Creating an Effective Goodreads Ad

Creating an Effective Goodreads Ad

When I began my Goodreads ad campaign, I wasn’t happy at first. I had trouble trying to get clicks. I thought I had created a good one, and I thought my cover alone would draw people into seeing it. Well, I found a thread on Goodreads with one man claiming that it does work. Many others replied, absolutely unhappy with their experience. I think I may have even commented, too, telling everyone that Goodreads ads were a waste of time. But because I had sunk 50 dollars into the campaign, I was determined to make it work. Even if no sales resulted from it, people are at least still looking at it and maybe adding it. So I decided to change the description entirely. Here is a screen capture of everything I did to create the ad that is earning me clicks now. Out of the 50 dollars I have spent, 23 dollars have been used since January. I consider that a victory, as many people struggle with trying to get clicks at all. GoodreadsAdIgnore the Campaign Goodreads Giveaway part. That is over with, but the destination URL simply takes you to the book, not to the page where you can sign up for the giveaway. Instead pay attention to the ad description. This is what will earn you more clicks than anything else. My original ad description was simply a rip of some sentence from the synopsis of my book. That wasn’t earning any clicks at all for the week it had been put up. However, once I changed it to this description, it slowly began to receive clicks. The description is short to the point and shocking. Witches are worse than murderers? That’s a big shock factor. Finding out her brother is one and they have to flee or risk dying? That’s another draw-in. These words alone convey a few things: This book is going tell a story about witches who live in absolute fear because they know they are going to be ruthlessly killed upon being discovered. The heroine, Amelia, is completely selfless and will do anything for her little brother, so it’s a story of sibling love. The cover helps as well. I shrunk this screen capture, but if you have ever found this ad on Goodreads, you would be able to read the entire title, along with my name.

Here is another picture detailing what also helped.

GoodreadsStatsI have two ads running. You can have multiple ads running, if you want. Notice that my click-to-rate for the second ad is 0.04%. You want it to be 0.05%, but my goal, really, is to use up ALL of my funds, as many writers who use Goodreads ads can’t even manage that. But look at the genres. The first ad might not have a high CTR because it targets less genres than my second ad does. However, my first ad yesterday received 5 clicks, and my second ad received 0. That was a CTR of 0.09% from yesterday. Each click also uses 50 cents, which is the minimum you should be using. This could affect how often Goodreads is willing to show your ad. I have also allotted a cap of 10 dollars a day. This may also reflect views. However, the views are very arbitrary. I have tried looking up why this may be, but I have found nothing.

Here is a line graph detailing my views:

Line ChartAs you can see from the line graph above, it takes a lot of views to receive a click. You can also see I have certain days where I peak and other days where I don’t. I can’t explain why this is. For three days now I have had clicks because of all those views you are seeing from the 25th to the 27th. But today, it doesn’t appear I’ll have any clicks, so my Goodreads daily report will probably show 0. It’s a very strange pattern for me. For 3 days I’ll have clicks, and then for 2 or 3 days I won’t have any. I cannot explain why this is, but it’s a miracle I’m receiving clicks at all, as many, many users of ads do not receive clicks…never.

All in all, I know I have created an effective ad campaign due to the usage of my funds. Will I do another ad? Probably not. It’s great for exposure, probably great for getting people to add your book, but I can get people to add my book through means that don’t cost money, like Twitter, Tumblr, and this blog, as well as the myriad of interviews and guest blog posts I do. Not to mention I still have some print books left that I can use to do a giveaway on Goodreads to celebrate some sort of milestone in my author life. I’ll probably do another giveaway once my publisher gives me the contract to The Stars Are Infinite ;).

