Build A Simple, Profitable and Sustainable Author Business

Hi, I'm Matt Holmes, and I help self-published authors build a simple and profitable business without the "hustle".

I spend 60-90 minutes per day building my wife’s six-figure author business.

And in my FREE daily(ish) newsletter, I’ll share real-time, real-world, actionable insights to help you do the same.

I’ll also send you my FREE Facebook Ads For Authors Masterclass as soon as you sign up.

SSA #022: Trojan Horse Facebook Ads

Jun 03, 2023

Read Time: 2.5 minutes


I spent $433.83 on 1 Facebook Ad last week.

And I thought it was a winner:

  • Lots of clicks
  • Low Cost-Per-Clicks (CPCs) – $0.14
  • High Click-Through Rates (CTRs) – 12.03%

Turns out though, that $433 only generated 2 sales and 1,100 page reads.

Those are some VERY expensive sales. Needless to say, this Ad was not a winner.

 

Why Am I Sharing This?

 

You might be asking why I'm sharing such a disastrous result I got from Facebook Ads! And I wouldn't blame you! 

The truth is, I feel it's just as important to share my "losses" as it is my "wins". It's not all sunshine and rainbows, and even though I've been running Facebook Ads for several years now, there are still lots of Ads I run that don't work; and this is definitely one of them!

If I only shared the highlights reel of what works and never shared what didn't work, and why, I'd be doing you a disservice.


Never In Isolation


Why am I telling you all this?

To urge you, if you're not already, to never look at your Facebook Ads in isolation.

Yes, this Ad looked great inside of the Facebook Ads dashboard, but from a conversion standpoint, it was a shocker; one of my worst ever.

I would never have known how abysmal the performance of this Facebook Ad was, had I not been using Amazon Attribution to track conversions.

When I did discover the truth about this Ad, you can bet your bottom dollar I turned it off!

If I'd been a little more on the ball, I would have turned it off sooner. But with one thing and another, I just didn't manage to check the conversions until it was too late.


Sales and Rank Dropped


With this Ad sucking up most of the daily budget, it meant there was less budget available to go towards the proven, winning Ads, that were previously driving a LOT of sales and page reads each day.

As a result, sales dropped a touch, but the most debilitating factor was that the Amazon Bestseller Rank tanked by about 3,000 places.

As soon as I turned this poor-performing Ad off though, the proven Ads had the budget to spend, sales began to rise once again and the Amazon Bestseller Rank started to improve.

Overall for the week, despite this $433 in wasted ad spend, we were still profitable; it would have been more profitable, of course, but we live and learn.


Four Lessons


I do my utmost to make these newsletters as actionable as possible for you each week. With this in mind, below, you'll find 4 of the biggest lessons I learned over the past week:

Lesson #1: Always use Amazon Attribution links to track conversions; without these, you are winging it, and potentially throwing hundreds, if not thousands of dollars down the drain needlessly.

Lesson #2: A great-looking Ad inside your Facebook Ads dashboard, never signifies (with 100% certainty), that it's a great performer, from a conversion and cost-per-sale standpoint.

Lesson #3: Keep a close eye on your Amazon Attribution dashboard to monitor conversions. Yes, there is a bit of lag in the data coming through (up to 7 days for sales and 14 days for page reads). But if I'd have checked Amazon Attribution a couple of days earlier than I did, I could have saved myself a few hundred dollars.

Lesson #4: Don't forget to analyze the failed Ad, and make a note of why you think it failed, so you don't use that image, headline, or primary text again in future Ads.

Learn from my mistakes; never look at things in isolation, and remember to keep a close eye on your conversions; low cost-per-clicks mean nothing without conversions.

That's it for this week; thanks for reading. See you next Saturday!

To Your Success
– Matt

Build A Simple, Profitable and Sustainable Author Business

Hi, I'm Matt Holmes, and I help self-published authors build a simple and profitable business without the "hustle".

I spend 60-90 minutes per day building my wife’s six-figure author business.

And in my FREE daily(ish) newsletter, I’ll share real-time, real-world, actionable insights to help you do the same.

I’ll also send you my FREE Facebook Ads For Authors Masterclass as soon as you sign up.