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There’s that little thing called marketing to consider – in other words, how you’re going to get your words into the hands of people who want to read them.

Even traditionally published authors are responsible for a great deal of their own marketing these days, as publishers reduce the amount of time, money, and energy they invest in developing their lists. And if you’re self publishing, of course, the marketing is entirely up to you.



It doesn’t have to be. In fact, marketing can be simple and (dare I say it?) even A FUN PART OF YOUR BUSINESS AS AN INDIE AUTHOR – if you go about it the right way.

The problem is that most authors don’t think of marketing the same way they think of crafting their books. Authors love to read all about craft, spend hours plotting and creating outlines, write reams on character backstory that may or may not ever make it into the book…

Yet when it comes to marketing and selling – if they’re doing marketing at all – they’re willing to just throw something together, post to Facebook once in a while when they remember (or when they’re procrastinating…), and maybe even dabble in Facebook ads here and there.

But marketing is just like writing – you have to know where you’re going and you’ll need a plan to get there.

If you want a successful, lucrative career as an indie author, you must create marketing systems that reach new audiences, sell for you, and leave you time to write and create.

That’s why I created the Self Publishing Formula’s Ads for Authors course.

It’s a full marketing system for authors that can be set up quickly and with a minimal budget. And then it will run in the background, working hard on your behalf to get your books into the hands of readers and pushing you up the sales charts. It will gather new readers, build your sales rank and add to your bottom line. All the while, you’ll have the time to concentrate on your writing, secure in the knowledge that your career is being developed. And you’ll be ready to market your next book when it’s ready.

meet the author: cecelia mecca

As soon as I saw Mark I knew 100% he could communicate information. I think he's a wonderful instructor. Knowing your information and being able to convey it are two different things; Mark does a fantastic job of conveying information - he's a great teacher.

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five years ago, when I independently published my third novel, I believed a lot of things about self publishing that I found out later were, well, just wrong. I thought that:

  • Self publishing is free. You don’t need to invest anything to be successful.
  • You can do your own marketing entirely on social media – again, for FREE.
  • I don’t want to bother people, so I don’t need a way to collect their email address (why would they even want emails from me?)
  • Advertising and marketing online seem pretty technical – and I’m not a technical person.
  • (And maybe worst of all...) I’m a writer, not a marketer.


I really had no idea what I was doing. I mean, I was the writer who managed to get 50,000 Free Downloads over the course of a weekend but didn’t have another book to sell.

Even worse, I was the writer who didn’t even have a mailing list where I could communicate with those readers when I DID eventually have something else to sell.

I could have tried and tried and tried, keeping that same mindset and getting nowhere. But I didn’t. I forced myself to sit down and learn from those who had gone before me. I absorbed all the knowledge I could and then I looked beyond self publishing into the broader world of internet marketing (because, let’s be honest, a book is a piece of digital content and the rules for selling on the internet apply to books as much as they do to other online assets).

I surrounded myself with brilliant people and learned as much as I could from them. And what I learned changed my perspective, my business, and my life.

Now? things are a bit different

  • I hit the bestseller lists everywhere I choose to sell.
  • I have systems that take care of the marketing for me, leaving me time to write.
  • I easily make five figures in sales each month with simple ads – and a comfortable high six-figure income for myself each year.
  • I have a list of more than 80,000 fans eager to buy my next book.
  • And I have created a repeatable way to launch every single book I write – and make a profit – from here on out.
Earth and book


The successful indie author is someone who understands that making a decent living from writing is not just writing a book - or even multiple books - but about embracing the power of new digital marketing techniques to create repeatable systems that get those books into the hands of readers over and over again.


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Of course, back before I figured these systems out, I was the guy who thought exactly what you may be thinking:

Too Technical

“it’s too technical.”

I'm not a particularly technical kind of guy. I'm not great with websites and data and all the stuff I thought I'd need to know to make advertising work. You'll be able to get ads up and running very quickly. Better still, I'll guide you through the whole process, teaching you the trickier concepts, explaining the jargon and then presenting you with hours of detailed videos that allow you to look over my shoulder as I set up and monitor my ads. I will demystify the process and show you how easy it is.

I don't have time

“i don’t have time!”

I won't lie to you: advertising on Facebook, Amazon and BookBub takes a bit of time to learn and set up, but I'm going to cut your set up time by way more than half, because I'll show you everything you need to know. And once you have your systems set up, it takes almost no time to maintain. I monitor my ads every day at 2pm. It takes 10 minutes - that's all. The system that I teach finds new readers for you while you write the new material that they are going to love.

