If you’ve spent any time on social media recently, you’ve probably seen paid or sponsored advertisements. Writers who are looking for effective ways to promote their self-published books might wonder if these paid social media ads are worth the cost—especially when using social media is free. Here’s the scoop: The marketing experts at Self-Publishing Relief have found that these paid social media ads can have a positive impact on sales! With paid social media, you’ll be able to boost your marketing strategy and reach more potential buyers for your self-published book—without breaking the bank.
What You Need To Know About Using Paid Social Media Ads
The Difference Between Organic And Paid Social Media
Organic social media marketing uses the typical everyday conversations and interactions with your fan base or customers: responding to comments and questions, interacting with other users’ posts, and sharing information in general. This is a great way to connect with readers and build your audience, but may offer only limited opportunities to make book sales. Since social media platforms make money by selling you advertising, they’ve created algorithms that restrict the number of followers who see your organic posts. You may have 60,000 followers, but only 200 might see the post about your self-published book being available for purchase. This limited yet loyal audience may still buy your book, but you won’t be reaching every potential buyer.
Paid social media involves creating strategic advertisements to blast to new audiences who may not be your fans or followers—yet. The goal is to target people who show interest in the specific genre, style, or topic of your self-published book in order to reach would-be new readers who are most likely to click the “Buy Now” button. To accomplish this, social media platforms use another advanced algorithm function to display the ads to the right people based on the relevancy of the ad compared to their demographics and interests.
The Best Social Media Platforms For Paid Ads
Currently, Facebook and Twitter have the highest user bases, which makes them key platforms to target, but Instagram is also quickly gaining popularity. Each platform offers unique strengths to consider in order to get the most bang for your buck:
Facebook: Best for selling books and generating brand awareness using their unique Marketplace system.
Twitter: Best for short-form content like book blurbs and quotes. It is also the best platform to redirect users to your author website.
Instagram: Best for image-based ads, like your cover art. It is also the best at presenting ads that don’t look like ads, which can help combat sales resistance in your audience.
These social media platforms are not as effective as the big three noted above, but might suit your particular readers: Snapchat, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, and Reddit.
The Benefits Of Using Paid Social Media Ads To Promote Your Book
Expand Your Readership: Paid ads will give your self-published book—and you as a writer—more exposure to potential new fans. Even if everyone who sees the ad doesn’t initially purchase your book, you’ll pick up new followers who may buy it later.
Learn More About Your Audience: Advertisement analytics tell you important details about your audience (age, location, and interests) which you can use to improve the effectiveness of your marketing strategies—and maybe even influence your writing!
Get Better Results: Unlike organic marketing attempts, targeted paid social media ads boost the odds that more people will see your self-published book. While that doesn’t guarantee an immediate book sale, you should still get better results than if you simply used organic marketing.
Discover Your Popular Content: The results of your paid ads will give you a better sense of what your audience likes. By noting which type of post gets the most interaction—be it a photo, article, or quote—you can create more posts that encourage more engagement.
Accommodate Your Budget: Most social media platforms let you set a daily budget for your advertisements, so you don’t have to pay more than you can afford. You can even set your budget to as little as a few dollars a day! However, keep in mind that the larger your budget, the better results you’ll get.
Take Advantage Of More Post Options: Paid social media ads can include “Buy Now” buttons, image carousels, a map to a bookstore where your book is sold, videos of you reading an excerpt, and layout design options. Customize your paid ad to make it stand out in a newsfeed and encourage interaction.
Paid social media ads are effective, informative, and get results! But if paid social media ads aren’t in your budget, check out these 99 virtually free marketing ideas for self-published writers!
Question: What’s the best ad you’ve seen on your social media platform?