With 330 million active monthly users on Twitter, 800 million active monthly users on Instagram and 2.13 billion active monthly users on Facebook,1 there is no doubt that social media is a great way to get people interested in an author’s message and book. This fact alone is a reason why authors should post on social media every day. But, like any marketing strategy, authors need to research, plan and monitor their methods to make sure they have the most success. Social media is the only way an author can sell books, so it’s wise to use all of the strategies available to balance your book marketing plan.
When an author knows who their audience is, how their audience engages, and where they are buying, they know where to focus their time and attention. This means understanding which social platform(s) should be used to reach their audience. While setting up several platforms with your branded information is not a bad idea, authors should consider focusing on using no more than two social platforms at one time to maximize engagements.
Helps you to market and sell books- Let’s get this one out of the way first. A big goal for most authors is to sell books. Social media offers a vehicle to reach millions of people hungry for content that makes them feel good, learn something or be inspired. The more posting an author does, the more credible they look, and the more followers they will attract. The right amount of daily posts, scheduled at the right times, with the right type of content, will attract followers.
Connect new readers worldwide- Social media provides a cost-effective way to share content with a global audience. Although most engagements will be with users in your own country, the world seems a lot smaller when using social media. Authors should post on social media every day to get the most exposure to this worldwide audience. One post can introduce an author’s work to a whole new audience.
Develops your voice– Consistently posting well-thought-out content will over-time position you as a subject matter expert for the topic you are writing about. Building credibility gives your followers comfort knowing that you have the expertise to write on that subject matter. I my blog article 7 Ways Social Media Helps Authors we discuss how each post is a reminder of your brand, message, and growing influence.
Promotes other content- When your posts consist of diverse content, your followers will become more engaged and help grow that platform. Engaged follower attracts new followers. Authors should alternate the type of posts they create between promotional, tips, articles and interesting facts related to their overall message. These messages should be delivered through memes, articles, text-only posts, RT’s or Shares, and videos.
It’s also imperative that authors only promote their book 20% of the time, alternating how they do this. Vary the colors, sizes and look of your posts to create appealing content.
Connects all of your platforms- Any channel or website should be promoted through your posts. It’s ideal to have all of your platforms linked together with similar headers, logos, and social share icons. Any post that is sent out will help followers find content on other platforms. Posting every day will increase the traffic to your website, Amazon page and other platforms selling your book. When your message resonates with a reader, they will research who is sending that message.
Create a community of like-minded people- There is a large community of indie authors who are open to developing mutually beneficial relationships. As authors build trust with their followers, the potential for supportive relationships will increase. If an author wants to connect with others that can help grow their followers, the best practice is to be generous with your time. It starts with having the mindset that you are willing to help other people succeed. Sharing other people’s posts and content with your followers is one way to begin developing these relationships. Be sincere, and it will yield results.
Analytics help you stay focused- Daily posting will give you the data needed to steer your social strategy. If you are just starting to use social media, it’s best to post for at least 30 days to gather enough data to analyze the best post times and most popular type of content. For those authors already posting consistently, using the platform’s analytics is your roadmap to success.
Helps you announce promotions and contests- Part of any marketing strategy should be running promotions and or contests. But these events do not have to be limited to just your book. Running a contest to find followers willing to sign up for your mailing list is one of many strategies that should be promoted through your social platforms.
Share your book across the reseller spectrum- Posting every day allows you to promote your book with different resellers and bookstores. Authors should not just rely on Amazon for retail book sales. Spreading the love makes business sense, and also shows resellers that you have an interest in helping them out. This strategy will reward you when you are looking to expand your distribution.
While using social media for book marketing is a valuable tool, it’s not for everyone. There are other strategies that authors can use to reach potential customers to include blogging, video creation, podcasts, author events, tradeshows, radio interviews and creating and working an email list. But using platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Goodreads gives authors an opportunity to find and over time, create long-term relationships with their followers.
If an author decides to use social media, they should remember to post consistently, with a voice, personality, and message that will become identified with them. This long-term approach is the best way to plan your social media strategy. Remember that your overall goal should be to develop trusting relationships with your followers. These relationships will turn followers into customers.
1 Nick Gulley and John Harrington, “50 Fascinating Facts About Facebook,” Yahoo Finance, February 2, 2018, https://yhoo.it/2E4bAqJ.
Rick Lite of Stress Free Book Marketing, stands at the forefront of the ever-changing book industry. He is a seasoned book marketing professional with over 13 years of experience in the industry. Rick’s expertise comes from tirelessly working on new and innovative ways to market his own books and CDs with his company and parent company, Stress Free Kids. Embracing the core values of integrity, innovation, and growth, Rick works closely with authors to create custom, robust book marketing programs. His easy-going manner provides “stress-free” support and comfort to authors going through the book marketing process for the first time. Rick is quick to share his knowledge and “insider tips” for a successful marketing campaign that will lead to increased exposure, awareness and most importantly, sales.