Per a suggestion from one of my blog readers, it would be appropriate to go over a few of the marketing updates I learned since I concentrated on those sessions during this 2015 conference. After all, that was mostly what I learned new from this year’s event. Now that I have a book coming out, it’s prudent to have the most up-to-date tools.
SOCIAL MEDIA THEN
In the past, the few sessions I’d attended ranged from getting a web site to joining Facebook to having no internet presence at all. I’m not kidding. There was one author who has managed moderate success with no internet presence at all. He touted it and was proud that he didn’t have a web site and no social media. He did everything though the conventional book channels like Amazon and Baker And Taylor etc. Include his incessant travelling in the mix.
On the other hand there were the others who pitched web sites and Facebook as the main social media sources. As for the web sites, they were a little vague on how to get one started but the prices ranged from free to hundreds of dollars. I almost forked out a couple of hundred bucks but soon discovered I could do it myself for about thirty. Sure, it isn’t super snazzy but it works.
SOCIAL MEDIA NOW
Things have expanded with social media. The guy with no social media wasn’t there this year and I don’t think many took him seriously, or if they did, they don’t seem to be having much success, or weren’t bragging about it.
The new thing with social media is, of course, a web site. The difference is that the web site needs to be focused enough so that people can find your book or books. My site, for instance, will always have my blogs, but will also have pages for my books. It will expand and deal with both because I want one central location for everything. I don’t like the idea of multiple web sites. You can do it any way you want, but it costs more and you have to manage much more on top of that.
As for the social media side, there’s more than just Facebook now. Add into the mix Twitter, Pinterest and a few I can’t even remember. However, those two are the main ones that stood out in my mind besides Facebook. I personally have ignored Twitter for a long time because I like to communicate in complete sentences and Twitter, with the 140 character limit, forces the shorthand language that I despise. However, to keep up with things, got to get on the bandwagon, to use a tired cliché.
A few tips about Twitter. Come up with a catchy name. Always use hash tags in your posts (so they can be found), and always limit your posts to 120 characters, NOT 140. I can’t remember the logic behind the 120 character limit, but just do it.
Pinterest is an image social media site, but it’s becoming more commonly used.
There is also a site that can manage all of your social media sites at once. What you do is make a comment and it will automatically post to all of them, but I can’t remember what the site is! I have it in my notes but didn’t identify which site it was.
GET A MARKETABLE E-MAIL ADDRESS!
According to the marketing professional, get another e-mail address if you use hotmail, yahoo, or g-mail addresses. That shows cheapness. Try to get an address linked to your web site. I finally did it, though it took a bit of stumbling around to figure it out.
SOLICIT BOOK REVIEWS
A class was dedicated to soliciting book reviews. Your publisher is going to do this also, but you should coordinate with them because they probably won’t cover every one of them and you can hit a lot more than they’re going to. You have to be smart and savvy and not be afraid to ask. At the same time, you have to pitch your book to them. Know who you’re pitching to.
There are certain reviewers to avoid also. I know of one on Amazon who is a flagrant fake reviewer. All she does is copy the back blurb of the book and put either a four or five star rating. It’s blatantly obvious she never reads a word of the book. If you want her name, I’ll send it to you privately, but I don’t want to slander her openly. Many reviewers on Amazon have smelled a rat with her and when they see her reviews, they tend to look suspicious at the integrity of any book and either the publisher or the author.
That’s the gist of what I learned from the 2015 conference and the updates on marketing. If I forgot anything, oh well…