Social Media Tips & Blog

Leveraging Your Email List for Your Book Launch

Book launch emailYour email subscribers are on your list because they want to hear from you and are eagerly anticipating your book release. They will be happy to share news of your book with their audience as well. They just need to know how to do that and you can provide all the information they need to easily share your book release announcement.

About a month before your book is released, let your email list know when the book will be released and ask them to share the announcement with their network. Write up copy about the book that your audience can share on their social media platforms. Include sample tweets and Facebook messages they can share. What other ways can you leverage your email list to support your book launch?

Here's a great example. Author of The Business of Being, Laurie Buchanan, PhD, just sent out an email to her list about her book release early next month. She includes several things her audience can do to help support her book launch - all of which I strongly recommend my clients include in an email they send to their list about a month before their book release. I asked Laurie if I could share her email here and with her permission, it's reprinted here. See my notes that follow. … more … "Leveraging Your Email List for Your Book Launch"

Support to Overcome Writer's Resistance

Today, a special post about getting writing done rather than marketing your writing. To begin, tell me a little about yourself. As a writer, how many of these have you experienced in the past two years? You can use the checkboxes to keep track. They're not storing anything anywhere.

Never finding the time to write
Making the time but not writing
Dreaming of writing but never getting started
Starting but never finishing
Starting but never finishing that one particular piece
Thinking you can do it without help
Thinking you're beyond help
A love/hate relationship with your writing
Focusing on unhelpful negative feedback and ignoring positive feedback
Focusing on positive feedback and ignoring helpful negative feedback
Wanting to write deep but writing shallow
Writing for others instead of yourself
Writing for money but not treating it like a business
Reading about writing instead of writing
Seeking out feedback before you're ready
Seeking out the wrong level of feedback
Ongoing health challenges like
    Unexplained fatigue (physical or mental)
    Mysterious illness (a neverending or recurring cold or flu)
    Injuries (constant little accidents)
    Addiction of any kind (substance, activities, self-destructive habits)

How many did you check?

Is it more than zero? (If it's zero, I'd love to hear about that.)

Otherwise, that's Resistance.

In the past 11 years I've written 20 books and 200 songs. I checked 17 boxes. SEVENTEEN.

I'm facing Resistance.

You're facing Resistance.

Resistance? What's That?

According to Steven Pressfield in his seminal work The War of Art Resistance is the mental and emotional pushback we feel when we expose ourselves by creating something. It is our unconscious mind protecting us from the "danger" of emotional vulnerability. It manifests in all the ways in that checklist above, and more.

Resistance is a bully. It will stand in your way and stop you. It will knock you down and hurt you, emotionally, even physically.

Resistance strikes nonfiction and fiction authors alike. (Memoirists, are you hearing me?) Writing a business book is still a creative endeavor and will expose you to fear.

It will stop you from writing using the tools you checked off in that list above.

It's Not Just You & I

“I was ashamed. I have spent a good many years since—too many, I think—being ashamed about what I write. I think I was forty before I realized that almost every writer of fiction and poetry who as ever published a line has been accused by someone of wasting his or her God-given talent.”

“. . . in my heart I stayed ashamed. I kept hearing Miss Hisler asking why I wanted to waste my talent, why I wanted to waste my time, why I wanted to write junk.”

Who was this loser?

Stephen King. Stephen 350 million books sold King.

This is a quote from his On Writing which, although not precisely instructional, is the most inspiring book I’ve read when it comes to staying the course as a writer.

This is the quote that gave me my writing life back. (Ask me about that story someday.)

Our innate desire to have our work accepted can lead to problems if we put what others believe about our "God-given talent" ahead of what we need to write. It's one of many ways Resistance twists natural feelings into quicksand.

What's a Writer to Do?

You cannot defeat Resistance once and move on. It's part of our mental and emotional makeup. You can, though, make it irrelevant. Note that I don’t say ignore it because you can’t ignore a bully. But if you defuse them, do things to take away their power, they are no longer a threat. Like the bully at school (or, frankly, in the office) they still show up every day. But we don't have to keep giving them our lunch money.

