I love these tips … I think they’re useful to ALL writers, not just authors!
As I’ve said many, many times on this blog – social media is great, because it lets us get our voices heard … but it’s also TERRIBLE!! Whilst there’s no ‘right’ way to do social media, there’s a gazillion errors we can make and then get noticed for all the wrong reasons. Yikes.
So, if you have a book, campaign, message, brand or something else you want to get out there, make sure you check out these great tips from Sarah. Enjoy!
Everyone markets on social media now – including authors. If you’ve never pictured yourself as a social media marketer before – oh well. You’re going to have to learn some time, and if you’re about to publish a novel? The time is now!
1) Get an Early Start
If you haven’t yet published your novel, start marketing now. There’s no such thing as starting too early when you’re trying to build hype up around the release of your book. Yeah, that means you’re going to have to stop basking in the bliss of finishing the thing and get back to work all over again. Small bits of news can take a while to circulate on social media, so starting a few weeks ahead of the launch will give everyone enough time to get word of your novel.
TOP TIP: Basically, you should be loud in announcing to the world that you finally finished that book, and make sure everyone hears you as soon as you finish that last chapter! MORE: Top 5 Social Media Mistakes
2) Create the Kind of Content That Succeeds on Social Media
Most social media platforms are centered around video and image content. Even Facebook has incorporated a feature that allows mobile users to float visual content to the top of their news feed. Informative promotional images and videos are more likely to be viewed and shared. More or less, people might feel like reading your book, but they probably won’t feel like reading your walls of text when they came to look at cat memes.
TOP TIP: If you’re thinking “wait, I’m a novelist, not a graphic designer!”, you can take the lazy way out and hire a graphic or video artist on Gumtree to create the content for you.
3) Incorporate Social Media into Your Website
Your preexisting audience might be able to do some of the promotion for you, provided they have the tools to do it. It’s time to think of “audience” and “minions” as interchangeable terms, and make them work for you. If you haven’t already, integrate “share” buttons into your website. If you have any free preview chapters available to view, put up a few buttons that will allow readers to share this content with a single click.
TOP TIP: More or less, people have a tendency to be lazy. They may not copy and paste, but they can sure click a share button.
4) Lend Your Novel Out to Influencers
Influencer marketing is a popular tactic for businesses, and it will work just as well for authors. Find popular personalities on social media or people who run successful blogs, and offer them a copy of your novel for review. If they enjoy it, they’ll recommend it to their followers!
TOP TIP: People like free stuff much more than the stuff they have to pay for. An influencer gets a free book, and you get a free review. If you cross link to each other, you can wind up sharing an audience. Everybody’s getting a piece of pie!
5) Host an Event
A lot of authors schedule bookstore appearances to read excerpts from their novels and answer questions. All of that travel can be expensive, and there isn’t a single person in the world who loves spending their weekends waiting at an airport. Rather than appearing in person, host virtual events. Facebook Live, YouTube Live, and Google Hangouts will allow you to hold events online.
TOP TIP: Anyone in the world can attend you virtual book events, and you only have to dress nice from the waist up. Put on a nice blouse, and nobody will have any idea that you’re still in your pajama pants. MORE: How To Do Social Media … And How NOT To!
Social media is an invaluable tool for helping you spread your message. Most importantly, it’s shockingly easy to get your content out there. You don’t want to work hard to push your book, and your readers don’t want to have to work hard to find it. Meet everybody where they’re at!
BIO: Sarah Anderson is a freelance writer who likes to cover stories in digital marketing and self-development. She is a frequent festival and concert-goer and loves to travel. Find her on Twitter.