10 Ways Authors Can Win the Game of Social Media
“Writing a book means starting simultaneously down two paths, if you want to be successful. The book writing, and the book publicizing. As the author of an idea that deserves to be heard you must do both.” Nick Morgan, communication theorist in Forbes magazine
You put your whole heart and soul into writing your book. You thought the hard part was going to be writing but now that your book has published or about to be published you face a harsh reality — if you don’t get the message out, nobody will buy your book.
Here at www.whatissocialmediatoday.com, we feel your pain.
In fact Ramajon Cogan and I started this business because we saw your need.
Authors today need to embrace social media marketing if they want to survive, to develop the readership they want to fulfill their dreams of making money selling books and building enough of a tribe to sustain them as they build careers as authors and authorpreneurs.
In his former career as head of the Publish Now Program for a well-known writing coach, Ramajon Cogan saw this problem first hand.
Authors would spend months, years and thousands of dollars producing quality books, only for their hard-earned efforts to fall flat and face low book sales once they hit the market.
After I published my second book, What Is Healing? Awaken Your Intuitive Power for Health and Happiness in 2012, I began to try to find good information about how to master social media marketing.
As a medical intuitive, I use my guidance all day long and have learned to trust myself. I remember asking for guidance about whether or not I should sign up for a particular social media marketing training program and I got a clear “NO!”
Like many humans, I had a terrible case of FOMO — Fear of Missing Out — so I spent $2,400 and signed up anyway, only to want to smack myself in the face during the first webinar when I recognized that I had virtually thrown my money away as the program I had signed up for was A boring and B out of date and C totally useless.
The only good thing about recognizing that I had just wasted $2,400 of my hard-earned money was that I was so mad at myself I resolved to figure this stuff out. I threw myself into studying social media and mastering it with thousands of hours of actual practice, trial, error and ultimately success.
I developed a broad base in the social media that has empowered me to develop and maintain a Klout score of 68, which puts me in the top 5 percent of influencers on the site. Influencers with a score of 60 or higher are in the top 5% users.
Although Ramajon Cogan and I had worked closely together to produce three books, it was at a writing workshop in November 2015 where I was working on my fifth book that Rama saw me in action and the idea for this business www.whatissocialmediatoday.com got hatched.
A fellow author at the writing workshop had asked me some questions about the social media.
“Sure no problem,” I said, promising to show her what to do during one of the breaks.
Rama observed me as I taught my fellow author what to do.
“Just click here, do this and emphasize that,” I explained as her eyes lit up. Rama and I could both see the hope spread all over her face as she realized she could do this — she could market her book effectively all by herself.
“Catherine, we need to bottle you,” Rama told me afterwards.
Rama and I began formulating www.whatissocialmediatoday.com in earnest in January 2016. We launched our first series of clients in July 2016.
We are passionate about training authorpreneurs, solopreneurs, ompreneurs and other entrepreneurs because we understand that what we teach you may make the difference between you scratching by to survive financially and thriving at levels you never believed could be possible.
The end goal of all this social media marketing is to empower you to live the life you really want.
As a single self supporting woman living in Atlanta, Georgia, I take my own survival pretty seriously.
Using the principles I’m about to teach you, the revenues for my main business increased 33 percent for the calendar year 2016 over 2015.
Yes, I sell books but more importantly I use the combined total efforts of my books and my social media to attract the clients I need to live a wonderful life working out of my home, teaching yoga and qi gong, walking my dog in the park every day, enjoying my orchids and lying in my hammock during times of the day when most other people are stuck in their office.
Here are my top 10 ways you as an author can Win the Game of Social Media:
- Learn how to play the Game of Social Media.
- Think Win-Win.
- Figure out your keywords and hashtags.
- Make your book into a multimedia experience.
- Become a Goodreads maven.
- Engage, engage, engage.
- Develop a digital social signature, aka your brand identity.
- Your blog is more important than your book.
- Build your tribe one raving fan at a time.
- Market like a rockstar.
Let’s break this down further.
Learn how to play the Game of Social Media
When Rama and I started www.whatissocialmediatoday.com we were deeply influenced by Jane McGonigal, a game designer and highly influential Ted Talk speaker.
