When it comes to promoting your self-published book, traditional book marketing strategies can still be highly effective. But if you want to reach a wider audience and get connected to more potential readers, the solution is social media marketing.
With social media, you don’t have to waste your money on paid advertising in print, radio, or TV media; you don’t have to exert a bunch of energy planning readings or book tours; and you don’t have to spend time trying to impress a bunch of book critics. All you need to do is create a connection to other people. That’s the purpose of social media, after all.
I’m not saying that traditional marketing doesn’t work anymore, because it occasionally still can. It’s just that it doesn’t guarantee that your book will sell a million copies or become a success — and it costs a lot of money. Social media, on the other hand, is free.
To expand the reach of your book promotion, increase your book sales, and convert more readers into buyers, here’s a few tips on how to make the most of social media:
1. Set up your social networking accounts early
Do not wait for the launching of your self-published book to create your Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Instagram accounts. You have to establish yourself online first before you’ll be able to connect with other users.
2. Introduce yourself as a writer, not a salesperson
Yes, as a writer, you want to sell books — but in the social media world, don’t talk about your book like it’s a product. People will quickly learn to ignore you. Instead, be interesting and authentic. The only way to gain credibility is by showing your real writer-self.
3. Build your author brand by being useful
People will follow you on social media if they find the content you post (whether it be humorous, informative, empathetic, or otherwise) consistently useful in some way.
Also, don’t focus your attention on readers alone; get connected with other authors and publishing industry people as well. Show off your expertise and interact with them by answering questions and participating in forums. They might help you in your promotion efforts along the way
4. Keep your followers, friends, and subscribers updated on your writing career
You should minimize blatant self-promotion as much as possible. However, your audience does want to hear about your life as a writer and reader. What’s the most recent novel that you’ve read? Post about that. How’s your next book project coming along? Let your followers know. Just avoid saying “buy my book” all the time.
5. Be creative online and become content conscious
As I mentioned above, post informational and interesting content on your social media accounts. Experiment with hosting a fun contest or a creative campaign that will boost your audience engagement. Make every status update or tweet count. Make sure your readers know that you care about them, and not just the other way around.
Social media is truly a powerful (and free) way to promote your book, drive book sales, and get your work noticed and share online — but only if you use it right.
Author Bio: Amber Stanley is a blogger and copywriter who works for Best Essays. Connect with her on Google+ and Twitter where she shares her perspectives on education, lifestyle, and creative writing.