Social media web sites, such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and even MySpace, can be perfect places to market a book. If you are already connected to the online networking and media world, stay there, and start promoting your work. If you are not connected, consider adding a few of the following strategies to your marketing tool kit.
Make Your Posts about Your Book
Do you regularly update your Twitter or Facebook status? If so, make sure that, as much as possible, your status updates are about your book. Many users will post things about their day or their families, but if your goal for social networking sites is to market your book, keep your status updates professional in nature. This will keep your book at the forefront of your followers’ minds.
Create Fan Clubs
Many social networking sites allow users to build groups or fan clubs. To spread the word about your book, you can make your own groups and fan clubs and encourage your friends to join. This will eventually encourage others to join when they see your friends’ notifications about the group. In this way, your name and the name of your book are getting out there and noticed.
Be sure to monitor these groups, however, as they are sometimes fodder for spam, and no one will spend time discussing your book on a forum filled with spam posts. Also, be sure to include information in these groups about where your book can be purchased, including links to Amazon and other online sellers if available.
Use Event Notification Options
If the social media site you are using has an event notification capability, use it. If you know you are going to hold a book signing or public reading, create an event and invite people online. Encourage them to invite their friends as well. This gets your name and the name of your book noticed, even if it does not increase the number of people at your book signing.
Set Up a Blog
One form of social media that you may overlook is a blog. A blog gives you a chance to post information about upcoming events, learn what your readers liked and did not like about your book, and stay connected with your readers. You can post a tidbit from a book or elicit discussions about different sections of the work.
Keep in mind that blogging must be done regularly to work effectively as a marketing tool. People expect blogs to be updated on a regular basis, and if not, they will stop reading. This will allow your book to slip from their minds, which also means that they are not telling people about your blog and introducing more potential readers to your work.
Build an Online Persona
In all of your social media and networking work, keep your online persona consistent. Whatever image you want to portray about yourself and your book, keep it in mind any time you post something or make a comment on someone else’s post. Always be looking for new opportunities to introduce potential readers to your work, but do so in a professional way that works in conjunction with they type of writing you wish to be known for.
Spreading the Word through Cyberspace
Social media and online networking are the wave of the future, and offer numerous opportunities to gain a following. Soon you will see your readership expand as you market your book through social media, and, as an added bonus, you will have the chance to connect in a more personal way with your readers.