- P. Barrera
Now What? Series - Social Media Part 3 (Facebook)
How is your Twittering going? Are you finding hashtags that work for you? Are you getting retweets?
This week we're going to talk about Facebook!
I'm sure that everyone is mostly familiar with Facebook, but in case you're not, it's simple. You log on and create an account and start adding friends/family. You can share things on their "walls" and all sorts of stuff.
Facebook is a really great social media tool if you use it on a semi-regular basis. The thing to be wary of with Facebook is the algorithm. Facebook has done pretty extensive research when it comes to people's habits, and they have a really nice algorithm (or sorting function) that will tailor things almost specifically to you. On the flip-side, the algorithm can also work against you.
If you don't post often enough or don't post for a long period of time and then start up again, Facebook has a habit of cycling you out so that no one will see your posts. This is something you really want to avoid.
With the E. Paige Burks author page, we encountered this same issue. It has taken months and months of constant activity to make the page appear in timelines again and to generate any kind of activity.
As far as what to post, Facebook is great in that you can post what you like. You can share videos, pictures, links to your book, and much more. You can link your Goodreads and Twitter to your Facebook so that your posts will appear on your Facebook timeline. This works for your regular page and your author page as well.
Cross-posting is great for you to be able to reach multiple audiences, and also helps people find your other accounts. Sometimes you will have more views because it is a cross-post than a regular post (don't ask me why this is, but I have noticed it is a trend!).
Just remember that whatever you post, you want to make yourself relatable to your reader. Talk about who you are, what you enjoy, and why you write what you write. Be sure to not over-saturate your followers with "buy my book" type posts, because this tends to turn people off to your message.
Facebook is also a great place to run ads. Have you ever noticed how the ads seem to just know what you're looking for or interested in? That's a product of Facebook's kick-a$$ algorithm.
The only thing to be cautious of with ads is that they need to be very specific. You need to know exactly who your audience is and input that into who you are targeting. This has a very good potential to generate sales for you, if you target accordingly.
And don't forget Facebook groups! There are many ways to connect with other authors and readers by finding groups where these people congregate. Just keep one thing in mind: other authors are not interested in buying your book (sometimes they are, but this is usually the case). If you join an author group, it is acceptable to talk about your book and share it and ask other authors to share it with their audiences, but other authors are not your target audience. Don't join an author group thinking that you will sell to them. This is one of the most common mistakes that new members of groups make.
Find a readers group, or a specific genre group, and market to them. They are your audience. Just be sure that whatever you're doing is within the community guidelines.
There are many other ways to use Facebook and I'm sure that I don't even know them all! Just remember to try different things until you find the one that works for you. Also, check out this blog series by author Joynell Schultz. She details how she went about gathering fans and subscribers, and her readership has grown significantly since she began this series. She gives very detailed instructions on what she has done and how she gained her followers.
Good luck and stay tuned for next week's Now What?