Showing posts with label social media marketing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label social media marketing. Show all posts

3 Tips to Powerful Social Media Marketing

 


 By Karen Cioffi

As an author, it’s important to promote your books.

So how do you go about doing this?

Well, one of the first steps, aside from creating an author website, is to use social media to bring your book to the world.

But, it’s important to use social media effectively.

Some social networks, like Facebook, LinkedIn, and Instagram, have optimization features for shared blog posts. It’s similar to how you’d optimize the blog posts on your website.

Here is a list of 3 social network features to be aware of (and take advantage of):

1. The post title.

Along with creating a keyword effective and powerful blog post title, you should try to keep the characters to 40.

Search engines only pick up the first 60 characters of the titles.

What does this mean for you?

Use those characters carefully. According to webinars by Marketing Experiments, make your title a complete thought. Along with this, be sure to include your keyword.

Just as important, you should make the title ‘WIIFM’ (what’s in it for me) effective. To do this, think of the benefit the reader will want.

If you’re a fitness writer, your title might be:

Lose 7 Pounds in Just 7 Days

Notice the title is a complete thought, it has the WIIFM (look your best), it’s keyword effective, and it’s under 30 characters.

2. Create a brief, but powerful description.

Along with the post title, you’ll be able to add a description of the article.

Most social networks allow for this additional search engine optimization. Absolutely take advantage of it.

See the example below. You have plenty of room to show your reader what the article is about. And don’t forget that search engines use descriptions to further categorize content.

So, how would you write a description for the article “Are You Overthinking Your Story?”

Here’s what I wrote:

(1) When writing for children, some new authors have difficulty realizing when the story is at the publishing or submitting stage. They may overthink the storyline, the characters, or even the sentences.

Another description might be:

(2) Knowing when your story is done can be tricky. How can you avoid overthinking it?

Either of these two descriptions is fine. The first though, gives more information, but its’ a bit long.

In (1) above, there are 169 characters, and I have several keywords. Along with this, the description is clear and to the point.

In (2) above, there are only 74 characters, but it’s not as informative as the first. On the flip side, it poses a question that may motivate the reader to click on the link.

So, you can see that they both have the potential to grab the reader and help the search engines find and categorize the content.

3. Use hashtags where applicable.

Most social networks allow you to use hashtags to let users find your topic.

Hashtags are a powerful marketing feature.

So, what exactly do hashtags do?

They’re basically keywords or tags that are relevant to your article’s topic. They help the social engines on the network you’re posting to identify and categorize your content.

Hashtags also allow other users to quickly find posts that are relevant to the topic they’re looking for.

Hashtags work. Hashtags are powerful. You should use hashtags where applicable.

Summing it up.

There are lots of other social media publishing optimization strategies, but these are the top three in my opinion. They help boost engagement and help the search engines find, categorize, and share your content.

References:
https://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/how-to-improve-your-google-plus-marketing/
https://searchenginewatch.com/sew/how-to/2327748/5-brilliant-ways-to-use-hashtags-in-social-media-marketing# 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning children’s author, as well as a children’s ghostwriter, rewriter, and coach with clients worldwide. She is also the founder and editor-in-chief of Writers on the Move, and an author online platform instructor with WOW! Women on Writing.

Karen’s children’s books include Walking Through Walls and The Case of the Stranded Bear. She also has a DIY book, How to Write Children’s Fiction Books. You can check them out at: https://karencioffiwritingforchildren.com/karens-books/.

If you need help with your children’s story, visit: https://karencioffiwritingforchildren.com.  
 

 

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Once You Have Social Network Followers, Then What?

This is a short post, but one that’s important for anyone who is purposefully using social media. What I mean by ‘purposefully’ is using social media to promote and sell your services or products.

One of my email subscribers asked me about Staged. It’s a social media engagement service that gets you Twitter Followers. But, unless you have the budget, it can get expensive since there’s a monthly fee.

I’ll call the subscriber John Doe for this article.

The other part of John’s question was that although the service did get him a lot of Followers on Twitter, how could he monetize them?

