Tips for choosing the best social media platform to sell your books

I attended a Serious Writer’s retreat two weeks ago with speakers Cyle Young and Michelle Medlock Adams. It was chockful of helpful information.  I want to share with you a few tidbits I learned over the next few posts. Today I’ll mention social media and genre. Deciding which social media platforms to be on is so confusion. Someone will say all of them, while others say pick one and do it well. I learned a few tips to help me focus. Genre and your target audience play a big part.

LinkedIn is for those looking for freelance work. Many corporations have websites and need bloggers. There are people looking for ghost writers and you can find experts on subjects for any article assignments you may have. If you write fiction it’s a good place to get writing assignments that pay well to supplement your income.

Facebook If you write women’s fiction, children’s books and even things that appeal to men focus your time here. Statistically, women buy the most books. Moms and grandmothers buy the majority of books for children through middle school.  They not only buy for their children, grandchildren but their husbands as well.  Non-fiction books on a variety of subjects can be promoted here too. For the same reason, women make most book purchases. You want to be where people are more likely to spend money.

Twitter is considered the best place to meet editors, publishers and other authors. Also, if this is your favorite social media and you have lots of followers, this can work for promoting your books. I’ve heard of authors selling a large quantity of books by having a large twitter following.

Instagram is for YA authors because young people aren’t on Facebook, they consider it their parent’s social media.  YA readers are active on this site. YA authors have a better chance to find followers and promote their books on Instagram. Don’t forget Instagram is a picture, video driven media. Memes are big on this platform. There are tutorials with tips to promote on this media. Google them.

Pinterest is a great place to promote cookbooks, craft books and any do-it-yourself books. How many cool ideas have you found when you’re remodeling or searching for a new recipe? This leads to sales as you offer fun pics and videos around your books.  Building character boards for your fiction is a nice way to introduce your book to the world. You can link to your sales platform. It’s a nice addition for fiction, but it’s not the premiere spot for sales.

Not everyone will agree with these suggestions because you may have found your sales niche in a platform other than those recommend above for your genre. These guidelines will help you not waste time on media that won’t find the audience you need.  The larger your followers, the larger your platform for sales.

Remember the 1 in 6 rule. Post one buy my book post for every six posts on social media. The other five should be memes, photos and stuff that interest you even other authors books. Then you are not beating your followers to death with a sales pitch.

Hope you found these tips helpful.

What social media has worked best for you?

 

 

 

Learn What You Don’t Know

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Marketing tip #4 Learn Stuff

To quote Leroy Jethro Gibbs (NCIS) when he tells his agents to investigate. “Go! Learn stuff!” They need to do interviews, research facts, and revisit the crime scene and evidence. This same directive applies to marketing. When it comes to marketing “we don’t know what we don’t know.” And for me, there is a gob of stuff I don’t know.

I just spent time building my author page on Amazon. Once you get in there it is a step by step process. Clear instructions and examples helped me put all the components in place. Then I came to the part where I could add my blog address. I know my URL. It’s http//www.jubileewriter.wordpress.com. But the site asked for my RSS. Without it, my blog post would not be part of my author page. What is an RSS and how do I find it? I didn’t have time to email a friend and ask for instructions. As I pondered this, the words of a young member of my critique group came to mind. You can find anything on YouTube. Thank you, Erin. So, I googled “how do I find my blog’s RSS.” Voila! I clicked the first reference. A blog about it with a—wait for it—YouTube link at the bottom to find your RSS for WordPress blogs. The RSS for WordPress blogs is simply—feed. You add a forwardslash and the word feed. Other blog servers have different RSS that must be added after your URL. I didn’t bother to learn those. Sorry! I’m sure there’s a YouTube video for those as well.  So, my URL with RSS looks like this. http//www.jubileewriter.wordpress.com/feed. I learned what I needed to know.

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Learn what you don’t know

Educate yourself about any social media you don’t know. I’ve used Facebook for years. Twitter is fairly new for me. I’ve been reading blog posts about hashtags to figure out how best to mark my posts. Twitter is an awesome place to market because your tweets go out live to every one of your followers and on feeds that match your hashtags i.e. #amwriter. You can retweet the same thing often because unlike Facebook people usually don’t go back once a week to scroll through what they missed.

I accidently got a Pinterest account. How can you accidently sign up for one? I needed a picture for my blog. Signing up gave me access to all those Pinterest pictures from various boards. Now I have Pinterest and their admin constantly emails me boards I might like to pin to my site. I need to learn more about Pinterest and create some boards myself. It is easy to use. My sister loves it. Other authors swear it is an awesome tool.  That brings me to the next point.

Make time to learn stuff early on

The learning curve for new things for some of us is long. I do better if someone talks me through steps while I do them. But I can follow step by step instruction, it just takes me longer. Learning how to create a blog site and figuring out how to reach more people has been a big learning curve for me. Blogging is part of my marketing toolbox. I have been using it for a few years. Years before my novel got a contract. Years before my novel is due to come out. This is key. Don’t wait until your book is out to learn stuff. That is like reading about CPR while your spouse is having a heart attack. Your novel may die before it has a chance to be part of many reader’s libraries.

 

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Be proactive

Ask marketing questions and do what can be done long before your book is published. I couldn’t create an Author page on Amazon or Goodreads before I had an ISBN number for my novel. But I could create a reader page on Goodreads and post lots of book reviews. Goodreads is a great place to engage with other readers. My Facebook friends who are avid readers follow me on Goodreads. Now I’ll build an author page on Goodreads and those same readers may follow me as a writer.

Pay for what you don’t know or don’t want to learn

There are wonderful people out there who can design bookmarks, flyers, and postcards for advertising in no time. Then there is me. I would rather pay for someone to do it for me than do it myself. As I journey through marketing my novel, Secrets and Charades, I will pay for others to do some of the work for me. Research which marketing people are right for you. Ask around for referrals. Learn stuff.

Share what you know

Gibbs always gathered his team for a briefing. Each agent shared what they found out and all the pieces were put together. Share the stuff you learn. Even if it’s little. There is always someone who doesn’t know what you know. Don’t be a negative Nellie. Be sure the things you bring to the cooperative marketing idea table are truly helpful. And if you must warn someone of a bad experience, package it in carefully chosen words. The right attitude may set the stage for you to be offered an opportunity to share stuff in a speaking or teaching venue in the future.

Tell me what you’ve learned about marketing along the way that made a difference for you? What services would you rather pay for? How do you learn stuff? I’m anxious to hear your answers.

 

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