Last Friday’s wide-ranging #followreader chat about the smartest book advertising strategies, with guests Denise Berthiaume and Tom Thompson of Verso Advertising, touched on topics like how readers are discovering books and how the avid readers who participate in our #followreader chats respond to book ads. (Some of these questions were also covered in last week’s two-part interview with these two publishing veterans – in case you missed them, here’s Part One and here’s Part Two.)
Check out the complete transcript here – our guests have lots of pithy insights on how to manage your marketing dollars and there’s plenty of passionate feedback from book bloggers, authors, publishers and others about what kind of book ads appeal most.
How do the readers here feel about book ads – has anyone bought a book recently based on an ad? #followreader
I don’t think I’ve ever bought a book based on an ad #followreader Posted by myfriendamy
I think ads less effective than authors who’re active on Twitter. #followreader Posted by maggiedana
Amazon gets me occasionally on a recommendation. That’s about it for me. #followreader Posted by DavidRozansky
I have bought a book from an ad if I already know the author; when ad alerts me to new book by him or her #followreader Posted by BethFishReads
We have found ads work best for authors with large fan base or books that are long awaited. #followreader Posted by DavidRozansky
I have bought a book based solely on an ad – not because it was an author I knew. #followreader Posted by ReadingItAll
I’m more likely to go with a book that has received MANY great reviews. I NEVER trust one paper or reviewer #followreader Posted by danish_novelist
Especially in USA I don’t trust ads. Country is so big that you can always find 3 idiots who called book a “masterpiece”:-) #followreader Posted by danish_novelist
Best way to buy book is via browsing. Ability to read page to see if you like author’s style, voice. #followreader Posted by maggiedana
Rich media ads can convey a browsing experience. It’s been hard to do w/our budgets but costs coming down… #followreader Posted by TomThompson
Yes, all our ads (both print and online) offer access to browse by sending to appropriate author/pub site #followreader Posted by DBerthiaume
Ads work best w/ all forms of marketing/publicity, not in a void; best to keep this in mind. #followreader Posted by DBerthiaume
Is it worthwhile to work with sites like Goodreads, Shelfari, and ReadingSocial in terms of advertising and engagement?
Yes, that’s where highly engaged readers are. you can really measure viral impact there as well (shelf adds, etc.) #followreader Posted by TomThompson
You can also use book social nets in tandem w/ facebook by advertising on their fb apps. Allows some crossover to fb newsfeed. #followreader Posted by TomThompson
What I like about fb apps such as Visual Bkshlf is you target engaged readers & word gets out to their broader friendfeed. #followreader Posted by TomThompson
Also, you can run rich media on the fb apps that you can’t on straight fb ads. But fb is rolling out new ad products every day #followreader Posted by TomThompson
I find the friend of a fan and niche ads really promising on FB #followreader Posted by ReadingItAll
What trends are you seeing on your ad networks about how readers discover books?
We’ve found that people trust their favorite sites, so are inclined to feel enthusiastic about a book appearing there. #followreader Posted by DBerthiaume
By fave sites, we mean enthusiast sites, like WWII/military history, cooking, parenting sites, etc. #followreader Posted by DBerthiaume
Along the medium to long tail in the web there are lots of sites that have specific knowledge, not just general news sites. #followreader Posted by TomThompson
Most sites like relevant book ads more than general products b/c they better serve their audience #followreader Posted by TomThompson
Join us for the next #FollowReader chat with Jane Friedman of Open Road Media, this coming Friday (December 11, 2009, from 4-5pm Eastern). More details here!