The first thing I asked John was if the Followers the service got him were targeted. In other words, were those Twitter users interested in what he had to offer? Were they potential customers?

On my own social media marketing, I’m picky about who I Follow. I only Follow targeted users. I do this because I want potential leads / clients. I also want Followers who can add to the targeted conversation in my niche.

So what do you do with those Followers?
Whether John gets Followers on his own or through a paid service, he still has to produce quality content that will lead those Followers back to his website. And, just as important, where ever he brings that traffic to must be monetized or optimized.

So, if John brings the website traffic to his blog posts, those posts must have a CTA (call-to-action). It might be a prompt to join his mailing list or to get a free consultation.

The same holds true for sales pages or product pages. If you’re bringing traffic to those pages, they must be effective enough to motivate the reader to take the desired action you want.

Bottom line, the size of your Followers isn’t as important as the quality of those Followers. It goes back to the blogging strategy of quality over quantity.

More on Writing and Marketing

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10 Ideas for Social Media Posts

Need help with your author platform?
Check out my WOW! Women on Writing eClasses.

4 Social Media Marketing Tips To Being More Productive

By Karen Cioffi

There are certain strategies that social media marketers use to make their efforts effective. It’s not enough to simply publish your blog posts to the social channels. You need to have a plan. You need to work the system.

1. Number one is a give-in: you need to know your audience and cater to them.

This goes for any form of marketing – you need to know who your audience is and what they need or want.

It’s pointless to send messages to the technology industry when your platform is on health writing.

It’s pointless to send in-depth SEO marketing posts to an audience that’s just getting their feet wet in the marketing arena.

It’s pointless to send ‘how to find a mate’ posts to an audience who wants to learn marketing strategies.

You get the idea.

Your platform needs to be focused on what your target audience wants.

Along with this, the Social Media Examiner post points out that your audience’s needs may change. You need to keep current on all things pertaining to your industry / niche and with the changing needs of your audience. Keep ahead of the game and help your audience do the same.

Let your audience know you’re the ‘go to’ person in your niche.

I do lots of research to come up with helpful posts for my readers. I also share helpful posts I come across in that research. If you think an article you’re reading will benefit your audience, share it.

2. Build relationships.

Marketing on social networks isn’t just about ‘hit and runs.’ You shouldn’t just post your content and run. You need to build ‘meaningful’ relationships with customers, other businesses, and anyone else within your business realm.

To build these relationships, you’ll need to offer helpful information that is actually useable. You want to inform, teach, and help those in your network.

Along with this, you need to engage with other users. Share the posts of others. Help promote a product or service you know to be helpful. Take the initiative to help others in your networks.

I spend around 30 minutes each day to schedule my posts, share the posts of others, and to engage with others in my social network sphere.

Social Media Examiner says to, “be a giver as you interact” with your audience. “Offer your time, resources, knowledge, encouragement or support.”

This helps build relationships.

3. Making money also needs to be a factor.

While you should earnestly want to help those in your audience, it’s also important to spend your time fruitfully.

Not many can selflessly spend time helping others. Businesses need to make money to survive. 

To keep this in the forefront of your social media marketing strategy, promote what you’re selling. Whether it’s a product, a service, a workshop, a presentation, include it in your social media postings.

Now, to do this, you need to upload lots more helpful information compared to promotional content. A standard ratio is 85% useable content to 15% promotion. You might even lean more toward 90/10.

You don’t want your audience to feel you’re using them for your own gains. Give lots and lots of quality information. Be helpful.

At one point, I posted around 12  to 15 posts of my own posts to Twitter each day. I also share posts of others that I come across in research. In addition, I Retweet and Favorite other users’ Tweets.

I would share 10 to 15 posts of others each day in addition to my own. This is being active and engaging. My connections know I offer valuable information on a regular basis.

This allows me to promote what I’m offering without seeming overly promotional.

Due to a very heavy work load, I’ve had to reduce the number of posts per day, but I am still consistant.

4. Monitor your results.

This is a must for all your marketing strategies. If you don’t monitor what you’re doing, you’ll never know what’s working and what’s not.

Monitoring your results is time well spent. Don’t forego this step.

