Monthly Archives: October 2015

Social Media for Authors: The Basics

These days having a social media presence is crucial for writers and authors. Not only can social media help your book sales, but it also expands your readership, gives you opportunities to try out new content, and helps build a community around your work and interests. If you’re new to social media, you may be wondering what platforms you should start with. If this is the case, Facebook and Twitter are great places to start. Here is a little more detail on why they are valuable to you as an author and how to properly get started and tap their potential.

Twitter
Twitter is an all-encompassing social network that allows you to interact with readers and other authors in ways that you never have been able to before with only 140 characters messages called “Tweets.” Writers and Twitter go hand-in-hand like bagels and cream cheese, because, let’s be real, what wordsmith doesn’t love a good old 140-character challenge? But Twitter isn’t just a quippy way to share a message. The accessibility of to potential readers by on Twitter is unlike any other platform; the readership-building potential is incredible.

How to use it
If you’re new to Twitter, it may be a good idea to approach Twitter as a reader first, then as an author. What I mean by this is, find some of your favorite authors and follow them on Twitter. If you’re reading one of their books, Tweet at them and let them know. See how they react and respond to you and other readers. Look at the type of content they share and how they inform readers about their new work. Find other readers who love the same authors and follow them as well and begin forming relationships. By building a community around an author’s work that you love, or authors whose work is similar to your own, it will make it easier to pitch your own book to your followers on Twitter. Just an FYI: users on Twitter tend to be more interested in being advertised to than on other social platforms, so feel free to send potential readers direct tweets or messages!

Facebook
For some authors, Facebook can cause consternation, especially since Facebook is constantly evolving the way that users can increase their reach. That being said, there are over 1 billion people using Facebook worldwide, which makes it one of the largest social platforms on Earth. The number of potential readers on Facebook is huge! And if you’re a self-published author, there’s a good chance that marketing your book is up to you, which means Facebook is a tool you can’t afford to not use.

How to use it
Having an author page for your work is just as important as having a website, and, in some cases, more important. Facebook is a way for readers to reach out and connect with you, and share your work. Thus, if you’re new to the platform, create an author’s page, one that is separate from your personal page that readers can “like“ rather than “friend.” Make your author page about your professional work or your book and share things that are related to that. Do you have a blog? Share that. Did you find an interesting article that you think your readers will also enjoy? Share that. Creating a conversation around your work and topics that you find interesting will help create your author brand. But remember: don’t say too much or too little. Finding the right balance and not overwhelming your readers is important. Users on Facebook are a little less interested in being advertised to directly via personal messages or posts on their private pages—so if you’re going to promote your work on Facebook, make sure you do it through your own page or through the platform’s official ad builder.

 

More articles on social media for authors: 
Twitter Tips & Tricks
The Do’s and Don’ts of Facebook for Writers
11 Steps To Take In Marketing Your Book
The Original Social Media for Authors
Pinterest for Authors
10 Tips to Grow Your Audience on Instagram

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By |October 26th, 2015|Uncategorized|0 Comments

What Is An Audience?

In today’s social media culture we assume bigger is better. Advertisers push their message onto millions of followers and get instant approval from billions of likes and retweets. But for writers, the ideal audience has nothing to do with numbers. Instead of pushing our work onto as many people as possible, it’s much more helpful to focus on pulling in that smaller slice of the population who will love what we’re writing. 100 fans who care about our work, can’t wait for our next release, and who loan our books out to friends, are worth more than a million faceless followers who will never take a chance on one single story. Instead of shouting louder to be heard over all the social media noise, the secret is to cultivate a solid audience that is ready to listen to what we have to say.

About The Author
Lauren Sapala is a fiction writer, writing coach, and blogger. She founded the Write City writing group in San Francisco, and its sister branch in Seattle. She coaches all levels of writers, helping them to discover their voices and realize their goals and dreams.  Lauren currently lives in San Francisco and is working on her fifth novel. She blogs regularly at www.laurensapala.com.

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By |October 19th, 2015|Uncategorized|2 Comments