3 weeks in to Facebook ads

Mike Grist Facebook Ads, Last Mayor, Marketing, Writing Leave a Comment

I have now spent £600 on Facebook ads! You may remember from my analysis a week back that I was losing money. So am I in profit yet?

Ha ha, no! I have made £500 so far, so I am still £100 underwater. This is actually pretty generous too, assigning all earnings to FB ads, which is not accurate – even without ads I get a couple of sales a day, so it’s probably more like £200-£300 losses.

Well well well.

Oddly though, I am holding my nerve still. In practical terms, I have only lost £100, which is really not that bad considering the number of books sold – a cracking 235 – and general exposure. I have to think most people who bought book 1 in a series will still be reading it (or are yet to even start), so readthrough hasn’t really kicked in yet.

Maybe next month it will, and cash will fall like manna from heaven?

Let’s break it down:

  • Costs per Click – these are getting lower, which is great. Average over the period across The Saint Rise promo is 15p, with The Last at 20p – but in recent days these have come down to 13p and 19p. Every penny counts, and I’m constantly tuning.
  • What tuning? Trying new blurbs, new images, new targets. Honestly, there is so much to take on board with all of these. More on this shortly.
  • Clicks per sale looks to be about the same – a sale per every 20 clicks. To help The Last I raised its price to $2.99 from 99p. This should help off-set cost of ads. I figure once people click an ad, whether it’s 99p or $2.99 doesn’t make much difference. I may be wrong, but it doesn’t look it so far.

Facebook ads call

Today I got a call (after scheduling it) from a Facebook rep that lasted for maybe 30 minues, where they offered some advice and ideas on how to deliver better ads. Here are the highlights:

  • Every bit of engagement on an ad is weighed by the FB algorithm as a good thing, and likely to reduce cost-per-click. This can be clicks to full-screen the image, clicks on the Read More if the text is long, even just pausing to look at the image – FB knows how long you look at something! These are good things. Engagement is key to driving down costs.
  • My challenge blurbs – saying things like ‘Better than the Walking Dead!’ and ‘Better than The Name of the Wind!’ definitely drive more engagement. People call me bold. People call me out. But a good number of people say they’re trying the book based on the boldness. Why not, right?
  • Maybe my blurbs are too long… The agent said best practise is an ad text that doesn’t need to be clicked via a Read More. So I reduced one and started it running today.
  • The agent suggested running a carousel ad. I’ve only heard people dismiss these, but I decided to give it a try. I picked 6 promo images that viewers can rotate through. FB will also rotate through them automatically, and discover which one is best at converting and make that the default. They are:

It closes out with an image of me – which the agent said was very handsome :).

Will the carousel work? Will the shorter text work? Hard to say at this point. Hopefully people will click to look at more images, that increases engagement, that sells them more, and they go buy in their droves…

Or maybe it satisfies their curiosity and they don’t click the main link, having figured out it’s not for them. But even in that case, maybe it’s good. They don’t need to click the expensive (to me) link to find out this is not for them. Instead their curiosity clicks serve as fuel to boost engagement.

Well, we will see. I’ll experiment here first, and if it works then carry things over to the The Saint’s Rise promo. If FB are recommending to do it, you’d think it must work…

I’ve scheduled myself to talk about ads to my marketing group in a week or so. It’ll be interesting to dig into this – we’ve never really had anyone talk to us about FB ads before. I hope my experimentation here gets other people experimenting, and thus we all learn from each other.

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