Even if you don’t want to spend hours on analytics, you can simple monitor your website traffic and its sources. And, you can easily see if you’re getting sales from your efforts.

If you’re not seeing the results you need, change course. Try another strategy.

To read the article at Social Media Examiner, click the link:
6 Habits of Social Media Marketers

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and author/writer online platform instructor. Get must-know writing and marketing tips at http://thewritingworld.com.

And, check out Karen’s e-classes through WOW! Women on Writing:
http://www.articlewritingdoctor.com/content-marketing-tools/ 

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The Social Media Marketing Smorgasborg


 

How to Navigate It


By Karen Cioffi

I read a great article by Jeff Bullas and it made me realize that those just entering the online marketing arena, specifically the social media marketing arena, can feel like they’ve been hit by a bulldozer.

There are lots and lots of social networks available for your use whether you’re a marketer, author, or writer. The most popular ones include:

•    Facebook
•    LinkedIn
•   Twitter
•    Pinterest
•    Instagram
•   YouTube
•   Snapchat


This is not a complete list and keep in mind that you don’t’ have to use them all. In fact, that would be a mistake.

So, how do you navigate the social network smorgasbord?

1. The first step, and most important, is to decide which networks you should work.

You’ll need to know who your target market is for this one. Research the various networks and determine which sites your audience frequents.

I’ve written about this before, pick around five or six networks to broaden your visibility reach, but choose one or two of those to actually work.

Working a network means to focus on that network. Post to it every day (you should post multiple times a day) and engage with other users.

2. Determine what type of content to use.

In particular, determine what type of information your audience needs to help them move forward in their endeavors.

This step encompasses being helpful to your audience.  Become the person who creates and shares useable content and engaging content.

This will help create trust and conversion (getting the person to take a desired action, say signing up for your mailing list).

3. Put it into action.

Start sharing your content to your chosen networks. And, become active on the one or two networks you will be working.

To be active or work a network, you will:

- Share your own content
- Share the content of others
- Engage with others (reply to messages or shares from others; share the content of other users; start a discussion; post relevant video; and so on)
- Monitor your efforts

4. To ease the social media marketing time element, look into automation.

Automation allows you to preschedule posts and it allows you to have your new blog posts shared automatically, among other features.

The service / tool I use is Buffer.com.

An article over at RazorSocial.com, lists the top tools and their features. It’s worth the read: Social Media Automation.

Choose one that will work for you and that fits your budget – some tools are free.

These four tips should help you ease into social media marketing. 

To read Jeff Bullas’ article on this topic, go to:
5 Key Steps to Mastering the SMM Landscape

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and author/writer online platform instructor. 

You can check out Karen’s e-classes through WOW! Women on Writing:  https://thewritingworld.com/your-author-platform/

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Can Marketing and Networking Harm Your Writing Career?

Can you market your work and network too much? My writer friends and I have discussed this question several times over and it can be quite controversial depending on where an author is in the process of a writing career. Early on in the beginning of my writing adventure  marketing and networking was part of every course I took. Build your platform, network with other writers in your genre, network with writers, publishers, illustrators on social networks to help get your name out there, blog to build an audience, and offer to write for free to get your feet wet. Everywhere I turned, someone was telling me to get myself out there.

 As I began finding my way, the advice included Query, query, query.... find a publisher you want to write for and send your ideas. Worry about the writing when you have an accepted idea. Write for various free sites and build your article folder, make yourself an expert and the work will find its way to you. Etc. Etc. Etc. New and seasoned writers know the drill. Does all this sound familiar? But when is too much marketing and networking harmful to your career and when is it enough?

Here is what I have discovered over the past 10 years of writing and trying to build a niche...it takes discipline to stay on course and courage to promote yourself in a humble way, Yet marketing and networking is essential even when  it can be too much and it can be harmful. Here is a quick list of when and how it can hurt your career.

