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Hi. I'm about to try and relaunch my whole approach to online advertising, so I've been researching what people do. It seems the three most favored sites for online ads for ebooks are Amazon, Facebook, and Bookbub.

But I've noticed a split - about half of people use nothing but Amazon AMS ads, and the other half of writers here seem to spread across Amazon, Facebook and Bookbub.

Does this seem like an accurate representation of where people are at?

I've noticed that in previous years, Facebook ads seemed to be predominant over Amazon ads, which surprised me. I guess that situation reversed at some point?

Let me know if I'm on the wrong track here. I'm thinking of using Amazon, Facebook and Bookbub ads, I'm just wondering about what kind of ratio to split my funds in.

All your advice is greatly appreciated.
 

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you are looking from the supplier side. You need to be looking at it from the buyer side.
A diy maker / quilter is rather to be found on pinterest and fb than reddit. A beauty person is rather found on youtube. A person interested in science fiction can also be found on pinterest - where they have boards about their favorite images as well as memes.

However a journalist is less likely to be on pinterest (except for work) - they prefer words over pictures. Those are initial buyer side interest.

Next to that it is about buying intent. When you are watching youtube videos, how interested are you in buying anything promoted to you? Most people are there for entertainment / watching - not for buying.
On Facebook however they may be in their favorite science fiction group daily - and when an add for something 'along the lines I am interested in' comes along, they will click.

This is where interest comes in. You are scifi - meaning you can target very well people on fb with their interest. You could target on Instagram but ask yourself: is your audience likely male and if so, how likely are they to look daily at streams of only pictures. I would assume not very much so facebook.

What is your scifi like? Find similar tv shows along that vine and target the followers of that page (it is an option on fb). you can put that in their view - but you cannot make them buy. This is where funnel comes in - with f.e. a free starter.

Ask yourself then who is around on Amazon. People are there to actually buy books - but there is tons of competition. In your case it is a KU read - I might try that out. I am not into cyberpunk but I like space opera.
This is again something you can target on AMS - if you identify the type of person who likes your book and what else they like, you can target that other book.

What gets in most authors ways is blinders and ego. Blinders - they ask the wrong question like you did and ego - when you talk to them about advertising being a numbers game and the results will not be 100% buys, not even 10% they tend to get miffed because they dont like the rejection. And thus never put enough work into the funnel. it is a numbers game.

Calculate your roi, calculate the arbitrage you can spend and try out a few options with enough money to get you good data. one time 10$ is not that.
note: your description has on it ("<p") and you might change your EU price to 2,99 instead of 2,69 - it will not do much for you but 2.99 is the normal price.
 

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While I'm no marketing guy, what I did mirrors that excellent points Nicole made.

99% of my ad-spend is FB. And over time, experimentally (before I paid attention to the kind of advise Nicole gave here), I've realized that I haven't been able to make Amazon AMS work for me with the margins and CTR I wanted. Promos etc. are good for one-time spikes and I have a personal reservation in doing too many of those with low price promos. So FB worked best because my reader group is a little older, therefore more engaged in FB, and I can target specifically (country, age, gender, interests) and this has worked out nicely.

I have two ads on FB, and one of them running for over a year now, no changes, and with no intention to change anytime soon. The advantage also is that with FB ads you get a nice social proof built over time (people liking the ad, leaving comments, short reviews) which makes it more and more compelling to new viewers of the ad, so there's the benefit of persistent data of engagement.

Finally, re: profit - I'm very focused on making sure I actually make a profit, however modest, and setting bid caps on FB has helped me control my costs.

I am yet to try Bookbug, so no comments on that.

HTH
 

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Nicole Simon said:
you are looking from the supplier side. You need to be looking at it from the buyer side.
A diy maker / quilter is rather to be found on pinterest and fb than reddit. A beauty person is rather found on youtube. A person interested in science fiction can also be found on pinterest - where they have boards about their favorite images as well as memes.

However a journalist is less likely to be on pinterest (except for work) - they prefer words over pictures. Those are initial buyer side interest.

Next to that it is about buying intent. When you are watching youtube videos, how interested are you in buying anything promoted to you? Most people are there for entertainment / watching - not for buying.
On Facebook however they may be in their favorite science fiction group daily - and when an add for something 'along the lines I am interested in' comes along, they will click.

This is where interest comes in. You are scifi - meaning you can target very well people on fb with their interest. You could target on Instagram but ask yourself: is your audience likely male and if so, how likely are they to look daily at streams of only pictures. I would assume not very much so facebook.

