If you follow Chris Fox, then you caught one of my most profitable marketing methods right now is fiction in the email he sent out this morning.
It’s one that I’ve been using successfully for the past 4-ish months to keep my profits high even though I haven’t published anything new in more than 6 months (closer to 8 months now).
If you didn’t see the email, then keep reading (keep reading anyways because it’s probably not the method you’re thinking)…
But before we dive into marketing tricks, I’ve got some explaining to do.
I missed sending out an email yesterday.
My little brother had his first kid yesterday afternoon.
And in the back and forth phone calls…
… the tweeting, texting, and Facebook messaging my other relatives…
… And the general excitement of the whole affair…
… I simply forgot to click “send”.
So, I’m going to combine yesterday’s email with today’s to give you a marketing master class instead.
How Chris Fox Let The Cat Out Of The Bag
And Why I’m Furious…
I’m not actually furious.
I just have a headline fetish.
But Chris did spill a HUGE marketing secret in his email this morning.
It’s a secret so big (and important) that it needs to be dissected on two separate levels.
Level 1 Dissection: The Technique
In the email, Chris mentions that he hasn’t been able to run a single profitable Facebook ad for this new science fiction book release of his.
He concludes that it’s because of Mark Dawson’s Facebook ads course flooding the market with new advertisers.
It isn’t (and I will explain why in our Level 2 Dissection).
But the Golden Nugget in his email (and I’m assuming the video, haven’t watched it yet), is that he reveals that Amazon ads ARE producing profitable results.
I can affirm that Amazon ads ARE working very, very, well right now.
Did they work well last year?
But for the past four months, I have been able to keep my monthly profit from fiction at the SAME OR BETTER levels as when I was actively and aggressively publishing books. Due in large part to Amazon ads. Keep in mind, I haven’t published anything new in over six months (I think it’s closer to eight months at this point).
I want to talk a little bit more about the significance of this, and why the TECHNIQUE isn’t nearly as important as the STRATEGY that Chris revealed in his email. So let’s jump into a deeper dissection of what’s really going on.
Level 2 Dissection: The Strategy
There is a huge difference between TECHNIQUE and STRATEGY.
TECHNIQUE = Facebook CPC ads
STRATEGY = paid traffic to free book
But strategy goes even deeper than that.
Good strategy is a mindset.
Chris Fox, in this morning’s email, revealed his strategy behind 100% of his success.
Most struggling writers need to take a close look at that email (and his others) and adopt his strategic mindset. ASAP is preferable.
Let me break it down for you:
Stop focusing on TECHNIQUE and adopt the STRATEGY of being the “fast mover”.
Self-publishing is NOT unique in the speed in which the path to success changes.
What worked last year, doesn’t work as well this year.
Welcome to business.
You must get out of your “day job mindset” where you receive the same paycheck for the same activity year over year.
Success in today’s marketplace (whether you are self-publishing or not) requires speed and adaptation.
As soon as you learn something, everyone else will have learned it as well. And by definition it will no longer be as effective as it appeared to be at the outset.
The key then, is to learn how to predict the “next big thing” in marketing TECHNIQUE so that you can apply it to your STRATEGY (whatever that may be).
How is this accomplished?
FOLLOW THE MONEY.
Facebook doesn’t care about its advertisers.
Don’t believe me? Spend some time in a Facebook advertising group. You’ll soon discover how Facebook’s vague terms of service is so brilliantly used (by them) to keep THEIR bottom line protected.
Think about it this way:
For Facebook, Amazon, iTunes etc. their end goal is to make as much money as possible.
You don’t make money from advertising. You make it from having eyeballs to advertise to.
Facebook is constantly trying to improve the user experience. They will go to any means necessary to create an “addicting” experience. They want you to come back over and over and over again.
THAT’S how they can attract advertisers.
It doesn’t work the other way around. It STARTS with the user.
User tastes change over time.
In the beginning, newsfeed CPC ads were very attractive to the user. People were getting incredible offers, tons of free stuff, etc.
Now, the user has moved on to something bigger and better.
Video ads. Lead generation ads. Instagram ads.
Your job as an advertiser (a role that makes up 70 to 80% of running a self-publishing business), is to spot these trends at the very least as they are happening. Not after.
To do this, it only requires your ability to be empathetic towards the mission and goals of the platform you want to advertise on.
FOLLOW THE MONEY.
Ask yourself, “if I was Facebook, how would I improve the user experience?”
Facebook CPC ads aren’t broken. They aren’t overcrowded and competitive.
They simply don’t serve Facebook’s bottom line anymore. Their users no longer want the news feed full of static advertising.
So, naturally, Facebook is making it harder to run CPC ads in the newsfeed. Are they making it impossible? No. They are simply making it harder (introducing relevancy scores, tweaking the algorithm even further to encourage “social ads” etc.).
They are simply trying to move advertisers to the ad type that their users want.
You want to know what’s working really, really, really well for me right now?
Especially video ads with part of my audiobook recording as the audio.
So, the point of all of this is:
If your advertising methods are starting to go stale…
… If you can’t seem to get traction in your genre using a method that “everybody else” is having success with…
… Then FOLLOW THE MONEY.
Figure out where the advertiser wants you to go. Are they trying to move towards video? Do they want more interactive ads? Where do they want you to send clicks (don’t underestimate this)?
This is how you never overpay for advertising.
Learn to feed the Dragon and the Dragon will guard your treasure. (Not my best metaphor).
It takes more than just learning a technique to successfully advertise.
You must develop the mindset first. Strategy second. Technique last.
Your technique will change the most over time.
Your strategy will change to, though not nearly as frequently.
But your mindset, if correct, will last you a lifetime. Regardless of new technologies, new marketing methods, or even new businesses that you enter.
Get that part right, and you’ll never go hungry again.
Mike “Not Furious At All” Shreeve
P. S. Over the past two days I have written just under 6000 words.
I am now just beginning to see what this story is going to truly become.
Even though I have a full and complex outline (which I will be sharing with you once I publish the first book), I am still discovering my story as I write it.
That’s the fun part about writing longer works. It never seems to get dull.