Now, before I go into the results, understand that this isn't a scientific study by any stretch. There are so many other variables to take into consideration as to whether social media marketing works, beginning with "is your book any damn good?"
Well, I like to think the nearly 4 star average review on Amazon is good, but maybe it's not enough to justify the cost of the paperback or kindle. Then again, maybe one or two reviews turns people off and they don't buy the book. Or the price is out of their range. Who knows.
Regardless, here's the background.
I started a twitter campaign on March 4, with a $100 max spend, and a max bid of $3 (more on that in a minute) and a max spend per day of $5. Right there I've listed three variables that may have an impact on both the visibility of the ad and the timing.
The objective was to get people to click over to the Amazon site listing my book. Obviously twitter can only lead the horses to water, it's up to me to make sure the Amazon site (i.e. the book summary) gets them to drink. Another variable.
The details of the campaign I'll leave out, suffice to say I chose to advertise people who follow or talk about post-apocalyptic topics, as well as younger demographic tv shows and writers like John Stewart or Stephen King.
A bid, by the way, is listed as "how much a visitor to your website is worth", with a higher bid increasing your chances of your ad being shown. I chose three dollars, because one person buying a book is a $3.86 profit to me from CreateSpace, so subtracting $3.00 still yields a profit. I know, a little business-y for a writer's taste, but if you're self-publishing, get used to it. You need to know this stuff.
Overall results then, so far: 1 book sold in paperback (woo-hoo!), 1 kindle ebook purchased, and 9 books borrowed or bought through Kindle Prime (which netted me about $1 in profit). So, if this all holds true, I'll spend about $100 to make roughly $15.
Hardly worth it.
HOWEVER, on the plus side, twitter does offer a lot of demographics about who is clicking on the link, meaning who is interested in your book enough to go check it out.
Right now I've got a click through rate of roughly .5%. That means for every thousand people seeing my ad, maybe five will click on it. That may sound really low, but that's the equivalent of spamming people, and .5% is actually pretty good, according to the stats you can find here.
But of the 116 people who clicked to my site, only 11 of them bought a book, which means interest is at about 9%. Not good.
I'm written too much here, so I'll carry on next with determining the best point for advertising and return on investment - finding the sweet spot so to speak. But again, I have to stress I'm not a PR expert and this isn't a scientific study. It's all specific to me and the variables of my work. In other words, results may vary.
In the meantime, if you have questions you'd like to ask, feel free to comment here, or find me on Goodreads here and drop me a question there. And most definitely, WRITE ON!
Optimism is NOT Arrogance
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