This is a question that I hear often – mostly from authors who are just starting to build their social media profile. Many will have already set up an author profile, so they wonder why a page is a necessary addition. Many don’t know how to use it effectively and so it becomes a daunting thought. Today I’d like to simplify it for you if I can.
- You absolutely should have an Author Page on Facebook.As an author, in this modern age of digital connectivity, it is easier than ever for you to control your interactions with your fans. We’ve already discussed my position on adding people as friends on Facebook as an author, but this is a great option for those of you who don’t want to add any “strangers” to your personal profiles. Having a page will allow you to maintain contact with readers while maintaining your privacy and in order to build your author brand and possibly generate sales, interacting with readers is important.
- How do I know what to post?I would recommend that you search for your favourite authors on Facebook and find their author pages. “Like” the page and then spend some time looking at what they post and how they manage their page. If it’s a fantasy author, do they focus solely on fantasy style posts? A murder mystery author who shares only relevant info? Or perhaps they share various things about writing and reading in general? Most post a mixed bag of things. From pictures and links to advice and articles of interest. An example of things to post would be to post funny pictures, writing memes, author quotes, links to favourite recipes and even music on YouTube.
One of my favourites writes with a view of a river, so she posts pics of the boats on the river. She’s also an avid gardener, so she shares pics of crop successes (and failures) as well as meals that she’s cooked and photo’s of her favourite travel destinations… as well as pictures that are relevant to her books. Inspiration for settings, new covers, character inspiration etc.
- So how do I remind people that I’m also trying to sell books?There are a few different ways to do this that don’t boil down to “here’s my book, please buy it”. It’s time for you to get creative and to think outside the box. Sure, you should share your book covers and links to buy pages etc, but there are many other ways to remind people that you’re a writer!
When you’re working on a book, let’s say a romance set in medieval Scotland, you could post a picture of a sexy, topless man in a kilt with a comment that says something like “I’m working on my new release and I needed a hot Scot for inspiration… you’re welcome! #Scot #inspiration #Sexy”. This will make people smile, make them wonder what your hot Scot is up to in the book and make them look forward to hearing more! When you participate in blog tours or if you’re having a giveaway, you also share these links on your author page.
- This is going to take up a lot of time. Shouldn’t I rather be writing?You’d be surprised. Once you get the hang of it, managing your page will take up remarkably little time. There is a great feature which will also make your life much simpler… you can schedule your posts!! This means that you can set aside a few hours and schedule posts for several days to come.
- Do I really need another social media profile to manage?Another great benefit of the author page is that you are able to link it to many of your existing other social media outlets. This means that you can schedule posts to your page and also post simultaneously to your Twitter feed, Tumblr page etc. Many birds with 1 stone! (Just be careful not to link your Twitter feed to your Page, especially if you Tweet a LOT!).
- How often should I post?Ideally, the frequency for posting to your page should be around every 5 hours. This keeps your page active without being “spammy”.
Once you get into it all, you’ll find that it’s rather fun to search for images, links for articles and if your page is about you as an author, the kinds of books you read and write, fun trivia etc, you’ll start to build a following of people who are fans of you and your work.
If you fancy some further reading, this is a great blog post to start with.
Until next time…