Social media has provided writers with an abundance of opportunities. From networking to marketing; it’s now possible for their work to reach thousands of readers, in just a click of a button.
However, social media marketing doesn’t come naturally to everybody. There is, quite literally, a time and a place for everything to work in harmony with one another.
With that in mind, here are our top tips, that will showcase how authors can market their book, and gain a buzz about their writing.
Know your market
You need to work out who exactly can benefit from your book, and target them specifically.
One central aspect of marketing is that you should never try to target too broad of an audience. If you do this, you risk being too vague and not reaching your full potential.
Everything you write – from your bio to your posts, need to have your audience in mind.
Don’t try to be everything to everybody. Speak directly to the people you expect to read your book, and your reach will be much higher.
When it comes to social media marketing, it is better to be a big fish in a small pond, rather than a small fish in a big pond.
Consider influencer marketing
On social media, there is an array of so-called “influencers.” In short, these are people with a lot of followers, that have the potential to influence many people.
This could be as simple as sending influencers a copy of your book. Make sure that you share their posts, and engage with them prior. You shouldn’t just “use” them for their followers.
All it really takes is one person, with a substantial following, to love your book.
Make sure that the influencers are relevant to your book, and the message that you’re trying to portray.
For example, if you have a cooking book; contact lifestyle influencers, who often try new recipes. It wouldn’t be beneficial for you to contact an influencer who focuses on vehicles.
Think outside of the box
You have to be innovative and make yourself memorable. It’s the best way to have your book stick in people’s minds.
Social media, despite all its benefits, is extremely competitive. There are billions of monthly users on one platform, which makes getting noticed extremely difficult.
If you can find any way to set yourself apart from the crowd, do it. Be unique and creative – and always take risks. Social media is great for letting your imagination run wild.
Engage with others
You must engage with others on social media. It’s one of the main downfalls for many people looking to market their work.
Give attention to others, comment on pictures, like posts, and show your support. It will help build up your followers and help you gain meaningful, beneficial relationships.
Also, if you come across another author, artist or creator who is attempting to share their work with the world – promote it.
Sharing other people’s content, and helping with their marketing efforts will often mean they do the same for you.
For this reason, we highly suggest that you have social media accounts way before releasing your book.
You need to build up your followers and create meaningful relationships.
Don’t forget about visuals
Though you’re a writer, social media isn’t the place for text-heavy posts.
Photos and videos are the most popular forms of posts shared on platforms. This is especially true for visual platforms like Instagram and Pinterest.
Post teasers of your book cover image, quick videos, or even screenshots of great quotes.
Another great idea is to post a picture of somebody reading the book. Photos with a face in it receive 38% more likes than those without.
While you may have mixed feelings about hashtags, they really do work. They make your posts more searchable, and will ultimately help you reach a bigger audience.
Stay away from generic hashtags that are dominated by ‘bots.’ While they may bring you in likes, these will all be incredibly useless in terms of marketing – rarely any of the people behind the likes are genuine.
You could even consider creating your own hashtag – this is a fun way to get people involved.
Hashtags are particularly great for Twitter and Instagram, although Facebook has also utilized them for trending topics.
If you only post about your book, multiple times a day, this will have an adverse effect.
“Buy my book” 3 times a day, on 4 different platforms will cause your audience to lose interest, and maybe even unfollow you.
Remember, this is social media. Share other things – things that have happened in your life, a selfie, a cat picture.
As a writer, you may also want to dive into blog writing. This gives you other content to share on social media – as well as a handy place to publicize your book. However, it’s important to take into account that book writing is very different from a blog or social media writing, so you might want to check some websites that aggregate editing service reviews to find editors that can help you out with these specific tasks.
Know the best times to post
It’s true, there is a “good” and “bad” time to post on social media. You should keep this in mind when marketing your book.
However, this can be entirely subjective, depending on your niche and audience. For this reason, we advise you to test multiple times – and discover the best one for you organically.
Below are some suggested times, but there’s no definite promise that these will work for you.
- Facebook – Thursday at 8 pm
- Twitter – Thursday at 5 pm
- LinkedIn – Wednesday at 9 am
- Instagram – Friday at 7 pm
- Pinterest – Friday at 1 am
You should aim to post on both Facebook and Instagram about 3 times a week, and Twitter and Pinterest a few times a day.
As we said, this is entirely subjective, and actually depends on your personal brand.
Consider creating a contest
A great way to increase engagement, and bring new people to your platforms is by running a contest.
Obviously, the winner will win a free copy of your book (again, great publicity).
With a contest, you have to set specific rules, that will benefit you. For instance, “Like this post and comment a friend that you’d love to read this with. You must be following me to be entered.”
If you don’t have the means to send a free copy, offer a free chapter to your first 1,000 followers.
It’s one of the biggest trends in social media right now. Live streaming on Facebook, Instagram, YouTube Live, or Periscope is massive at the moment.
It’s a great way to engage with your audience, in a less scripted and real way. Again, placing emphasis on creating meaningful relationships.
Don’t forget to end with a call to action. This will give your audience something to consider.
If you want to build up your follower list and audience organically, you have to be patient.
Don’t make the mistake of giving up too quickly. Take it like by like, share by share.
It may be a little slow at first, just as you attempt to build up your connections. Obviously, networking outside of social media, and other marketing efforts will help.
Have you had a book launch?
If you haven’t organized a book launch, it’s time to do so. It’s also crucial that you make the launch a fantastic event – at least for social media.
Make sure you post about the launch on your Instagram story and get people to share the event on their social media platforms.
Most of the time, a book launch event is a few days before the actual launch – and it’s a great way to promote.
People on social media love boasting about an exclusive event invite. Make sure you capitalize on this.
Create a community
There is an entire community of social media users that are desperate for your book. They want to read it, share it, and talk about.
Your platform should ultimately become a platform for those people.
With this in mind, you should create posts that cultivate conversation. Ask opinions, and share information. When you do this, people will love following you.
Once you have your own community, it will only grow – becoming a beautiful bunch of followers, that all understand each other.
You could also consider conducting interviews or inviting them to events. Any way to engage with your audience, you should leap on it.
We highly recommend that you list three significant themes about your book. From these critical themes, list all the audiences that may be interested in your book. Follow and engage with these people.
After all, engagement is really vital.
It may not be the easiest thing to master. However, using social media to market your book can be one of the best ways to start a conversation about your book.
In the publishing world, a lot of rejection occurs. It seems like it’s hard to win as a writer.
You’ve worked so hard, and we promise that people want to see what you have created.