Friday, October 25, 2013

Social Media For Authors Who Hate It

Many authors are anti-social about social media, but they know it can’t be ignored forever. Even if they don’t participate, they’ll need to hire someone to be their surrogate and build up an online presence for them.

Here’s a quick look at what you should consider when it comes to undertaking a social media campaign:

1.      Choose a platform -- or several—to get the word out. You won’t have time to do everything, even if you feel ambitious.

·         You must have a Web site
·         You must be on Twitter
·         You should have a blog
·         You should be on Facebook
·         LinkedIn is more for professional networking
·         Google+ lags behind Facebook and LinkedIn
·         Think about creating podcasts
·         Think about holding webinars or teleseminars
·         YouTube could be huge for you, depending on your topic
·         Pinterest -- good if you have visuals
·         Instagram -- good if you have visuals

2.      Determine your keywords- the buzzwords surrounding your area of expertise. If you write about dieting, your keywords could include the following (singular/plural;/different tenses):

Diet                 weight            exercise            self-help          fitness
Health             weight loss      snacks              resolution        shape
Food               weight gain     medical             gym                body
Eating              pounds           doctor              muscles           sexy
Hungry            work out        biking                running            walking

You will use these keywords throughout all of your tweets, blog posts, Facebookings, Website copy and all public communications.

3.      Think of the broad topics you can see yourself writing about for your blog or Facebook page. For instance, as a diet book author maybe you’ll discuss:

·         Joining a gym (pros-cons)
·         Benefits of weight loss
·         How to lose weight
·         Self-control
·         Looking better
·         Feeling better
·         Defeating the challenges to weight control
·         Avoiding diseases due to obesity

I’m sure the list goes on. You’ll also write about what’s in the news, such as:

·         Overweight celebrities
·         Government studies on weight/diet/health
·         New surveys/polls/stats on health
·         Reaction to new diets
·         Content that relates to holidays (Thanksgiving), New Year’s Day, or other special dates.

Think about creating an editorial calendar. Determine if you’ll blog twice a week, three times, or daily. Think about a comfortable length (300-500 words or 700-1000 is standard). Look to see where you can pull content from, including guides, books, a news story, government records, etc.

4.      Determine how much time you can devote to your social media. Be consistent. Make a time budget -- for each day, each week. If you need help, ask others to supply content, such as a guest post on a related topic.

5.      Decide on your voice or persona—how do you want to come off to your fans and followers? Will your social media postings be serious or funny? Will they share ideas- or opinions- or facts and statistics? Will you give steps and top 10 lists -- or will you tell stories? Will you analyze what you see, share how you feel, or merely report what you learn? Or all of the above?

There’s a lot you need to know to perfect your social media platform, but if you address even half of what I just wrote you’ll be in a good position three months from now to grow, expand, and build on your success.

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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer, Media Connect, the nation’s largest book promoter. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog © 2013

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