I’m not sure why so many people think so many things should be this complicated, but every time you want to do something for the first time, there seems to be a steep learning curve. Of course, I’m talking about doing things with and through electronic machinery and software developers, all tangled up in The Web. And it’s my first time. Too bad you can’t start with the second or third time, so you know what to expect.
So here I am trying to “boost” a Facebook post. It’s an ad for a sale I’m running on my self-published book, which hasn’t sold a lot of copies on Amazon for a while. First thing to do was lower the price to make it at least a little more attractive than how it appeared during all that time it wasn’t selling.
I changed the Kindle price from $3.99 to $2.99, and the paperback price from $9.99 to $7.99. Not huge, I’ll grant you, but 25% and 20% are reasonable to experiment with. Not having done any price changing or boosting before, I suspected this would be plenty to learn with. But to make the paperback just a little more attractive, I activated the Matchbook function and set it to allow anyone buying the paperback to get the e-book for free. There. That should attract somebody.
Almost immediately, the new Kindle price was reflected on the Amazon page for the book. And the paperback price was…almost reflected. By that I mean the Kindle price showed the savings of its price compared to the new paperback price, or $7.99. But the paperback, right there next to it, still showed $9.99. And it continued to do so for THREE DAYS.
So I sat for three days, waiting for the price to be right so I could put a post on Facebook saying I’d lowered the prices. I was doing this at this time because I wanted to take advantage of the upcoming Mother’s Day, perhaps persuading someone who had given up hope of finding the right gift to leap at the chance. It was a hope. Maybe not rational, but a hope nonetheless. But the days were going by without an ad.
Finally, the stars aligned and the prices did as well. Time to go to Facebook and tell the world. I pasted my carefully-crafted words into a post, added a link to the Amazon page, and posted it. Then I clicked “Boost.” It took me to a page to customize my boost effort, and I just authorized their recommended audience algorithm, adjusted it to run for 12 days, ending on Mother’s Day, and gave them my credit card info for $36. Hopefully it will expand my audience enough to encourage enough sales to at least let me break even…but my hopes aren’t that high, especially because I just lowered my prices and therefore decreased my royalties.
Six hours later, I still have a notification that my ad is being reviewed and they’ll let me know when…or if…it gets approved. During that time, four of my friends responded with “likes” and one commented that it was a great read. Also, one shared it, though he actually only shared the link to the Amazon page and didn’t include my carefully-crafted text that would convince people to buy a book for Mom.
But, well, I’m learning. That’s what this whole self-publishing thing is all about. Apparently. It could have been all about raking in piles of dough…but that’s in a different universe.
Learning now…piles of dough later. Maybe much later. Like, next book. Or the next. But, hey…learning is good! At least it’s moving forward. And next time, it’ll go quicker and easier.
I can hope.