This week we have something new. A post about social media that is grammatically correct! That is because the folks at Grammarly reached out and offered me a guest post. So I won’t hinder this post any longer with my poor punctuation. Pay attention to this article by Nikolas Baron, it addresses the most important thing to keep in mind when using social media for marketing.
For a budding author, social media indicates the active application of a spectrum of social media tools to garner publicity and heighten awareness in order to create a fan base. To appeal to modern consumers, a variation of stimuli needs to be applied to encourage consumer engagement. Generation X and Y consumers are utilizing social media in every part of their decision-making process, from the sourcing of a book title to the reviews other readers have provided. Websites, posters, and displays in shop windows have the nature of being one-way communication channels and are thus no longer generating the dynamic traffic flow achieved by authors who embrace the interactivity of social media. Encouraging increased interaction on these platforms generates a fan base of loyal followers.
The aim of social media tools is not to replace traditional marketing. Instead, the objective is to build relationships, share stories, and connect with people. This in turn creates awareness and publicity for the author. The three key points to note with any successful social media campaign are:
- Constant activity emphasizing the importance of two-way communication with followers on all sites,
- Optimized content that prompts activity and allows for engagement, and
- Synchronization of content on all social media used (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, blogs, Libboo)
Two-Way Communication is Key
The idea of using social media isn’t to blatantly promote your wares. “XXX now available on Amazon. Get it NOW!” or “Get your copy of XXX in bookstores today!” These types of messages simply don’t work anymore, especially when readers are already spoiled with choices. Think of social media as a platform to establish a relationship with your readers. Write something personal about yourself to put a personality behind your words. Readers want to know that you’re human, too, and not just a robotic drone behind a screen. Share your current playlists, your moods, and where your next book tour is bringing you with your followers; this really generates word-of-mouth for your name.
Inducing Activity and Engagement
Get your readers to talk to you. Checking every social media platform daily is essential. People always love a personable author who takes time to respond to their posts. I’m not suggesting that you reply to every single comment; where it is relevant and appropriate, you should respond to your readers as frequently as you can. This can take up a solid hour in your day, but will definitely be worth your while, especially in building rapport and loyalty with your fans. Run contests, get feedback from your readers when you’re stuck on a plot line, and think along the lines of them and not you.
The Use of Synchronization Across All Social Media Platforms
It’s highly likely that your readers will subscribe to more than just your Facebook page. Hence, it is fundamental that all the platforms you use coincide with one another. Don’t post the exact content on all the media, but paraphrase and keep it along the same lines. One thing to avoid is using texting ‘lingo’ on social media sites. Grammatical mistakes should not be tolerated just because these platforms are not formal interaction. After all, you are a writer. That has to be so reflected and ingrained into your personality that it bursts at the seams. A very useful program to take note of is the downloadable grammar checker by Grammarly. This free proofreading software can check your grammar and spelling errors on all internet-based sites as you type. The small icon located on the bottom of the text box will indicate the accuracy of the language used, and highlight the possible mistake, just like a word processor.
When it comes to social media, the key word to keep in mind is connection. As mentioned earlier, social media is not meant to replace traditional marketing. It simply serves as an additional boost to increase your sales exponentially. In the words of marketing guru Peter Thomson, “Social media isn’t something that you ‘do’, instead you have to ‘be’ social.”
Nikolas discovered his love for the written word in Elementary School, where he started spending his afternoons sprawled across the living room floor devouring one Marc Brown children’s novel after the other and writing short stories about daring pirate adventures. After acquiring some experience in various marketing, business development, and hiring roles at internet startups in a few different countries, he decided to re-unite his professional life with his childhood passions by joining Grammarly’s marketing team in San Francisco. He has the pleasure of being tasked with talking to writers, bloggers, teachers, and others about how they use Grammarly’s online proofreading application to improve their writing. His free time is spent biking, traveling, and reading.