What is your scifi like? Find similar tv shows along that vine and target the followers of that page (it is an option on fb). you can put that in their view - but you cannot make them buy. This is where funnel comes in - with f.e. a free starter.

Ask yourself then who is around on Amazon. People are there to actually buy books - but there is tons of competition. In your case it is a KU read - I might try that out. I am not into cyberpunk but I like space opera.
This is again something you can target on AMS - if you identify the type of person who likes your book and what else they like, you can target that other book.

What gets in most authors ways is blinders and ego. Blinders - they ask the wrong question like you did and ego - when you talk to them about advertising being a numbers game and the results will not be 100% buys, not even 10% they tend to get miffed because they dont like the rejection. And thus never put enough work into the funnel. it is a numbers game.

Calculate your roi, calculate the arbitrage you can spend and try out a few options with enough money to get you good data. one time 10$ is not that.
note: your description has on it ("<p") and you might change your EU price to 2,99 instead of 2,69 - it will not do much for you but 2.99 is the normal price.
I have the same problem here that I do when people write computer-related content - they use all sorts of abbreviations and buzz words, so by the end of it my head is spinning, and I'm none the wiser.

So could we have a glossary, please?

Diy maker
quilter
f.e.
AMS
Funnel
roi
arbitrage
<p

Many thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Awesome responses guys, you've really given me a lot to digest. Thank you. I'll probably keep reading it over today.

I think I appreciate your main point - these kind of decisions cannot be made ahead of time, I'm just going to have to try different platforms, and study which gets what kind of response - because it's going to be so unique to my audience. I actually suspect that a lot of my target demographic are moving away from Facebook... but to what? I'm really not sure. Not to get political, but I've noticed a lot of people under 30 express real hostility toward the Zuckerberg media empire over the past year or two. It's past its prime. Anyway.

I also get what you mean that the world of advertising is brutal in terms of success rate, and that puts a lot of authors off. That's why I'm trying to once again throw myself into it and research it fully... but I guess gathering the data is a lengthy process, that can't be shortcut. I'll settle in for the long haul, and prepare to be persistent.

Nicole, you're a real hero for bothering to read my product description that accurately ! I genuinely never noticed that my price in foreign currencies was appearing as an odd number. Kinda obvious now I think about it. I'm going to put the first book down to 0.99 anyway for a few months...

Alondo said:
So could we have a glossary, please?

Diy maker
quilter
f.e.
AMS
Funnel
roi
arbitrage
<p
I'll help how I can with these haha

Diy maker / quilter - These are literal quilt makers, i.e. a person who sells blankets online, for example

AMS - Amazon Marketing Services, basically the main Amazon ads program

Funnel - This is complex but important, it's the way you set up your website/pages to 'encourage' people to join your mailing list. I suggest you look into it further!

Roi - Return on Investment, essentially a measure of profit achieved. I believe it's profit divided by cost to produce a ratio you really want keep above 1. (I have never yet achieved this)

Arbitrage is a new one for me, not totally sure how it applies in this context.

<p - That's just some bad html code, ignore it
 

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First, a quick shout out to Nicole for her astute comments.

I have spent most of my career marketing meeting space and special event support services. The concepts are the same whether you are selling widgets, cigars, or jetliners. You market where the buyers are, not where the sellers are.

I am just starting to market my books. I have deferred marketing for the more pleasant task of writing and it's time I applied some discipline to my craft. One tool I relied on when marketing to meeting planners was a report of who the publication reached. The reports told me whether the readership organized the types of events I was equipped to serve or not. (We did strictly corporate events and did not do weddings, bar mitzvahs, quinces, or birthday parties.) Where do I find similar reports for the publishing industry?

To date, I have not made enough money to cover my copyright fees, and that needs to change.

Bob
 

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You might also ask what point are these folks in their author careers and how did their ads strategy grow and develop over time as their business grew?
I don't know that anyone has AMS, FB, and BB ads running right out of the gate at the start of their author career. They add platforms as they go along.

Master one platform at a time. BB is notoriously hard to scale up and the ads go stale very quickly, so for most authors that means concentrating on either FB or AMS first. Then, when you have a firm understanding of that platform, and the ads are working and profitable, then you branch out and learn/add a second platform.

A lot of the big $$$ career indies running AMS and FB and dabbling in other things, and newbies see that and get overwhelmed. They think they need to be doing all that too, but that isn't the case. One thing at a time!
 

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I mostly use AMS but I have a lot of stand alone nonfiction; Facebook works better for magnets and list building...so if you have a series.
 
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