In her first Ted Talk, Jane discussed the mentality she says is essential if you want to enjoy what she calls an “epic win.”
In real life, we take our losses and challenges rather seriously. We get depressed, we get discouraged.
On the other hand, Jane McGonigal points out, in a collaborative online environment, gamers feel super empowered to feel they can change the world.
This ability to overcome feeling discouraged by loss gets developed in the 10,000 hours of online games the average young person plays before the age of 21 — matching if not exceeding the average of 10,080 hours they would spend in school from 5th grade to high school graduation if they had perfect attendance.
Rama and I recognize that when you develop the attitude that you are playing what we call the Game of Social Media, you will have enough fun playing that you eventually get very good at it.
If you take the same mentality into social media that you have in real life — that things are oh so serious — you may get discouraged and want to give up.
When you play any game — whether that be Monopoly, Spades or marketing your book in social media — you may suck in the beginning but if you’re having fun and doing it eventually you will move to the next level if you keep it up.
In our program here at www.whatissocialmediatoday.com, we recognize that people have different learning styles so we have four ways for you to learn how to play the Game of Social Media:
- Weekly online webinars
- One to one coaching, where Rama and I hold your hand, get online with you to look at what you are doing and coach you to take your Game of Social Media to the next level
- Peer learning by playing with other clients
- An online forum where you can ask questions, read articles on all the important topics in social media and watch pre-recorded videos.
If you think like a gamer, even if you are playing well you recognize that there’s always another level to get to, always another layer of learning and you keep growing as a player as you develop your audience.
As your tribe gets bigger you increase your influence and develop more readers for your books and customers for your business, products and services.
There’s a reason it’s called the “social” media. If you want to win the Game of Social Media you want to develop online friendships with like-minded people.
The truth is even if you are a solopreneur or single author, you won’t win the Game of Social Media by yourself.
Here are some simple ways you can achieve win-win as an author:
- Cross blog with other authors. Post a blog for every blog you post. Include links to each other’s books and bios and photos of your books. Here’s an example of a blog I posted for fellow Amazon №1 bestselling author Lynne Cockrum-Murphy.
- Interview each other on your Youtube channels. Use a video conference system like Zoom.us to record videos and post them on both of your Youtube channels. Here’s an example of a Youtube video where my friend and fellow Amazon №1 bestselling author Maxine Taylor interviewed me about a medical intuitive reading I did about President Donald Trump.
- Share each other’s posts on your respective social media channels.
- Co create online webinars. Here’s an example of a FREE online webinar fellow yoga teacher Suzanne Dulin and I created. Not only did we create a Youtube video together, I posted a blog about the event where I listed the URLs for all her businesses. We gave away a FREE copy of one of my books about social media. Suzanne and I both promoted each other in newsletters to our respective tribes. And Suzanne promoted the event in her Facebook yoga community.
You have to be a friend to have a friend. Create good karma by sharing news about each other’s book launches so that when you need help your friends will be there for you also.
Recognize that everybody is an influencer because your friends always will know people you haven’t met yet and these folks may also be interested in hearing about your books, products and services.
Figure out your keywords and hashtags
Here at www.whatissocialmediatoday.com, we empower all our clients to determine the right keywords and hashtags to promote their books, products and services.
Why is this so important?
If you aren’t using keywords and hashtags you simply won’t get found.
Our search engine optimization (SEO) expert Scott D. Smith of London, England, helps all participants in our program find the precise keywords you need to get discovered through the search engines.
One of the secrets of the sauce of our program is Scott’s thorough research so you’re not just guessing — you know what your keywords and hashtags need to be.
Not knowing keywords and hashtags is a beginner mistake.
Knowing your keywords and hashtags and not using them will relegate you to obscurity.
If you’ve been on the social media and still nobody is finding out about you, read my latest book on social media, What Is Social Media Today: Keywords, Hashtags and You, Oh My! to find out what you’ve been missing.
Make your book into a multimedia experience
Social media is not just about words, it’s about images.
Here are some good ways you can convert your books into multiple formats to gain new readers:
- Go to Goodreads.com, the world’s largest social media website for readers and authors, and list your favorite quotes from your book. Once you have these quotes listed, you can share them directly from Goodreads into your Twitter feed and Facebook timeline.
