In this session with media buyer and senior staff writer at HorrorTalk James Ferguson, we go deeper than ever before on the show on one of the most powerful advertising platforms on the planet for Kickstarter creators: Facebook. Why it works, and how to get started with Facebook advertising.
Today’s Session is Sponsored by the Johnny Bullet webcomic by Hervé St-Louis. Read it for free at comicbookbin.com/bullet.
Session Table Setting
Welcome back to ComixLaunch! This is the podcast to learn about mindset, strategies, and tactics… today, we’re going to touch on all three.
I’m excited about today’s episode, because the topic is one we’ve touched on before in the show, and has been a recurring theme among some of the most successful creators we’ve had on the show.
I’ve talked about my own limited, but exciting success with it around the edges of other topics… but today we’re going to focus in. What am I talking about?
Now, as I’ve said before… I am no expert on FB advertising… but with success I’ve had… specifically surrounding the C is for Cthulhu brand, built 35 people to 12,131 in under a year… powered the biggest Kickstarter to date last year, and then a big online store launch in October, and a huge December on Amazon.
My guest today is a senior media buyer with 10 years of experience in the advertising industry. He spends his days handling the planning and execution for clients in a variety of fields across display, video, mobile, social, and programmatic campaigns. He’s certified by the IAB in both Sales and Ad Operations. And by night, he is a senior staff writer at HorrorTalk, heading up the comic coverage for the site including news, reviews, features, and convention coverage. He’s also an aspiring creator and co-host of the Raging Nerdon podcast.
Welcome to ComixLaunch Mr. James Ferguson
Guiding Discussion Questions
1) Why should comic book creators or anyone advertise?
2) How do you know if advertising will work for you or if you’re just going to be wasting money?
3) What would you say to a creator who says, “I’m launching a Kickstarter because I don’t have the funds to make my comic… so obviously I don’t have the funds to advertise.”
4) Why Facebook advertising vs all the others out there?
5) What are the Steps You go Through When Launching a Facebook Ad Campaign
- Evaluate Your Assets
Before you start any ad campaign, take a good look at what you have available. If you’re promoting a comic book Kickstarter, odds are you have some great artwork. Video is nice, but not a must have as it tends to be a little more expensive.
- Select Your Images Carefully
Think of your own user experience for a moment. What catches your eye as you’re scrolling through the news feed? Facebook optimizes ads based on performance, but you’re probably working with a rather limited budget, so you won’t have the time or space to do a whole lot of testing and learning.
- Set a Goal
Pick one and stick to it. Don’t go into a campaign with the intention of getting new email subscribers, new page likes, new backers, new site visitors, and more. Those are all different KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) and all utilize different tactics. You can have a primary and secondary goal, but once again, keep your budget in mind. The goal should be realistic and attainable. Facebook allows you to choose your goal when creating a new campaign. (see below screenshot) The goal you select alters the algorithm used to optimize the campaign.
- Set a Budget
You can spend as much or as little as you want. Facebook has no shortage of ad space given the 1.4 billion users it has accessing the platform every day. If you were a traditional advertiser, you’d want to have a larger budget to work with and go after a broad audience. You are working in the opposite direction. Whether we like it or not, comics aren’t as popular as something like Coca Cola. You want to get very granular with your audience which means you’ll have a very small group which means a rather small budget. This is all up to you though. You can do $20 or $200 or $2,000.
- Define Your Audience
I’m sure you’ve pitched your book out the wazoo by this point so you know what to compare it to. Is it The Wizard of Oz meets Hellraiser? Well, use those as keywords to target. The Facebook ad builder is like a big Chinese food menu with so many options to choose from. The problem is that you need to have an idea of what you’re looking for first. You can start with the people that already like your page and friends of those people. Then layer in the additional targeting. Get as specific as possible. Don’t just type in “comics” and call it a day. Add in any similar books, comics, movies, and TV shows.
- Got an Email Newsletter?
Regardless of the size of an advertiser, there is nothing more valuable than first party data. If you’re a creator, this would be your email subscriber list. I cannot stress this enough. These are people that have already raised their hand and volunteered to receive emails from you on a regular basis. Unfortunately, as you are no doubt aware, that doesn’t mean that they’re opening every email you send them. You can upload that subscribe list into Facebook and tell all those people (assuming they have Facebook profiles) about your Kickstarter. Taking it a step further, you can use that audience as a base to build “look-a-like” models. These are essentially people that exhibit the same online behavior or like the same types of things as your existing audience. This means you’ll take your existing fan base and expand it to find people just like them across Facebook.
You can have ads run as often or as infrequent as you like. Maybe you want to do a little boost to get you through the mid-campaign doldrums or if you’re coming up short on your goal and time is running out, a last minute push could put you over the line. You can do this as a daily burst or as a continuous flight.
6) How much do you have to spend on Facebook to see results?
7) Should you boost posts or run ads?
Pin a Post!
8) Is the advertising platform built into Facebook good enough, or do you recommend the power editor?
9) Good resources for people interested in learning more about Facebook advertising?
In a moment, I’m going to give you today’s ComixLauncher, but first, we need to thank our sponsor…
Johnny Bullet is really the kind of comics that we don’t get enough of. Hervé St-Louis, also known as Toon Doctor, creates it.
It’s a web comic that has the look and feel of a classic newspaper comic strip, except that it’s published weekly web comic.
Johnny Bullet is a professional drag racer who gets in trouble with the law, bad guys, and of course bad women!
You can tell that Hervé, Johnny Bullet‘s creator, likes cars and drag racing. There are muscle cars everywhere!
There is really no comic like Johnny Bullet. It’s been described as Michel Vaillant meets the Dukes of Hazzard. Set in the 1970s the characters sport afros, and bell-bottoms.
It’s fun to read a crime comic that’s serious but without being dark and gloomy. Johnny Bullet is your classic good guy!
While Hervé tells me that he isn’t ready to launch his Kickstarter just yet, there’s nothing stopping you from reading Johnny Bullet at ComicBookBin dot com slash bullet (comicbookbin.com/bullet).
Leave him comments so he knows that we sent you!
Johnny Bullet. It’s a comic about a man and his car.
It’s time for today’s ComixLauncher.
A ComixLauncher is a short, actionable activity you can and should do right now, or immediately after listening to the show. They’re all activities I’ve done myself, and will get you one step closer to a successful ComixLaunch. They’ll transform this Podcast from a passive, lean back activity centered around Tyler James, into an active, lean-forward activity centered around YOU.
Today’s ComixLauncher — For Facebook users…
This ComixLauncher is for those of you who already have dedicated Facebook fanpages for your projects. (If don’t have one yet… your CL is to go create one.)
Create two very similar posts promoting your content. Make them visual, maybe share a cool cover image or panel from your series.
Now, I want you to boost one of your post for 1 day for only $1.
In 48 hours, check both posts, in terms of People reached. How much bang did you get out of your buck?
All of us our busy, but we all can spare 5 minutes to do this. [NA — What comes out on paper may surprise you. And if you’d like to share the results of your ComixLauncher with me, I’d love to see them. Email me at [email protected], subject line: ComixLauncher #28.]
Wrap Up Questions
1) Do you have any recommendations for creators with horror related Kickstarter projects for getting covered at places like HorrorTalk.com?
2) What’s the best place to keep up with you online?
Thanks for Listening.
Tease future episodes
We’re going to go even deeper into both mindset, strategies and tactics for making KS work for you.
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