All about social media marketing for authors
Here’s the hard truth about social media marketing for authors: it’s not the best way to generate book sales.
Shocking? Hey, I don’t blame you because we always think that social media is the driving force behind the purchasing power. And the data says it all.
If the data does indeed say that social media can drive sales, why am I saying that it can’t help with generating book sales? Do people who are on social media don’t read books?
Despite people’s short attention span and being constantly bombarded with new content, I still believe that people love to read books. So, the demand for books is still high. Or at the very least it doesn’t change that much for the last couple of years.
But when you see the sales conversion isn’t that high despite your utmost effort in being active on social media, it doesn’t seem like a productive strategy to me.
Fortunately, I’m not the only one who feels that social media doesn’t do much when it comes to generating sales for my book.
Even Tim Grahl said it himself in his blog post that social media isn’t the best way to generate book sales.
Social media marketing for authors: should you even care?
If you’re not that active or not even on social media at all, you probably feel relieved that you’re not missing anything. And you also feel glad that you choose to focus on other book marketing strategies such as email marketing and paid advertising.
But if you’re already on social media, should you abandon your social media accounts for good?
Well, the answer to that question is no. Social media still has its place in your book marketing strategy.
Rather than seeing it as a place for you to generate book sales, you need to see it as a place for you to connect with your potential readers. Or at the very least, allowing your potential readers to discover you online. This is what I realize after using social media for quite sometimes.
If you’re doing content marketing like me, social media is another place for you to let people know about your latest content. After all, some people do follow you on social media because of the contents you create.
Even if you don’t do content marketing, you can still use your social media account to build an email list. Sure, building an email list through social media is just as hard as trying to get people to buy your book. But at least it can get people to be interested enough to join your mailing list especially when you barely update your social media profile.
So, don’t dismiss social media marketing for authors just yet.
Which social media platform you should be using
When it comes to which social media platform you should be using, that will depend on where your target readers are hanging out online.
But what if you don’t know where your target readers are hanging out online? If that’s you, then I highly recommend you to follow Frances Caballo’s suggestion.
According to her interview on The Creative Penn podcast, she recommends authors to be on Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.
But if you find that her suggestion seems overwhelming to you and you can only be active on one platform, I highly suggest you start with Pinterest.
Why Pinterest, you wonder?
According to the stats by Pinterest itself, 77% of pinners discovered a new brand or product through Pinterest. What’s even better, 84% of the pinners made a purchase because they found the product on Pinterest.
Since Pinterest is more like a search and discovery platform, it will be much easier for your target readers to stumble upon your book on Pinterest.
What about Facebook?
Some of you are probably wondering why Facebook isn’t on that list.
The reason for that has a lot to do with the organic reach of the Facebook post. With the current Facebook algorithm, your post will no longer have the same outreach as before.
What’s even worse, not all people who are following your Facebook page will receive your new update.
The only way for you to get the same outreach as before is to boost your post. The cost of boosting your post will depend on the number of followers you have.
If you have a lot of followers, expect to pay a lot.
Even if you did boost your post, some of your followers still can’t see your post since the Facebook algorithm emphasizes updates from your friends and family rather than from the Facebook page.
So, should you still use Facebook despite the recent change in the Facebook algorithm?
Well, you can be on Facebook if that’s where your target readers are hanging out online and you have the money to spend on boosting your Facebook post.
But if you don’t plan to spend a dime, then you’re better off being somewhere else.
Which social media platform I’m currently using right now
You may not believe it when I say this, but I’m literally everywhere. Yes, I’m not just on Twitter and Pinterest. But I’m also on Facebook and LinkedIn. In fact, I’m also flirting with the idea of creating an Instagram account too.
While that may seem a lot of places for some of you, the truth is I don’t do much with my Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn account. I only use these accounts to post updates for my blog.
As for Pinterest, I didn’t use it just to post updates from my blog. But I also use it to keep track of all the books I’m planning to read. Pinterest also helps me to come up with a new blog post since I tend to organize my blog posts differently on Pinterest.
I realize that Pinterest does yield a better result than any other platform I use. What’s even more surprising, I get an amazing result even though I only pin once a day since I started to be active again on Pinterest again.
If you’re still on the fence whether you should be on Pinterest or not, then I hope that my personal experience is enough for you to decide.
How to manage your social media account efficiently
Since you already know that I’m literally almost everywhere online, how do I manage my social media account? Do I head over to my social media account directly whenever I need to update my accounts?