I'm not a marketer

“i’m not a marketer.”

Successful writers know that you need to wear lots of different hats. The days when you could just write and leave someone else to get your books into the hands of new readers are long gone. And that’s GREAT. I bet you’re exactly like me – you want people to love your stuff, and you want to be paid enough so that you can do what you love as your full-time job. Why wouldn’t you want to take advantage of the most efficient strategy I have discovered in the last five years to make that a reality?

I'm not ready to launch

“i’m not ready to launch...”

All you need is a finished book that's ready to be delivered to readers. THAT'S ALL. I'll show you how to leverage that book to drive sign-ups to your mailing list (the #1 most powerful marketing strategy that a writer can have). And then I'll show you how to sell it. There is a perception in the indie community that too many authors are advertising and it isn't as effective as it once was. I don't agree. This course will show you how to make your ads as effective as possible - and what's working right now.

It'll be too expensive

“it’ll be too expensive.”

I thought it would cost too much to make a campaign work as it should, and it is one of the most frequent concerns that I hear from other authors. It's not true. You can run simple list building ads on Facebook for as little as $5 a day. And that's an investment that should result in a tidy return - the goal is to make a profit as new readers buy your books.

meet the author: Garrett robinson

The difference for me before I did Ads for Authors and after was before I did it, I didn't have a career, and after I did it, I had one. That was the straight-up difference. Before, I was not anywhere close to making a living from my writing, and afterwards, not only was I suddenly making a living from my writing, but my wife got to quit her job in order to work for me as well. So, I'd say it worked pretty good.

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at a certain stage in life – or your business – you’re not interested in just doing what you’ve been doing. It isn’t working. You’re not getting the results you want. And that’s frustrating. You’re ready to take things to an entirely different level.

The problem is this: it’s not something you can do on your own. It’s not going to be you sitting in a coffee shop, figuring out how to make your books sell in the intervals between writing new stuff.

You need help. I need it, you need it, we all need it. Ads for Authors is designed to be the guidance that helps you ditch the status quo. I want to drive you to new levels that you might previously have thought were unattainable.

in fact, when you’ve completed this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Find your perfect readers and hit them with beautiful, well-crafted ads that convert them into buyers and fans.
  • Build an automated email sequence that introduces new readers to your writing and encourages them to move on to your paid books.
  • Grow your email list exponentially with readers who have signed up because they are eager to know more about you and your writing.
  • Turn some of those readers in to fans, and then into superfans (and members of your Street Team – selling more books for you!).
  • Write engaging emails to your readers that build strong lasting relationships.
  • Start growing the core posse of 1,000 true fans any creative artist needs to build a sustainable and reliable business doing the things that you love.
  • And – I almost forgot – SELL BOOKS.


When I mentioned that I was going to put together a course setting all this down, I was contacted by more than one successful indie author who suggested that I keep it to myself. Why? Because they were using ads very successfully and wanted to keep their strategies to themselves.

Not cool!

I created this course because I hate the idea of writers sitting on manuscripts, worried about self publishing, because they think it’s going to be prohibitively expensive, when that’s just not the case.

And now that I’ve been teaching students how to do this for a while, the results have been astounding.

I’ve proven that the ads work in any genre, for any kind of writer. I’ve seen romance authors make FIVE times their investment on ads. I’ve seen writers from niche genres ADD THOUSANDS of emails (yes, literally) to their mailing lists.

it can be done - and you could be next.



The modules are fantastic. Even if you’re not technology-savvy, it’s very easy to do. It’s seamless. I became a full-time author 3 months ago. I’ve strived for it for a long time. This is the avenue that’s allowed me to do that.


I wish I could go back in time and tell myself to take the course earlier so that I could be even further along than I am now. This course really makes a huge difference and will change your career. And your life.


I knew how to write but I didn’t know how to treat it like a business. Within two to three months of doing the Ads for Authors course, I made five figures in a month. Six months after that I was able to quit my job and do this full time.

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This course will show you everything you need to know to create ads for list building and sales.

I will show you the exact strategy that I have deployed to add thousands of readers to my mailing list and increase the sales of one $6.99 box set by 500%. You don’t need a degree in computer science to pull this off. Apart from the modest budget for ads, you don’t need to buy anything else.

