS strikes me as a comparatively cheap form of experimenting with promotions. Sure, you might see your AMS budget as somehow wasted when you don't get sales, but you're getting solid data as to why.

And since many authors seem to be getting good AMS results from advertising well-priced books, I wonder if a good AMS campaign can remove the (perceived) need for a 0.99 cent price point? If an advert works well, will it matter if your book is priced 0.99 or 2.99?
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Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #180 on: March 14, 2017, 05:29:48 PM »
A couple of observations coming from this thread.

Considering that a FB campaign or even services like Freebooksy can cost $30-50 per month that can achieve nothing, AMS strikes me as a comparatively cheap form of experimenting with promotions. Sure, you might see your AMS budget as somehow wasted when you don't get sales, but you're getting solid data as to why.

And since many authors seem to be getting good AMS results from advertising well-priced books, I wonder if a good AMS campaign can remove the (perceived) need for a 0.99 cent price point? If an advert works well, will it matter if your book is priced 0.99 or 2.99?

I think I can answer that. I'm running an ad (the one I just increased to a daily spend of $10 from $3) for my most popular series. I'm advertising the first book at 99c. The following novellas (3) were priced at $2.99. No sales. I dropped the price of those three books to 99c. I had 21 sales of book 2 from 2/25 to 3/3. Then I raised the price to $1.49. Two sales on 3/4 and no sell-thrus since then. I'm back down to 99c as of today. At this point, I'll just take what I can get. YMMV



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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #181 on: March 14, 2017, 05:45:52 PM »
I have only one ad at $9 a day. It sells the most (except for my nonfiction book) and it feeds readers to the other books, IMO. All the other ads are at $2 or $3 a day. Most are at $2 a day, and none of them run out.

I'm about to run an experiment and lower it to $8 a day, while upping another one to $6 a day. The one that's going up has gotten a lot of impressions but not many clicks and even fewer sales, so perhaps the keywords are not on target--or the cover does not appeal, or the blurb, or whatever. Before I change them, though, I want to see if money talks. I know this has been tried before, but I'm willing to give it a short run just on spend alone. The most I'll waste is $21 in the week I'll run it at that limit. I think it's worth trying.

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #182 on: March 14, 2017, 05:58:02 PM »
All of my romances and women's fiction are competing with books at 99 cents. I'm not going there. I think position is more important than price with these ads at first. I have to let people know the books exist. Once the books catch readers' attention, then, if they're interested, they look at the price. Since my romances are the usual $2.99, if price is a barrier, they can read the books in KU instead, which is free. I frankly do not want to attract a large readership of people who only are willing to pay 99 cents for a 50k novel.

The thing is, I've bought a lot of 99-cent novels from Amazon and even more that were free, and I haven't read more than a few of them. I'm much more likely to read a book I pay more for. And as an author, I want readers to commit to reading my stories, not grab them up because they're super cheap and then ignore them. 

 

Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #183 on: March 14, 2017, 06:29:18 PM »
My fantasy books I've been advertising are at $6.99 and until today weren't in KU for the last couple months so were making money without KU borrows to boost them.  My non-fiction titles are generally at $4.99 and not in KU.  My romance novel was at $4.99 and not in KU and had 12 sales on 224 clicks for the most recent ad I ran on it. But I struggle to get my romance ads to run at the prices I'm willing to pay.


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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #184 on: March 14, 2017, 07:35:24 PM »
I've been running campaigns since Feb 3, have moved about 78 books (all at $3.98 except five paperbacks between $10 and $13). Ads have paid for themselves and left me with about $1.28 in profit per book. I have experimented with the campaigns up, down, and inside out, and concluded... I don't have a clue. Nothing I've tried in altering these campaigns seems to make any discernible and reproduce-able impact on the sale results.
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 07:49:06 PM by loraininflorida »

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #185 on: March 14, 2017, 07:41:17 PM »
My sales dashboard shows a definite upward pattern, both KU reads and sales. It's not big money, and after I subtract the AMS ad costs, it's even less, but it is much more visibility and psychologically it is validating: The books are selling better because I am advertising them in the right venue. Other ads I've purchased in my indie career have mostly yielded either a mere dollar or two in profit, or, more typically, a loss. 


Offline Philip Gibson

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #186 on: March 14, 2017, 08:28:34 PM »
A couple of observations coming from this thread.

Considering that a FB campaign or even services like Freebooksy can cost $30-50 per month that can achieve nothing, AMS strikes me as a comparatively cheap form of experimenting with promotions. Sure, you might see your AMS budget as somehow wasted when you don't get sales, but you're getting solid data as to why.

