"The universe is made of stories, not of atoms."
—Muriel Rukeyser

Laurence O’Bryan's 10 critical things to get right before you get started on Amazon ads

1. Expect to invest time in understanding how the AMS platform works, what keywords to use, what bids to make and how to monitor results so you can make adjustments.
2.  Each ad is called a campaign. You can only choose books you have published on your Amazon account for your campaigns.
3.  Start with a low budget ($5 a day – often not spent) test campaign. Create a naming system for your campaigns, to help you identify each campaign’s attributes quickly.
4.  Only spend what you can afford.  It will take between a few days and a month to see sales generated for the previous period, so be patient.
5.  Know your royalty rates (70% or 30% if self-published – probably less if you share royalties with a publisher) or the latest KENP (Kindle Edition Normalized Pages) rate, the KDP Select per-page read rate royalty. The rate rose to $0.0046 in June ’18 and has been at about that level each month recently. That means that currently for 1,000 pages read Amazon pays the author $4.60 if the book is in Amazon Select.
6. You will need to maintain an ACOS (Advertising cost of sales) below 70% to be in profit if you are on 70% royalty and below 30% if you are on a 30% royalty rate on your ebooks.
7.  As sales and borrows are slow to report, a good metric to focus on is your CPC – Cost per Click. A low cost per click, 12c for instance, means it cost you 12c each time someone clicked your ad and was taken to the Amazon book page for your book.
8. Ensure your book description on Amazon is the best it can be before starting your Amazon ads. There is no point in paying to get people to look at your book/s on Amazon if the Amazon description/s will not help you sell it.
9. Ensure your cover/s look amazing. Homemade covers are no longer appropriate, except in rare circumstances. Look at the covers of the books at the top of your genre and rate yours against them. If your cover is not as amazing get a cover designer, not a graphic designer to make you a new one. This is not as expensive as previously. 
10. Ensure you have at least three honest (not one line) reader reviews on Amazon.com before you start. 
Laurence O’Bryan founded BooksGoSocial in 2013. He previously worked as a sales director for a software as a service firm and in technology marketing for over twenty-five years. He also founded the Dublin Writers Conference in 2014.

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