How to Maximize Use of Social Media


As an author, one of the marketing strategies you will be expected to use is social media. Perhaps the biggest challenge is keeping up with the ever-changing platforms, applications and formats through which social media is delivered.

This outline is designed to help you maximize your use of social media by providing a basic overview of the most common social media channels, key considerations and strategies on how to effectively and efficient promote your books and author brand online.

What social media channels are you using?

FacebookSM icons

Different channels have different applications

Connecting with readers
Connecting with influencers
Connecting with reviewers
Connecting with other authors
Re-route visitors to website
Share information
Establishing professional reputation
Cultivate interest/curiosity
Promote product
Facilitate two-way communication/interaction

What are you trying to achieve through your social media outreach?

It is critically important to know what you want and need to achieve in order to use the right social media channel effectively.

Common myths and presumptions about social media

High numbers of followers/connections = increased book sales. (NOT TRUE!)

Social media is one-way communication and/or mass communication. (FALSE!)

Everyone else except you knows the “secret” for social media success. (THERE IS NO SECRET!)

Social media = immediate results. (EFFECTS ARE CUMULATIVE!)

Important things to remember about social media

Social media connections should be treated like 1-on-1 interactions

Social media allows you to connect with audiences beyond your geographic reach – look for groups to connect with

Make sure your personal profile and other information is accurate and well-organized so people know who you are

Your social media should reflect your personality and style

Leverage the different types of format to appeal to different audiences (video vs. images vs. text)

Content must be accurate, timely and consistently maintained

Insure that branding elements (logo, key words, images) are consistent across all social media channels

Tips to leverage social media benefits

Make it easy for people to share your social media content. by using LIKE and SHARE buttons

Remember, it might be YOUR social media but it isn’t all about YOU

Create content that invites people to engage – ask questions, encourage participation, etc.

Give people a reason to come back to your social media

Keep content fresh and current

Create shareable content

Interview or profile industry experts

Share news bites or blog posts about your industry

Use photos and images

Learn how to use social media and use it regularly

Subscribe to blogs about social media

Share tips and advice with other authors

Explore tools such as Tweetdeck to help manage your social media channels

Use social media for interactive events such as Virtual Release Parties or Tweet Chats

How to achieve broadest reach with Facebook posts

  • Words with no link — highest reach
  • Words with no link and a photo — next highest
  • Words with link embedded but no auto “pop up” below — third highest
  • Words with link embedded but no auto “pop up” below and an attached
  • photo instead — fourth highest reach
  • Words with link embedded with an auto “pop up” below — fifth highest
  • Shares of a link — lowest reach

Piggy-back off of other people’s connections

Use hashtags (#) to both identify and search for topics

Use the @ symbol to highlight other people’s names/profiles, in which case your post will appear no only on your social media stream but that of the highlighted individual

Comment on other people’s posts using # and @

What is your most significant social media challenge? Biggest social media success story? Share your questions and tips!



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