And since many authors seem to be getting good AMS results from advertising well-priced books, I wonder if a good AMS campaign can remove the (perceived) need for a 0.99 cent price point? If an advert works well, will it matter if your book is priced 0.99 or 2.99?

Since starting with AMS ads late last year, I no longer even consider using any of the paid promo sites.  Over the past 3 years, I've used all of them (except Bookbub) multiple times and have probably spent close to $2,000 in that time.  All I've ever achieved is short term spikes in sales of discounted books and equally short term boosts in rankings.  Nothing sustainable, and sustainable sales and income is what I am seeking.  Isn't that the case for most of us?

With AMS ads, I advertise my books on an ongoing, daily basis at full price and make a consistent, if small, profit of a few hundred dollars each month.  A substantial part of that is sales of paperback books at full price - something that never happened with paid promos. And that's without really knowing what I'm doing.  As I learn more and add more books to my catalogue and to AMS ads, I am hopeful that I can achieve at least my modest goal of generating a regular monthly income (profit) of $1,000 or so by the end of this year.

Philip
« Last Edit: March 14, 2017, 08:37:44 PM by Philip Gibson »

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Offline Decon

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #187 on: March 15, 2017, 06:18:21 AM »
Since starting with AMS ads late last year, I no longer even consider using any of the paid promo sites.  Over the past 3 years, I've used all of them (except Bookbub) multiple times and have probably spent close to $2,000 in that time.  All I've ever achieved is short term spikes in sales of discounted books and equally short term boosts in rankings.  Nothing sustainable, and sustainable sales and income is what I am seeking.  Isn't that the case for most of us?

With AMS ads, I advertise my books on an ongoing, daily basis at full price and make a consistent, if small, profit of a few hundred dollars each month.  A substantial part of that is sales of paperback books at full price - something that never happened with paid promos. And that's without really knowing what I'm doing.  As I learn more and add more books to my catalogue and to AMS ads, I am hopeful that I can achieve at least my modest goal of generating a regular monthly income (profit) of $1,000 or so by the end of this year.

Philip

Sounds like a plan to me. I've had similar results and the best December I have ever had, but with a combo of AMS and promo sites. I think December spoiled me with profit of $600 after all ad and promo costs and I was expecting bigger things for 2017. It was like all my books were firing on all four cylinders.

Alas two and a half months on without promos and AMS hasn't cut it on it's own for me, so I've started some more promos to suppliment AMS.

Still, considering I did a post on here around 2 years ago when I was ready to hang up my keyboard after only making $5 for December, I'd say AMS has been fantastic,  even if it only produces a small profit.

Talking about strategy. I have two books planned for publication this year and both will be $4.99 from the off on AMS with higher bids. I may even try one of them at $6.99 and only use keywords of trad-published titles as a trial. I'd rather do that than experiment with what I have now. Saying that, I'll still use up as many free days to get downloads at publication as I can because I'll need reviews at that price and I only allow organic reviews having given up on ARCs. I'll alkso be setting a budget I can afford to lose with AMS to try and get momentum.
« Last Edit: March 15, 2017, 06:21:18 AM by Decon »


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Offline Gregg Bell

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #188 on: March 15, 2017, 03:12:09 PM »
All right, I'm starting to get some impressions and clicks but no sales. So just hold tight for a while or this a reason for concern? (My campaigns are running 11, 5, 5, 3 and 3 days respectively.) (I wish I had Decon's patience!)

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Offline Cassie Leigh

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #189 on: March 15, 2017, 04:19:48 PM »
What are your numbers?  How many clicks does each ad have?  Have you noticed additional sales above your baseline since you started running the ads even if the AMS report isn't showing them yet?


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Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #190 on: March 15, 2017, 04:34:34 PM »
All right, I'm starting to get some impressions and clicks but no sales. So just hold tight for a while or this a reason for concern? (My campaigns are running 11, 5, 5, 3 and 3 days respectively.) (I wish I had Decon's patience!)

My goodness, that's no time at all. I'm making a small profit, but it took at least a month to get that far.

What are your numbers?  How many clicks does each ad have?  Have you noticed additional sales above your baseline since you started running the ads even if the AMS report isn't showing them yet?

Cassie's right. Don't look at your AMS dashboard for sales. Look at your KDP dashboard. AMS says it can take up to three days to register sales. I just had several sales show up after much longer than that.