  1. Marketing and networking can be harmful if all you do is market, network, and never sit down to write or create a product. You loose your authenticity when you say you have a product or you promise your book to your audience but you do not deliver. It is only a positive reflection on you as an author if you have something valuable to offer your audience and you continue to provide what you promise in your marketing campaign. 
  2. Social media is a fabulous tool but it is only a positive tool if you are using it to either promote your product, book, or service. It is also a positive career move to promote others through social media especially those in your field of interest and those who can help you to grow as an author. Social media can have a negative impact on your career if you find yourself distracted from your writing or if you get caught up in the negative or false leads that social media can trend or if you use social media to procrastinate from the job you need to be finishing. 
  3. If you see positive results with the marketing techniques you are currently using and you can schedule your time like any other task it can be positive for your writing career. If you focus all of your free time on marketing and networking at the expense of writing time or family time it can be detrimental to both your professional and family relationships. There must be a healthy balance between writing, marketing, and family obligations. 
  4. Marketing can be self-absorbing if you are the only one saying good things about your work. While we need to be our own best horn blower,, at some point you must count on the opinions of others in the form of reviews of your work, comments on your blog, notes from editors, and such to balance and provide an objective view of your products. Someone somewhere must notice your work... your tried and true product or story. It can harm your career if you are the only one saying you are a great author. Networking with authentic people in your area of expertise can validate your work and in turn promote your career in a positive way. 
Marketing and networking must be guarded and planned just like the story you create or the product you develop. Care must always be taken to make sure the actions you take to promote your career are helping and not harming your reputation as a writer. 

About the author: Terri Forehand writes from her home in Nashville Indiana. When she is not writing, designing, or crafting she spends time working in the neonatal intensive care, spending time with grand kids, and running the small fabric shop she owns with her husband, She is the author of The Cancer Prayer Book and The ABC's of Cancer According to Lilly Isabella Lane. She is currently working on an picture book about first aide for first graders. http://terri-forehand.blogspot.com

Shaun the Sheep and Marketing with Animation

By Karen Cioffi

I’ve watched silent movies before. And, a couple of the ‘oldie’ cartoons (e.g., Tom and Jerry) that had no talking. But, I would never have thought a full length movie for kids would work in today’s dwindling attention span society.

Well, I was wrong.

Shaun the Sheep has NO talking. No captions either.

The entire 1 hour and 25 minute cartoon movie conveyed the-grass-is-greener concept, conflict, obstacles, heroism, loyalty, and emotions. And, it did it all through actions, through animation.

I took my grandsons to the movie and the theater had lots of other grandparents with their grandchildren. Every child was captivated, the adults too. In fact, you forgot there were no words – no dialogue.

My 9 year old grandson who has ADD paid attention through the entire movie – and, he didn’t want to go in the first place, thinking it was a baby movie.

I was amazed, not only that it held his attention, but it help my attention. Me, who is always thinking of what I have to do next.

Quite an accomplishment.

This is the power of animation.

And, just imagine if an hour and a half animated movie can hold children’s attention, think how it will hold your readers’ and visitors’ attention on your website in short focused clips.

But, aside from my own viewpoints of Shaun the Sheep, there is research that backs up animation’s benefit in content marketing and inbound marketing.

Some Statistics

According to TippingpointLabs.com

  • People are 64% - 85% more likely to purchase your product or service after watching an animation/video – that’s a significant boost to your conversions.
  • Visit lengths are another factor that gets a boost. Visitors will stay on your site at least two minutes longer with animation/video.
  • And, there’s the power of YouTube. You're 53x more likely to get on Google's first-page for search results by embedding video on your site. (1)

Along with this, Shooting Business states that, “Google, Yahoo, MSN, AOL are among the hundreds of Search Engines that give priority listings to websites that host video content.” (2) Taking advantage of tags, descriptions, and any other kind of SEO strategies allowed when publishing the video is another avenue of search visibility.

If this isn’t enough incentive to jump on the animation bandwagon, think about the social media marketing aspect. Sharing and clickthrough rates are increased significantly with video.

Animated videos can be humorous, serious, emotional, and educational.

Using animation in your marketing, specifically your content marketing, is a win-win strategy that you should be taking advantage of.

