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When it comes to advertising your books, there are so many options, and therefore so many ways it can go wrong.

To avoid blowing your budget on ineffective or even shady ad campaigns, it’s best to go with a trusted source. BookBub is one platform that thousands of authors have turned to for help promoting their books, and their services are known for creating results.

In addition to their Featured Deals newsletters, BookBub also offers ads, which appear at the bottom of those newsletter emails. These ads can help generate more clicks and sales for your books. Read on to learn more about how BookBub ads work.

How Do BookBub Ads Work?

BookBub ads allow users to promote pre-orders, new releases, and discounted books to drive sales and visibility. These ads appear at the bottom of BookBub’s Featured Deal emails, which are sent out to thousands of subscribers.

Advertisers can target readers based on their author interests, preferred categories, geographic location, and favorite retailers.

You can also set your own customized budget and schedule for each ad, which gives you the freedom to run a campaign of any size at any time you want. Update your ads and track live results directly from your Partner Dashboard.

Having the option to run either PPC (pay-per-click) or CPM (cost-per-thousand-impressions) ads gives advertisers the flexibility to run campaigns that achieve their unique goals.

How to Use BookBub Ads

Follow these steps to set up your next BookBub Ad campaign.

1. Log in to your dashboard.

The first step is to log in to your partner dashboard, where you can manage all of your BookBub promotions.

(For help setting up your author profile, check out our free tutorial.)

bookbub partners dashboard login image

2. Create a new ad.

Click the BookBub Ads tab on the side panel, then click Create New Ad.

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At the top of the creation form, you can search for and select the book you wish to promote. Doing so will automatically pull any data for that book that BookBub has on file so you can fill out the form faster.

3. Design your ad creative.

ad creative for bookbub ads

You have the options of either uploading a custom ad creative, or creating your own image with BookBub’s in-form creative builder. Your ad creative is the final image readers will actually see, so make sure to include any text that you want to appear.

BookBub recommends keeping your image size to 300×250, because very large images will be reduced, which can negatively impact the image quality.

If you’ve already selected your book in Step 2, your cover image will automatically be added, so all you need to do is add your text.

4. Choose your click-through links.

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Click-through links are what lead to an external source when readers click on your ad. BookBub uses data for their readers’ preferred regions and retailers to automatically target them with the appropriate links.

As an advertiser, you can customize your ad so it only reaches readers based on their preferred retailer or region (for example, Canadians who read on Kobo).

Another benefit of selecting your book in Step 2 (as opposed to manual entry) is that BookBub will automatically pull any retailer links they have on file for that book. You can edit or add additional links if necessary.

If you did not select your book and need to enter links manually, this page can help you find the right retailer links by region for your book.

5. Choose your target audience.

audience targeting for bookbub ads

You can target your ads to a specific audience based on their preferred authors and categories.

Author targeting will allow you to reach readers who have expressed interest in specific authors. If you choose to include multiple authors, any reader who is a fan of one will be eligible to see your ad.

A dial on the right will show you a projection of your maximum reach based on the settings you’ve chosen for author interest and preferred categories.

To get an idea of which authors you should choose, you can look at the “readers also bought” sections of different retailer’s sites.

6. Determine your schedule and budget.

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Next, it’s time to set your ad’s schedule and budget. This will determine when your ad runs and the maximum amount you’ll spend on it.

When setting your schedule, you can opt to either run your ad continuously or over a set period of time.

If you choose to run continuously, your ad will serve until you manually turn it off. To set your budget, you should enter the amount you’re willing to spend per day.

If you choose to run your ad over a specified period of time, you should enter the amount you’re willing to spend per day. The minimum budget for a BookBub ad campaign (total and daily) is $1.

For a fixed schedule, you’ll have to determine how you want to pace your campaign. Stretching your budget over a one-month campaign will pace your spending evenly, but you might also limit the number of impressions you can get each day.

On the other hand, hitting your budget as quickly as possible means you’ll win all the impressions for which you’re the highest bidder, but you’ll likely run out of funds well before your campaign’s end date.

7. Set your bid.

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Next, you should determine whether you want to run a PPC ad or CPM ad.

In either case, you’re bidding against other advertisers who are also trying to reach your target audience. The difference is that with PPC ads, you’ll choose how much you’re willing to pay for each click your ad gets.

For CPM ads, you’ll choose how much you’re willing to pay per 1,000 impressions (one impression = one opened email). You’ll win impressions if you’re the highest bidder for that audience.

PPC is considered the lower-risk strategy because you only pay for actual clicks, whereas with CPM you pay for impressions, which might lead to clicks.

The higher you bid, the more clicks or impressions you’re likely to get. You can bid as high or as low as you’d like. However, one helpful feature of BookBub is that they’ll show you the average range of what other advertisers are currently bidding.

8. Name your ad.

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Finally, you’ll want to give your ad a name. (This will only be visible to you in your dashboard.)

Naming your ad is helpful if you’re running several ads, and it also allows you to quickly search and find campaigns.

After this step, you can either save your ad as a draft and return to it later, or click Continue to add your payment information and launch your ad.

9. Track your campaign’s progress.

Once your Bookbub ad campaign has launched, you should track its progress from the Manage Ads section of your dashboard.

You can view and monitor the following stats:

  • Impressions served: This is the number of times a reader has viewed your ad.
  • CTR (click-through-rate): This is the percentage of impressions that led to clicks.
  • Effective PPC/Effective CPM: These indicate the rate you’re paying for each click or 1,000 impressions so you can determine if your ad is cost effective.
  • Budget Spent: This indicates how much you’ve spent so far on your campaign. You can also view your Remaining Budget, which indicates how much you can still spend before maxing out your budget.

Are BookBub Ads Effective?

To determine if BookBub Ads are an effective marketing solution for your books, you can run tests to see which targets are most effective.

Investing just $10–$20 can help you figure out which types of ad copy, images, and preferred authors work best for you. From the results, you can also get insights to where most of your clicks are coming from. (For example, maybe more readers in Canada are clicking through your ads than expected, so you can readjust your strategy.)

The only limitation is that it doesn’t track conversions, so you won’t see exactly how many books were sold as a result of the ads. In our experience, though, BookBub ads have proven effective, and we feel they’re a great tool to use together with other promotions.

Promote Your Book

BookBub Ads are just one of many ways to promote your book. These campaigns can yield impressive results, but you should also incorporate other strategies in your plan.

For example, you can try using Facebook Live or street teams to help get publicity for your book. There are also a variety of promotions you can sign up for, including TCK’s very own book deal promotion service.

Did you find this post helpful? Let us know in the comments below!


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