Writing Wednesdays: How to talk to your readers when you publish online

How do you talk to your readers when you're publishing online? I share some of my top tips in this post.

Ah, social media. For some of us, it’s second nature. For others - well,just ask them to go skydiving without a parachute, why don’t you?

If you’re feeling a little lost when it comes to using social media to target your readers and grow your audience, hopefully this will demystify it a little!

I cannot emphasise enough how important it is that you make use of social media and interact with your readers when you’re posting your work online (or trying to get published). It might not seem obvious, but it is important. Hopefully this will explain how to use them a little more, if you’re confused about how to angle yours toward your readers.

Social media accounts are super easy to set up.

Facebook pages are free to set up (you only have to pay for advertising and that’s optional) and they’re great – you can share covers that you or your fans have made, you can maybe say ‘Hey this song goes great with a chapter I’m writing’ and post a link to a music video. It’s versatile and easy to use.

Twitter – great for interactions, linking to longer posts, photos, and responding to people, and sharing what other people say via retweets.

Tumblr/Wordpress/other blogs are really useful too. Free to set up and easy to use, and you can personalise them. Share things on them similar to the Facebook page, and they’re great for writing longer posts – maybe you have a bit of writing advice, or talk about a book you’re reading, or you want to talk about a character in your book. You have the option to pay for themes, but you can do it all for free if you want.

Instagram - because, duh. It’s just another social media.

Now: what should you post about on these social media sites?

If you’re posting online, post links to your stories (the latest chapter, and the first chapter) and to your profile on whatever story sharing platform you’re using. Don’t just post a link, though – say something like ‘Hey guys, check out the latest part of my book [BOOK TITLE] here: [LINK]’ – you know, that sort of thing. 

If you’re publishing traditionally or even as an ebook yourself, post links to where people can buy the book. 

Instant click through is very handy.

You can be personal on these sites – but try not to get too personal, if you’re trying to keep it professional.

Also, link your accounts. 

You can connect your social media profiles easily -for instance, your Tumblr could automatically post to Facebook and Twitter.

You can also use something called Hootsuite or dlvr.it (again, free) to schedule social media messages on Facebook and Twitter. On Tumblr you can schedule posts too, but this has to be done via Tumblr.

Try and use the same name on all these places too.

 Especially the same name as you’re writing under. Minimal confusion, and it makes you easier to find. Use the same profile picture if you can, too!

Interacting with your readers and with other writers can help you promote your story, and you as a writer, and it can also make your readers feel like they can relate to you more sometimes if you respond to their comments and questions.

I hope all of that makes sense and that you’ve found it useful. Best of luck out there in the wild jungle of social media, and as always – any questions, just ask.

I've also started a new blog series called Social Media for Writers, which you might find really useful. Check it out here.

No comments:

Powered by Blogger.