Continuing our discussion about social media, once on Facebook and set up correctly, I truly suggest setting up a 1-week ad set at $5 a day, or $35 for the week. You will be amazed at how many new Likes and Followers you get based on $5 a day. While waiting, begin to set up Twitter, which is much simpler to do. You will want your Twitter account to focus on you as the author and not the product itself. Your profile picture should be a picture of you, and your title or “description” should be about you, and there is really no additional setup involved. Twitter is simple.
Social Media Etiquette
Once you have set up the page, try to do at least 1-2 posts a day around 3pm on every weekday, which is the approximate time for the most engagement. There is no delineation as to what time zone this useful tip encourages, so I would stick with Central time to avoid being too far from the target time zone. Then, try to do 2-3 “Retweets”, 2-3 “Likes,” and 2-3 “Comments” on your News Feed throughout the day. This may sound tiresome, but it will allow you to gain the most Followers and Retweets, which pushes you up the engagement ladder, facilitating more profile views and equally higher engagement on your own Tweets.
More Social Media…
What do you Tweet about? Quotes are a big hit, as are images. In fact, on both Facebook and Twitter, posts that include a photo of some sort show an 88% higher engagement rate than those that are simply text-based. Also, for both platforms be sure to include at least one hashtag, i.e. “#books” as this also enhances your changes of receiving a Like, Comment, or Share/Retweet. Weird, I know, but people seem to respond to posts with photos and hash tags. Do some ancillary research on proper ways to optimize social media posts (found here).
This should help you in properly aligning your posts.
Finally, LinkedIn is optional. So is Instagram. The two are best if you plan on putting yourself out there as a service provider, and are not too big on products. You do want to join LinkedIn and sign up for Groups that are relative to creativity, books, and authorship. This allows you to form chains of communication, thus leading people to your profile where they can see posts you have written about an upcoming book release, a discount period, or an event. Again, do not try to sell the product. Sell yourself first, then sell the product.
We end this eBook with a section on the concept of working as a solo author versus working as a company. There is much debate on this subject. Many are in favor of the idea while others think that forming a company (and I do not mean an actual LLC or corporation, just a title) is a detraction from your role as an author. I feel that every author should utilize what route they feel is best. Personally, I am in this for more than just selling books.
Promotion & Stuff
I want to help other authors successfully promote their books, and even proof their work. Does this mean that you have to do the same? Absolutely not. You can stick with a page like www.Rwmcclellan.com. This is called a landing page, and is a simple, one-page teaser for your book. Others may choose to approximate a company to represent their book, as often you will be asked what publisher you went through, and what then? Self-publishing is all about perceived value, as we discussed. You need to give the reader a sense of pragmatism over prudence, i.e. rather than saying you are self-published, give the perception that maybe you are not.
Not Hard, Nor Easy
A lot of people still have this preconceived notion that self-publishing a book is a lazy process. As we know all too well, it is quite the opposite. However, to the public it comes off as that. Therefore, your primary mission is to figure out who your readers are going to be, and if they are going to view you in such a manner or not.
Get Them Sales!
If you want sales, you have to know your audience, and if that audience is more likely to trust you if you went through a traditional publisher, you may as well come up with a name (mine was Circle 5 Publishing Group) and use it as your “publisher.” If your readers will not care about this, you then have to decide what to put in the “Publisher” section of Amazon and anywhere else your book is located.
I wish I had more to say on this subject but I do not want to get too deep into it. I have been in this industry for quite some time, and I have found that many authors (not specifically you) are very sensitive about this subject. Many feel it means giving up their sense of entitlement as a hard worker; others feel it is a necessary practice to set up a website much like I did with Circle 5, and do more than just write books.
I leave it in your capable hands to make a decision.
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