Promoting Yourself and Your Book
What to Post
Not all content you post to social media accounts has to be original. Like we mentioned earlier, it pays to cross-promote other authors. Retweeting and reposting others’ content is a great way to advertise each other. Also, if you follow organizations and clubs based on subject material relevant to your book, feel free to retweet their information, as your readers are probably interested in this content as well.
Interaction with both the accounts you follow and the people who follow you is important! The more interaction you have, the better. Your original content can be pretty much anything you see fit. Definitely promote your books, any events you’ll be attending, and other authors. After you finish reading a book, post a recommendation and tag the author in your tweet. Or, congratulate an author you know who has just recently received an award. Generally, people will retweet tweets in which they are directly mentioned, which results in promotion for you both.
Another good tip is to respond to your readers. If someone asks you a question or gives you a good review, quote their tweet and include your response. You can also tweet directly back to them, but that conversation will only show on the timelines of individuals who follow both you and the reader with whom you spoke.
Keep in mind that holidays, seasons and special occasions are great ways to make your tweets relevant and relatable. If you write military nonfiction, promote your books a little extra - or offer a short deal on your books - during the week of Veteran’s Day or the anniversary of Pearl Harbor. Sports fiction authors could promote their books about football during the week leading up to the NFL kickoff. Celebrate your first book’s birthday each year! And, of course, increase your marketing and promotion during the holiday season. Books make great gifts!
When to Post
When to post and how often depends on your schedule. During the weeks leading up to an appearance or book launch, you’ll want to increase your output. Standard Twitter protocol varies across industries, but you’ll want to send out about 2-3 tweets a day on a normal week. This doesn’t include retweets, or conversations with your readers: just original content. For Facebook, generally one post a day will suffice. Again, you can reply to comments from readers or share articles/posts to your timeline as well. At the end of the day, you judge what’s best for your brand.
The peak times of engagement we’ve noticed at Deeds have been between 11:30 a.m. and 1:00 p.m., and between 3:30 and 4:30 p.m. However, that differs based on your audience; if you’re aiming to engage your young adult readers, you may want to schedule content around 7:30 a.m. as they check their phones during the bus ride to school, and 3:00 p.m. as they catch up on social media after school. College students generally have class from mid-morning through early afternoon and often work in the evenings. To target this demographic, it may be wiser to send out content between 8:00 and 11:00 p.m.
Promoting your events before, during, and after may seem like overkill, but it’s worth it. Starting about two weeks before each event, communicate to your readers that you’ll be attending this event. Include the time, date, purpose, location and even directions. The more you share this information with your followers, the more likely they’ll be to attend. Retweet other people, like fellow authors who will be attending as well or the organization that is hosting the event. Even if there isn’t a specific event, you should announce things like book launches and online sales of your book on Amazon.
Book launch dates in particular need to be announced far ahead of time, with reminders posted every now and then.