Publicity Tip #33
Are You Making the Most of Your Connectivity?
Word of mouth has been and always will be the most effective way to get people interested in what you have to sell – your writing. You might be an internet junkie, be “virtually” disabled or have some level of computer competence in between. Strictly speaking, the best and least expensive way to generate a ‘buzz’ is through the use of social media.
Your author platform hinges on how you address this basic modern necessity.
The virtual world of the internet allows you to potentially connect with millions of people and is a resource that should not be ignored if you plan on utilizing a high-quality marketing strategy for yourself and your work.
Does that mean you have to be online 24/7?
Does that mean you have a bigger presence than email and an author website?
The list of social media platforms is endless. There are two key important points to consider:
1) Who is my target market and where do they hang out?
2) Which avenues make sense for my personal interests and how much time do I have to dedicate to them?
If you don’t already have a Target Audience or Target Market for your writing then figure out who that is – and don’t cop out and say “everyone.” Once you know who your ideal reader is you need to determine where to find them online. There are sites for chatting (facebook, blogging), sites for discussing (google +, LinkedIn), sites for viewing, (Pinterest, YouTube), sites for sharing (Tumblr, Wattpad), sites for readers (Goodreads, Shelfari), sites for getting help (Kickstarter, Indiegogo), sites for peaking interest (Twitter, Podcast Garden), and so many more – you just need to research what’s out there and who’s using them.
Now comes the easy part – deciding which of those online sites, where your readers hang out, actually interest you. Do you like your voice? Do you hate the way you look on video? Do you love interacting with new people who share your interests? Do you despise the internet altogether and only want to do the minimum? (You still need to choose at least one other avenue besides your website/blog) Once you’ve got your list of potential sites and types of sites, you need to decide on how much time you’re going to spend on each one, each week – make this goal realistic so that you can stick to it. One hour, one day a week is just as useful as one hour, five days a week – it just depends on how many avenues you are connecting to. Don’t spread yourself too thin and don’t cross-pollinate (say the same thing on every site) – you’ll lose your following faster than a fart clears a room.
The time you spend cultivating your online presence to match who you want your fans to know you as is called branding – you will be branding yourself in the best possible light for your public persona. Remain consistent, follow through on your promises, and keep your exchanges on topic and on target with your audience.
Just remember – it takes time to build a following. If you can, begin 4-6 months before the publication of your book. If you’ve already released your book, dive in and announce yourself! Your online presence is not cyclical – only done when you want to sell something. This is a commitment you’re making for the future of your writing.