How Would Madison Avenue Hawk Your Book?

“Does advertising really work?

Companies spent north of 140 billion dollars in the United States in 2014 on advertising. Someone thinks it has a pay-off. It really depends on what you want to accomplish with your advertising. If your goal is to sell a product, event, or service, the advertising needs to more than pay for itself. But if the advertising also is used for branding purposes and laying the groundwork for something bigger, the value of such a thing as advertising will be hard to define initially – but possibly worth the expenditure.

Advertising books rarely pays off for the author, given he or she only gets a royalty and not the lion’s share of the sale profit. Further, advertising a book as opposed to a series or a brand, is tough. So what should an author consider when mulling an ad plan?

First, think of what else you’ll spend money on for promotions and marketing. Set you priorities.

Second, explore the possibilities. Are you doing billboards, infomercials, radio commercials, event sponsorships, pay per click ads, newspaper ads, or something else? What’s the cost and reach of each method?

Third, gut-check if your book is really worthy of an ad campaign – does it have enough going for it that the selling of the book via some kind of ad will be successful?”

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