The Book Marketing Blogby Penny Sansevieri
May 1, 2015
Today, we’re lucky to have a guest blogger – our friend Frances Caballo, an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. Read on for her valuable pointers on how to manage your social media in about 15 minutes a day. Thanks to Frances for joining us!
Social Media in 15 Minutes a Day
You know that to sell your new book you need to be involved in marketing it and in today’s world that means social media has to be in the mix.
If you’ve already been using Facebook and LinkedIn for some time, great! You’re ahead of the learning curve.
But if social media is completely new to you – aside from a Facebook profile you somewhat neglect – then it’s likely that you’ve spent time reading blog posts or attending webinars and social media workshops at writers’ conferences.
What you probably haven’t learned is that you can manage your social media in about 15 minutes a day.
Isn’t that a lovely idea? You’re probably wondering, “It that realistic?”
Keep reading because I’m going to show you how to manage your social media in a way that it won’t dominate your marketing efforts or send you into the vortex of social media time suck.
Four Steps to Managing Your Social Media Marketing
Regardless of the social media platforms you use there are four steps to managing your social media.
- Start with curation. Find content and create content to share. The content can be in the form of text as in links to blog posts by colleagues and experts in your genre or posts you write. Your content can also be in the form of images. Share as many images as you can – at least once daily on Twitter and in every post elsewhere.
- Schedule your social media posts. Once you know what you want to say and share, use a social media dashboard to schedule your posts.
- Find time to socialize. The very nature of social media is that it is social. In the book Twitter Power 3.0 the authors Joel Comm and Dave Taylor write, “Someone who uses social media successfully doesn’t just create content; he or she also creates conversations, and those conversations create communities.” So keep the social in social media and create communities with your readers on the social media platforms that best serve you.
- Review your analytics. Determine which posts receive the highest level of engagement and try to replicate that content every week. You can use the free analytics tools on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest (if you have a Pinterest business account). There are also tools (such as SocialReport, mentioned below) available that provide analytics on other social media networks.
Tools to Help You Save Time
There are numerous applications available to help you save time on social media. Here are just a few the tools and tricks I use.
- AllTop – This is a wonderful directory of the top blogs in every category imaginable. You will always find the information here to curate and share.
- Swayy – Once you tell Swayy what your interests are, the app will send you an email each day with the five top blogs in your niche or genre, and you can schedule your post within the same application. This tool will save you a lot of time.
- ContentGems – This application works identically to Swayy except it will send you a longer list of blog posts.
- News feeds and lists: On Twitter, you can create lists of people who post great content and then use that list to curate content you want to share. You can also do the same thing reading through your news feeds on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Google+ and other social media networks that you use.
Scheduling your content is your next step. You will need to find an application that has the features you want.
- Buffer – This is a great tool for scheduling your posts. Buffer integrates well with other applications such as SocialBro, which determines your best tweeting times throughout the day. If you upgrade to the Awesome Plan you can also use it to share your posts on Google+.
- SocialOomph – This is my favorite social media dashboard. However, I only use it for LinkedIn and Twitter. You can schedule your Facebook page posts for the week using Facebook’s scheduling tool within the status update box. In addition, you can use a free chrome extension to schedule your Google+ posts. If you’d rather have one application take care of all of your scheduling needs, you can upgrade to a paid version of Buffer (about $10/month). If you’d like a more powerful dashboard, use SocialReport, which posts on every major social media network and provides killer analytics But SocialReport is about $40/month.
- Applications just for Twitter: TweetDeck and Pluggio (Pluggio has great analytics!)
Tools to Help You Socialize (As If You Need Help with That!)
There are some cool apps that will keep you in the know.
- NutshellMail –You can choose to receive an email once or twice a day. Each message will tell you who your new followers on Twitter are, who unfollowed you on Twitter, what’s trending on your Facebook news feed, which friends have birthdays, and what information is trending on LinkedIn.
- Newsle – This application is just for LinkedIn. You will receive an email every day that lets you know when your friends and colleagues are making the news.
- Twitter Notifications Tab – You can also log into Twitter and click on the Notifications tab (or check your social media dashboard) to find out who is following you and sharing your tweets.
- Join Groups & Communities – By joining groups on LinkedIn and Facebook and communities on Google+ you can easily join in conversations, share expertise, and make new friends and contacts.
Can I Really Do All This in 15 Minutes?
Yes. But – you knew there would be a but, didn’t you? – if you can allocate one day each week to spending at least 30 minutes for planning your social media posts.
The rest of the week you will only need at most 15 minutes a day.
And those 15 minutes can be spent while waiting for a friend at a café, sitting in your doctor’s waiting room, or sitting in front of the TV and taking time during commercial breaks to check in and be social.
We all know that social media can be time-consuming. It’s easy to open Facebook, check our news feed and get lost in our friends, fans and followers’ posts. We can click links that take us to another website and spend too much time watching silly videos.
It doesn’t have to be that way.
