I've been hitting the promotion front pretty hard since September. It started off with Experimental Notebook. There were cover reveals, followed by advanced sales. Early reviews came next, then Lisa Burton toured around and discussed the book. A small bit of that is still going on.
Part of Notebook is a free sample of Will O' the Wisp. The hope was that leading into October, folks might be interested in that kind of story. Lisa made a stop on Friday, and has one more in early November to talk about this book.
Macabre Macaroni is part of the mix too. If someone likes one of those stories, maybe they will take a 99¢ chance on my Notebook.
There is more Macabre Macaroni coming, but I'm also trotting Will O' the Wisp out for another blog tour. You'll probably see a few reblogs around here to help my supportive hosts out.
I want to talk about Amazon advertising today. I decided to run a campaign for each book, but I chose different options in each case. This isn't a scientific comparison, because they are different books with a different price point. I still think there is some information to be gleaned.
In each case, I bid 19¢ for placement of my ad. Amazon awards the bid to the highest amount, but only charges enough to win the spot. Some of my ads were placed for 6¢. I'm only charged when someone clicks on my ad, not whenever it gets seen. Let's look at the chart.
The bottom campaign is an old test drive for Will O' the Wisp dating back to May. This campaign placed my ads on products that might be similar to my book. You can see that I spent 95¢ to show my cover to 28,000 people. Seventeen of them clicked on my ad, and I never sold a single book.
In my mind, this is a mediocre winner. I got a lot of exposure for 95¢. I wasn't convinced or defeated here. So I decided to do it again.
On October 4th I ran a very similar campaign. I am banking on the season to help me with this particular book. Right now I have 19,500 views, and 12 interested parties. Nobody has taken the bait yet, but I've only spent 94¢.
The top row is for The Experimental Notebook of C. S. Boyack, and it started on October 6th. For this campaign, I chose genres instead of products.
I didn't know until after my first campaign what the difference might be. With products, you cannot be advertised on Kindles or the various apps. With genres that is where your book gets placed. What this means is if someone is shopping for a boxed set of the television show “Charmed” they might see the advertisement for Will O' the Wisp. The risk is they aren't shopping for a book, and might not be readers at all.
The Notebook campaign shows 2634 placements, 17 clicks, and one actual sale at 99¢. (Which I have to share with Amazon.) These ads were all placed with folks shopping for ebooks. I have no idea why I have more page views than clicks. I assumed there had to be a click before there was a page view. Maybe the person who bought the book went back and forth a few times??? You can see that my 35¢ royalty cost me $2.55.
Both current campaigns are performing better than my original one. I'm getting a ton of exposure, and I know my covers are great. The Notebook cover isn't as awesome at thumbnail size though.
I don't see these campaigns as losers. I'm spending a minuscule amount of money for a ton of exposure. It is possible that someone will return later and make a purchase too. They might see the cover for Wisp on the blog tour and go, “Oh yeah… I'm going to buy that.”
For those who haven't explored this program, you have to commit a specific amount of money. In my case $100. This serves as a fail safe to prevent dumping a million dollars on a campaign that goes crazy. The campaign ends at $100. There is also an ending date for the same reason.
It looks like the campaign that targets genre is performing a little bit better. Notebook is cheaper, but one sale doesn't sway the performance much.
I know I've spent $50 on several promotions that never netted a single sale. This doesn't look too bad by comparison.
Let me hear from you guys. Have you ever used this service? Are my numbers pretty typical, or do they suck? Would you ever use this service? Has this post piqued your interest in this service? Do you want to buy a book?