by Frances Caballo
You wrote your book and sold copies to everyone you know. But you have goals that extend beyond a few dozen copies sold.
How do you achieve your dream of selling books around the world? With social media, you can build your platform and reach readers in locales you never imaged possible before.
In this book, you’ll learn how to:
• Create a Facebook fan page and actively engage with your readers.
• Optimize your LinkedIn profile.
• Tackle Instagram, Tumblr, and Snapchat.
• Build and optimize Pinterest pinboards for SEO to maximize exposure of your books, blog, and other landing pages.
• Improve your blogging.
• Excel on Twitter.
• Create images for your blog and social media posts.
The second edition of Social Media Just for Writers is both a primer for authors new to social media and an advanced study of platforms that weren’t widely known four years ago. Whether you write romance, historical fiction, young adult, or steam punk novels, you’ll find help in reaching your online audience of new and dedicated readers.
Not Sure How to Approach Social Media? CARE about Your Readers
Among all the rules you’ll find online – the 80/20 rule (only 20% of your posts should be about your books or blog posts while 80% of your posts should contain content from other sources), the admonitions against using social media as a bullhorn, the warnings about over automating – there’s also an unspoken tenet.
This tenet isn’t a rule that comes up on the blogosphere. Instead, it’s more of a system of approach and an acronym that I created while preparing for the San Francisco Writers Conference.
If you follow the approach I’m about to explain, you can be sure that the time you spend on social media will generate the type of engagement with readers that you want to have.
Once you start to use social media, be prepared to CARE about people. I know that it seems evident to care about people online but give me a moment to break down the acronym.
• C - Communicate with your readers.
• A - Answer your readers’ questions.
• R - Relate to your readers.
• E - Educate with stellar content.
And most of all simply care about people.
Joanna Penn devised the term social karma. As she explains it, if you want book sales, buy books. If you want book reviews, write reviews for all of the books you read. If you want people to like your Facebook page or follow you on Twitter, like your readers’ and friends’ Facebook pages and follow them on Twitter.
Reciprocate actions. And just as you might offer money to a homeless stranger, smile at a person walking down the street, or invite a new family from your church over for tea or dinner, take the types of actions online that will help you to get to know the people who follow you and want to connect with you.
In other words, be kind online. Be inquisitive. Be responsive. Be open to meeting people and revealing parts of your life.
Let’s look more closely at CARE.
AUTHOR Bio and Links:
Frances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert
for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including The Author’s Guide to Goodreads and Social Media in 30 Minutes a Day. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences.
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5 out of 5 stars
Social Media Just for Writers: How to Build Your OnlinePlatform and Find and Engage with Your Readers by Frances Caballo is an excellent resource for information about the major social media platforms: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, Tumblr, Goodreads, and blogging. The author uses clear and simple instructions to walk one through establishing a presence on each of these venues, describes drawbacks and advantages to a particular medium, and explains how to analyze the impact. There are excellent screenshots that provide guidance on what the screen should look like and specific directions on where to find specific tools.
I originally requested to review this book because I work with writers who are at all stages of social media familiarity and wanted to find out if this would be a helpful title. I was impressed by the detail and breadth of information available, and surprised to discover that the lessons are applicable to any newbie to each type of interaction even though they are tailored more for authors. I was intrigued to discover that there is a different emphasis for fiction versus non-fiction authors and reminded that there is a reason I have not engaged in most of the popular media. I admit that I hadn’t previously included Goodreads in my list of social media platforms but I have given the same type of recommendations to authors about how to become engaged on that particular platform.
As a semi-Luddite, I am definitely not adapted to those applications that require the use of a smartphone but I can see how the age group of users will definitely be useful in tailoring one’s marketing efforts to the appropriate market. I think this is a great informational tool, and I presume it will be updated as needed because it has quotes on the various prices being charged for the ancillary applications that refine the use of each platform.
I think this book has value for anyone interested in establishing a social media presence and will save one hours of frustration because it gives tips on how to reach a desired market as well as how to block the undesirable element. I was most impressed that the author reaffirms a mantra that I have attempted to convey to those I work with, i.e. be yourself, do for others what you want them to do for you, and don’t just try to push your book, care about people!
A copy of this title was provided to me for review