By Guest Blogger Frederick Vallaeys, Google’s AdWords Evangelist
If you are you an author looking for new fans, search marketing can help you connect with potential readers at the exact moment they are searching for information about your area of expertise. With Google AdWords, your ads can appear on the Google search results pages when a user types in one of the keywords you’ve selected. Because you only pay when someone clicks your ad, you control your budget, and since there is no minimum term, this is a low-risk method to give yourself and your books more exposure, hopefully leading to increased sales.
Here are a few tips to get your campaigns started off on the right foot:
1. Pick relevant keywords
When a user does a search, their query tells you exactly what they’re looking for and if you have a great solution or answer for them, it’s an opportunity to pitch your book. AdWords lets you choose which keywords should trigger your ads, but keep in mind that some keywords are better than others. Pick good keywords by putting yourself in the shoes of a user who might be looking for your type of book and imagine what they might search for. Those are the types of keywords you should select.
Don’t waste money on keywords that are too broad and could have multiple meanings because those are less likely to lead to sales. For example, the keyword “floral arrangements” could come from a user who wants to buy a floral arrangement whereas the keyword “floral arrangement ideas” is more likely to be from a user who wants to do it themselves and who might consider buying a book on the topic.
2. Write compelling ads that highlight the relevance of your keywords
When a user sees ads on Google, they make very quick decisions about which sites to visit. If it’s not immediately obvious why your ad could solve their problem or fulfill their need, it’s likely to be passed over. Make sure you use the keyword in your title and ad text so that the user knows immediately that you can help them.
A common pitfall is to use your name or the title of your book as the headline. But, unless you or your book are very famous, that’s unlikely to get the user’s attention. Instead, give the user a compelling reason to click your ad; for example, you could include a discount, a free shipping offer or recognition your book has received. Also take advantage of the fact that you can write multiple ads and let Google choose the one that gets the best response.
3. Measure results and bid sensibly
AdWords is a low-risk way to advertise because you only pay for clicks. Figuring out what a click is worth can be challenging though so you can start with the option to let Google figure out the best bids to drive the most clicks possible for your budget. After your ads have been running a few days, look at the detailed reports in AdWords to see which keywords are driving clicks to your site and at what cost. If you installed free conversion tracking from Google on your site, your reports will tell you how many conversions like sales and newsletter sign-ups you got from each keyword. With this data, you’ll be able to make smart decisions about how much each click is worth.