Writing a blurb for a novel is difficult. How can you possibly condense a novel you’ve poured blood, sweat, and tears into down to just three paragraphs? It’s nearly impossible and sometimes feels more difficult than writing the novel in the first place. But even worse is ad copy. I’m referring here to Amazon Sponsored Products Ads.
My goal in 2019 is to quintuple my royalties. (Crazy, I know.) In order to make that goal happen, I’ve been advertising more and more on Amazon. One of the most frustrating aspects of Amazon ads is writing the actual ad copy. Amazon limits the copy to 150 characters. How can you possibly tell enough of the story to interest a reader with only 150 characters? You can’t. It’s impossible.
But then, I had an epiphany. I was in the shower when I realized my mistake. (I really should get a robe.) Ad copy doesn’t need to tell the story. That’s what the blurb is for. Nope, the only thing ad copy should do is get the reader to click. That’s all. Get a reader interested enough to click.
Sounds easy enough, right? Yeah, not really. Here are a few rules I apply to my ad copy:
Tone and voice. It’s important to incorporate the same the tone and voice of your novel into the ad copy. If your novel is witty, be witty. It’s not enough to say the novel is witty, you need to show it.
Don’t lie. Of course, we should never lie. (White lies are okay, right?) But what I mean here is you shouldn’t mislead readers. If your novel is not full of suspense, don’t make it sound like it is in the ad copy. At best, you’ll have lots of clicks with no buys. At worst, you’ll get one-star reviews from readers who feel tricked.
Here are some other tips:
Quote an awesome review. Let a reader pick your ad copy for you!
Indicate prizes your novel has won. I’m not a big fan of bragging about prizes, but it’s undeniable that it works for marketing.
Use genre-specific terminology. For example, does your novel fall into a beloved romance trope such as the reverse harem? Make sure to mention it.
Indicate urgency/discount. Indicate the price is a limited-time only discount. Go further and show the discount by indicating the original price.
Use social proof. For example, if you have over 50 five-star reviews or over 50,000 copies read.
How about you? How do you write ad copy? Any tricks of the trade to share?
This blog post is part of the #AuthorToolboxBlogHop. This is a monthly blog hop hosted by @raimeygallant. Make sure to stop by the other author blog posts in this month’s blog hop to fill up your author toolbox!