Creating your indie-author brand. The online edition!April 30th, 2019
If you’re just starting out, the idea of promoting yourself and your book can be a little daunting. Self-promotion can be frowned upon in our culture, and you wanted to publish a book, not get into marketing! Unfortunately, these days there are very few successful writing careers that aren’t accompanied by an active social media presence.
This is just as true if you’re publishing a commercial fiction book with a major publisher, a niche work of poetry through a small indie press or self-publishing a family memoir. As a writer, you are your own business and people want to get to know you!
The good news is that it is relatively simple to find a social media voice and style that works for you, even if you think you’re not that tech savvy! While this will look different for every author, there are a few rules and strategies you should know about.
- Don’t spam. This rule may seem counterintuitive – after all, you are on social media to promote your book. You should be wary, however, of posting too often about your work lest everything you post come to read like a sales pitch. Instead, use the platform to engage with readers and other writers, share aspects of your writing process and events you take part in, and repost interesting articles you’ve read. And, of course, when you have exciting news to share about your book, share that too!
- Engage with others. Social media is, well, social. Don’t treat your Facebook, Instagram or Twitter feed like a shout into the void. There are plenty of like-minded people out there for you to engage in conversation. That is how you will build an audience and network over time. Remember, building a social media following takes time and commitment.
- Post regularly. Consistency is very important in our oversaturated digital landscape. There are so many voices, products and new items vying for people’s attention that in can be very easy to get lost in it if you don’t post reliably. If regular engagement in conversations on social media doesn’t appeal to you, you can still keep up a presence on your platform of choice by scheduling a post once or twice a week.
- Be professional. Your public author social media accounts should not be treated like your personal accounts. This is your public persona, designed to let your readers get to know you and your books – it is not the arena for political discussions (unless you’re writing political commentaries) and it’s not the place to air personal grievances. Your followers are potential customers, so be aware of how you would like to come across to them in your social media presence.
When in doubt, just talk to people! Reply to comments, share your favourite books and blogs, and ask people questions. Social media can be a great way of getting to know your audience and making some new friends at the same time.
Tags: author, kidslit, marketing, picture book, publicity, publishing, self publishing
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