For the icing on the cake, according to Hubspot:

  • Ninety percent of the information the brain receives is visual.
  • The brain processes visual information 60,000 faster than text.
  • Videos in posts get 3X the inbound links than posts with only text.
  • Animation (visual content) increases engagement. (3)

If you’d like to try your hand at a free animation tool, go to PowToon.com and click on the FREE option. (I’m NOT an affiliate, I just think it’s a great marketing tool.)

If you’d like to get one done without the headache of creating it yourself, check out AWD’s Animation Service.

References:

(1) http://www.slideshare.net/tpldrew/steal-this-slide-ecommerce-video-conversion-rates-statistics
(2) http://www.shootingbusiness.com/web-video-statistics/
(3) http://blog.hubspot.com/blog/tabid/6307/bid/33423/19-Reasons-You-Should-Include-Visual-Content-in-Your-Marketing-Data.aspx



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This article was originally published at:
http://www.articlewritingdoctor.com/2015/08/shaun-the-sheep-and-marketing-with-animation/ #ContentMarketing

What is Social Media Proof? Is it Important? How Do You Get It?

Before social media networking, social proof came in the form of reviews, testimonials, recommendations, referrals, word-of-mouth, and so on. This form of ‘proof’ came through word-of-mouth or written. It wasn’t called social proof at the time.

Now, it’s all about social proof.

But what exactly is this new strategy?

According to TechCrunch, “Put simply, it’s the positive influence created when someone finds out that others are doing something. It’s also known as informational social influence.” (1)

Wikipedia describes social proof as “a psychological phenomenon where people assume the actions of others in an attempt to reflect correct behavior for a given situation.”

Pro-copywriter Colin Martin also weighs in on this subject. In a webinar I attended, he said, “The influence of your friends, family, and co-workers has greater effect on your buying decisions than the best advertising [. . .] People give more credence to ideas that are started by multiple sources.”

Why is It Important?

For one thing, social proof is recognition (acknowledgment) that other people and businesses value you, your business, and/or your services. It shows you have influence.

As an example of this phenomenon, marketing research shows that book reviews sell more books.

People perceive you and your brand as having authority based on what others are saying about you. This perception motivates consumer behavior. In other words, if Joe sees that Tom, Jessica, Amanda, and lots of others bought your program or software or product, he’ll be motivated to buy it himself.

It’s very similar to how search ranking works. The more people who visit your site and share your content, the more valuable the search engines will perceive you to be.

So, these numbers matter significantly. The higher your numbers the better your search engine ranking, traffic, authority, and conversion

It’s important to note that having social proof from influential people carries an even heavier weight.

In the realm of social media networking, this proof is more quantifiable than before. Now, we’re talking about hundreds and thousands weighing in on your influence through social networks.

Social Proof and Numbers

How many Twitter followers do you have? How many Tweets, Favorites, and Retweets do you average? Are you on any ‘social proof’ lists?

What about Google+ and Facebook? What about LinkedIn? What about YouTube?

How many blog post and social networks shares do you get? What about comments.

How many email subscribers do you have?

Again, these numbers matter. The higher the numbers the more influence you will be perceived as having.

How to Get Social Proof

There are a number of ways to garner the proof you need. Here are nine simple ways to get started:

  • Guest blogging on influential sites
  • Getting comments on your social media posts and your blog posts
  • Provide case studies on your website and social media
  • Provide case studies on how you helped clients move forward
  • Be active on social media and promote engagement (activity)
  • Show you're numbers (number of followers, number of shares, etc.)
  • Show the good stuff (show any 'good' comments you get on your social media channels, show any 'good' lists your included in)
  • Show off your LinkedIn recommendations
  • Show actual testimonials and recommendations

Keep in mind that video testimonials are more powerful than any other kind of testimonial from clients. The reason is the visitor to your site can actually see a person. She’ll know it’s not a fake. This absolutely matters.

You can also create banners for your website’s home page showing your numbers. Add it to your header or your sidebar.

Colin Martin recommends:

  • Use content share buttons that display the number of shares
  • Use the WordPress Rotating Testimonial Widget for your website sidebar
  • Use the WordPress Facebook Comments Plugin
  • Get some YouTube testimonials up

There are other tools and strategies to use to get your social proof out there, but these should get you going in the right direction.

