Wren 4 Finished! & FB experiments – 2020 Writing Week 20

Mike GristWeekly Writing Update, Writing Leave a Comment

This week I set out to finish Wren book 4, now titled Ghosts, and I succeeded!

It has left me feeling pretty shattered. There were quite a few surprises through the end. It does all kinds of unexpected things, and I have a lot of sympathy for poor old Christopher Wren. He’s more broken now than ever.

Next up is book 5! Goal is to at least write that, maybe even book 6 by the end of 2020, if I can get really going.

Hmm – I thought I’d have more to say, but it would all be spoilers.

So, Facebook ad experimentation!

The key finding of this last week, spurred on by various expert authors making suggestions, was that pretty much all of my previous ads were not working great.

The Conversion rate was abysmal on some ads. The video ads I talked about a few weeks ago were getting 1 sale in several hundred clicks. Even if clicks are only 6c, that’s still $6 plus for a sale. It’s far too scattershot.

I mentioned last time that I was trying desktop targeting. I’ve continued that, but even that doesn’t produce such great results. Better conversion, but still like 1 in 50. Money-losing.

Then I saw David Gaughran talking on a Youtube video about using the actually book image in the Facebook ad. It was always the most obvious thing, but common wisdom has ben that it didn’t work, because costs per click were so high. I know I tried it before and pulled away.

I’m trying it again. Here they are:

They’re very similar, in line with what Gaughran suggested. Because click costs are higher, I’m getting fewer results than before for the same budget, but can already say that the conversion rates are better than ever. 1 in 20? Still not great. More costly. Maybe it comes out a wash?

Next I’m tackling targeting. With that book right there in the image, I’m not going to be getting random clicks anymore, from people who are just looky-loos. When you see the book, and the ad says ‘SHOP NOW’, by the tie you click you’re seriosuly thinking about buying.

So – why not open the targeting back up?

I am accordingly going back to targeting mobile users. There are way more of them and clicks will be cheaper. I can potentially even dump narrowing targeting factors like ‘Kindle’ or ‘Ebooks’. With that book graphic, I’m sending a clear signal to readers.

That’ll be next. Try a big audience of many millions, and trust the FB algorithm to get me the best clicks, and hope that all those clicks are warm and follow through to buy.

That’s next week.

Next week goals:

  • Widening out targeting experimentation, remove narrowing factors, go big with mobile.
  • Finish the edit of Book 4 Ghosts and send it out to Foundation Inner Circle ARC readers.
  • Finish the edit of Su’s book and get it out to Beta readers. Finalize the cover.

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