Case Study Positive ROI on Facebook ads for Authors

As an author it can be challenging to promote your book.  You want to reach a new audience and there can be many avenues to promote your book.  Facebook ads are a natural venue but it’s hard to get the return on your investment with a lower cost product like a book.  In this post, I will share with you what worked in getting positive ROI on Facebook ads for an author.

Facebook Ads for Authors – a challenge

One of the biggest issues with a book is that is hard to have positive ROI on Facebook ads because the price of the book is generally between $10-20 and possibly lower for the Kindle version.

The other issue is that you can’t track the specific sales from each ad if you are sending your traffic to Amazon.

But it isn’t impossible.

The key is in the targeting and the messaging.

I’ve worked with Paul Lipton before and he has a great story.  He was a lawyer in Florida and now is semi-retired and has written a series of books.

His latest, In These Five Breaths, is a powerful story about life and death and what a well-lived life means.  What we found is the targeting made a HUGE difference in the response to the ads.

In these 5 breaths novel

Test Plan for Facebook Ads

Our objective was Traffic to the Amazon page and our Key Performance Indicator (KPI) was link click cost.

The other challenge with authors and tracking is that we can’t tell which ad is leading to more purchases.  We could have run the ads consecutively to isolate that but we didn’t want to spend that much time in the testing phase.

We created 3-4 images for ad testing and ran several ads under 3 different audiences.  Because we had a limited budget overall, we did not want to create too many variables so the results had significance.

High level comparison Facebook Audiences

Some of the other things that can be good for authors if you have an audience is to retarget ads to website visitors and do some engagement retargeting from people who have watched your videos.

In Paul’s case, his book had very direct appeal to Mitch Albom readers and Hospice workers which we were able to target well on Facebook.

As we found the best audiences, we then refined the messaging specifically to those people and created some new ads with testimonials that would catch their eye.

Facebook Ad appealing to audience

Facebook Ads Results

As we narrowed our results down to the best performers, we were then able to drive more targeted traffic to Amazon for lower costs and we scaled those ads up.

We had a testing phase of 2 weeks, spending just $50 per ad and then scaled.


Comparing results Facebook Ad level

The overall result was a positive ROI on book sales and a great book launch.  Plus Paul can now run these same ads when he wants extra visibility on his book.

Testimonial from Paul

Thanks Paul for your testimonial!

“I would highly recommend working with Andrea Vahl to run your Facebook ads.  I am an author and have published multiple books.  My latest book “In These Five Breaths” was promoted with Facebook and through her testing we got the campaign down to $0.11 link click cost and 15% click through rate which resulted in a great launch for the book.”


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