You’ve got this.



First, we will discuss WHY we should use Facebook to advertise our books.


facebook general principles

We will learn how to use the INTERFACE that I recommend for creating our ads. We will examine it, in detail, with the benefit of a detailed screen flow as I explain what everything means.

Then, we will look at FACEBOOK’S AD STRUCTURE: How a campaign is put together, and how each component part interacts with each other.


using facebook ads to build your list

I’ll show you how I have used Facebook ads and the incredible success I have had in adding THOUSANDS OF NEW SUBSCRIBERS to my list.

You might be wondering why you should even have a list. I’ll show you how having one can solve two of the most intractable problems for writers – GETTING SALES AND GETTING REVIEWS.

Then, I’ll show you my three-step system for converting those who are interested in my books into fully signed up subscribers. Hook, Line and Sinker – it’s as simple as that.

We’ll look in great detail at how we can CREATE and – just as important – TARGET OUR ADS.

Then we’ll consider how to MONITOR THE ADS to make sure that we know they are performing as we want them to perform and, if they’re not, how to diagnose their weakness so that we can fix them.

Then, we’ll look at the precise sequence of AUTOMATED EMAILS that I send to new subscribers, how I deliver their free books and how I get them to buy from me once they have finished their samples. I’ll let you have precise swipe copy for that sequence so that you can use it yourself.

Finally, I’ll discuss HOW MUCH SUBSCRIBERS ARE WORTH to me (this is important so that we can ensure that we are making a profit on the exercise), together with sensible strategies for ensuring that our mailing list is kept healthy. And we’ll close with a look at the survey results from when I quizzed 3,000 of my new Facebook subscribers to see how they found the experience of signing up – there is a lot of useful information there to help you optimise your own sign up process.


using facebook to drive sales

We’ll start by looking at the PURPOSE OF USING ADS in this way and the results that I have had.

Then, we’ll look more closely at how we can OPTIMISE OUR AMAZON PRODUCT PAGE to increase the numbers of sales that we make (useful for all your Amazon visitors, obviously).

We’ll look at AFILIATE LINKS, and how we can use them and stay within the terms and conditions of the Amazon affiliate programme.

We’ll look in great detail at how we can CREATE and – just as important – TARGET OUR ADS.

Then we’ll consider how to MONITOR OUR ADS to make sure that we know it is performing as we want it to perform and, if it isn’t, how to diagnose its weakness so that we can fix it.

I spend a lot of time answering questions in a TROUBLESHOOTING session, before we go through another extensive selection of EXAMPLE ADS that are working like gangbusters for the authors who are using them.


BONUS MODULE!amazon ads

Amazon Advertising is the hottest platform in the world and I’ve re-recorded this extensive module to take into account the new tactics and strategies that are working like gangbusters right now. I’ll take you through how to set up Product Display and Sponsored Keyword ads and show you how to optimise and scale them so that you can sell books (print, digital, audio and Kindle Unlimited) and increase your rank. I’ll show you how to advertise outside the US and to use the best version of the reporting interface.



Author Pip Reid has used Pinterest to significantly boost her book sales. In this specially commissioned module she shares her secrets on how she did it.


BONUS MODULE!write simpler, better ads

In this guest module from author and author trainer, Bryan Cohen, you’ll learn how to create hooks to draw in readers and master the art of crafting compelling ads for your books – including how to fine-tune them to maximise their performance.


BONUS MODULE! bookbub cpm ads

You’ve probably heard about BookBub’s Featured Deals and how powerful they are. In this module, bestselling indie author Adam Croft shows you how to get your own ads on the bottom of their daily emails, and how you can use them to get cheap clicks to all of your retail pages.


BONUS MODULE!facebook messenger bots

I’m very enthused about these... What would you say if I showed you how to set up an automated process that would interact with interested readers through Facebook messenger? For example, you could use it to pose a series of questions that would guide new readers to just the right book in your catalogue for them to begin their relationship with you. This stuff is very cool – and no-one is doing it (yet).



Access insightful and useful webinars on all things self-publishing with fresh content added on a monthly basis.



It’s probably the hottest multi-generational social media platform out there right now. In this module we’ll show how your author business can make the most of its awesome potential.