If you are willing to spend at least 30 minutes once a week planning your social media posts for the week than all you need is 15 minutes a day to spend some fun time socializing with your friends, followers, and contacts, who are mostly the people who read your books and stories.
These 15 minutes a day are the most crucial part of your social media marketing. During those 15 minutes, you are creating relationships with your readers. You are answering their questions. You are allowing them to get to know the author behind the book.
Don’t ever forget how special it feels to know the author of a book you adore. Why wouldn’t you want to spend 15 minutes a day talking to readers who most appreciate your writing?
So as long as you’re willing to spend 30 minutes once a week, all you need is 15 minutes a day to incorporate social media into your book marketing strategy.
I would love to hear about any strategies you use to economize your time and make social media less time-consuming.
About the Author: Frances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. You can receive a free copy of her book Twitter Just for Writers on her website or check out her newest book, Avoid Social Media Time Suck. Connect with Frances on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+.
April 23, 2015
Don’t miss the chance to sign up for the new-and-improved Book Marketing Expert Newsletter!
Over at Author Marketing Experts, we’ve been working hard on revamping the newsletter, and we think you’ll love it. We’ve shortened it up while adding more quick tips, more opportunities for authors, and color!
If you haven’t opened an edition in a while, now’s the time to give us another shot! And if you’re not yet subscribed, be sure to sign up here!
April 23, 2015
Welcome to the fourth installment of our April “Social Media Series.” This week, we’ll focus on using images to market your books on social media. Here are my recommendations for the best places to find free stock images!
Twenty Places to Get Free Stock Images
- Free Range Stock Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://freerangestock.com/
- Morgue File Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://www.morguefile.com/
- StockSnap – Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: https://stocksnap.io/
- FreePhotosBank – Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://www.freephotosbank.com/
- FreeFoto – Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://www.freefoto.com/index.jsp
- Life of Pix – High-res images and videos for personal or commercial use: http://www.lifeofpix.com/
- New Old Stock – Some very cool vintage images, no known copyright restrictions: http://nos.twnsnd.co/
- Picography – Free high-res photos to use for business or personal: http://picography.co/
- Pickup Image Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://pickupimage.com/
- Snapographic Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://snapographic.com/
- Free images Free for personal or commercial use, no attribution required: http://www.freeimages.com/
- Super Famous Studios: Great Pictures, credit required: http://superfamous.com/
- PicJumbo High res images for personal or commercial use: http://picjumbo.com/
- Pexels – Images for personal or commercial use, no credit required: http://www.pexels.com/
- Little Visuals – 7 new pictures every week: http://littlevisuals.co/
- Unsplash – 10 free high res images every week: https://unsplash.com/
- IM Creator – Great site, attribution required: http://www.imcreator.com/
- FreePik – Only vector images, attribution required: http://www.freepik.com/
- Pattern Library – Super cool patterns, free to use: http://thepatternlibrary.com/
- Death to Stock Photo – monthly free photos in your inbox: http://deathtothestockphoto.com/
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April 22, 2015
Ask the Author is a very cool feature on Goodreads but are you using it the right way? Patrick Brown of Goodreads takes us through how best to use it for maximum impact and exposure! Check out this video on Penny’s YouTube channel!
April 20, 2015
Learn how to maximize the Goodreads giveaway with this video on Penny’s YouTube channel. If you’ve ever done a Goodreads giveaway of your book you know that it’s a great tool to help you get the word out. But are you using it right? Patrick Brown of Goodreads takes you through some simple but powerful tips for getting more out of each giveaway you do!
April 16, 2015
Welcome to the third installment of our April “Social Media Series.” This week, we’ll focus on Pinterest. Check out these tips to make the most of your Pinterest book marketing!
Wondering when to post what on Pinterest?
Well let’s have a look at best times to post:
10-4PM is a big time for pinning, 32% of all pins are added during that time and after dinner, so 9pm to midnight sees around 18% of all pinning.
- * Monday: Fitness
* Tuesday: Technology
* Wednesday: Inspiration and inspirational quotes
* Thursday: Fashion
- * Friday: Humor
* Saturday: Travel and adventure
* Sunday: Craft, food and recipes
One of the stand-out categories on Pinterest is humor, more than 3 million pins are saved to boards each day.
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April 9, 2015
Welcome to the second installment of our April “Social Media Series.” This week, we’ll focus on how to get more bounce from your Facebook ads. Check out the tips to make the most of your book marketing on Facebook!
Facebook ads have become more complex as their ad department keeps rolling out upgrades and modifiers to their ads. Getting traction has been harder and harder however these simple tips (which we’ve tried) should help you gain more visibility for your Facebook ads:
Use an Image of a Smiling Woman
You’ll be amazed how well this works – and it’s not just for Facebook ads but the ad world in general has known about this trip for a while, too. A smiling, happy woman has shown to have some of the highest click-through rates. Don’t use complex images with lots of people because remember, users are seeing these in their newsfeeds and often while they are on mobile.
