Social media can be a lot of things to a lot of people—a fun distraction from work, a source of frustration when one’s relatives constantly post inspirational or political memes, a way to stay connected… but for authors, it’s also a powerful marketing tool.
Most authors will tell you that marketing is one of the most uncertain and most difficult parts of maintaining a social media presence. On one hand, whenever you have a new cover to share, or a new review goes up, you want to let your followers/friends/whatever know. On the other hand, if you do that too much, you risk alienating them, or seeming like a self-promotion machine, and nobody likes people like that. You could actually lose followers if you treat your Twitter or Facebook as your Personal News Network. So what’s an author to do? Well, we’ll be so bold to suggest a few things…
- Get yourself a new website. Your website often makes your first impression with your readers. A clean design from Clockpunk Studios can make you stand out from the crowd, and the WordPress platform is easy for you to use when it comes to uploading content. We’d also suggest linking your site to your various social media platforms, so anyone who stops by knows where to find you online. Sometimes, a cover or a blurb or a cool review isn’t worthy of a whole blog post, so social media is where people go to find the latest news. Therefore it’s good to make sure your followers know where to find you!
- Use multiple platforms and multiple strategies. These days, there are many social media platforms, and they all have their advantages. Use them all, and spread your net wide. Use Twitter for pithy remarks, up-to-the-minute news about what’s going on in your career, or for fun banter with your friends. Facebook… everyone likes to complain about Facebook (“algorithms!!”) but it’s still an effective social media tool. Facebook allows for associated images with posts, so you can engage in a dialogue more easily if you’re curious about fan responses to some new review or a hot issue in publishing or in what you choose to chare of your personal life. Instagram is more about pictures, so it’s great for showing of cool covers, fan art, cosplay of your characters—anything! And so is Pinterest. By spreading your message out, you can seem less self-promotional while still showing off your stuff.
- Keep it alive. Publishing is uncertain and irregular, but you aren’t. Whether you’re grabbing drinks with friends of colleagues, cooking up your signature dish, at a bookstore looking at some new titles to grab, or just out in nature, Tweet/Facebook/Instagram it! Fans love to know what their favorite authors are up to (unless you’re George R.R. Martin, in which case they’ll chide you for doing anything other than working on The Winds of Winter.)
With these techniques, and a Clockpunk Studios author website to get your social media sites out there, you’ll be sure to keep your fanbase interested and engaged!