Social Media Content

3 Best Social Media Platforms for New Writer-Publishers

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SocialMedia
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New to Publishing?  Does the sheer thought of connecting with potential readers make you already nervous?  In many of my seminars and during publishing and book marketing consultations I meet authors that are not only new to writing, but also often have no “platform” – which means no blog or website and no Social Media presence, aside from some posts on Facebook to friends and family.

No problem, it’s all a matter of organizing it and not getting overwhelmed!  Here are some practical tips for new online book marketers – that are for independent writers and “published” authors equally important:
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How to Start Your Social Media Platform
Authors can do a lot to be organized and to save time on Social Media – time to write.
First let’s start with some brainstorming:

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Why do you want to make yourself visible as a writer?
Readers need to find you and your book! Your chances to be seen on Amazon, Kobo, Barnes &Noble or Waterstones is about 1 : 6 Million or more, almost as good as winning the lottery…

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What do you want to achieve?
Preferably show your best site to potential readers, reviewers and book buyers, interact with them, network and be sociable. Remember, there are two reasons people why people flock to Social Media: to learn / gain something or to be entertained.

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How do you want to be seen?
As a professional writer certainly, as someone to be taken seriously. That starts with your (not your cats’ or dogs’) photo /avatar and your short introduction. Always remember: You never get a second chance for a first good impression!

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And what do you want to post and why?
Just recently I wrote an article: “What to Post on Social Media”.

– Your Blogs Content and News Content
– Motivational and Inspirational Quotes
– Photos, Videos, Slide Shows
– Curation / Re-Blogs from other Posts
– Polls and Surveys
… and most important: Interactions with your followers
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Always ask yourself: does this post help my tweeps? Does this post entertain?  Are your followers gaining knowledge or learn about publishing news? Will they be happy to see your post?

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The 3 Essential Social Media Platforms for Writers

1. Your Blog:
Content you are writing that can be split in short, single sentences and (together with your blog URL) posted on your Social Media sites. Why your blog sells your books is shown in a former post.  Invite your readers to sign-up for your blog posts, and eventually for your newsletter too.
Some Key Statistics:

• 84 percent of people have bought products based on their description in blogs.

• 25 percent people (25-34 year olds) read blogs every day.

• 1 in 4 people buy something each month based on blog content.

• 18-34 year olds valued blogs as the most important information source when making buying decisions.

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2. Goodreads:
With 26 Million English-speaking readers worldwide the largest pool of potential readers for your book – provided you are following eventually roughly 5000 of them. As more you reach out as greater is your success, and following readers or reviewers is done by a single mouse-click. How to open an author and a book page, to navigate Goodreads and how to start a Goodreads Giveaway is explained in these Slide Shares.

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3. Google+
The greatest benefit of Google+ and their communities is the fact that everything posted there is automatically on Google’s Search Engines and very high in rankings! As with Goodreads, Google+ also offers an author page, but for EVERY book a separate one, plus the possibility to open your own community (up to 50 separate sites). There are no strong limitations how often your book can be shown on Google+. However your followers (preferably readers, reviewers, book lovers etc. ) want to hear more from you than about your book only.

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Before You Start Posting on Your Social Media Sites

  • Make yourself familiar with each detail on these Social Media sites, all the functions and how people interact.
  • First set up folders and files for your images, posts, tweets – and most important for all your passwords, to have them always handy when you work online.
  • To find lots of free images for your blogs use either the “Commons” on Wikipedia or check out the fast inventory of photo-sharing sites.
  • List your posts and tweets neatly in a row on a notepad or word documents, so that you just need to copy and paste into your Google+ page.  Don’t forget to type all your passwords and log-ins immediately in your files!
  • Connect all your Social Media Accounts.  An essential step would be to open a Twitter account, and connect it with Google+, so that all your Google posts go automatically over to Twitter. Set up your Goodreads page, so that all your blog posts are automatically show up on your author page.
    Always type into the search function on top of each site: reader, reading, book lover, bookworm, reviewer, book blogger, avid reader etc. to find the right people to follow.
  • To shorten your links in posts and tweets, use a shortener, such as www.Bit.ly, which you can even use to tweet from their site. And later, if you want to post more on Twitter or Facebook and to be present “around the clock”, use a scheduling program, such as Hootsuite.com or FutureTweets. It will save you a lot of time – time you can use to interact directly with your followers.

There are certainly more Social Media sites than these three pillars, such as Twitter, LinkedIn or Pinterest, however a blog, Goodreads and Google+ should be your first choice.

