Amazon Ads for Authors: 6 Ways To Make Yours Explosive

Book Marketing Amazon Ads

Amazon ads for Authors Intro

It’s no secret that in order to sell lots of books you have a great marketing plan. In this article I’m going to focus Amazon Ads for Authors. If you haven’t done them before, take a big breath, they are really easy to set up. Making them profitable though is the hard part and this is where I come in.

I’m going to give you some great tips to simplify the process and ensure you don’t spend more money than you make in royalties, so you too can become an Amazon best-selling author.

  1. Keyword research
  2. Book marketing copy
  3. Also boughts
  4. Kick – starting Amazon Ads for Authors
  5. Little and often
  6. Amazon keyword reports

1. Keyword Research

Amazon adverts run primarily on keywords. Simply put these are the words people type into the Amazon search engine to find what they’re looking for. So if someone is looking for a book, then at a basic level they will type the word ‘book’ and get a list of results.

When you advertise on Amazon, you tell Amazon which keywords you want your book ad to show up for. You also select how much you’re willing to spend for this to show up high on the list (known as a bid).

This is the highest amount you’re willing to spend for a reader to see an ad for your book and click on it. So for a term like ‘book,’ as you can image competition is fierce between advertisers.

Bids on this particular keyword are likely to be stupidly high and a sure fire way to blow your advertising budget in a nano-second.

Instead there is a method to get cheaper clicks on your books which also narrows down your target audience.

This is where you need to think like a customer. When you type in a search term like ‘book’ you’ll get books of every genre, most of which don’t interest you at all. As a result, you’ll try and narrow your search. You may then type ‘for kids’ and if you still don’t get the results you desire, you may add ‘aged 7 to 11.’

So you end up with a chain of keywords ‘books for kids aged 7 to 11.’ This is known as a a long – chain keyword. These are the kind of keywords you want to be using to get your book in front of more readers.

There will be much less competition for this keyword, so the cost of someone clicking on your advert is much less. The cheaper the better right? Cheaper clicks mean there is a much higher chance of making a profit

So, how do you find a list of keywords like this? The good news is there are free ways, the bad news is they are time consuming.

To start with, write a list of all the keywords you can related to your book. It’s name, location, characters, genre, tropes, distinguishing features. For my books it would be things like twins, superheroes, middle grade fiction, children’s books, Northern England, series.

Type these words into amazon and look at the suggestions Amazon gives you, use these as your keywords. Type enough things in and you’ll soon generate a list of a few hundred keywords.

Book marketing keywords

You can also use the same method in google, to produce similar lists of keywords.

Alternatively, check out Goodreads for lists of books in your genre. You’ll quickly be able to find thousands of similar books to yours. Take these book titles or the names of authors and use them as your keywords.

Then when a potential reader types in the name of a similar author to you, on the results list an ad for your book may show up.

Alongside these methods there are paid tools you can use to give you massive lists of keywords which will cut the time spent generating keywords in half. I highly recommend Publisher Rocket as a quick way to generate a list of relevant keywords.

2. Book Marketing Copy

If you are running ads In the US you have the option to add text to your advert and I’d always suggest you do so. You have a limited number of characters so this needs to be short snappy and really entice the readers to click on your ad.

I’ve trialled both ads with and without copy and the ones with definitely outperform those without.

The hardest part here is selling your book in just one sentence. As writers we’re used to writing lots and lots of text and expanding our word count.

“Less is more when it comes to ad copy.”

You have 5 seconds to capture someone’s attention so make it captivating. If you’re really struggling here you can always go down the route of saying something along the lines of

“Fans of Andy Slinger (famous author) will love this book…”

See what I mean; short, snappy and guaranteed to make people stop and click.

If you want to find out more about copy writing I’ve written another article about it here..

Copywriting skills: How to improve your book sales.

3. Also boughts

When you click on your book page, lurking underneath your book description there is a bar of books that says something along the lines of “people who bought these books also bought.” This is vital information to look at.

Firstly, this will show if your book is sat in the correct Amazon categories. So if the books here are completely unrelated to yours, you have an issue. In this case give me a shout to help resolve it before you move any further with this section.

