Do I need social media? YES...
Today, let's talk about social media because it's 2021 and that means that this is something you should do.
Unless, of course, you absolutely hate it, then don't....but really, you need to, especially if you are an author. There are millions of books out there and you want people to read yours! You have something to say, and let's face it, you want to make money. Making money as an author could be an entire post, book, blog, course, etc..but it's hard to do so you want to give yourself the BEST CHANCE, and social media is a great FREE way to do it.
Yup, I dropped the F-bomb--lol, okay not that one, but one that people hate to hear. FREE. It's FREE so why not use it??
You do NOT need to spend heaps of money running ads that get you nowhere. In fact, social media marketers who sell courses on how to use ads know this but they are also in business. I'm not slagging ads, because they do work, especially when you can spend a lot. I once took a business course on how to run a membership and the guy running it had a guest talking about how to make money as an online business owner and he said that you must spend up to $3000 every week.
Now, if I were making 1 million or more a year, sure no problem, chump change, why not dump it into ads, but I'm not there--yet. Honestly, if you have the money great but for the purpose of this newsletter (and it will be a new blog too, I will also post it there so you can always refer back to it- you're welcome) let's say you don't have all this extra money lying around waiting for a place to be spent.
So...here we are looking at FREE ways to build our author audience and brand. I was in a zoom coffee chat call this morning with a group of authors and coaches and someone pointed out that only authors follow authors and only coaches follow coaches. Well, this is true and not true. It's great to follow other authors and have them follow you because you are building a relationship with them. Also, I always promote other authors. And maybe their followers will follow you. But, I'm getting ahead of myself.
Seriously, I may write a book about this someday. There is so much to cover.
I started using social media when I was out of work when it started. I used it to stay connected. I used it to connect with other authors and artists (as I do both) and it was a great way to learn about things like retreats, workshops, agents, submissions, etc.
I have gotten 100% of the jobs I have had since 2005 by staying active on social media. It's powerful.
***it can be awful too-just like anything you have cyber bullies, stalkers, and jerks. I have been targeted and bullied really badly on social media and I'm still here.
The way to be successful on social media is to be authentic. Don't listen to your kids, or grandkids, or whoever is telling you to have thousands and thousands of followers, who you can buy if you want to, in order to be successful. It's better to connect with 200 people than 20,000 who just scroll past. TRUST ME ON THIS.
You can be authentic by commenting on others' posts, by joining groups (on Facebook), by commenting on threads (Twitter), by showing up to peoples' lives on Instagram & Facebook, and commenting, by always being real, honest, and kind.
If you are an author it's important that your readers get to know YOU but you have to be thoughtful about how you do it.
You can promote your books without being the annoying person who is always like "look at me me me me me and buy my book" and here is how.
You can post your cover reveal
You can announce when you sign a deal with a publishing house
You can announce when you sign with an agent
You can mention your book tour
These are all GREAT
BUT here is how you can stand out!!
Let's say you write a book about a girl who goes to Paris to become a chef and she falls in love (well, I'm writing one of those LOL) you can post pictures of food, you can post pics of the Effiel Tower (PEOPLE LOVE PARIS!!!) you can post quotes about falling in love, about Paris, about food. You can post about any of the TV reality cooking shows. Anything that relates to your story. Then when your book comes out and you reveal the cover your followers will be dying to read it!
On that note, join a group about Paris or French cooking on FB or follow hashtags and comment often being authentic and not selling.
There are many many ways to do this and this newsletter could end up being 400 pages on how to be successful so I will cut it off. I think that's enough to get started.
Here are the ones that authors should be on.
TikTok because it's becoming huge, get on it, lurk, and follow #authortok #booktok to get a sense of how authors are using it.
Instagram because it's also big right now and Reels are huge. They are like TikTok, short videos that people are doing, usually giving value or being entertaining. Follow hashtags like #writingcommunity #writerslife #author #writersofinstagram #authorsofinstagram
Facebook--it's the standard and while people complain about it, they are still on it. Join FACEBOOK GROUPS for writers. If you write for kids (18 and under) joining Kidlit411 but there are many writing groups.
I have a FREE one for FEMALE AUTHORS you can join it HERE if you aren't already in it. It's called The Female Writers Society
Honestly, I know you may hate social media but it's 2021 and it's huge and free, so why not use it?
there is also Pinterest-where you post pictures and I use it to talk about writing with tips and such, but you can use it any way that you want.
My last piece of advice is to choose ONE and get good at it first. Put all your energy into that one. "But Stephanie, you are on all of them??? What gives?" I've been on social media and very active since 2005, so that's why. This didn't happen overnight. I've posted over 6,000 posts on Instagram and over 21,000 on Twitter and I have no idea on FB. It's taken me a long time to get to use these like it's nothing.
Okay, have a brilliant day and I hope this was helpful to you!! Please share with other writers who can use it!
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Cheers and happy writing!!!
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