Goodreads is a revolutionary platform for book-lovers to meet, write reviews, and connect with their favorite authors. On top of this, their Cost-per-Click Advertising system is an excellent, cost-effective way to find your readers and drive sales. This article offers some helpful tips on how to run a successful Goodreads campaign, while getting discovered by people who love your genre.
Before you begin.
Make sure that you’re fully set up as an Author in Goodreads, and that each of your books are available before you even look into Marketing.
Using your Goodreads account, you can login to their advertising site here.
The above image is what you can expect to see when setting up your campaign. Find your book by searching for its ISBN. This will double check that you’re advertising the right novel.
It’s a pretty straightforward system, but there are few things that will help you make the most of it. First, decide how much you are willing to spend on your overall campaign, and how much you are willing to spend per click, then consider doing the following:
Running a Successful Campaign
1. Schedule Two or More Ads At The Same Time
Unlike its cousin Amazon Marketing, you can use the same budget split across multiple ads in Goodreads. That means you can pay $30 for a campaign which has several ads running considerably. This is a great technique to to target different audiences and track which group performs the best. It also widens your net considerably, giving your ads far wider reach for the same cost. It’s also usefult to know that while Amazon has a $100 minimum campaign fee, but Goodreads does not!. So, it’s a pretty good marketing option for authors that don’t have the biggest budget set aside for marketing.
2. Target Multiple Authors for One Half of Your Ads
Take the time to research the bestsellers in your genre. Using a websites like Amazon can be extremely good for researching what is selling, and to what audience. Make note of the bestsellers’ names and their book titles.
While setting up your Targeting on your Goodreads campaign, take advantage of this bestseller list and make sure to include these authors’ names. Your ad will be targeted at their readers, and will hopefully gain you some readers of your own.
In saying that, however, don’t mislead your readers. If you haven’t written something like the next Go Set A Watchman, don’t advertise that you have. Readers will call you on your dishonesty, and like most online platforms it can turn nasty.
3. Target Multiple Genres for the Second Half of Your Ads
Make sure you know where your genre sits, and use Goodreads to target people who read those genres. If your book is Young Adult Romantic Fantasy, you can add all of that in one ad target, or you can split them up. If, like the Divergent series, your Young Adult book can appeal to adult readers as well, don’t forget to target the Sci Fi Dystopian Fiction audience as well as Young Adult.
The above warning remains however; select only the genres that your book actually falls in. Don’t try and sell something as Historical Romance if it’s Horror.
4. Try Multiple Taglines
Use multiple taglines for each advertisement. Mix it up because some people won’t necessary click on a title if you add that its only 99c, while others will, for example. Using a question such as, “Will Lassie Reach Tommy in time?” can intrigue readers to want to know more.
Taglines are great, and each audience will have something that will attract them specifically. Have fun with it, and see what makes readers click.
5. Promote Give Aways
Ads are a great way to promote your Goodreads Giveaways. This will give you double the exposure you would normally receive from a normal giveaway. If you are a new author, giveaways can help you receive reviews, as well as encourage people to talk about your book. Don’t forget to advertise your those giveaways on your social media pages, too!
6. Use a Call to Action
Use a call-to-action (CTA) on your ad such as “Add to Your Shelf.” When readers add a book to their shelf, for instance, this action is displayed on their own profile, to all of their followers and sometimes to their Facebook timeline, too. This spreads the ad further than the one platform, and also encourages friends to discuss new books they have found with each other.
7. Clever Linking
You have the option in your ads to link to your book’s Goodreads page or any outside website. The above advice of splitting half your ads to link to its Goodreads page and the other half to your Amazon page can work to achieve two different ends. First, linking to a Goodreads page will help create a viral effect of adding books to shelves and sharing with friends and on Facebook. Second, if you link to your Amazon page, this is more likely to result in an immediate purchase.
As you can see, Goodreads is a great advertising tool that lacks some of the restrictions of other Cost-Per-Click advertising (especially Amazon). Using the above tips will help readers find your work, while offering you value for your marketing budget, and hopefully driving higher sales.
For a more detailed explanation about setting up and running your Goodreads campaign, this is a useful video to watch:
What’s your favorite thing about Goodreads? What inspires you to click? Have you tried Goodreads advertising yourself?