Below are a Couple of Examples of Other Social Proof

This shows my Top Skill on LinkedIn:



Here are a few Lists I was recently added to on Twitter:



This is social proof.

You an also use the stats from a blog post that got lots of views or a screenshot of 'good' social media engagement numbers. You get the idea. 

Do you have other strategies you use to get and display social proof?

References:
(1) http://techcrunch.com/2011/11/27/social-proof-why-people-like-to-follow-the-crowd/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_proof 

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This article was originally published at:
http://www.karencioffiwritingandmarketing.com/2015/03/what-is-social-media-proof-is-it.html


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Goal Setting: It’s Not About Ideas – It’s About Making Ideas Happen


“It’s not about ideas. It’s about making ideas happen.” —Scott Belsky

We’re into the second quarter of this year. It’s time to think about where you’ve been and where you’re heading. It’s time for ideas.

According to Business Dictionary, an idea is “a thought or collection of thoughts that generate in the mind.”

They’re usually derived from intent, but they can also be unintentional.

Ideas are the foundation of all advancements. And, they’re at the foundation and growth of your business.

While ideas may be the initiating force behind success, they’re powerless without action.

Action is the implementation of an idea. Action is taking deliberate steps toward an end. Action is what makes dreams a reality.

So, how do you turn an idea into an actionable plan?

Four basic steps you will need to take to get started.

1. Create a plan.

First: Take that idea and actually write it down, don’t just type in your laptop or computer, actually write down what you’re idea or goal is. Then you can put it in your computer.

This idea should be considered your long term objective.

Second: Divide your long term goal into short term goals with actionable steps you can take to reach your objective.

Suppose your objective is to boost your social media marketing in order to build a large and loyal following with conversion potential. Divide that into sub-categories. They may be:

• Two to three social media channels to devote more time and effort into
• Who will handle this strategy (if you’re a solopreneur, it’ll be you)
• Time to be allotted to this new strategy
• Budget for this new strategy
• Create user engagement and connections
• Actionable steps needed to accomplish this new goal

Why write your goals and action steps down?

According to an article in Entrepreneur.com, “Warren Buffett has described writing as a key way of refining his thoughts.” And, “Richard Branson once said, ‘my most essential possession is a standard-sized school notebook,’ which he uses for regular writing.” (1)

Along with this, another article, 5 Reasons Why You Should Commit Your Goals to Writing, explains, “Dr. Gail Matthews, a psychology professor at Dominican University in California, did a study on goal-setting with 267 participants. She found that you are 42 percent more likely to achieve your goals just by writing them down.” (2)

Writing goals down takes more thought than typing away. This makes you more conscious of what your goals are. It adds, if you will, emphasis to what you want.

So, it’s easy to understand that writing your ideas / goals down is a key to fulfilling your goals.

Finally, keep your goals and action steps front and center. You need to see them daily (throughout the day) as a reminder of your intent.

TIP: Make sure your action steps are realistic and doable. Nothing will squash your motivation and efforts more than not being able to fulfill your action steps.

2. Implement your plan.

Your goal and actionable steps are on paper and in your computer. Now it’s time to actually take action. Follow through and post more to the social media channels. Engage with other users by Retweeting, Following, Liking, Sharing, and so on. Take all the actions you’ve listed in your plan.

3. Keep it up – persevere.

Whatever action steps you do, do them wholeheartedly and regularly. Don’t give up because you don’t quickly see results. Give it time to determine if the steps you’re taking are the right ones for you and your business.

4. Analysis and Revise.

While you do need to give your actions time to generate positive results, you also need to test what you’re doing.

Determine what’s working and what’s not. Then revise your plan accordingly.

Don’t waste time on efforts that aren’t working. Try a different approach or marketing strategy.

Your time and effort will be much more productive if you regularly test your results.

