Case Studies

Ads and Promos for Book Launch

Book: Illusion by Frank Peretti (Howard Books)

For the launch of the first novel released in seven years by New York Times bestselling author Frank Peretti (Howard Books), our team created a variety of ads and online promotions.

Our online ads for Illusion were effective. Facebook ads generated more than 3.2 million impressions, with a click-through rate of .137%, nearly triple than the standard click-through rate of .051%. Blog ads reached nearly 500,000 readers. Our team also facilitated three weeks of online book giveaways, bringing another 750,000 impressions of the book to potential readers.


Book: The Bone House by Stephen Lawhead (Thomas Nelson Publishers)

To see what we accomplished for New York Times bestselling author Stephen Lawhead’s The Bone Housethe follow up to our work with his first book in the Bright Empires series, The Skin Mapwatch the video here.

Social Media

Social Media is an ever-growing, ever-changing landscape. Our team has a depth of experience within all major social media tools. We have: launched Facebook fan pages, converted personal profiles to fan pages, run wildly successful Facebook contests and giveaways, hosted live chats for authors and fans; created and facilitated hundreds of Twitter accounts, run Twitter promotional giveaways, hosted online games using Twitter as a main medium of clue-sharing; created boards and hobbies on Pinterest; worked with Google+.

For Zondervan Publishing, we created two genre-specific Facebook fan pages from nothing into complex communities, where fans engage with other fans, authors, and our team of facilitators.

On one page—Christian Fiction—our facilitator set up and ran a monthly Virtual Book Club. The page, originally starting with zero fans, grew to nearly 4,000 fans in just three months. Fans were encouraged to connect with each other, participate in giveaways, and also attend Virtual Book Club meetings.

The second page—Amish Life—grew to more than 6,500 fans in three months. Fans were encouraged to submit recipes of their favorite Amish dish, to participate in a virtual quilting bee, and connect with each other.

Sweepstakes Management
Win Books Weekly

Win Books Weekly is a vehicle for Handlebar to team with publishers, authors, and agents, to promote newly launched books through our social media channels. We give away five copies of a new title each week, integrating our Twitter and Facebook platforms to promote the giveaway. This platform also allows us to collect email addresses on behalf of the paying client.

Each giveaway varies in the amount of impressions received—our platform here is growing with each giveaway—typical giveaways see nearly 400,000 Twitter impressions in one week for the book title, and an average of 100 email addresses collected.

For the Frank Peretti Illusion launch, we integrated Peretti’s Facebook page into the mix along with nine Handlebar twitter accounts* promoting the giveaway, and Handlebar Facebook pages. This campaign realized nearly 1,300 new fans and email addresses for the Peretti database.

*Twitter accounts used are chosen based on the book content; we make sure our followers are the right match for the book being promoted. With 40 Twitter accounts, we have most genres covered.

Content Marketing

The key to all online marketing efforts is a mantra recited by agencies everywhere: “Content, Content, Content.” We might argue that a better way to approach online marketing is with content, certainly, but high-quality, well-crafted content that truly communicates your message and elicits an action from those consuming your content. Our case studies for content marketing show two of our team’s great strengths in creating strong, relatable, actionable content.

For the book Break Through: When to Give In, How to Push Back by Dr. Tim Clinton and Pat Springle (Worthy), as with many of our book launch projects, our team created 48 tweets and scheduled them for maximum exposure through Handlebar maintained Twitter accounts. Each tweet had an actionable link, used hashtags and keywords to maintain branding set forth by the publisher, and ultimately led to more than 6 million impressions. The team also wrote articles (wiki-how, scribd, and others) based on the content of the book as a means of showing what can be learned by reading the book, and to gain potential readers through a self-help venue.

Our team wrote and posted three online articles for the book Break Through, receiving thousands of impressions. Read one such article on Wikihow here. The three articles combined received nearly 10,000 views within a year of the book launch, testifying to the endurance–and importance–of strategic online content marketing.


Long considered the “free advertising” of the communication world, publicity is a far more powerful tool than this phrase lets on. Although a company doesn’t pay dollars for design and placement, which is wrapped up as soon as the ink on the contract is dry, dollars spent on publicity bring a different kind of design and placement. And oftentimes, this is the piece that is most noticed, and trusted, by consumers.

Our publicity team can develop a unique media plan for your book, create a personalized press kit and pitch releases with strong media hooks. Our relationships with key media contacts help us get your book into the right hands for optimal coverage.

In one case, we created a media strategy for the Zonderkidz brand new The Beginner’s Bible App. Working closely with the client, we wrote a keyword rich news release with a strong hook, compelling quotes, and a strategy for the best, most fitting media contacts for this app.

In addition to the media plan, we integrated a social media campaign using proprietary Twitter accounts and a blog tour, resulting in more than 400,000 Twitter impressions, and a reach of thousands of blog readers through 45 blog reviews.

Blog Tours

Book: Common English Bible (Abingdon Press)

Blog tours can be a fantastic tool for reaching a large group of prospective readers that may not otherwise hear about your book. Our team has facilitated numerous blog tours, coordinating “stops” on the calendar, strategizing the best blogger fit to the book we are promoting, and ensuring the amount of potential readers is brings our client the best bang for the buck.

For the months surrounding the launch of the Common English Bible, our team created and facilitated a 40-day blog tour focusing on scriptures relating to the Lenten Season.