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9 Suggestions: What to Post on Social Media

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Social-Media

Social Media Connects the World

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People are on the Internet for one of two reasons: Either to solve a problem, or to be entertained.   Are you struggling to create daily numerous engaging “posts” on your Social Media sites?  Then you are not the only one on the search of great content. We all want to stand out from our “competition”.  On the other hand, creating content for Social Media should not end up in stress. In a former post I explained that blogs do not necessarily need to consist of written content, but also may be among others, videos, images, curated content, re-posts etc.  The same is true for Social Media content.  How can you achieve this:
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Your Blogs Content
Connect all your Social Media sites and use a scheduling program to post at the best times of the day.  It enables you to publish your message to all of your social media channels at once.  The time you save frees you to communicate with your followers.  Using your blogs content lets you stand out among your peers and makes sure you have original content / messages that no one else posts.  Write posts that resonate with the things your audience cares most about.  Create a document or notepad and start listing your tweets and posts out of short sentences or headlines from your blog or website, add the URL – and voila!  you just have created an archive that you can copy / paste and use forever.
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News Content
Ask questions and tease new stories to encourage people to comment and like. Try to find news in your field that is interesting for your followers. Avoid political and religious topics, as well as gossip. Bookmark the best news sites and comb through them, using their sharing buttons to post on your Social Media sites to save time.  Then spend this time to interact with your followers on a personal level. Relevant News provide something that is shareable, conversational, and engaging for Google+, Twitter, LinkedIn, and other social platforms.
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Motivational Quotes
One of the most popular forms of inspirational content are quotes. Nearly everyone loves quotes! And especially quotes with images. Pinterest has helped to make them extremely popular.  Bestselling author Sean Gardner took it a step further:  “I searched online for inspirational content from my supporters, and then started making image quotes with what they wrote and/or said. I believe this is a powerful way for people to connect online.  The greater the diversity of positive, empowering statements, the greater the diversity of people sharing those points of views. ”
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Interact with Followers
Are you a good party guest at the big Social Media party?  Are you commenting or asking questions?  Are you thanking your followers? Invite conversation by asking your followers’ opinions on topics, or asking them to tell you what sorts of content they would appreciate.  Everybody likes being asked, and fans and followers feel extra-appreciated when you fulfill these desires.  It’s all about conversation, that’s why it is called Social Media networking.
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Videos and Slide-Shows
YouTube is the second largest search engine in the world, and creating a short video is very easy these days. Load it up to YouTube or any other video sharing site and post the URL for your video frequently on your Social Media sites.  On most of them visitors can click it directly to watch your content – and generates almost double the amount of visitors / views and attracts more content and likes or plusses on Google+.  The same is true for slide shares

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Photos
When you are scrolling through the feeds on any social network, what’s the first thing to catch your eye?  I bet images!  No question, photos are THE most popular Social Media tool, and more appealing than text only.  Even if you are not a professional photographer you can use fantastic photos on Social Media – for free.  We listed several sources for free photos you can use on Social Media in former blog posts.  Photos generate more re-tweets and likes, but keep in mind that attaching an image to a Twitter post takes up approximately 11 of your characters.
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Promote or Re-Blog other Posts
Retweets are a great way to get more followers.  By retweeting something that links to a website or blog, you are doing a service to the website mentioned and the person who originally tweeted the article!  Social Media is all about networking. Re-tweeting is a very important part of this.
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Polls and Surveys
Most Social Media sites offer this option automatically. What could be a question for a poll or survey? You could ask your readers for example which one of the book covers for your next thriller or non-fiction book they like best. Survey Monkey offers a free program  that allows you to create a survey in minutes with our intuitive web based tool. PollSnack offers a similar program.
Wepolls.com shows in a YouTube video how it works on their site.

 

Contests
For a photo contest, you can encourage users to submit their own photos and videos in order to win a really attractive prize.  Another possibility would be to organize a “pay with a tweet’ contest to win a free book.  In an earlier blog we explained how fast and easy it is to set it up.  Don’t forget to highlight your contest winners in several posts later on.
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Encouraging Results:
 joint research project by Stanford and Facebook where the perceived vs. actual audience sizes of 220,000 Facebook users were studied.  Each user was asked what they believed to be the size of their audience, then the research team compared this perceived size to an actual size, using server logs to gauge the true scope of a post’s audience.

The result: Your actual audience size is four times larger per post than what you think.  Great News!

Read also:
A Myth: Selling Books Through Social Media?
Are You a Good Party Guest?

