Game Marketing Tips, Analysis, and News

Friday, November 12, 2010

Ad Solutions For Rest Of Us

If you're looking to promote a book or a game in an inexpensive way, you've probably looked at Google's Adwords program. This is how you buy a listing next to search results, and it's been the source of 95% of Google's revenues. Because it works for advertisers, and they get to control their spending very precisely and see just how much they are making from their advertising. (As opposed to magazine ads, where you generally have only a vague idea of how effective they are, if any idea at all.)

Now there's Facebook Ads, which (not surprisingly) are somewhat similar to Adwords. You get to control how much you spend, and you can pay for clicks or just for viewing. You can send people to your Facebook page or to your web site. With Facebook's enormous audience, this could be worth a lot of business. Especially if you've been building up your social marketing by working a Facebook page and Twitter.

There are some examples to look at on the Facebook Ads site, but here's an article (a hat tip to George MacDonald) that presents some case studies of Facebook Ads usage, showing the range of what's possible. Just as with Adwords, you're limited in the amount of space and words available, but not as limited (Facebook gives you 25 title characters and 135 body text characters).

The best part about both of these programs is that you are in total control of how much you spend, and you get all the information you need to analyze your spending. It should be pretty easy to look at how much you spend, and how much revenue you bring in, and then decide whether or not to expand your ad buy or to stop spending.

Yes, you'll need to work on how you can make these ads as effective as possible... the right wording is crucial. Also, where you bring the customers and how you close the sale is important. The cool thing is you can tweak these variables and see the results, good or bad, almost immediately. There's nothing like feedback to make corrections!

(If you're looking for advice on Google Adwords, there are roughly a bajillion guides to using them out there... at some point I'll post some of my favorites. But there's plenty of advice for those interested in getting the most out of this tool.)

I see these as one of the key marketing tools for the small business marketer -- the author trying to sell an e-book, the developer trying to sell an app, a designer trying to sell an RPG. Once you've got your web site and your products ready to sell, this is how you get that first wave of customers beyond your closest friends. Without spending a zillion dollars on marketing.

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