With big thanks to Guy Kawasaki for clarity and accessibility, here are his 10 Social Media Tips for Authors along with some comments from myself as an author in the trenches. See Guy’s entire post here: 10 Social Media Tips for Authors:
1. Start yesterday. It takes 9 months to build a web presence around your book.
(Me: If you’re groaning already, because your book is in final edit and you are just now starting the learning curve, just keep reading. You are here now, so just get in the river.)
2. Segment the services. Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Pinterest, and LinkedIn.
(Me: What Guy is talking about here is learning the difference in these outreach tools for your web presence. He distills them to the 5 Ps, respectively: People, Perception, Passion, Pinning, and Pimping. That’s right, LinkedIn is for pimping, as in displaying your skills in order to be hired. I use a different angle to help you gain understanding of which service you want to use and why, but Guy’s 5 Ps offers a memorable window on these poorly understood differences.)
3. Make a great profile. Your profile page is an ad. The photo on your profile? Only your face. Not you and your spouse or a vacation shot.
4. Curate, don’t create. (Me: Pay attention here! This will save your efforts. When you are building content for your web presence while simultaneously writing your book, don’t attempt to create original content all the time.) Guy offers his excellent site, Alltop.com,
for a place to look for interesting things to share with your readers. (Me: Stay relevant, but develop search skills in order to streamline the process of sharing with your readership.)
5. Act like NPR. and 6. Restrain yourself. (Me: In short, offer great value to your community throughout the year, and keep your pitches and sells to 10% or less of your content.)
7. Candy-fy. (Me: USE BIG IMAGES.) Guy says 400-500 pixel images should be included with all your posts, because they draw eyes from the swamp of offerings over to your content. I love this tip! I immediately adjusted my use of images in all my posts.
8. Respond. To comments on your blog. (Me: Tend the conversation. Period. If people are interacting on your blog, you must see them as treasured community members. Groom these relationships.)
9. Stay positive or stay silent. (Me. Good advice on dealing with the little monsters. Don’t use anger i your own posts, let readers respond to your opinions with their own, and if they come back a second time with comments you think aren’t appropriate for your audience, block them.)
10. Repeat. Guy says most social media “experts” disagree with him on this, so I find it extra interesting. He repeats his Twitter posts four times every eight hours.
He adds a final note to these ten, which is as important as any of them. Jump in and do this. Don’t spend all your time creating a strategic plan. Guy says the goal is to build 5,000 followers before you publish your book. (Me: If you’re ready to publish, don’t wait on that either. You will learn vastly more by doing than by waiting.)
The one thing I would add to this list is to steer yourself toward video. Find the most accessible way into this medium and make it a regular part of your life. Ask yourself: “What do I need today to be able to create a basic video tomorrow?” I mean literally tomorrow. Building your web presence in video will drag all the other pieces along with it.
Which of these tips made you raise your eyebrows?
Keep in touch,
Follow Suzanna on Twitter: Brainmaker