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Does Advertising Really Work?

Recently, I’ve seen some scuttlebutt talking about how ads don’t convert. Below is my response to that, but the TLDR is that yes, ads do work. Not only do they work, but they’re crucial.

Let's start way back in early 2017. I kept seeing authors posting about how they tried ads on Facebook and AMS and didn’t see a return--this was the genesis of my "Help! My Facebook Ads Suck" book. I wanted to show people that they *do* work. You just need the right mindset and process.

But please remember, it’s not the FB ad’s job to sell your book—that’s up to the retailer’s product page. The FB ads job is just to get people to click. That’s it. So if you’re getting clicks, the ad is doing its job.

People confuse that issue a lot. We hear a lot ‘my ad isn’t working’. But the ad is working. It’s the product page isn’t working and that means your cover, your blurb, the promise you sold in your ad.

If your ad makes a promise, your Amazon product page (or other retailers) has to back up that promise. If you have an ad talking about ferocious kittens and your book is for space marines, you’re going to have a serious disconnect and not see a lot of buys.

OMG. Ferocious kitten space marines. Why isn’t this a thing yet?

OK, so you know I think Facebook ads are important. I mean…Jill and I are the Facebook ads girls! However, some folks out there say that ads don’t convert, that they hamper cashflow and stifle your business. I’ll warrant that the wrong ads certainly can do that. As a general rule, a business’s marketing budget shouldn’t be more than 30% of it’s net profits. There are (as always) exceptions, but it’s a good rule of thumb.

So why do I think ads work? I’m going to posit something: 99% of every single freaking thing you own and use are only in your possession because of ads.

Damn close to everything.

Your car? You saw it in an ad. Heck, you probably saw it in hundreds of ads over the years. The latest i-whatever? Ads.

If Apple released a new whatsit and never told anyone about it, no one would know it was available to buy unless they go into an Apple store...and what percentage of their customers do that these days?

The pair of shoes you got from the boutique shoppe downtown? Ads. Even the store’s sign is a type of ad.

They’re hanging their shingle out there and saying “hey you, we do this thing. If you want it, come in and get it.”

Not only that, but all those car ads, Apple ads, and storefront signs are conveying a brand and telling you about the style, quality, price, and dozens of other things you absorb and consider as a part of your decision-making process.

The same is true for authors. This isn’t Field of Dreams. If you build it and do nothing else, they most certainly will not come.

You’ve gotta hang your shingle out where people are strolling by. Be that Facebook, Google, Amazon, Youtube, or their inbox. Folks need to see your book to even consider buying it.

And they need to see it more than once. You need brand/name recognition.

Ads work. Jill and I have made well over $1.5 million dollars selling fiction books because of ads. We've spent over $10k on Disney vacations because of ads.

We work pool side because of ads.

Basically, ads = marketing, and marketing doesn’t have to be scary. Heck…this post is marketing. I had fun writing it because this is a topic I’m passionate about and believe in fiercely. You believe in your book, right? Be passionate.

Be fierce.

Run some ads, do a newsletter swap, get on some podcasts and talk it up. Market that sucker and let people know about your creation.

Not sure about marketing? Need help figuring out what your brand is or how to represent it? Comment more info below and we would be happy to help.

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