I have been talking to quite a few new and up-and-coming writers in our area and have found that the majority of them do not know or understand the importance of social media and websites to their future as writers. More and more books are being published as eBooks and quite a few new writers are self-publishing using the tools on websites like Amazon.com. What they are forgetting is that you have to PROMOTE YOUR WORK! You are in the pilot seat now-a-days and that means you have to do your own publicity. One of the easiest and some consider it the fastest way to get more readers and buyers of your work is through social media accounts like Twitter and/or Facebook.
There are more social media sites out there but these are among the top with Pinterest.com coming up fast. Twitter is just communicating through text messages. You have 160 characters to send a message to your fans. You can upload a picture, you can send a link and you can Retweet someones tweet. It takes time to get followers but once you start posting tweets, following others who have similar interests and family and friends you will gain followers yourself. You can tweet from your cellphone, from your computer, even your Kindle Reading Device. Most of your fans will just want you to tweet about your day, how the book is coming, characters that you are having problems with or those that are going good. Posting a picture of you working, relaxing, or meeting with experts are all of interest to your followers. Signing up with Twitter is very easy, only takes an email address, typing in information about yourself and your website address, uploading a professional photo of yourself and follow at least 5 people. That’s it. You might want to fool around with the settings and change the color scheme and background picture to make your twitter account more unique to you and your personality. You will want to post a Tweet at least once or twice a day. This will get your Tweet count up quickly and the more consistently you post the more followers you are bound to get.www.twitter.com
Facebook, on the other hand, takes a little bit more to sign up for and then create a Business Page. You have to create a personal account first with basic information, then “Friend” your Friends and Family. Once you get a few acceptances, filled out the basic information, etc. you will then be able to create a Business Page. The personal account can be set to just Friends and Family but the Business Page is open to the public, can be linked to from your website and you can send links to your blog articles from your website to your Facebook page. You want to name this page either as your “name – the writer”, or if you are writing a series you can name the page after the series name. Facebook has a wide range of Help Files and links to set up your page and will ask you to put it in a category so that they can include it in an index listing and send your page out to the search engines. You want this to happen because when someone puts in your name and or series name they will find the Facebook page fairly quickly. Like the Twitter account you will want to post something to your Facebook page at least once or twice a week. Include a picture(s) as you go along. You can take a picture of your messy desk and post an update about working to distraction. Or you can take a picture of your pet doing something funny that inspired something in your writing. You can even post pictures of places you go for research or people that help you with your writing. The more you engage your readers the more likely they will come back when you make big announcements about your upcoming book being available for sale! www.facebook.com
Both of these things will take time, patience and persistence. But like your writing, it will be worth it in the end. Your are the “Captain of Your Publicity Ship”. Start now, gain a following, and keep at it. All you have to do is set aside 15 minutes a day to post a tweet or update to Facebook. Good Luck! If you send us your link to your Twitter and/or Facebook page we will Follow You on Twitter and “Like” your Page on Facebook! Just go to the CONTACT US form with information.