Tips for Successful Amazon Marketing Services Ads

Amazon Marketing Services Logo 2017

Yesterday, I shared part one of this post, about how to use AMS ads for fun and profit. Today, let’s start by looking at how I examine some of the numbers I get on my ads. If you click on the ad from your dashboard, you’ll see a number of different columns, including impressions, clicks, cost per click, etc. If you single click any of them, they will show you their performance in that category, from bottom to top. Click it again, and you’ll see the same information from top to bottom.

Overall, there are some numbers I use as benchmarks to decide if an ad is working. I like to see close to one click-through per 1000 impressions. Too much lower than that and Amazon will stop serving your ad, no matter how high you bid, because readers are not responding to it, and relevance is a big part of the algorithm that decides how and where your book appears. Then, I really want to see one sale per every 7-8 clicks. If my average cost per click is $.20, and it takes me 12 clicks to get a sale, then I’m losing money on every $2.99 book I sell. Continue reading “Tips for Successful Amazon Marketing Services Ads”

The Key to Amazon Marketing Services Ads: Keywords

Amazon Marketing Services Logo 2017

How time flies. I wrote a post on Amazon Marketing Services in January, 2015. Like many of us, I made a number of attempts at making AMS ads work for me at that time. None of them did and eventually I relegated them to the back burner, intending to revisit them someday.

That “someday” happened about four months ago, when I started hearing of authors who were using the ads effectively. That encouraged me to jump back in and start experimenting with them again. It took quite a few false starts, but by January, I was running a number of ads that were profitable. Now, I am focusing more and more of my time and ad dollars in this arena.

Let’s start with the basics. Continue reading “The Key to Amazon Marketing Services Ads: Keywords”

Juggling Multiple Writing Projects

authors juggling multiple projects girl-1940244_960_720If you ever spend any time in online groups where there are a lot of early-stage writers, you will find a few common threads. First, of course, they are constantly looking for reassurance. Will someone read through the first paragraph of my novel? Or, I want to write a book about an alien invasion, but they turn out to be cute little bunnies. Will anyone buy that book? Another common malady is what I call First Chapter Syndrome. Writers will have first chapters done for twenty-six books, but have exactly zero chapter twos.

I’ve always thought I might be susceptible to that same syndrome, so I’ve always made myself finish one project before starting another. Oh, sure, I had the “idea file” where I stockpiled future ideas, but I never allowed myself to actually begin to write any of them until I was done with my current project. That way, I figured, I’ll never be one of those guys. Continue reading “Juggling Multiple Writing Projects”

Indie Publishing is Like Yoga

writing exercise stretching-498256_960_720Thank goodness we don’t have to do the Downward Facing Dog. No one wants to see me do that. What we do need, though, is flexibility. Flexibility in all things Indie: how we look at writing itself, how we market, what our covers look like, how long or short our blurbs are: everything.

Indie Publishing was easier four or five years ago. I published my first book in September of 2012. I sold 82 copies that first month, and was thrilled. As soon as I hit the 30-day cliff, though, that booked stopped selling. I sold two copies in a week. So, I did a free promo and gave away almost 25,000 copies. Total cost of that promo? Zero dollars. There was no Bookbub yet, and all the sites were just looking for free books to feature. I applied, they featured me, and the free downloads poured in. Continue reading “Indie Publishing is Like Yoga”