I hope this helps. Any questions, feel free to ask me in the comments or e-mail me at


  • Every Friday I will be doing a post on publishing, whether it be publishing news or a column from me responding to articles about publishing–with statistics, of course.
  • Every Wednesday I will try to do an author update post about what is going on in my author life–something inspirational–ending it with a picture quote from When Stars Die.
  • Pau has been live-tweeting my book, and here is her review. I normally don’t post reviews others have done, as I am an EXTREMELY modest person, but because she live- tweeted it, I decided to go on ahead and give her blog a nudge. I want to warn you that there are spoilers in the latter half. Follow her on Twitter! She’s fantastic, an avid reader, hardcore lover of books, and I appreciated all her live tweeting. It was fun to read her reactions as she was going through my book.
  • I am also going to try to do one Youtube video per week. I haven’t decided what I want my theme to be. I may answer questions people have posed in the past, or I may do something else entirely. Currently I am watching John Green’s Youtube channel to gain some inspiration. I would also love to do something with my ballet, like detailing my journey as an adult dancer while I’m simply practicing by myself. However, that would require my fiance to attend my dance class at least once a week to record my practicing.
  • I’m pretty much going to blog on here every other day so I can also blog on Tumblr.

“Teach your son to respect women.”

“Teach your son to respect women.”


This billboard makes me so mad for a number of reasons. This billboard is trying to get across the message that we should teach our boys to respect women instead of teaching our girls to protect themselves because most domestic violence is incurred by men. My parents taught me to protect myself and had in fact put protective measures in place to keep me safe from such violence. But I internalized it very differently: Boys are bad. Boys are terrible. Boys will only hurt you. What kind of message is that to send to a person? Boys are people just as any other people. They have feelings. They hurt. They love. They laugh. They care.

Do you want to know how I internalize this billboard? I don’t receive the message we should be trying to prevent domestic violence against women by teaching our boys to not hurt women. The message I receive is that boys are innately evil, that that evil should be beaten out of them at an early age, that they are robots who need to be programmed not to harm women. I do understand the intent of this billboard, but I think it fails on a number of reasons. And it is just plain insulting. We are teaching our boys to hate themselves for what they are. No one is innately anything. Human beings have no instincts. We should be teaching our children in general to respect other human beings, and everything else will fall into place after that.

I have met many wonderful men in my life, including my own dad and my fiancé, and I hate to think that these messages are being perpetuated and internalized by boys and men that this is something only they are capable of and that it must be beaten out of them at an early age so that they never participate in such behaviors.

I get it. We live in a patriarchy. Violence is more prevalent against women than men. Women should not be taught how to protect themselves from such violence, when such violence does not need to be taking place period. I have experienced the patriarchy firsthand through catcalling and gendered name calling and the comments of articles where women try to point out sexism or misogyny, but are torn down for it, their experiences invalidated. I know the statistics, I know the power structures in place, but I know…I KNOW that most men are not this way, and this billboard absolutely breaks my heart and makes me so beyond furious. I understand the “most men” argument should not be used when women are speaking of their experiences against violence, but don’t you think it’s important that women have a positive view of men, that one man should not determine how all men are viewed? I think so.

I was taught that boys are terrible, and I frankly hate that I was taught that because for a while during my early teen years, I did resent boys. I know parents in general mean well, but sometimes they need to pay attention to the messages they are sending across to their children because children are very sensitive to messages, ESPECIALLY in their teen years.

It is on the onus of men to prevent violence against women, but this billboard is not the way to do it because it is putting the blame on them. You can argue we should put the blame on men for incurring violence, but what kind of message is that to send to men? That’s only going to make them ashamed of being men.

I am a humanist, and while my depression may make me despise people from time to time, it is my depression doing that to me because it might be out of paranoia that I don’t want anything to do with people. Otherwise, I am a very caring person who wants equity for all, and this billboard just isn’t doing that for me. Simply put, it is dehumanizing boys. Just look at that hoodie.

We want to argue that misandry doesn’t harm men, but hatred is hatred is hatred. Whether or not hatred harms, it is harming to the person who is hating. And we don’t need any more hatred in this world. We need compassionate, loving people who see more good in people than bad, and I choose to see more good in people. I choose to understand why people are the way they are–to a certain extent, of course.

So what should the message be instead? Teach your CHILDREN to respect people, and all else will naturally fall into place. They are looking. They are listening. They will internalize.

We do need to have the conversation that men should be the ones to prevent domestic violence because they have it in their power to do so, but this billboard, again, dehumanizes them. It is the hoodie that is most troubling to me.

I seriously want to hear your thoughts on this.

There are plenty of men who don’t need to be directly taught to respect women because they were taught to respect human beings in general, and respect needs to be taught in general.