Is advertising a waste of money?
Lately I have been using a few Facebook ads and some direct messaging and guest posting. The results of a months’ worth of advertising is greater reach, but no sales. In addition, from 15 Feb 2021, Facebook will be charging the GST on ads and only businesses that are registered will be able to claim it back.
The results of my direct messaging (LinkedIn) was personal reach, an unexpected course sale and some interesting people who I may follow up later.
There is an old quote from an advertiser that said:
Half of all my advertising works… if only I knew which half!
Spend Book Promotion Time Wisely
As a serial self-published writer, I read and realised myself that you need to split your time 50/50 between writing/editing and promoting/connecting. As I fit in client work too, it’s more like 75 | 25.
If you don’t connect helpfully with others, then you’re unlikely to get a guest post (parts from your book) or free book review from a reader.
Guest blogging is one of the secrets to getting a strong link profile and online reputation. (The former serves Google rank while the latter is how others see your work).
When other bloggers / reviewers / journalists are talking about your book, then you’ll come into some good sales. It may be unknown to you where these sales stemmed from originally, yet it is more leveraged than one-at-a-time sales you do know about.
See exactly how MBS published his book and sold 180,000 copies. (Long post warning, and ignore the costings, which are too high).
A Simple Hack for Authors
One hack is to build a team to do some of the grunt work. I admit a Blogger’s Assistant would be nice – everyone needs one, even if they are one! There is just too much to do, for example:
- Graphic design
- Writing blog topics and making blog images (e.g. Canva)
- Pinterest posting and follows and Facebook group posts, if needed
- Making connections with other authors and offering posts (email or phone)
- Writing press releases / your media page
The people I do use are for technical setups or the imagery, as these often take a lot of time. I hired a PeoplePerHour assistant to set-up the 10-Day Author Blog Challenge, a course via email. I hire a developer in New Zealand for the difficult changes to my WordPress sites. And I hire a VA for doing the blog images and to get fresh marketing ideas. These people all have different hourly rates pertaining to the level of difficulty.
Why use your own tired brain when you can use someone else’s fresh one?
What kinds of advertising have you done, and did it work for your purpose?
Advertising vs Content Marketing Which method is more effective?
Here I explain why, after trying scattershot advertising and promotion to all, I decided on thought leadership content marketing. Besides doing SEO and blogging, explaining the value first certainly made our marketing results a lot more effective. I’m still blogging today, 7 years later.
Blanket advertising is not the answer to your business prayers–but can be used if well-targeted to the right niche. Advertising vs Content marketing is explained in the VIDEO below.
While researching my book, Power Marketing, I also enjoyed several other copywriter books, like Bob Bly’s Digital Copywriter’s Handbook, and Dan Kennedy’s No B.S. Direct Marketing. The book Story Branding came along later, which is also a great method of sharing the deeper mission behind what you do, and getting people to care.