Do Sponsored Facebook ads really help sell books?

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Facebook is a great way for authors to network and get their books presented to the world. Your personal page is of course the best way to promote your work to friends, family, readers, and potential readers. Authors also tend to create business (fan) pages, so their readers can follow them and keep up with information strictly about their books. Facebook also has allowed authors to create sponsored ads, which authors pay a certain amount of money to have a specific post about their work promoted to the world. While it’s a great way for people who you don’t know personally to find out about you, do sponsored ads really help indie authors, in particular, sell books?

I was hesitant to create a sponsored ad at first. With all the hackers stealing people’s personal information, and even duplicating and locking them out of their own profiles, I wasn’t sure it was a good idea to enter my credit card information on Facebook. But, as a self-published author who is still relatively unknown to many people and who so desperately wants a better fan base, I took the risk and created an ad. You set a certain amount that you wish to spend in total, and Facebook claims that a certain amount of people will be able to reach (see) the post, depending on how much you spend. I wasn’t sure about it, so I set my total goal to be $10.00. Once the ad was approved, I got notification updates often on how many people were ‘seeing’ my post about my new release. However, even though once the ad campaign was completed, over 2,000 people were ‘reached’, I only ended up with less than 25 of those 2,000 people who actually ‘liked’ the post, 1 person shared it, and only 3 people commented on it. And most importantly, I had 0 book sales in total. Out of all of that, I didn’t sell 1 book due to my ad campaign. Just an F.Y.I.: Facebook likes and views don’t guarantee you a book sale.

So no, it wasn’t worth it to me to spend the $10.00 that I spent so that 2,000 people could view my post about my book. I spend a lot of time promoting my work on my blog, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and by word of mouth for free, all day..everyday, and I’ve seen much better results with my book sales. I’m not saying it will be this way for everybody; I’m sure well-known, more successful authors have better luck with the Facebook sponsored campaign ads, but it proved to be a waste of money to me. Have you used sponsored ads and did you have better luck than I did with them?

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