If they’re all in the same genre as yours then these are perfect books to target. Copy the titles and use them as keywords in your ads. Then click on these books and see what their also boughts are, then guess what? Copy these titles again.

Before you know it you’ve built up a huge list of authors and book titles to target in your ads.

Just for ease of use I tend to copy these all into a big spread sheet, organised into categories. Then if I’m struggling for key words or inspiration I can refer back to it at any time.

4. Kick starting Amazon ads for Authors

Book marketing; kick starting your Amazon ads for authors

You may be worried about your ads spending lots of your money but with Amazon ads for authors it’s sometimes hard to get them to spend at all. You pay nothing for impressions, (to have your ad seen by potential readers) you only pay when someone clicks on your book.

Sometimes, though these ads won’t even generate impressions at all or in very low numbers. So I would suggest always selecting an end date which is a month from now (remember to extend it later if your ad is performing well). This gives your ad an immediate boost and it’ll show impressions straight away.

Also, keep your daily spend on an advert to no more than $5. It is extremely unlikely to spend this money but if it does, congratulations you’re getting clicks on your book and potential sales anyway.

5. Little and often

The most effective way to run Amazon ads is little and often, I tend to check them once a week and generate 5 new ads at the same time.

Keep your budgets per click low, a maximum of 30 cents and you have far more of a chance of becoming profitable.

“When it comes to Amazon ads, go for quantity.”

Lots of ads generating a small number of profitable clicks is the way to make more book sales. Remember you’re looking for relevant keywords, with low competition.

Be consistent with analysing your ads, you don’t need to check them daily but definitely once a week. Turn any off that aren’t generating sales after a month, and keep on producing new ads.

This process carries on and on until you discover those incredible keywords that sell your book for a minimal spend.

6. Amazon keyword reports

Amazon Keyword report

Did you know you can get a copy of the effectiveness of all your keywords e-mailed to you whenever you like?

Just look at the top left and create your own report. You can decide how often you get it sent to you, I have it sent to me monthly.

This is a really quick and easy way to see the search terms which are performing in your ads. I make a list of all the terms that have generated sales and then create a new ad with them, a super ad!

Because you know these terms are effective, you can raise the cost per click to 35 cents or even 40 cents if you have a series. Thus generating even more sales.

You can also restart the keyword research process again using these terms in google and amazon like you did before, thus generating even more keywords.

Amazon ads for Authors conclusion

Amazon ads for authors take a little time to master and can seem overwhelming to most at first. But don’t panic, keep it simple, follow my advice and you won’t go far wrong.

If you do lose money on your ads at first, think of it a different way. You pay when someone clicks on your book, not when they see your ad.

I have ads that have generated millions of impressions. So millions of people have seen my book cover, for no cost. Even if you’re not generating sales initially, you are generating exposure and lots of it.

You are also gathering data. You’re discovering which keywords work and which don’t. Just think how many sales you could generate in a month or two or following this weekly approach.

Besides, if you get stuck and need a hand, I’m really nice I’m always here. Send me an e-mail, DM me on Instagram or even use the little chat circle in the left corner of this screen.

If you haven’t done already, join my e-mail list of like minded authors and get free marketing tips straight in your inbox.

Published by Andy Slinger

Andy is a best selling, award winning, children's author turned digital marketer. His expertise in book marketing is well sought after, he now helps authors to become best sellers too.

7 thoughts on “Amazon Ads for Authors: 6 Ways To Make Yours Explosive

  1. Wow this is so useful! Perfect steps for someone like me who doesn’t know much about Amazon ads! Thanks so much, I’ll be setting some up this weekend.

  2. Great article! So you say “Keep your budgets per click low, a maximum of 30 cents.” Amazon recommends 90 cents for my keyword. Does the closer I bid to recommended help with making sure my book ad appears near the top of the search results? Thoughts? Thanks!

    1. Hi Kevin, sorry for the delay in replying. The chance of you winning the bid is also dependent upon the relevance of your book to the keyword. So for example, If your keyword is ‘porridge’ and your book is ‘how to make great porridge.’ You’re much more likely to be shown for this keyword, despite having a lower bid. So start your bids low, you can always raise them slightly later on if you aren’t getting much luck. Hope this helps!

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