“Live as if you were to die tomorrow; learn as if you were to live forever.”~Mahatma Gandhi, Indian leader
Social media: think you know everything? I don’t, but I thought I knew more than I did.
Tonight’s Emerging Writer’s Workshop will be a refresher for me, right? Nope. I left with five vital pieces/nuggets of advice. Ultimately, you want to be an expert, as in: “When I [agent/editor] Google a keyword, you [author] come up.” Be there or be square. Social media can give you that legitimacy, validation and exposure. In order to make social media work for you, you have to know how to work it.
1–Don’t spam on social media.
Okay, this one I did know, but tonight gave me a different perspective. I’ve heard the 80/20% rule of not promoting vs. promoting your book, but 90/10% is recommended. Think: “What am I there on social media for? Am I here to buy a book?” No, you’re there to catchup with your friends, read updates and share information, not to read spam. Don’t do it to others. Just don’t; it’s rude.
2–Don’t just talk business.
Use social media as a tool to share your perspectives and boost other writers. I love this Tweet idea shared tonight:
“My followers, [author I know]’s book cover looks like [well-known book] so check out [author I know book’s title].”
Don’t expect favors, though. Make a connection because you want to, not because you want them to. Karma comes back to you, good or bad.
3–Social media doesn’t sell books.
But it does increase awareness. Use your superpowers to highlight not only your book but also upcoming events, causes you support and personal interests. You’re a 3-dimensional person; make that show.
4–Be consistent with any site you use.
When you blog, have a realistic schedule and maintain it. Don’t disappear for two months. Set aside time specific time each day or week to reply to Tweets, updates and Likes.
Give yourself permission to tailor your content for specific audiences on each media platform. For example, use: Twitter for book reviews; LinkedIn for writing advice and marketing; Facebook to post jokes; and Instagram to share pictures of your puppy. Followers are following you for a reason, so keep that focus. You can change at any time, of course, but if you’re engaging on a platform for a specific reason, stay true to that goal.
5–Don’t make your social media stream all look-at-me-me-me!
The biggest tip I got from this part was to not quote book reviews. Simply say. “[Company/Blogger/Site] reviewed my book, Wow! [provide link]” and share that. Let people celebrate with you.
The coolest bonus tip I learned was: Stand in the longest checkout line at the store so you have that additional time to update, Like and retweet on your social media platforms.
Suddenly, grocery shopping is more motivating.