In February 2016 we ran a Valentines promotion with author Jen Hatmaker to push orders of her recent release, For the Love. After doing some research on Jen’s audience, we found that her followers were all about generosity and community, so we wanted to run a campaign that catered to her audience.
I worked with my team to come up with the idea of the Share the Love campaign, which Jen first shared about in a blog post. We gave her readers the option to nominate someone (or themselves) to receive a free book (For the Love) for Valentine’s Day by filling out a form on the Share the Love splash page. Once the nomination form closed, we then gave her same readers the opportunity to anonymously buy For the Love for someone who was nominated. We had no idea how many people would be nominated, but we were willing to bet that Jen’s audience would come through.
We promoted the campaign on social media (with ad spend behind Jen’s post) and via email, and it was a huge success. We had 2250 women get nominated and every single person received a book (with each purchase reported to Bookscan). The campaign even got picked up by a media outlet, which gave the book and Jen even more coverage.
In this campaign I took part in the brainstorming and overall ideation for the campaign. I worked with the retailer to figure out logistics and fulfillment. I created the splash page for the campaign where people could nominate, and then also the page where people could purchase the book. I was also in charge of the ad spend for the campaign and making sure Jen’s posts about it were seen by as many people as possible.
I worked with a first-time author on a small Facebook Ad campaign that packed a big punch. The ads pushed chapter downloads and preorders of her book, African Pearl. The author had just created her Facebook page, so she had less than 10 page likes when we started.
She had a limited budget to work with for advertising, so I ran two campaigns for her to give her the best exposure possible for her book. The first was a campaign pushing a free chapter download to grow her email list, but also to give her page exposure. The audience for this ad set was based on similar authors and interests of potential readers. We spent $25, garnered 19.6K impressions, and had a CPC of $0.34.
Using the data from the first campaign, I built a custom audience for her based on page engagement and website visitors for the second campaign, which pushed the preorder. In this campaign, we spent $27, garnered 31.4K impressions, and had a CPC of $0.13.
This campaign shows that I can make a little bit of budget go a long way with an effective strategy. But this same strategy can be applied a larger budget for even greater success.
I worked with a first-time author on launching her middle-grade fiction book, Welcome to Superhero School. In our marketing campaign we wanted to be able to call the author a “bestselling” author, so the team came up with a plan to achieve this. The author ended up writing a short prequel to her book (Journey to Superhero School) that she launched as an ebook about 6 weeks before the launch of her main book, so I created a campaign to make that prequel a best seller.
We decided to make the prequel ebook free for 5 days on Amazon, and I orchestrated various promotion opportunities with ebook sites to send emails and make social media posts about the free ebook during the duration of the sale. I also ran an Amazon marketing campaign and BookBub advertising campaign to the prequel during the promotion window.
When the promotion started, the prequel was #88,338 overall in the Free in Kindle Store. By the end of the promotion, it was #118 overall. During that time we reached #1 in three different categories, achieving our goal to make the author a bestselling author. Overall, we had more than 4000 downloads of the prequel, giving the author and her main book more exposure.
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As an author and publisher earning over $6 million in royalties, I help authors turn their ideas into successful self-published reality.
Former Penguin Random House Executive Director, Digital & Social Marketing. I love helping authors find their audience!