I've been experimenting with Amazon advertising for the first time this week, to try to drum up a few more sales of the novels. I've only been doing it in a small way at present, mainly to make sure I know how everything works, and also to find out what is and isn't working about my current offering.
The Amazon ad system is pretty reasonable cost-wise, a little complex to get the most out of it, but more importantly, generates a lot of useful metrics so that I can make a guess at what needs to be done. I've been running it for a few days, and it confirmed a couple of things I'd been expecting.
Firstly the ratio of the number of times the ad is displayed compared to the number of clicks points to a less than effective front cover. So, as you can see from the image above, I've made an effort to improve these – to give them a common, consistent theme as a coherent series rather than the design that evolved over each release. The oriignal cover of my novel, The Stream, even got a little nod in the new cover of Integration
It's better, if not perfect. Best I'm going to get without the next obvious step of actually paying someone competent to do some covers for me!
Secondly, the ratio of clicks to number of sales is poor. The best way of fixing that is to make my blurb on the Amazon listing a bit more punchy. I've now made both these set of changes and submitted them for publishing. So a new edition should emerge over the next couple of days.
I've also updated this website with my new cover images, and the front page with the new blurbs, although I've left the dedicated product pages unchanged with the original text to add a bit more information.
I've not changed anything in the novels themselves, not my intention to do so again, just the surrounding collateral to improve sales.
Phew, that's it. I'll be quietly keeping my eye on the ad performance in the vain hope that the sales revenue will outstrip the ad cost…