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Our WordPress blog
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As we cannot transfer thousands of subscribers we will re-blog for a while.  If you want to get these valuable tips in the future, please sign up when the pop-up window shows up after 10 seconds on the new site, to make sure you won’t miss any articles in the future. THANKS



Social Media: Is it a Total Waste of Time?

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Airshow-Acrobatics

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It’s always surprising: when searching on Google for a certain word or topic, I often find our own articles and blog posts, as well as re-posted content from our Google+ sites on Google’s first page. This very high ranking on Google’s Search Engine means that users find easily our content. And if YOU, as an author, write a lot of posts, blog articles etc. – always with a link to your website or Amazon author page – you will be high in Google ranking too and more people will learn about your books.

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Total Waste of Time
Authors flock to Social Media sites to get the word out about their books. However, many writers see it as a waste of time and would rather write on their next book. Smart authors combine the best of the two worlds and post small snippets of their writing or interesting details of their research on Google+ posts. Think about it: if you combine your Google+ page with your Twitter presence, explained here in detail, you post only once on Google+ and it appears on Twitter as well. You save 50% of your time on Social Media!

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Your Goal for Being Online:
Unless you have ten-thousands of dollars every month to spend on advertising for your book, you might use the more subtle way of book marketing and meet your readers online on Social Media sites. But what would your (potential) readers be interested in or want to hear from you? They certainly want to learn more about you as a writer and they want to learn about your books and get samples of your writing. It means you can do what you like most: WRITING and at the same time give your potential readers and buyers of your book reasons to follow you and tell others, or re-post and re-tweet your content.

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Use Your Creativity
Authors often ask: “what should I post on Google+ or on Social Media sites in general?” Nothing easier than that. You can use every word, every fact, every location or scene in your book to write a short post, blog or even a long article. Even novels, such as a Science Fiction story has lots of potential to be used to write short articles. Just one example: I recently thumbed through a clients’ book and found on the first page, under acknowledgements, that she thanked the police chief of her town for giving her a tour and explaining her certain laws when she did the research for her book. Her meeting with the police chief and each one of the laws she learned about, could be the topic of a short article or blog!

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For Authors: It’s a Must to Be on Google+
Google has been using Google+ to discover new content, and many authors have discovered that URLs (links to their sites or articles), but also posts that they commented and shared on Google+ are indexed very quickly – and they find themselves often on page 1 on Google’s search results – one of the main reason to be on Google+ or to post on Google+ communities.
Compare this to Facebook, where privacy settings and restrictions on data sharing, make it rather often impossible for posts to never be crawled or indexed by Google at all. Unlike Facebook, which hides data from Google, or Twitter – which directs Google not to follow most of its links – Google+ data will be immediately and fully accessible on the Internet and readers can find you and your books easily. Each post on Google+ acts like a mini blog post and adds highly share-able, link-able context to the search engines. Last but not least: Don’t miss to link to all relevant profiles from your Google+ “About” page.

To sum it up:  Use your research and your manuscript to write lots of blog posts, articles and Social Media content and post it first on your Google+ page.  Combine your Social Media sites, linking to each of them.  Post with one click on several of your Social Media sites, which can be done by using scheduling sites, such as Hootsuite.com or Shortening Sites, such as Bit.ly. This is just for posting your articles – not for directly connecting with your followers or readers. The time you save when linking your Social Media sites is not only time you save to write, but also some time you can spend to connect directly with your readers!  Social Media = Social Networking.

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More About the Benefits of Google+

http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2013/12/17/how-to-get-your-author-page-on-googles-page-1/

http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2014/02/25/5-tips-for-a-successful-google-presence/

http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2013/09/21/3-top-reasons-to-be-on-googles-page-1/

http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2013/09/01/15-reasons-to-be-on-google/

http://savvybookwriters.wordpress.com/2013/01/25/how-to-get-more-followers-on-your-google-page/

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If you would like to get more support in all things publishing, have your book intensively promoted and learn how to navigate social media sites – or to learn how you can make yourself a name as an author through content writing: We offer all this and more for only $179 for three months – or less than $2 per day! Learn more about this customized Online Seminar / Consulting for writers: http://www.111Publishing.com/Seminars   Or visit http://www.e-book-pr.com/book-promo/ to advertise your new book, specials, your KDP Select Free Days or the new Kindle Countdown Deals.

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Tagged: Google+ a MUST for authors, GooglePlus is the best Social Media site, how to link all your Social Media sites, how to write great content, leverage your manuscript, Social Media Content, Social Media: Waste of Time?, your reason for being online


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