No matter what you write or how you choose to publish, the majority of authors can agree on one thing: social media has redefined the way books are promoted.
You no longer need to rely on the traditional press system for a successful book launch. You’re not also at the mercy of a publisher that chooses to promote your book to a specific group of bookstores, and you don’t need a million dollars in marketing money to reach your goals.
With a well-thought-out social media plan and a bit of creativity and effort, you can promote your book to millions of potential readers.
Social Media Marketing for Authors
You don’t need to spend thousands of hours online to start using social media to promote your books effectively.
Below are some of the ways on how authors can do social media marketing.
- Create a Facebook Community around the Theme of Your Book
One of the best ways to promote your book online is to create a Facebook community around the theme of your book. By creating a Facebook Group for your book’s topic, you can quickly bring together individuals who share a common interest.
Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean creating a Group for your book itself. It’s an excellent technique for fiction writers, and especially those who write series.
However, remember that you can also create a Group that’s about the theme of your book—whether that’s entrepreneurship, natural wellness, sweet romance, or epic fantasy. These types of groups can attract more fans, but you’ll need to post content that isn’t directly related to your specific book—it’s more about building community than about promoting a title.
To keep your group’s members engaged, you need to share posts and stories actively, host author cover reveals, start discussions around your book’s theme, and have fun conversations with like-minded readers and authors. Beyond creating a buzz for your book, such activities also help in networking, establishing relationships, and productive connections that may later turn into sales.
You can also take part in other Facebook communities to build these relationships. You can find many Facebook book groups where readers actively take part in discussions and share their thoughts.
- Create an Author Website
No amount of social media exposure can substitute a well-designed author website. Your author website is necessary to tie together all your branding or social media activities and give you maximum exposure.
If you don’t think you have what it takes to create a website, don’t worry! You can hire a designer to create a targeted website for a very affordable price—some even offer designs that specifically highlight your social media. You can also use Squarespace or WordPress to quickly design an excellent website for yourself—often in an hour or less!
When it comes to their website, some authors prefer a clean, minimal site that simply provides some necessary information about the author, their works, book summaries, contact info, and author bio page, purchase links for buying books, and social sharing buttons.
Other authors prefer creating an elaborate website with an active blog that covers various topics related to book writing. Your blog can highlight the genres or subjects that you write about, sharing the inspiration behind your upcoming book and your passion as a storyteller.
Regular blogging also helps you engage with your readers, bringing more people to your site and introducing them to your work.
You can also add a section for subscribing to your newsletter or encourage email signups to let you share regular updates with your readers.
People love feeling that they have a personal connection with an author. For this, you can add a comment section or contact form on your website. Be sure always to acknowledge your readers’ feedback and views.
- Create an Author Fan Club
Another proven strategy to promote your books is creating an author fan club on Facebook. This gives fans a dedicated community space where they feel more connected to the book and the author.
With an author fan club, all your members get an opportunity to chat and ask questions in a closed setting. Many authors have successfully used this strategy to promote their book and actively connect with their fans.
- Get Bloggers to Promote Your Book
Getting book bloggers to promote your book can significantly increase your success rate. Renowned book bloggers enjoy tens of thousands of followers, and your book can get reasonably good exposure through blogging appearances.
Asking influential book bloggers to do a book review for you and actively sharing that review on their social networking channels, like their Facebook page and Twitter account, can give your book a lot of traction.
Many authors have joined hands with popular book bloggers to get a book review and enjoyed a great response. Here are a few things you can do to make the most of blogging opportunities:
· Share Permalinks on Social Media
To spread the word, share the permalinks of bloggers’ reviews and posts on your social media accounts. For instance, when mentioning a new review, add “Read full blog” with the permalink leading back to the original blog post.
· Use Short Snippets
Use short snippets from the blogs or reviews as tweets to generate more interest.
· Share with Blog Communities
You can promote new reviews and blog posts mentioning your book in several blog communities to get the word out. Think about sharing in Goodreads communities or your Facebook Groups.
- Create Shareable Content
To promote your book extensively on all social media platforms, you need to create a constant stream of content to keep your fans and followers hooked.
The most popular content strategies used by authors are:
Visual marketing is more popular than ever, so try to use a lot of images with your content to grab the attention of your audience. Using an image of a book cover is also a good idea—everyone loves a great book cover, and it’s an easy way to spread your book’s branding.
Using snippets or samples from your book or quotes from characters layered on catchy, Instagram-ready images is another good idea to attract your fans. You can easily create these shareable images with a service like Canva or PicMonkey.
We all know Amazon book reviews are essential to give any new book more exposure. Share these reviews on all your social channels to create interest among your audience. Do the same with your Goodreads reviews for even more opportunities.
Social media has limitless potential, whether you’re using it to promote your latest book, build a dedicated fan base, or strengthen ties with your audience.
However, to gain maximum response, you need to understand that social media and content marketing go hand in hand. So you need to optimize your social media efforts for each platform to gain momentum organically.
Don’t make it all about selling your book. You need to make sure you are out there communicating with the people who love reading books, and sales will naturally follow. Like other kinds of marketing, social media marketing takes time and patience. However, once you have mastered it, you can maximize it to promote your book effectively.