Once you’ve published a book, promoting it on Facebook isn’t as easy as simply posting a photo of the cover and a link to where it can be purchased.
Your personal Facebook community may care about your most recent beach trip or your new puppy, but the audience you’ll promote your book to is completely different. Yes, you may get a few sales from good pals – and even truly interested friends and family – but, for the most part, your book audience is going to be elsewhere.
Here’s how to increase your book sales on Facebook.
Create a Fan Page
You need to treat your new book like a business, which means you’ll need a different, more professional, and targeted place to promote it. Create a fan page, which you’ll cater to differently – and more frequently, probably – than you do your regular Facebook profile. Aim to post one to two times a day, and keep with that schedule even in the beginning when you don’t have much of an audience – the consistency will pay off.
Run Facebook Ads
Facebook users give the platform a lot of information, and that information is used to determine their demographics and interests, which marketers then use to target their ads to the right people.
Assuming this is your first time running Facebook ads, you’ll want to wait until you have more experience and audience insight to choose objectives like increasing conversions or getting more people to take advantage of a special offer.
For now, stick with increasing click-through rate, which means getting more people from your ad over to your website, where you’ve hopefully set up some sort of landing page to encourage people to buy your book (or download a free sample as part of your marketing funnel).
Engage with and Respond to Your Fans
Once you’ve done the work of gathering a book audience on Facebook, don’t neglect them. If they comment on your posts or ask questions, respond to them. Further engage with them by asking them questions, too, and by doing things like holding Q and As during a live stream or posting raw, in-the-moment content to Facebook Stories to show them what your authentic life is like. Consumers love to connect with brands and professionals that are real.
Here’s an insider tip: To get your audience chatting, don’t ask broad or yes-or-no questions. For example, “How’s everyone doing this weekend?” or “Have you read the latest book in the XYZ series?” won’t encourage a conversation. Instead, something like this will work better: “Who else is addicted to [book name]? And more important, who would you cast in the lead role for a movie version?”
Join (or Create) a Facebook Group
Facebook Groups are ready-made communities of people who fit the right demographics – i.e., they’re already part of your audience, you just haven’t met each other yet. And while you can create your own Facebook Group – and probably should once you build a following of your own – joining an existing group of people who are interested in books in general and in your book’s subject area means a lot of the work has already been done for you. However, know this: You don’t want to head in just for the sake of promoting your work. Spend time listening to what the members are saying, jump into conversations you’re genuinely interested in, and bring up your own book when it fits naturally into a conversation.
Ultimately, the cornerstone of promoting your book on Facebook is to find more readers. Since Facebook has such a vast audience, a percentage of them are bound to be interested in the topic of your book (and books and reading in general!). With a combination of organic and paid tactics, you should be able to drum up interest in your book, increase sales, and build an audience that will stick with you as you write even more in the future.
Brian Meert is CEO of Hollywood based digital advertising agency, Advertisemint, and author of the best selling, The Complete Guide to Facebook Advertising. Brian has managed millions of dollars of digital ad spends in entertainment, fashion, finance, and software industries. He is the author of the best selling, The Complete Guide to Facebook Advertising, and is a regular contributor to Forbes Expert Panel. Brian previously built and sold Gofobo.com, an online ticketing system that revolutionized the entertainment industry and is now utilized by Warner Bros. and Disney.
Amen, amen and amen to what Brian wrote–I have had a “book page” on Facebook for a number of years, and have seen slow but steady growth there. But Facebook reduced the views my followers got, so I turned to creating a group with the same theme. Since my topic is the outdoors and Easy Walks, interest in this topic has skyrocketed during Covid. Requests to join the group have also increased dramatically. Getting some help administrating the group has been important–but thankfully it’s not hard to see who are the most interested people in your group–they are the best candidates to turn to for help making sure discussions do not go off the rails, as sometimes happens in Facebook. This is my tribe, and having a group dedicated to this topic has made it much easier to share book release announcements, but also to offer information of value that keeps readers returning to the page.
Would you recommend creating a fanpage for a new author? I’ll definitely use facebook ads and a landing page on the site. I’m working on my first book (a legal thriller novel). But since I’m a new author I don’t have fans yet, so my page would literally only be friends and family.