Well, here’s the secret: I use social media management apps to manage all of my social media accounts. Not only that, but I also schedule all of my updates on social media too.
That’s the wonder of using social media management apps. Not only you can manage all of your accounts in one place, but you can use it to schedule the updates too. In fact, you can post the same thing to all of your social media accounts! Isn’t that amazing?
When it comes to social media management apps, there are plenty for you to choose from. But here are some of the apps I’m currently using to manage all of my social media accounts.
Tweetdeck is the first social media management app that I used when I started using Twitter.
Back then, you can use Tweetdeck to monitor all of your social media accounts. But now, you can only use it to manage Twitter account since Tweetdeck is now acquired by Twitter itself.
I love using Tweetdeck because I can see all of my Twitter accounts on a single dashboard. That makes it easier for me to monitor mentions from all of my accounts.
You can also schedule tweets using Tweetdeck too.
Tweetdeck is available for free. All you need to do is to sign up using your Twitter account.
Once you already sign up, you can customize the dashboard in any way you want. You can also add another Twitter account through the dashboard easily too.
Buffer is another social media management app that I used to manage my Facebook and LinkedIn accounts.
What I love about Buffer is that I can schedule the same post to all of my social media accounts at once.
While that may seem convenient, I don’t recommend you to post the same thing to all of your social media accounts.
That is always the case if your post contains images. While the tall, vertical image works great on Pinterest, it will be too big for a post on Twitter.
Even if you plan to post the same thing on your social media accounts, just be sure that the image size is tailored to a specific social media account. You can create the same image with a different size for social media with Canva.
The free plan allows you to connect up to 3 social media accounts and schedule up to 10 posts.
But the pro plan allows you to connect up to 8 social media accounts and schedule up to 100 posts.
You can connect to any of your social media accounts with the free plan. But you can only connect to your Pinterest account if you have a pro plan, though.
Just like Buffer, you can also use Hootsuite to schedule your post on all social media channels.
What I love about Hootsuite is that you can bulk schedule your post and upload all of your posts on Hootsuite in CSV format.
But the bulk scheduling feature is only available for the professional plan, though.
Hootsuite also offers a free plan that allows you to connect up to 3 social media accounts and schedule up to 30 posts.
But unlike Buffer, you can connect with Pinterest even if you’re on the free plan.
Unlike Buffer and Hootsuite, Tailwind app is only for scheduling Pinterest and Instagram posts.
But what makes Tailwind app worth considering is that you can repost the same pins to the same Pinterest board again thanks to its SmartLoop feature.
Just like tweets, your pins can also get lost among all the new pins that you post on Pinterest. But with SmartLoop, you can repost the same pin again to generate more traffic to the page you’re linking on Pinterest.
Another thing that I like about Tailwind is that it will provide you with the checklist on how to improve your Pinterest profile for better result.
Even if you don’t plan to use the scheduling and SmartLoop feature, I find the checklist to be helpful especially if you want Pinterest to yield a better result for you.
The basic plan starts at $15 per month. But the free trial allows you to schedule up to 100 Pinterest posts.
I don’t use Tailwind app to schedule my Pinterest posts since I’m using Hootsuite to do that. But I do use the checklist that is accessible from the Tailwind dashboard to improve my Pinterest profile.
Social media marketing for authors resources
Now that you already know the basic thing about social media marketing for authors, where can you learn more about social media?
If that’s you, here are the best places for you to learn more about social media marketing strategy.
I love Hootsuite blog because most of the blog posts are geared towards the beginner. If you don’t know what all the features you come across can do for you, you can bet that Hootsuite has it covered for you.
As always, the examples they use on their blog tend to revolve around using the Hootsuite app. But you will still find their blog to be useful even if you don’t use Hootsuite or only using the basic feature.
You can take a look at Hootsuite blog right here:
Buffer blog is another great place for you to learn more about social media marketing strategy. But the blog tends to be for people who are already familiar with the social media’s basic features.
If you’re looking for an advanced social media marketing strategy, then the Buffer blog is the best place for you.
You can take a look at the blog right here:
Tailwind app blog
If you want to learn everything about Pinterest, then there’s no doubt that the Tailwind app blog is the best place for you to do just that.
You can also join their Facebook live to learn more about the latest Pinterest marketing strategy. But if you can’t attend their Facebook live, you can also watch the replay on their YouTube channel.
You can take a look at Tailwind app blog right here: