Recently, my vacation to Iceland led to an offer for $30 in advertising credits. If you want a quick summary, don’t unless you: 1) have a significant Instagram following; 2) have the time and money to lose; and 3) have a book on sale. That seems to be the only people I’ve seen with success who haven’t lost a ridiculous amount per sale. Everyone else seems to just absorb the cost. If you disagree, I’d love to hear about it in the comments.

Now, I’m still getting hits on my Iceland trip, so if I aimed to be an influencer or wrote about travel, this would likely be a different story. I don’t – so we’re working with what we’ve got here.

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As I was abroad without a computer and had a time crunch, I used an older post when I first showed off the new cover art for High Summons. I narrowed the audience to be extremely specific – as I’d heard that led to the best results.

Plus side – over 3,000 people saw this ad. Downside – only 80 or so liked, 2 commented, and while they clicked through enough that I went through the daily budget ridiculously fast, I saw no associated sales. My books are generally $3.99, so a good price but not necessarily an ‘I have to have it now’ sort of click bait price. If I were to do it again, I’d want to have my book on sale ($0.99) and hone the ad to yell that at the consumers. Based on other articles I’ve seen, that still would likely lead to a negative return, but I always like to see the range of possibilities.

On the other hand, I’m not an Instagram lover. A bit feast or famine. During vacations and business trips, I post a lot. Otherwise, I’m more likely to be on Twitter, and honestly, my general social media stance involves me trying to not post unless I have something very specific or interesting to say – I sometimes fail. Therefore, I’m not the best person if you are extremely and consistently active on Instagram.

To sum – do it if you have a solid Instagram following, the time to design an image specifically for the ad, and money you’re willing to lose.

Good luck!

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