How to Build an Author Platform through Social Media Social media is the term used for online social sharing sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, etc. If you’re a new or budding author, having a social media presence can help establish credibility in your niche, build a core audience, and develop a fan base ready to purchase your book when it’s released. Remember, your work is much more attractive to publishers if you have done the legwork and already established a core following. Social media is universal and powerful. Here are recent numbers on the top social media sites. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6.
Facebook – over 750 million YouTube – over 490 million Twitter – over 225 million LinkedIn – over 150 million Google+ – over 90 million Pinterest – over 11.5 million
ou can easily get swept into the social media time hole and spend hours updating and checking posts. Don’t. You’re a writer, so as important as social media is in reaching your target audience, you want to be disciplined in sticking to your writing schedule and not wasting hours hanging out on social media sites. To avoid being sucked into the social media time vortex, you need to create a social media plan. 1. Start with just one social media channel. You can expand gradually, but you want to learn the channel and educate yourself about how to find connections in your target market. For instance if you are writing a crime novel — you have to find out who reads crime novels and where they are hanging out online. Start with a general Google search on “crime reader blogs.” As you can see, just from this quick search, I’ve discovered a Crime Reader’s Association. A quick peek at the website and I’ve discovered they have a Twitter and a Facebook audience. What can you offer to the conversation? How can you build connection with this audience? Keep in mind, Twitter and Facebook are generally considered the big powerhouses for building personal connections. LinkedIn is ideal for business connections, including editors, publishers, and other writers.
2. Set aside a certain amount of time for social media each day. Break it down into small chunks. Be realistic about your writing goals and don’t let social media dip into your writing time. Set a social media timeframe. Start with 30 minutes. Set a timer to keep yourself on schedule. Be disciplined. 3. Stick to a theme. What’s your writing niche? For instance, is your book about gardening, Chinese checkers, or, if you’re writing fiction, do your characters have interesting hobbies or vocations? Is your book set in an exotic location? Build your fan base by establishing yourself as an expert in your niche. Create a social media/content editorial calendar to help you stick to your niche and keep your updates regular. 4. Exhibit social etiquette. Thank people when they repost or comment on your updates. A personal thank you goes a long way. On the opposite side, don’t bash other writers, editors, agents, etc. publicly. Social media is all about building credibility and relationships with your target readers and nobody wants to hang out with a whiner. You can finish reading this article on our website about social media.
Marketing and SEO expert Heather Georgoudiou provides solid guidelines for using social media to establish an author platform - with time le...