Learn how to use YouTube to find new fans and convert existing ones into ambassadors for your books and your brand.


payment options

30 day money back guarantee

12 monthly payments of *$75


one time payment of *$749

Paypal, Mastercard, Visa

* Sales tax may be applicable in some EU countries

Mark Dawson's advertising for authors

Plus: signing up for the course provides you with a host of fantastic additional services worth hundreds of dollars!


  • BONUS MODULE: Amazon Ads by Mark Dawson
  • BONUS MODULE: Write Simpler, Better Ads by Bryan Cohen
  • BONUS MODULE: BookBub CPM Ads by Adam Croft
  • BONUS MODULE: Facebook Messenger Bots by Kerry Gardiner and Mark Dawson
  • BONUS MODULE: Pinterest for Authors by Pip Reid
  • BONUS MODULE: SPF University
  • COMING SOON! YouTube for Authors
  • COMING SOON! Instagram for Authors
  • $50 OFF the standard price of our COVER DESIGN FOR AUTHORS COURSE by Stuart Bache, the designer of book art for multiple bestsellers – including mine
  • PRO BOOK COVER DESIGNS by Stuart Bache: discount worth $85 for ebook design, Facebook ad images and 3D packshot package
  • Discounted BOOK FORMATTING (25% OFF) with my preferred company, Polgarus Studios
  • Discounted membership for an annual plan with BOOK FUNNEL, the popular eBook distribution service (worth $50)
  • An additional month of access to PROLIFIC WORKS (formerly INSTAFREEBIE), the book giveaway service (Plus Plan - worth $20)
  • Get $10 OFF a Book of the Day ad with book promotion service BOOKSENDS
  • Monthly $5 discount on the monthly plan for READERLINKS, the impressive new data dashboard created by indie authors for indie authors (worth $120 per year)
  • BOOK BRUSH: 15% DISCOUNT on the ANNUAL PLAN FOR LIFE! This new amazing service makes creating professional ad and social media images for your book campaigns an absolute breeze.
  • FREE EBOOK: Digital copy of ‘The Authors Email Handbook’ from Larissa Reynolds at Fiction Insiders Club – a fantastically practical and useful guide for indie authors (worth $25)
  • FREE EBOOKS: from The Alliance of Independent Authors – practical and genuinely useful guides on self publishing services and selling publishing rights (worth $25) Swipe Copy – precise Launch Team Recruitment copy as PDF (worth $25)

We also have THREE fantastic options to create a professionally produced, engaging and marketable AUTHOR WEBSITE at DEEPLY DISCOUNTED PRICES:

  • Discounts on a fully functioning Wordpress site with Mailchimp integration from a tried and trusted team that echoes the style of my original and very effective author site (discount worth $130 - $250 depending on package)
  • 10% discount on any website package from The Author Site, the established pro website creation team that specialises in creating stylish, robust and functional author websites
  • A huge 25% discount (worth $1000) on a super premium website for the ‘authorpreneurs’ out there who require something more advanced and customised – from the crack team that’s put together multiple sites for the global self publishing community



Don’t worry! Once you’ve bought the course you’ll have lifetime access to all future updates of the platforms covered as well as any new modules that are introduced. We do our best to make the course as up to date and future-proof as possible.


As a student of this course, you’ll gain immediate access to a hugely supportive Facebook community made up of indie authors at various stages of their careers. Whether it’s feedback or insight that you’re after, this is a fantastic place to start. For technical and payment queries, our online support team will aim to respond to your query as quickly as possible.


We offer a payment plan for authors wanting immediate access to the course but who prefer the benefit of spreading the cost of purchase over 12 months. Administration of the scheme does require extra resources which are covered by the additional cost of the payment plan option.

money back guarantee

If the course isn’t for you, that’s not a problem. All you need to do is email me within 30 days of purchase to receive a full refund.

Three Days Back guarantee

meet the author: maggie lynch

I took Mark's class and I went from 400 people on my mailing list, which I had grown organically over five years, to 12,000 people within six months. Solely by using Facebook ads to drive traffic. And then the next time I really got to test it was on my next launch and I sold 2,000 books in the first week. Previous to that, the most books I ever sold on a launch was 200 or 300. So, it's huge. It's absolutely huge.

whether or not you become a successful indie author has much more to do with your marketing systems than anything else.

The good news is, the tactics you need to know to market your book are not difficult to master. I’ve done the hard work of putting all the information together into one hub and system you can use to find readers, introduce them to your work, and create fans and readers for life.

The only thing left for you to do is make it happen.

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