- Make 1 to 3 minute videos about your book. You need not hire a Hollywood production crew. Just ask a spouse or a friend to use your smart phone to record videos of you talking about each chapter. Then post these to your author page on Goodreads.com, load them on your Youtube channel and share them throughout all your social media channels.
- Use FREE websites like Pablo by Buffer and Canva to create shareable images with quotes from your book. Be sure to include your name as the author and if possible the name of your book. Share these not only on Facebook and Twitter but also on imagecentric social media websites like Instagram and Pinterest.
- When you’re getting ready to do a book launch, use programs like Viraltag and Tailwind app on Hootsuite to post images of your book cover.
- Create presentations for Slideshare.net such as this one I did on How to Start Your Blogging Career on Tumblr and this one on Your Social Media Tribe Awaits.
Become a Goodreads maven
Because Goodreads is the largest social media website for authors and readers, you want to set up your author profile there.
Anyone can become a member of Goodreads but as a published author Goodreads gives you a FREE marketing platform.
Find friends there from Twitter, your Facebook connections and personal phone directory. As you develop friends, some of these people will become your Goodreaders followers.
Be sure to repost your blog onto Goodreads as more than likely the 55 million members of Goodreads exceeds the number of people coming to your personal blog.
Give away your books on Goodreads, list your favorite quotes and join communities to reach new readers. To read more about how to succeed with Goodreads, read this blog I posted at this link.
Engage, engage, engage
Don’t just broadcast on social media. Communicate!
The more you respond, the more potential readers will respond back to you.
Your customer service experience doesn’t begin the moment someone buys your book. It begins the moment people connect with you on social media.
Develop a digital social signature, aka your brand identity
Here at www.whatissocialmediatoday.com, part of what we do in our one on one sessions is help you develop what we call your digital social signature, also known as your brand identity.
What do we mean by that?
Your digital social signature begins with consistent descriptions throughout each of your social media platforms and extends not just to the words you use to describe yourself but the images as well.
For example, most people who follow me know that I love orchids and Rama loves classic cars, mountain bikes and gorgeous Hawaiian sunsets.
Your digital social signature becomes easily recognizable across all platforms and allows people to relate to you as an author and fellow human being.
Your blog is more important than your book
Develop fans for your writing by blogging regularly.
As you blog and we at www.whatissocialmediatoday.com teach you how to market your blog through the social media, you develop a wider readership and these people become your raving fans.
The entire purpose of social media marketing is to use the URLs in the posts you make to drive people back to your website where they read more of your writing and discover about your books, products and services.
This is what is known as content marketing.
If you’re a novelist, here are a few things you can blog about:
- Your writing process
- Your characters
- The period of your book
- The environment of your book
- Upcoming news about your new books
- Rough drafts of chapters — remember Charles Dickens posted his books as serial literature
If you’re a nonfiction writer, you can post about:
- Your topics
- User-friendly helpful information
- You can even blog your book by publishing one chapter at a time
- Videos you have made
Build your tribe one raving fan at a time
Although over time you do want to build large numbers of fans, remember that you build your tribe one raving fan at a time.
Take time to respond to people. Even 15 minutes a day can be devoted to reading posts by other people and commenting on them.
Make friends and people will appreciate you.
Market like a rockstar
While many businesses take more of a funnel approach going for the masses, rockstars have super fans who they reward for loyalty.
You may have readers who consistently write good reviews, share your posts on Facebook and Twitter and buy every book you write.
You want to find a way to reward these people because your super fans will spread your message faster than anyone.
Give them advance copies of your new books, offer them free sessions, free swag.
Send them a message of appreciation when they take their precious time to write a positive review.
You can even host a party for them — online or in person — to give them the love they deserve for supporting you in your chosen profession.
Join our program at What Is Social Media Today
Putting all this together takes time and is part of creating a successful social media strategy.
We’ve got four ways for you to learn:
- Weekly webinars that you can join LIVE or listen to at your convenience
- One on one coaching
- Peer competition
- A forum with resources where all your questions can get answered
Join Catherine Carrigan and Ramajon Cogan at www.whatissocialmediatoday.com and we will show you how! Call Catherine Carrigan today at 678–612–8816 or email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact Ramajon Cogan at (928) 821–4553 or email email@example.com.