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Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Creating a following BEFORE your novel is published? part III

Facebook... When taken advantage of, facebook is arguably your greatest tool for creating a following, direct advertising and a handful of other helpful things that will enable you to be successful in getting your name out there.

Have I mentioned that you should visit my page, 'like' it and tell everyone you know about it? Another incredible feature of facebook is their advertising capabilities.  I happened upon a coupon for $50 of free advertising and was stunned at the targeting capabilities of facebook advertising.  It is simply amazing.

I don't get paid by facebook or anyone else to write this (FYI).  When you place an ad, you create what you want people to see -the picture, the text -today I'll use 'I am New Author trying to generate a following BEFORE my book publishes.  Please help and join my revolution!' Keep in mind, you only have 135 characters to say what you want to say.

Now for the amazing part, the targeting.  You can pick the countries you want to target.  I shoot for all the english speaking countries. Then you can pick the age you want to target.  Obviously this will be the age range of your target readership.  To the right is the estimated reach, which will change as you go.  Right now I'm at around 135 million people.

It gets better. Precise interests is where you can narrow it down to virtually anything you want including specific facebook pages.  So, if I want to target people who read a specific author...say, J.K. Rowling, I can do exactly that.

For connections, I always put 'people who are not fans of J.R. Wagner'. Obviously you don't want to waste advertising on people who already like your page. Advanced demographics; sex, in a relationship, work etc. are things I don't target -I select all.  Why limit?

Name your campaign and set your budget. I always pick lifetime budget -my first time I picked per day and set the dates/times and facebook assumed I meant two days so I spent twice as much as I wanted.  Lifetime budget won't let you exceed your budget (the campaign stops when you reach your budget)

Set your pricing. I always pay for clicks because that's what I want from the ad.  The bid amount is a cool thing.  The way facebook advertising works is if anyone else has chosen to advertise on the same page as you, the bid determines who gets to show up on that page.  I suggest using the range suggested by facebook as a conservative start.

All that's left is to place your order.  You can run multiple ads at the same time, stop ads, pause ads -the flexibility is incredible.  The reporting will tell you how many people saw your ad, how many clicked on it and much more.

In the end you can end up spending just a few dollars on an ad or a few hundred depending on how big you want to go.

Facebook ads are great but certainly not the only way to generate traffic to your page.  There are many other free methods to do this.  I will touch on them next (and I'll keep you posted on how my ad worked)

Until then...come visit!

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