Saturday, 17 August 2013

Paid Advertising For Promoting Books

Like many authors I love writing, but I'll confess that I'd like to sell those stories. As an indie author it's up to me to sell my books, recently I've been experimenting with paid advertising. Conventional wisdom is that paid advertisements rarely pay for themselves for self published and for the most part I've found that to be true.

Here are the various places I've tried and the results I gained, it's worth remembering that results vary, so you may well have different results.

kufads

http://www.kufads.com/

kufads are ads placed on the KUF forums (one of my favourite places to hang out online) and associated mailing lists and sites. The ads are reasonably priced at £8 a week and booking ad placements is fully automated and a doddle to use.

So far the ads have generated a few sales, although I am fairly well known on the site, so I wasn't expecting too much of a boost. However it's a great place to chat with other authors and readers and placing the ads here are as much about supporting the community as trying to sell more books. To be fair while there are rules for promoting books, they are quite generous in allowing authors to promote their work.

Goodreads

http://www.goodreads.com/advertisers/ad_home

Goodreads is probably the main site for readers and writers, like with KUF I'm very active in various groups. It's another great place for authors to connect with readers. I'm also an avid reader so it's a decent place for discovering new reads.

They provide a self-serve advertising programme for authors. It's a pay per click . Unfortunately it's an expensive method as you need to pay quite a lot for each click, with low priced e-books that eats a lot of your royalty. I also didn't see a large increase in sales, it netted a few, but not enough to cover the costs of the campaign.

The Goodreads ads were one of my first paid adverts, I might give it another try now that I have more reviews for my books.

Kboards

http://www.kboards.com/ads/

I had high hopes for my advert here. It's a busy site, the book was reduced to 99c and by then I had a good number of positive reviews. The ad resulted in no sales at all, that was not a well spent $90.

The Kindle Book Review

http://www.thekindlebookreview.net/advertise-here/

I paid $40 for a month long sponsorship that is still running. It's difficult to be sure, but it's generated a few sales. Nothing like what I've paid for the ad, but a few nonetheless.

Book Gorilla

http://www.bookgorilla.com/advertise

This was another place I had high hopes for. I'd heard good things from promotions here but it got me zero sales and cost me $50.

EReader News Today

http://ereadernewstoday.com/bargain-kindle-books/

I've saved the best until last, the ENT campaign gave me a decent sales boost and even better they charge you only a fee depending on the number of of sales they actually generate. It's a pity more sites don't operate on a similar principle - I'm more than happy to pay for results.

So that's been my experience with paid ads up to date, if you know of a good place to advertise then mention it in the comments - and I know about Bookbub, unfortunately I don't have enough reviews for them yet.

14 comments:

  1. Thanks. All worthy of investigating. I'm not ready to begin paying yet but when I do I'll know where to look.

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    1. I'll keep investigating different places and will post again with my results in the future.

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  2. Good post Michael. I've tried KUFads (which worked the first time, but generated no sales the second time) and Goodreads pay per click add, which has been catastrophically bad! Would still like to try ENT but need some more .com reviews first.

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    1. Thanks, I think KUF is quite a small community so if you're active on the site it doesn't have much additional impact.

      Have you tried advertising in forums, magazines and sites related to mountaineering?

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  3. Hi Michael. Sadly, the results you got don't surprise me :( Advertising tends to be rather like gambling - the odds are definitely in favour of THEM earning a whole lot more than YOU ( My own past experiences revealed that for selling anything, "word of mouth" and being in the right groups was far more important than taking out costly ads. It seems that advertising really is for big business! Cheers, Steve.

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    1. I think it's interesting that the one site that charged based on results was the only one that actually gained me any.

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    2. It sounds about right, though :) Of course, there are plenty of sites NOT charging, but making use of being affiliated with various online bookstores - though none really seem to do much more than flood social networks with links, at most, and I usually cancel those just as I unfollow such people/sites :( A genuine results-based system, which says as much up front, does sound best - if the costs aren't too high ;)

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    3. I keep wondering about setting up some sort of collective, maybe if I ever get more time :-)

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    4. More time? Is that even possible? LOL

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  4. Are there any comparable sites in the UK that promote ebooks that are on sale for a short time? I've had very good results with ENT and also BookBub, but I've yet to find sites that promote books to UK readers. Help! Any info or links would be greatly appreciated.

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    1. KUF ads (http://www.kufads.com/) and IBB (www.indie-book-bargains.co.uk) are worth checking out.

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    2. Thank you, Michael. I'm a member of KUF, but didn't know they did ads. I'll check out IBB too. Thanks again.

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    3. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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