If you’re still struggling to find your footing with social media and trying to decide whether it’s worth your time, I have news for you: Social media is IDEAL for authors. In fact, if the rest of the world wasn’t already using it too, I’d argue that social media was created specifically FOR authors.
As an author, your number one priority should be to get your book in front of readers. And one of the easiest ways to do that is with social media, which allows you to attract and build an audience of potential readers. The social media networks give you plenty of opportunities to reach your audience and engage them with interesting content.
I’ll be expanding on social media strategies for authors in the coming weeks, but here are some basics you should know:
1. Start with a blog. Add new posts at least twice per week, and then share them with all of your social networks (blog post title plus link).
2. Write compelling blog post titles. The title is almost more important than the post itself since it helps potential readers decide to click and read more.
3. Maintain a presence across the top five social media networks: Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, and Pinterest.
4. Manage your time by pre-scheduling your blog posts to publish on specific days and times to your social media networks using http://Hootsuite.com.
5. Check in on your networks several times throughout the day when you have a few minutes to spare. This doesn’t have to require a huge time commitment. Take a moment to respond to comments and to share content by other people. Yes, share other people’s content too! Your goal should be to serve your audience, and that means finding great content for them to enjoy.
6. Use http://tweetdeck.com to monitor and manage Twitter. And by the way, Twitter should be the primary social media focus for most authors (more on this in a future blog post).
7. Monitor your site traffic by installing Google Analytics (it’s free!). Social media should drive traffic to your site and if you follow the above strategy, your traffic will begin to increase each month.
8. Embrace social media. It’s not a trend that’s going away, though it is evolving. If you can find a way to enjoy it, that will come across with your audience. It should take you less than 30 minutes per day to manage your social media presence. And if you simply don’t have time, hire some help! (We offer social media management services for authors here at Authority Publishing!)