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Offline Philip Gibson

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #191 on: March 15, 2017, 06:21:35 PM »
All right, I'm starting to get some impressions and clicks but no sales. So just hold tight for a while or this a reason for concern? (My campaigns are running 11, 5, 5, 3 and 3 days respectively.) (I wish I had Decon's patience!)
How many clicks does your longest running campaign have?  Depending on what you pay per click, I'd say you only need become concerned if:

1. you have over 40 clicks with no sales showing up in your KDP dashboard.

2. it takes more than 2,000 impressions to produce a single click.

Philip

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Offline Harald

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #192 on: March 15, 2017, 10:51:52 PM »
All right, I'm starting to get some impressions and clicks but no sales. So just hold tight for a while or this a reason for concern? (My campaigns are running 11, 5, 5, 3 and 3 days respectively.) (I wish I had Decon's patience!)

Without knowing more of your specifics, I'd hold tight on the 3-5-day campaigns and let them settle in more (minimum 7 full days). I'm surprised that an 11-day campaign doesn't have at least one sale, unless there is something preventing it (the blurb, the book price, the competitiveness of the genre, et al.). Just as a comparison, on my three campaigns, I made my first sale on Days 3 & 4. But I have inexpensive books in a relatively small genre. A lot of factors at play.
   
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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #193 on: March 16, 2017, 08:45:05 AM »
My sales dashboard shows a definite upward pattern, both KU reads and sales. It's not big money, and after I subtract the AMS ad costs, it's even less, but it is much more visibility and psychologically it is validating: The books are selling better because I am advertising them in the right venue. Other ads I've purchased in my indie career have mostly yielded either a mere dollar or two in profit, or, more typically, a loss.

That's awesome. I usually see a lot of KU page reads with ads myself, but I don't always make money. I guess visibility is worth it, though.

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #194 on: March 16, 2017, 12:13:15 PM »
Did y'all get the survey from Amazon?

Please, please, please, on that last question ask them to make historical reporting available. I have several campaigns that have been running for months, and figuring out what the effectiveness is NOW is a freaking PIA. Basically, you have to keep downloading the data and then manually compare it.


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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #195 on: March 16, 2017, 12:34:23 PM »
Under the keywords, what does it mean when a keyword has an actual zero under impressions rather than a dash? I've got several of those in an ad I just started this morning, and I noticed that the last time I'd looked at the keyword data before now, all of those previously had 1 impression listed for them, but now they've been zeroed.

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Offline Gertie Kindle 'a/k/a Margaret Lake'

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #196 on: March 16, 2017, 12:44:23 PM »
Did y'all get the survey from Amazon?

Please, please, please, on that last question ask them to make historical reporting available. I have several campaigns that have been running for months, and figuring out what the effectiveness is NOW is a freaking PIA. Basically, you have to keep downloading the data and then manually compare it.

Sorry, I already filled it out. I didn't think to ask for historical data probably because I've only been at this since January. I did ask for more up to date reporting and column for borrows.


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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #197 on: March 16, 2017, 01:01:27 PM »
I checked here first but no one had posted about it yet. Sorry. You're correct that history would be very valuable.

I did ask for a lot of things, including separating out the print sales from the ebooks, telling us whether upping the daily spend budget results in more sales, telling us why and when they slow or stop showing our ads and what we can do to make them start up again. A bunch of stuff we're all trying to figure out blind. I emphasized that I would spend many more ad dollars if I knew what they produced. Hint, hint, Amazon.   

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #198 on: March 16, 2017, 01:54:05 PM »
I checked here first but no one had posted about it yet. Sorry. You're correct that history would be very valuable.

I did ask for a lot of things, including separating out the print sales from the ebooks, telling us whether upping the daily spend budget results in more sales, telling us why and when they slow or stop showing our ads and what we can do to make them start up again. A bunch of stuff we're all trying to figure out blind. I emphasized that I would spend many more ad dollars if I knew what they produced. Hint, hint, Amazon.

Good suggestions.


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Offline Marian

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Re: AMS Ads Learning
« Reply #199 on: March 16, 2017, 02:16:22 PM »
I checked here first but no one had posted about it yet. Sorry. You're correct that history would be very valuable.

I did ask for a lot of things, including separating out the print sales from the ebooks, telling us whether upping the daily spend budget results in more sales, telling us why and when they slow or stop showing our ads and what we can do to make them start up again. A bunch of stuff we're all trying to figure out blind. I emphasized that I would spend many more ad dollars if I knew what they produced. Hint, hint, Amazon.   

I didn't get a survey, but if I do I'll echo what you said.