If you missed Free Advice Friday last week, you can watch the replay on our YouTube channel, youtube.com/NewShelvesBooks.
March 4, 2022 Free Advice Friday Hot Topics
As an independent publisher, how do you get around the exorbitant print cost? Listen to Keri explain the details here at 27 seconds into replay. Tip: The name of the game in publishing is quantity—not margins per book sold.
Is it worth the time and money to participate in a book fair? It depends on you, your book, and your goals. Just so you know—they are an all-day thing so bring a friend. It can be good exposure, especially if it is in your genre. Authors of children’s books can do well at book fairs geared for children. The kids see the book and want to take it home, and parents and grandparents are shopping and often willing to buy on the spot.
Is magazine advertising a good idea? Yes, some people do still read magazines. The magazine-reading audience may be a bit older. Just make sure if you spend money on magazine advertising, you target your specific audience. Consider: Will you hit your audience and convert them to book sales?
Book Fairs: Is attending the American Library Association conference a good idea? If your book is geared for libraries, it could be worthwhile. Try to attend in person rather than just having your book on display.
Don’t miss this! Watch at 8:49 in the video to see Keri build a FB audience: Facebook ads can be a great fit, especially for authors who chose to put their books into the Kindle Select program for Kindle Unlimited. FB audiences tend to be mystery and romance readers and are usually older than thirty-years-old. FB ads are a great option for children’s books as well as parent and grandparents often use this social media platform. Keri’s advice: Start small and spend only $1-$2 a day.
Now, how do you build your audience?
- Make sure you have a public page if you are going to run FB ads.
- Start with the United States only, unless you or your book have a strong connection to another country.
- Target the right demographics.
- Find your comps!
- Target an audience of 3-6 million.
What does it mean when you are asked to “boost” a FB post? Boosting FB posts is paid advertising to make posts you have already shared to your Facebook page more visible.
Should you use auto ads? Keri doesn’t recommend allowing FB to automatically run your ads. Rather, figure out what your goals are and create ads that support those goals. Are you trying to gain more website visitors, get more messages, or bring in more engagement? Keri usually aims to gain more website visitors to a direct sales page. Hot tip: Make it clean with as little friction as possible. The fewer links you have, the less clicks to get to the buy button, the more conversions you make.
Additional Facebook ad tips:
- Run ads on FB for 4 days as a minimum. You need at least that much time to get algorithms up and going. Keri recommends 2 weeks or more.
- Make sure you have a strong hook for the description.
- Consider using a stock photo instead of your book cover.
- Use an HTML text generator to make your text stand out. Keri uses this one: https://capitalizemytitle.com/bold-text-generator/
- Have ONE clear call to action. “Buy now”, “Download for free”, etc.
If you haven’t sold books with FB in the past, should you bother with them now? FB ads are not for every book. Non-fiction books can do well on FB. eBooks enrolled in Kindle Unlimited and Children’s books often are the best sellers with Facebook ads.
Where do you get stock images? You can use any of these 77 Free Image Sites or use the stock images FB provides free of charge.
At 40:29, check out Keri’s suggestions on what you can offer to build your email list. Decide first on your goals. You can entice people to give up their emails by downloading a free short story. Non-fiction authors may use a PDF check-list or other helpful tool. Children’s book authors could do activity sheets. They read the short story and buy your series to find out where the story leads. Remember, this is a long-term strategy so think evergreen when creating a giveaway.
If you have questions you’d like answered, join us next week, Friday, March 11th at 10am EST to get your questions answered LIVE or e-mail your questions in advance to firstname.lastname@example.org with “FREE ADVICE FRIDAYS” in the subject line.