Social media and book promotion are two hot topics for authors. What’s the most effective way? How much time should you spend on promoting?
No matter whether you are traditionally, indie or self published, all authors need to promote their books. In the current publishing market, authors are taking the reins in social media marketing and I, for one, am proof that any author can be successful. Promoting your book can be overwhelming at first, but if you follow my lead, you will draw more readers and sell more books.
I started writing Princess of the Light back in 2012. Being a social media novice at the time, I started tweeting about my writing. I think I had only 500 followers at the time, but the more I talked about my writing, the more followers I gained. Here are some examples I used:
-Hey everyone, I am off to work on my book. The characters are really developing and calling my name.
-Hey Twitterworld, it has been fun but alas I must get some work done. Off I go to my #writing corner.
-I get so excited for this time of day because it is officially #writingtime. Have a great afternoon.
Suddenly, people started to reply. They wanted to know what I was writing and how it was going. People are genuinely curious about things, especially books and writers. They want to get an inside glimpse into what it takes to write a book. Through Twitter, I gained many followers and the buzz started to happen for Princess of the Light. I interacted with people on Twitter and they soon wanted to know when it would be published.
I also started writing a blog. I was nervous at first because, hey, it’s a lot more than 140 characters. What was I going to write about? Would anyone care? I knew I wanted to start out somehow and connect it with my book. Since my book was inspiring, I started writing an Inspirational Thought of the Day. I also started crafting blog posts about my writing experiences and writing tips.
It was slow at first, but once I connected my blog posts to Twitter, I started to gain followers to my blog. I interacted with my followers and was myself. I have found that if you are yourself, people will flock to you.
After the blog hit 500 followers, I started spreading my wings to other social media outlets. The more I interacted with people, the more they seemed to be interested in buying my book. Sure, it was time-consuming, but in my opinion, it was time well spent.
The key for me in promoting my book on any social media outlet is building connections. There are a zillion books out there and in order for mine to stand out, I needed to be authentic and approachable. I am not out there to give a hard sell of my book. BUY MY BOOK! READ THIS NOW! BUY! BUY! BUY!
Sure, I tell people where they can buy my book along with the link. But I am also on Twitter and Facebook talking about writing, feeding the homeless, reading great books, inspiring people to be the best they can be, inspiring kindness and of course, spreading the Light. People connect with me on a human level and people will remember me for being kind. They will remember my book the next time they have $10 to spend at Amazon.
So here are my top eight quick tips for successful social media promotion:
- If you are on Twitter (and I highly recommend it for every writer/author), be creative in your tweets. You are trying to attract readers, so have fun with words. Sure, you have a limited number of characters, but you are a writer and you can be creative. Think about the tweets that pique your interest. What would make you click on a link about a book?
- Sign up for Hootsuite. I can’t stress this enough! Your time is precious and Hootsuite is a fabulous author helper. It helps you schedule tweets, posts, etc. while giving you analytics at the same time. This is invaluable because Hootsuite can tell you what tweet got the most response. It’s a huge help and it’s free!
- Post short sweet posts on Facebook and try to post a picture too. I take graphics from Google with a quote related to either writing, reading or my book. I usually either ask a question or make a statement. People don’t have much time and I have found on Facebook, the shorter the better.
- When signing off on a blog post, always ask for comments and shares. It seems like a no-brainer, but it reminds people to interact and spread the word. People love to share good articles with their friends and followers.
- Don’t forget to use Google+ on all your blog posts. Not only will this increase your circle of influence, it will get you into Google search faster. Google search is key in attracting new readers and new followers. After I publish each blog post, I post it to Google+. It takes a second and it really works. Make sure you have the settings set to share your post to Your Circles and Public. “Public” are those people who don’t know you yet but Google can show them your post.
- Goodreads is an absolute must for all authors. I follow several of their groups and make sure to interact on the message boards. It’s a great way to find new readers and connect with other authors. It’s also a free advertising avenue.
- Retweet other authors and others related to your book’s interest on Twitter. This is a common courtesy and it really creates goodwill amongst readers. Authors and writers are readers too. When you show kindness to others, it will come back to you tenfold.
- On all social media outlets, talk about more than your book. You have other interests, don’t you? I talk about everything under the sun including baking, cooking, the weather, sports, news, music, television and many more topics. It will show you are real and well rounded.
You know more about your book than anyone else. You should be the one to promote your books to readers. You are the #1 expert and it will come across in your promotion on social media. I hope these tips help you in your promotion of your book. Soon, it will come naturally to you and you will have more followers/readers than you know what to do with.
All authors, no matter if they are traditionally or independently published, are expected to be on social media and to promote their book. It can be overwhelming and I hope my tips for successful social media promotion help my fellow authors.
What’s your #1 social media tip? Share in the comments below.
N. N. Light