Advertising/Marketing for Indie Authors

 

Up until a few weeks ago I was paying $50 to have Facebook ads/banners created. I am not great at graphic design, so I didn’t think I’d be capable of creating my own. But when I saw how much I could purchase images from shutterstock.com (5/$50), I decided I needed to create ads/banners/teasers on my own.

This information is probably old news to most, but if I can even help 1 person I’d love to share what I have learned. After a lot of research I discovered canva.com. This website is amazing. The price for each ad/banner/design is between $0-1. Hmm. Free/$1 or the $50 I was spending before–not a tough decision. I can create so many different ads/banners/teasers.

I spent a lot of time playing around with it, and I am still learning, but here are a few sample ads/banners/teasers I have created. Just note- be careful for the ratio of text to image for Facebook ads (I am sure most are aware of their stringent – no more than 20% text rule)…

 

A lot of the above are teasers & are used mostly for Twitter or blog tours (the ones with a lot of text, that is)… I like using quotes on these images since you’re limited on how much you can type in a Twitter post.

A couple notes on advertising:

-I am releasing the 3rd book in my series at a preorder/new release price of only $0.99. Another successful author I know does this, and I was originally hesitant, but I realized the genius in it… 1) Having an extract to my book in the back of the others with a note about the price = A lot more preorders than I got on the other books. 2) I can use all of the wonderful email marketing companies for this book even though it is a new release (as long as my previous books meet the rating requirement). I already have 3 companies lined up the week of release (and the rest cannot be submitted until the sale is within 30 days). I had a lot of success with bookgorilla, booksends, ENT, and myromancereads on my previous marketing campaigns for books 1 & 2- so, I’m hopeful for this book.

-Facebook Spending… I have only spent a few dollars here and there, but every once and awhile I’ll do a $20 ad. What I discovered is I get the same amount of clicks on a $5 ad as I do a $20 ad. As for using the Ads Manager versus boosting a post… With Ads Manager I stopped allowing Facebook to put the ad on Instagram/Right hand side/3rd party (why?- Well, I was getting charged $1 or more per click on Instagram/Right-hand ads)–which is nuts… And I’d get a TON of click on third-party ads (but the conversion rate was SUPER low). Whenever I only had the mobile/desktop option selected–> Most clicks–>Most conversions (least amount spent!)

Boosting a post- interestingly I get a lot of likes/shares/comments (less clicks on the link though!). So for the last $3 ad I boosted on my page, I had 20 likes/5 page likes/9 shares (all within a few hours)… But less sales than when I used the ads manager (which usually results in 1-3 likes though)…

Okay. So there is my 2cents in all of this. I am not sure if it helps. I do notice though when I run an ad during the week only– the sales mostly appear on the weekend. My guess is they download a sample, read, then decide to buy. Have my results been successful with Facebook ads? If I spend $20, I usually make between $25-40 (so there is a profit of $5-20, but then when I do not advertise the following week, I see steady sales, so my hope is those customers have bought the next book).

PLEASE SHARE ANY WEBSITES/SUCCESSES/TIPS HERE. THANK YOU. And be sure to add a LINK to one of your books on the market!

 

 

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26 thoughts on “Advertising/Marketing for Indie Authors

    • You’re welcome! I’ll be posting the 3rd installment on email marketing companies after I get results from my next book in June. ENT (enewsreadertoday) is amazing & not expensive. It got my book in top 100 for romance suspense during the promo.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. At picmonkey (dot) com, there are a myriad of options which include making banners specifically for Facebook. I use their free version and have found it to be fun, MORE than useful and easy. I have also used this site to create the completed photos for my Angel Messages book (which I am including the Amazon link to here) as well as for my book, PhoKu. Thanks for your tips Brittney, it always helps to hear what others are doing, how it has worked and then compare! Cheers. http://www.amazon.com/Angel-Messages-Annette-Rochelle-Aben/dp/1523901888/ref=sr_1_1_twi_pap_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1461760260&sr=1-1&keywords=angel+messages+annette+rochelle+aben

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m impressed by your energetic marketing. So far I haven’t taken on many of those options, but am gearing up to tackle that universe once I get my POD books out. I’m going to save this post for reference.
    I’ve often used depositphotos for images. Images suitable for the web are $1. I like the option of being able to add text on the spot at Canva, but I didn’t find as many images I really liked there, even the psid $1 options. I haven’t been especially happy with the free-image sites I’ve tried and usually end up going back to depositphotos or one of the other royalty-free sites. I’ll try the one Chris recommends!
    This week, people interested in a mystery/suspense novel set at the Kentucky Derby (It’s that time of year!) can use coupon code KQ22Z at Smashwords to get a free copy of King of the Roses. A sample chapter is available at my web site, virginiasanderson.com, and editorial reviews from the book’s original publication by St. Martin’s Press are up on its Amazon page: http://www.amazon.com/King-Roses-V-S-Anderson-ebook/dp/B010QWR6DA/. It’s not a romance per se, but it definitely has a romance built in! I especially like the reviewer who wrote, ‘I wouldn’t recommend it as bedtime relaxation!”

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Brittney thanks for that. Anyone help with a problem. I’ve found the perfect picture to revamp my first book cover when I googled the subject – but I can’t find it in a stock library to try and get copyright permission – it;s been used on Tumblr, Pinterest and several blogs but no one seems to know who owns it. Is there a central library of images I could google and match the pic?
    Also did you ask for a link to one of our books? Truth, Lies and Propaganda is on £0.99 in the UK only till Monday – a fun bio about how I fell into a writing career.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I also recently started using canva. I was very nervous becasue I am not in the least technologically savvy. However, though I am still learning, I, like you, have found it remarkably easy to use. And the end result is really quite good.

    Liked by 1 person

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