Google+ is a diverse social media community of a generally more mature nature than Tumblr or Facebook. You’ll find fellow authors, publishing industry professionals, artists and techies here. Interaction is important here, but it is great for making those social connections with other professionals to discuss writing, tips, tricks and all there is to know about your genre. Check out the Google+ communities for different groups.
A bonus of Google+ is that it links directly with Blogger for sharing blog posts.
It has been said that Facebook is the social media network for keeping in contact with those people you already know. Thus it may not seem a very useful site for authors wishing to generate an audience. However, it is a good redistribution network for blog posts and information about new books.
You can also create an author page on Facebook, which is separate from your personal account.
Twitter is all about quick-fire interaction. 140 characters, messages can scroll by quickly and be gone into the ether. It’s good for short announcements about book releases and upping your author profile by interacting with lots of people. One piece of advice, learn how to use hashtags if you want to make good use of Twitter.
One important note – it is easy to spam people on Twitter – DON’T. Keep your publicity messages to a decent number, no going on and on about the new book every minute. Plus, be a real person, post some fun stuff, retweet other people, interact.
Tasha’s Twitter: @beren_writes, Sophie’s Twitter: @thwax,
Wittegen’s Twitter: @wittegenpress
Tumblr is all about pictures and videos! It’s a media network with a younger demographic as well. Cover artwork, short pieces of 2-300 words, punchy adverts, book trailers all work well here.
Tasha’s Tumblr: berenwrites, Sophie’s Tumblr: thwax
You can create trailers for your books. These trailers can be used on Amazon and other networking sites and Youtube is a good base from which to link your videos. You may also be able to generate an audience directly on youtube.
Youtube also directly links to Google+.
Again, this site is all about pictures. Book covers and links are useful here.
Goodreads is a book site where you can review other people’s books and add your own books for other people to find. Set up all your books on this site. There are also groups on different subjects/genres that you can join.
Tasha at Goodreads, Sophie at Goodreads
It is important for any author to have a place they can interact with their audience. A blog is a good way of doing this. There are many things you can do on your blog to build your audience and make contacts.
Tasha’s Blog – Tasha’s Thinkings
Sophie’s Blog – Sophie’s Thoughts and Fumbles
- Set up your blog
- Blogger and WordPress are the most usual types of blog, but some people do choose Tumblr as well. We’ll be talking about Blogger, but most of this can also be done of WordPress.
- Creating a blog in blogger
- Pick a name, it can be your name, or something including your name.
- Select a layout and use the template editor to tweak the colours
- Add the following widgets to your layout by default
- ‘follow by email’
- Google+ Add to Circles
- Join this Site With Google Friends Connect
- Contact Me
- Search Blog
- Blog Archive
- Add a page about you/your brand/your books.
- Turn off ‘Comment Moderation’ and ‘Word Verification’ under ‘Settings/Posts and Comment’ since CAPTCHA and not being able to see your comment immediately annoy commenters. You can always turn on this functionality if you have problems with spammers.
- Creating an audience
- Blog regularly, about anything BUT NOT just about your own book.
- Join blog hops and don’t just post to them, interact with the other people on the hop.
- Do blog tours for your books. A useful site for organising this is BlogTour.org, where you can ask for hosts. This link tells you how you can set up a blog tour easily.
- Host guests on your blog – have a page inviting people to submit to be a guest.
- Do guest posts on other people’s blogs – you can do this through BlogTour.org, or just wander around people’s blogs and check out their submission guidelines.
- Run giveaways and fun competitions