Social media marketing---love it or hate it, it's part of the job description if we want to publish what we've written. Carrie Fancett Pagels is here today to share some tips about using social media wisely. -- Sandy
Carrie: Marketing is something writers must do. When I was a psychologist, a percentage of my time was spent on Public Relations/Marketing, just part of the job, as it is for authors. I’m going to focus on one area of modern marketing – social media.
At each point in your writing career, you need to ask yourself – “Am I doing what I need to do to get my writing in front of the readers who will enjoy it?” And look at how you do that. Social media is something that can consume all of your time if you let it. But those books won’t get written if you are on social media all day. Save your social media time for a) your down time in writing (write during your most productive times) and b) the time your readers are most likely to read your posts and c) don’t be a slave to your social media. Try to have a regular and predictable presence on your favorite social media that readers can count on vs. a haphazard one. Also, don’t be one of those folks who jumps in and posts a “buy my book” type of post and runs off. Engage with your readers. Whenever possible, try to respond back to each person who is commenting on your posts, whether that be a blog post or a Facebook post, etc. Who likes to be ignored?
Limit yourself to several media options that you like and are easiest. One caveat – if you enjoy, e.g., Twitter, but never see any return or any connection to it really promoting your brand as an author, then consider dropping it. Every social media venue’s results are personal and individual. What works for someone else may not work for you. Don’t just jump on the next bandwagon because it’s the new thing. Sure, check something out and see if it might fit but don’t push yourself to begin new social media because you’re afraid you’re going to miss out.
As a marketing presence builder, blogging has been maligned. When I first joined ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) we were all encouraged to blog. Regular blogging instills the writing habit. CBA fiction blogging connects you with readers and authors (connections are paramount in marketing) and keeps you on track with what releases are coming out in your genre. The farther you go in your career the more likely you’ll be doing more guest posts on other blogs and it becomes more difficult to keep up with your own blog(s). I prefer group blogging because of the camaraderie and you can help each other out. I have professional endorsements from relationships built with authors, over the years, who I’ve met through blogging that I don’t think I’d have had otherwise.
Combining your two favorite social media outlets can be good. We combine regular Colonial Quills blog Tea Parties for new releases with Facebook events. Does it sell books? Like marketing a practice, this is just one aspect of promoting one’s product. Best wishes!
Which social media site is the most enjoyable for you? Which is the most productive in terms of marketing?
Carrie Fancett Pagels is a multi-published award-winning author of Christian historical romance. All three of her Christy Lumber Camp books were finalists for Family Fiction’s Book of the Year. Twenty-five years as a psychologist didn't "cure" her overactive imagination! She resides with her family in the Historic Triangle of Virginia, which is perfect for her love of history. Carrie loves to read, bake, bead, and travel – but not all at the same time!
Blogs: Overcoming With God and Colonial Quills
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Links for purchase for Saving the Marquise’s Granddaughter by Carrie Fancett Pagels
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