There you have it, four basic steps to creating and implementing a business plan. Take the time to write your ideas / goals down and create and implement actionable steps to help you achieve them.

~~~~~
References:

(1) http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/234712
(2) http://michaelhyatt.com/5-reasons-why-you-should-commit-your-goals-to-writing.html

~~~~~
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Apps to Help You Find New Tweeps

Guest Post by Frances Caballo

We all know that social media isn’t a numbers game. While we may ooh and ah over a colleague’s 45,000 Twitter followers, we know that what’s most important is whether we have a dedicated following that frequently retweets our messages, buys our books and leaves comments on our blog.

However, if you are thinking of leaving the self-published route behind, a prospective agent or publisher invariably will ask you if you have a marketing platform. Then that person will want to know how many followers and Facebook page Likes you have.

So even though social media is about engagement and not numbers, someone – without fail – will be more interested in your follower count.

If you feel that you have too few followers and you want to boost them before pitching your book to an agent, there are several strategies you can implement to boost your numbers.

Twubs - http://twubs.com/

If you want to grow your following, consider occasionally joining a twitter chat. When you sign up for Twubs, you can use this tool to find a Twitter chat and join one. Joining a chat from Twubs enables you to jump into a discussion and Twubs will take care of adding the chat’s hashtag to your tweet. By joining a chat you will discover like-minded individuals who share your interests and who have great content to share.

Tweepi - http://www.tweepi.com

Tweepi is familiar to many Twitter users. With its free version, you can unfollow anyone who isn’t following you back, assuming that’s an important criterion for you. However, you can also use Tweepi to follow new users based on which Tweeps they follow. In addition, if you especially like industry experts such as Jane Friedman or Joel Friedlander as examples, you can use Tweepi to follow their lists. If you are willing to upgrade to a paid account, you can also search for tweets based on geolocation and the topic of their messages and decide if you want to follow them. Another paid feature would allow you to search for new users according to keywords they used in their bios to describe themselves, such as authors, writers, or bookworm.

ManageFlitter - http://manageflitter.com

ManageFlitter is a helpful tool that will enable you to unfollow Tweeps who haven’t yet personalized their avatar and accounts that are fake. In addition, it will identify Tweeps who rarely use Twitter. It’s paid plan will search through more than 80 million Twitter accounts and find the right people for you to follow. You can also use this app to copy other Twitter account’s followers or accounts they follow.

If you feel as though your follower account is stagnating, it might be a good idea to use one of these apps to boost your count. I’ve noticed that as my follower account grows, my book sales increase. So even if you aren’t thinking about finding a publisher, it might be wise to boost those numbers on occasion as long as you don’t compromise engagement.

What Twitter tools do you use?

About the Author: Frances Caballo (http://socialmediajustforwriters.com) is a social media manager for writers and author of Avoid Social Media Time Suck: A Blueprint for Writers to Create Online Buzz for Their Books and Still Have Time to Write, Social Media Just for Writers: The Best Online Marketing Tips for Selling Your Books and Blogging Just for Writers. Presently, she is the Social Media Manager for the Women’s National Book Association-SF Chapter, the San Francisco Writers Conference, and the Bay Area Independent Publishers Association. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest and Google+.


Book info:

Avoid Social Media Time Suck: A Blueprint for Writers To Create Online Buzz for Their Books and Still Have Time to Write.

Synopsis: Social media is no longer an option for writers--it is a required element of every author’s platform. If you’ve been avoiding Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and other social networks because you think tweeting and posting will take large chunks of time out of your day and leave you with little time to write, think again. Using social media to market your books doesn’t need to be time-consuming. And with the four-step formula you’ll find in this book, it won’t be.

Whether you’re a seasoned or a newbie social media user, this book will introduce you to posting schedules, timesaving applications and content-rich websites that will help you economize the time you spend using social media to promote your books. You will learn:

•    How to create and perfect your author platform.
•    Where great content exists on the Internet and how you can use it to further your brand within your niche.
•    The importance of being social and applications that make this task easy and fun.
•    Tools that enable you to track and measure your success so you can better understand the return on investment of your valuable time.
•    Which tools prevent you from accessing the Internet when the time comes to sit and write that next book.
•    Exercises for introverted writers to help you feel comfortable on the social web.