Don’t target too narrowly
Facebook has a fantastic targeting feature that lets you show ads to only a specific group of people, however if you go too narrow, you’ll have a pretty ineffective ad campaign. So how large should your audience be? I would suggest 1,000 to 3,0000 minimum, anything under 1,000 is just a wasted effort.
Don’t Make them Guess
Remember we need to tell people what we want them to do, ads are no different. Having a clearly defined call to action (CTA) is really important. Make sure your consumer knows what you want them to do: get your “free book” or “download this now!” Whatever it is, make sure it’s clear and focused. Don’t make them guess because I can guarantee you, they won’t.
Don’t Use the Same Ad
One thing I recommend is ad rotation. If people see the same ad over and over again they’ll stop “seeing” it, so rotate a few ads. This will also tell you what ads work better and which ones don’t work at all.
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April 2, 2015
Welcome to our April “Social Media Series.” This month, we’ll focus on why it’s critical to use social media to publicize your book, and how to increase your book promotion with social media tips.
Facebook Frenzy – are you using Facebook to market your book? If not, you certainly should be. Check out these important Facebook stats and tips on the best time to post on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and LinkedIn!
Facebook Stats Did You Know?
- 30 million businesses now have a Facebook Fan Page.
- 19 million businesses have optimized their Fan Page for Mobile. Have you?
- 5 million businesses now spend money on Facebook ads.
- Businesses are paying 122% more per ad unit on Facebook than they did a year ago.
- 399 million Facebook users only use Facebook on mobile each month
- 928 million people use Facebook on a daily basis, this number increased from 802 million last quarter.
- 63% of Facebook users engage on a daily basis
- If you wonder where your time is going, check this out: The average Facebook user spends 40 minutes a day on Facebook, this number used to be 20 minutes.
- Not quite sure about Instagram? This image-driven platform is used by 200 million people each month.
- Not using video on Facebook? Maybe you should: Twice as many people now watch videos on Facebook in their feed compared to just six months ago.
When is a Good Time to Post on Social Media?
While the exact right time and date for optimal posting does vary by industry (and you should keep an eye on your stats), there are some great guidelines to follow:
According to Social Media Today, Facebook engagement is higher (by 18%) on Thursdays and Fridays meaning that the best time to schedule your most important posts is towards the end of the week. BufferSocial reported that 1pm is the best time to get shares while 3pm gets the most clicks (all times EST).
According to MediaBistro, Twitter engagement increased by 30% on the weekend. During the week engagement on this site peaks between 1 and 3PM EST – which correlates with lunch breaks!
SocialNewsDaily says that the best time to post on G+ is 9am and 11am and the worst times are 6pm and 7amEST. Mid-week posts tend to get higher visibility on G+ and 9am Weds is a great time to post as well!
Because LinkedIn is so B2B driven, it would make sense that their optimal times are between 7am and 8:30AM and 5 to 6PM. Also (according to IT World) Tuesdays and Thursdays are the best days to post on LinkedIn.
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March 14, 2015
Ramp up your book promotion with these book marketing and publishing industry tweets, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include blogging and social media mistakes to avoid, how to repurpose content, tips to run your own virtual book tour, and more. Happy marketing!
* 10 Ways to Get Your Book “Review Ready”
Always start with a professional editor. And get a really good book cover:
* Major Blogging and Social Media Mistakes to Avoid
It’s better not to have your blog autopost your latest piece to social media. Control the way your social media updates go out:
* Quiz: Do You Have What it Takes to Self-Publish?
Ready to find out? Wise Ink Blog has the questions you should ask – before you take the plunge:
* A Book Marketing Truth Few Experts Will Admit
Sometimes your book marketing won’t turn out the way you hoped, even if you do everything the experts recommend:
* 7 Ways to Repurpose Content for Your Personal Brand
Think about creating Infographics, developing a SlideShare presentation, and using cross-promotion to get more from your content:
* Tips for Creating Your Own Virtual Book Tour
One author explains how he developed a tour for his book and shares his best tips:
* 11 Essential Elements of an Author Website
A good author bio, your blog, a contact page, and other important items you should include:
* How to Promote Your Books Around The Holidays
There’s more than Christmas – there are public holidays throughout the year that you might be able to tie to your book:
March 9, 2015
Welcome to Author Marketing Experts’ Blog Carnival. This week we have guest posts on self-publishing, and writing. Thank you to all of our contributors.
Sarah Bolme submitted Important Information for Christian Authors posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “Do you finish every book you start to read? Many people don’t. I once saw a statistic that said that most people only read about half of a nonfiction book.”
Hazel Longuet submitted How I improved my writing productivity by 100% posted at A Novel Experience, saying, “I was struggling to hit my daily word count targets – these are the simple steps I took to improve my writing productivity by 100% – they can help you too.”
Colin Dunbar submitted Format a Book with Word: Formatting for Smashwords posted at Format Books in Word, saying, “This is the first of six posts covering the formatting of your book for Smashwords.”
That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/