So now you know what your brand is, what do you do with it? Well you need to avail yourself of all the social media platforms as a way of getting your brand out there. I cannot stress this enough; this needs to be done long before you publish a novel. It makes no difference what path to publication you’ve chosen either. Whether traditional, indie, or self-published you need to start making your brand know
V. L. I don’t have any books published, how is my brand any good without a product? I’m glad you asked. You need to start somewhere for a complete social media newbie I recommend the very basics to start your brand presence online.
1.) Create an author page on Facebook. You won’t have a lot of followers and you won’t want to pay to publicize it, but get it created and make it shine as your little place in the Facebook universe that is all about you 24/7. Whenever any of the Facebook writing groups have a self-promotion day make sure to post your author page. This helps build an audience, just make sure to return the favor if a fellow author likes your page. If you don’t it’s rude and not likely to go over well with the other authors in the group. Did I mention join Facebook groups? Join as many as you can find. Once you determine if the groups a good or bad fit then adjust your membership. It’s easy to leave a group and better that you do it before you start shamelessly self-promoting your books.
2.) Create a Twitter handle for yourself. Mine’s pretty basic @VLCookeAuthor. It’s not difficult but like the Facebook page it will become critical. When creating your Twitter handle don’t be vague. If you have chosen a pseudonym then make sure you include it in your handle. Make sure that whenever the opportunity to post self-promo posts in groups are available that you include your Twitter handle and always follow those who follow you. Also join some of the writer’s chats on Twitter. If you’re unsure which are a good fit, ask your author friends. We all have opinions about what we like and we love to share writerly information with each other.
3.) To Pinterest or not to Pinterest? I do. This one is purely subjective and is a personal decision. I can tout pros and cons till the cows come home, but it all boils down to what works for you. I think it’s a good thing. Especially for authors like me who use Pinterest boards as a collage of sorts for your work. It’s also a great way to allow other people to experience your worlds before they are available via your books.
4.) Tumblr? I’m not big on Tumblr right now, but that may change. I prefer to use my blog as my primary forum.
You may use Wattpad, Tumblr, etc. Whatever social media options you choose to use remember to remain consistent. Don’t suddenly go off brand and start spewing your personal political agenda on every social media format available to you. Consistency is what your readers will expect and it’s what you should give them. Don’t be afraid to expand your brand, just be cautious that what you expand with ties in with your already established brand.
Homework: In the next seven to ten days I would like you all to create your social media persona. I would like you to leave links in the comments so that I can follow you across every social media forum you choose. Next post will be all about social media etiquette for authors. I look forward to seeing your comments and following you.