Frances Caballo is also hosting a book giveaway for Avoid Social Media Time Suck on Goodreads during the month of April.

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Where is Publishing Headed



With Amazon removing buy buttons from the Big Six publishers, where does the author go to have their manuscript published?

Amazon has also removed numerous reviews because of the hint of purchased reviews, which authors have admitted to so they could rank higher and sell more books.

With thousands of books written per year, and Amazon flexing its muscle, are authors suspected to publish according to whatever terms Amazon dictates, or find company to create the book and let the author sell and market their book themselves?

Traditional publishers currently ask authors about followers and request a marketing plan. Authors have two options:
  1. Hire a publicist to market their book
  2. Learn how to publicize and market their book on their own
As authors, forced into marketing mode, when are they going to find time to write their next book? Will there be fewer books written? Will there be fewer people wanting to write or even have a desire to be creative?

There are new indie publishers springing up almost daily. What do these indie publishers offer the author? Are they willing to help the author publicize, promote, and market books for authors, doubtful at best?

What this boils down to is the fact that authors are out in the cold even more than they were before. 

More than ever, authors had better learn about contracts, publicity, promotion, social media, scheduling book tours, book signings, media kits, designing a marketing plan, where to sell their books, or save for hiring a professional to do it for them.

Hiring professionals for publicity and promotion can be very expensive. Acquiring an agent is difficult and expensive; an agent is not the end all that authors believe it is.

Robert Medak
Freelance Writer/Blogger/Editor/Proofreader/Reviewer/Marketer

Social Networking the LinkedIn Way by Donna McDine




Social Networking the LinkedIn Way

By Donna M. McDine

I know I know I can hear your disgruntled gulp in your throat, “Yikes, another social network to participate in? No way, no how!” I too feel the same way at times, but definitely not with LinkedIn! I don’t want to bore you with boring statistics, but it’s important for you to know…
  • There are over 150 million professionals on LinkedIn.*
  • With over 1 million professionals joining each week, hence two professional join every second.*
  • Members are 2X more confident with information shared on LinkedIn than any other social site.*
  • Members use LinkedIn not only for networking, they are reading business news and studying trends.*

*2012 Social Media Examiner, Mario Sundar              
                                       
Please don’t fade away, these statistics matter to you. With the confidence level of information shared between members this provides an arena to build your expertise through varying networks. Oftentimes authors (as well as other professionals) fall into the rut of networking with only their peers, when we truly need to broaden our scope beyond our colleagues. LinkedIn if used correctly goes well beyond this and the thought process of only being an online resume.

First, if you haven’t already signup and setup your LinkedIn profile at www.linkedin.com. It’s easy and they provide step by step directions to provide your information. Once you have your profile setup follow these five points to engage with fellow LinkedIn members:

  1. Seek new connections daily and send invites. LinkedIn has a fabulous Advanced People Search broken down into several different categories… keywords, title, location, company, school, first and last name, country, and postal code. (i.e., elementary school teachers, librarians, the list is endless).
  2. Don’t forget to reply back directly to your new connection once confirmation is received (i.e., I’m delighted to connect with you at LinkedIn and look forward to learning more about you).
  3. Research groups of interest the same way for people connections. Join and become active through conversations, questions and answers.
  4. Update your status consistently with a course of action for visitors with either a question or interesting news article (i.e., “New Google table to go against Fire” by Michael Liedtke, Associated Press and include link).
  5. Engage with fellow members by sharing and commenting on their status updates, send private emails, etc.).

Automating your blog and twitter handle feed is okay, but if you don’t engage personally connections will not feel compelled to engage with you. I know for myself, the constant automation of customer service lines, doctor offices, etc., frustrates me to no end. I want to talk to a live person that knows what they are talking about.

Don’t fall into robot automation. Let your personality shine through cyberspace through consistent engagement. I’m sure you will be pleased with your results. 


Until next time…

Donna M. McDine
Publicist & Award-winning Children's Author

Donna’s Website: http://www.donnamcdine.com
Write What Inspires You Blog: http://www.donna-mcdine.blogspot.com
Author PR Services: http://www.authorprservices.com

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