Blog Tour wrap-up for ‘Isis, Vampires and Ghosts – Oh My!’ by Janis Hill 1-30 Sep 2014

Guest posts and interviews

Massive thanks to Roxanne Rhoads from Bewitching Book Tours for the work she and her bloggers put into the tour! Neither Janis nor I can recommend them too much. Thanks people. Continue reading

Marketing for authors: what to expect from click-through and conversion rates

CTR tag cloudBeing presently involved in an advertising campaign for our latest release Lights Over Emerald Creek by Shelley Davidow, I thought I’d check to see how our advertising compares to industry averages for click-through rates (CTR) and conversion rates (CR). Surprisingly, given the poor return we’re getting, it turns out we’re actually achieving average rates in both categories.


  • CTR = 0.05%, i.e. for every 2000 views of an advertisement, we expect to get 1 person clicking the advertisement to visit our site; and
  • CR = 2%, i.e. for every 50 people visiting our site we expect to get 1 sale.

And no, the financials don’t necessarily add up. For a series of advertisements designed to be viewed 86,000 times we’re paying $330. That will probably give us 43 click-throughs, and possibly between one and two sales (at $5 each). At the moment we are still working to improve future CTR by focussing our ads in those blogs which give us the best return (the ads are presently being tested across 8 blogs, all with either a focus on YA Fiction, or SF&F). However, we are also using alternatives which have the potential of either increasing the CTR, or reducing the cost, for those with limited budgets.

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A post on Facebook will reach 50% less people than it did 6 months ago!


Organic reach graphAccording to an a recent article on the reach of a post on Facebook (ie the number of people who actually get to see a post) has halved over the last 6 months. To some extent this can be related to what appears to be a 50% increase in the average number of pages liked by the average Facebook user over the last year techcrunch. What this means is that the average user now likes so many people/pages that they simply don’t have the time  to keep read every post that could (in theory) appear on their timeline.

Of course this isn’t the only factor, the big problem for most businesses is that rather than building the tools to help users manage their own timeline Facebook has decided to impose a news feed sorting algorithm that according to Facebook’s News Feed Director of Product Management Will Cathcart has over 10,000 factors. The most important of those 10,000 are:  Continue reading

How changes to Facebook’s news feed affects small businesses

FaceBooks thumbs down

Changes to Facebook in the later part of 2013, and specifically the way the news feed is created,  means that people will no longer be presented with all the posts by people or businesses they are following.  This will have an obvious, and sometimes devastating effect on small businesses that rely on Facebook to inform their followers of new products etc.

In a recent post on Paul Szoldra wrote that the changes are “designed to restrict the reach of posts  that get little reaction from friends and followers, but to promote posts that get high levels of engagement.”

The problem is that this approach is quite different from Twitter, YouTube, and Google+ where content remains unfiltered, and raises the obvious question why Facebook did it? Continue reading