How do you use social media? Many authors start out uncertain of themselves because they don’t have a social media strategy. To develop one, read this post. It’s easier to do that you might think.
Gone are the times when authors could work on their book, hand it to an agent, and relax.
Back then, publishers would handle book covers, social media marketing, speaking gigs, and book placement in big-box bookstores.
Yes, agents can still reach publishers, and you can always opt for traditional publishing, but guess what?
You still need to prove that you have an audience for your book by establishing a following on social media.
In today’s world, authors need to connect with the readers, colleagues, and influencers in their niche.
A Social Media Strategy Is Essential
There is no doubt that social media has taken over the internet and has a significant impact on the publishing industry.
Therefore, when it comes to marketing, advertising, or creating a connection with readers, there is no better tool than social media.
But, you can’t proceed blindly or willy-nilly. Social media marketing requires an effective strategy for your books and for you as the author.
This blog post will guide you through the basics involved in creating a strategy. Keep reading to understand the concepts better.
#1 Understand your goals and reader demographics
This is the foundational step toward interacting with your reader demographic. The idea is to make small goals so that you can have a better focus on your big picture and achieve it systematically.
First, who are your readers? What demographic do they typically belong to? Are there any particular likings that they have in common?
What age are they? What gender? Where do they live?
Understanding your potential readership is crucial.
It would help if you also built an attractive profile, ensure brand visibility (as an author, you are your brand), and launch new content at the right time.
Always remember to focus on one or two goals. Once you achieve them, move on.
#2 Be wise in choosing the right social media channels for yourself
Here, the idea is to start with one social media network and slowly build your profiles.
This step will follow the previous one as you need to have an idea about your reader demographics to be able to choose the right channels. For instance, if your readers are young adults, Instagram, Twitter, and Tumbler would be your best choices.
If you write cookbooks for gluten-free children, your impetus is to make life easier for the kids and their parents.
If you write romance novels, you want to provide your readers with a few hours of escapism and enjoyment, right? Facebook and Instagram are ideal platforms for these books.
Now, if you write historical fiction novels, you want to provide a fantasy escape for history lovers. If you write graphic novels, you might want to write a book that will expand the minds of your young readers, help them to explore new worlds, and encourage reading.
Now you understand why the first step – determining who your readers are – was so important. Right?
#3 Create engaging content
In the end, the idea is to build connections with your readers, engage with them, and learn from them.
Once you have a profile that showcases who you are and what you write, the next step is content creation.
Create images along with niche-specific quotes and quotes from your own books. Also, share your blog posts and posts from other authors in your genre.
Sometimes, you could even opt for a survey to determine your readers’ preferences.
Remember, social media is all about creating connections with your readers and colleagues in your genre. That’s why a social media strategy that is vital.
#4 What is your social media strategy return on investment?
Now that you have spent time in setting the goals, choosing the channels, and creating content, what next? Studying your readers’ level of engagement with your content, also known as return on investment (ROI).
Are you getting successful results from what you are doing? Is there any improvement, or are you becoming stagnant with your images?
It is crucial to monitor your results and understand how you can improve upon them. Therefore, it is essential to keep an eye on your ROI at all times so you can adjust your social media strategy.
#5 How well are you engaging with your readers?
This is the most critical question.
Only posting a lot of attractive content is not a strategy. What about engaging you’re your readers?
Check the number of reactions you get. Are people commenting on your posts? Do they ask questions? Do you reply to their questions?
Interact with your readers as much as you can.
#6 It is all about clicks and shares!
Social media isn’t about you. And it’s not about your books.
Book marketing is about your readers and prospective readers.
Share content from other authors and influencers in your genre. Also, share content from your readers.
Track the number of times your readers click your links and share your content. Knowing these numbers is critical to building an effective strategy.
Try to create content that your readers and others will share. Why? Shared content is the holy grail of an effective social media strategy.
Having an online presence via social media is a must. It’s not difficult to establish a social media strategy, although it is time-consuming in the beginning.
But without a social media strategy, how can you possibly proceed?
Gaining an insight into your effectiveness on social media will help you to improvise your strategy and make adjustments along the way.
How Are You Doing on Social Media?
To determine who well you’re doing on social media, sign up for a social media audit. I’ll give you a detailed report that explains what you are doing correctly and where you can make improvements (and how). Read what people say about my audits.
Frances Caballo is an author and social media consultant. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online and building their platform. She also provides content writing and email marketing services. Learn more about her.