Running Away with a #1 New Book Release on Amazon

Recently, I’ve had the pleasure of working closely with Licia Morelli.

She’s a psychic, speaker, and recent author of her first children’s book, The Lemonade Hurricane: A Story About Mindfulness and Mediation.

The book is wonderful, and has found its place serving a community of parents who want to instill mindfulness in their children.

This story, however, is about how a book that hasn’t even released yet became a #1 New Release on Amazon.

What does it take to have a #1 New Release on Amazon?

In short, the answer is book sales, but that’s overly simplified, and the answer isn’t as simple as Facebook Ads, either.

No, that’s not where it starts.

It all starts with Licia and her team.

Smart business owners surround themselves with even smarter specialists.

While Licia may be good at drawing, it’s Jennifer Morris providing the illustrations, and while I’m sure Licia is a business maven herself, it’s the very talented Lisa Fiorvante serving as her business and launch strategist.

There are other strong talents on the team, and if they’d like to be named, I’m more than happy to. They deserve it.

And then there’s me– hired on as the Facebook Advertising manager.

My only hangup? I’ve never run a Facebook ad campaign for a physical product before.

It’s a big deal for me to be working on a campaign where success was marked by the sale of a physical product.

Up until now, I’ve sold digital products and chased other digital wins, like building an email list. I knew that Facebook ads had the capability to sell a children’s book– I just hadn’t seen it with my own eyes.

I found confidence in something that I commonly tell my clients.

Facebook Ads are not magic– they can only multiply the results of a campaign’s success or failure.

A good campaign can become great, and a bad campaign will only lose even more money.

I believed that Licia’s book was something people wanted, and I had faith that her very capable team could pull off the launch.

Then it was just a matter of reaching the right people, and relying on the help of an unexpected marketing tactic.

Here’s how the campaign went down.

The most important component of any good online promotion is the landing page, and this one is beautiful– check it out:

With such a good landing page to drive traffic to, and an entire book of illustrations to pull from for ads, I didn’t have to worry at all about making a seamless transition for potential customers.

Those are the two ads we A/B tested. You can pretty easily tell which won out (hint: one has 130 shares).

Next up came targeting.

Licia provided me with a great base of audiences to start with, and then I expanded upon it through my own research using Facebook’s Audience Insights tool.

Since it’s a children’s book, we were able to get pretty specific about who we targeted.

I managed to trim our interest-based audiences down to specifically moms in their 30s/40s with children in preschool or grade school. Pretty spot on, huh?

Following the audience testing procedure I use (which can learn more about here:, we started with 34 different audiences and finished with only 5.

And really, most of the ad budget is being spent on 1 of those.

The results?

The worst ad set had a CPC (cost per click) of $2.81, and the best was $0.29– BIG difference.

We’re currently at almost 2,000 website clicks with an average CPC of $0.43 and a 10 relevance score — and that’s for an ad with a “Pre-order your copy of my new children’s book today!” CTA (call to action) — crazy!

Basic rule of thumb is that when directly promoting a paid product, you can expect a CPC of $1 or more. For content or something free, you can whittle it down to $0.50 or less.

This campaign is defying that rule– and the best part? It’s scaling beautifully.

But clicks don’t necessarily mean anything.

It’s true– they don’t, and that was my biggest concern in promoting a physical product– especially one being hosted on Amazon amongst all its competition.

Book sales are what we need, and those come from exposure to a receptive audience. The most sustainable way to do that is to break into the top 100 in a relevant book category on Amazon, because then you start getting organic traffic.

Early sales momentum is everything, and Facebook ads are perfect for getting the ball rolling.

Your “Amazon Best Sellers Rank” is how your position in a given category is determined, and it’s updated in real time.

Licia’s book was placed in the Siblings category nestled beneath Children’s Books, and was having a real struggle breaking even the top 200– turns out it’s a really competitive category.

I started researching how to succeed with a book on Amazon.

In the meantime, it was Saturday and we experienced a stroke of luck– the book made it all the way down to #95 in the Siblings category, and then further to #87.

Book sales reports are released weekly from the publisher, so we didn’t know it then, but when we saw it the following week we learned that sales jumped from around 400 to over 1,000 on that Saturday alone!

Now is when that unexpected marketing tactic comes in.

Rank seems to fluctuate a lot on Amazon, and the book receded back into the 200s. That’s when I came across a guest post titled How to get an eBook to #1 on Amazon that was featured on OK Dork, the blog of my favorite internet marketer, Noah Kagan.

It seems pretty simple now, but the post suggested early on that researching less competitive categories to place the book in can solve the issue of placing in the top 100, and that once you place in the top 100 you get prized #1 Book Release banner.

I shot a message over to Licia about listing the book in some less competitive categories, and she passed along my suggestion to the publisher.

Soon enough, the changes were made.

We jumped straight to #9 in one category, #45 in another, all the while remaining #201 in the original Siblings category.

What does that translate to?!

A #1 New Release on Amazon.

It’s not over yet.

The Facebook ads continue to be a success. They’re getting outrageous engagement (and most importantly, shares) and the sales coming in continue to far outpace the daily investment.

We’re still in the pre-sale phase until early September, so we’ll see where our numbers end up once the book actually ships. Our next goal is glowing reviews, paving the way to a #1 Best Seller.

Want to learn how to do Facebook Ads and recreate these results? Check out my recent blog post outlining the 3 things you should do before spending $1 on Facebook Ads.

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