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Social Media Presence & Author Branding

Okay, so social media is nothing new. We've all heard plenty about it and how great it can be to build your online presence. Well, it works great for authors too.

 It's especially helpful for communicating with your readers, building a loyal fan base and engaging with your audience in a variety of ways.

First stop is Twitter. Second stop is Facebook. Third stop is LinkedIn. Make sure you are on all three.

Your ultimate goal when using social media will be to build an "author platform." You may have heard this term before, but it encompasses many different elements and describes a very wide range of tools you should be using to your advantage.

Social Sites for Authors

This site is a must-have for all authors and aspiring writers alike. If you aren't already on the site, you must go register now. This resource is invaluable. There are so many neat things you can do. 

Start by creating an author profile, list your eBooks/books next. Then, add some of your quotes if you want. Start a discussion group. Make friends. Ask for reviews. 

You can even upload your eBook to sell on the site if you'd like. The best way to use GoodReads to promote your books is to hold a free book giveaway contest. This is only available for print books, but it's worth doing. 

Order a few copies from Lulu and start a giveaway. 

GoodReads will pick the winners, somewhat based on who is likely to be interested in your type of book or genre. This is an outstanding and reliable way to get some thoughtful book reviews on the site, from avid readers. You are responsible for shipping the books to the winners. 

  I mentioned this site for their cool review depot, but it is also a great social reader and writer community as well. Explore what it has to offer and create an author profile!
 This site is similar to the previous two mentioned. Create an author profile, upload some of your work. Play around with the features and check out the possibilities offered by this social author site.

  This is a great service provided by Amazon. Once you register your profile, it will appear towards the bottom of your eBook's product page. People can click on it and it will take them to a profile where you can add an RSS feed to your blog, upload author photos, submit an author bio and also allows you to track your sales and recent customer reviews, when you log in. Must-have for anyone selling their book on Amazon.

New, Innovative Social Author Resources

 This is a free (with paid options as well) promotional site for authors that allows them to create a listing for their titles and generate a neat author widget with a preview of their work.
  A very neat and brand new app for building and creating stories centered around a topic or person using social media search engines. Easy drag-and-drop interface allows you to add content from Twitter, YouTube, etc. 

Do a search for your book title and add search results to your "story." Fun to play with.

  Very cool way to add autographs/signatures to your eBooks for fans and readers who collect autographed copies. Easy sign in with Twitter account and other users can request a signed copy.
  Incredibly useful app that will generate an RSS feed to update every time you sell a copy of your eBook on Amazon. Great sales tracking tool and totally free to use.

  A new app for promoting your books on Facebook.
ñ  Really great way to turn your blog into an eBook. Customize it, add advertisements and other images, etc. Only $5 per ebook with custom options, or you can buy a monthly subscription.

More Promotional Ideas

  Start a newsletter for your readers, fans and social media followers.

Use a service like Tiny Letter to get started with a simple newsletter to keep your audience up to speed with your latest activity.

  MatchPoint. This is a paid service, but they offer a free ten day trial. Copy and paste your press release into their media kit setup and fill out all the additional fields.

Use their awesome search engine to plug a few relevant tags (that have to do with your book and/or writing) and search for bloggers and journalists who have covered those topics recently. Then, you can jot down a quick and personalized pitch to each one you want to contact individually and send them your press kit at the same time. Track how many of them open and view your message and other materials.

  Article marketing and user-generated content sites.

Start with eZineArticles or Squidoo. Create content that relates to the type of writing you do. Promote your books by including "spotlight Amazon reviews" in your Squidoo lenses. Drive sales.

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