Being a writer is hard. You don’t have to do this alone.

Too many writers are facing the emotional struggle to write without the support they need. After years of writing about it, I’ve created a forum to help writers and artists deal with writer’s Resistance.

It’s not going to be a collective moan-fest or even chat-fest. Instead, it's a guided learning environment, a community of writers making a safe place for some “you’re not alone” emotional support. It will also cover practical and actionable tools and processes to get you writing and keep you writing.

Membership is $5 per month or only $25 for the whole year. Questions? Comments? Shout 'em out below and I'll answer every one.

Monthly Lunch-and-Learn Sizzle Series Webinar June 21, 2018

Lunch-and-Learn Sizzle Series webinarJoin me as I present during the monthly Lunch-and-Learn Sizzle series webinar on Thursday, June 21, 2018 at 10 am Pacific. The webinar series is hosted by Cathy Davis of Davis Creative.

In this call you will learn:

  • Why social media matters for authors
  • Where to start
  • Strategies and Processes to Use Social Media Effectively
  • Pre-Launch Social Media Marketing Strategies

The webinar is free and will air live. If you can't make the live call, register and you'll get the recording.

Register here: http://daviscreative.com/add-sizzle-business-self-publishing/

Goodreads Basics for Authors

Goodreads is a useful social media platform for authors but some find it challenging to navigate and use. Here are a few tips for setting up your account, interacting with readers, and advertising.

Setting Up Your Account

  • Sync your blog to your author page.
  • Link your Facebook and Twitter accounts.
  • Add images (book covers) and videos (book trailers).

Interacting with Readers

At Goodreads avid readers share what they’re reading, what they want to read, and what they think of what they’ve just read. You’ll get more out of using the platform if you participate also as a reader, not just as an author.

  • Join groups that interest you and participate in discussions as yourself (not as your book or as an author).
  • Follow other authors you like.
  • Review books you like. (If you want to get reviews, you first need to give reviews).
  • Vote and comment on lists: https://www.goodreads.com/list. Though you can’t add your own book to a list, you can always ask a friend to do it for you. 😊
  • Add books to your Want to Read list.
  • Set up Ask the Author and respond to comments.

Advertising on Goodreads

Are you on Goodreads? Leave a comment with a link to your profile so we can connect. You can find me here.

Which Platform Works Best for You?

With all the social media platforms available, authors often ask which one is the best platform for them. My answer: it depends on where your audience is and which one you feel you'd be most comfortable spending time using. Here are four popular ones and my thoughts on each one. Then you decide which one is best for you. (I recommend you set up a profile at each one and then focus on one. More on that in a future post.)

Twitter is a Music Festival

It's easy to set up a Twitter account and start following people you hope will follow you back. The trap to avoid is following everyone. Follow people who are relevant in some way. Perhaps they've tweeted about your topic or have a hashtag in their bio that indicates interest in your topic. Create lists so you can categorize those you follow - other authors, book marketers, publicists, and others.

Because you can tweet often, you drive more traffic to your website from Twitter than other social media platforms. That means your tweets need to have valuable information with a link that readers want to click to learn more.

Yes, it's easy for your tweets to 'get lost' in the huge Twitterverse. However you can make good connections and start conversations that may result in taking the conversation into email. Over the years I've made really good connections with people in my industry in this manner, and have even gotten clients through Twitter.

Twitter is like a music festival with many different bands all playing at once on different stages of a huge venue. Thousands of people are attending. It will get noisy, even confusing at times. You might feel lost, that your message isn't being heard. But those who want to hear what you have to say will find you and listen, just like at a huge music festival. Maybe you went to listen to one or two bands. You'll seek them out and listen to them. Your audience will seek you out on Twitter and listen to you too - as long as you've set up your account and tweet in such a way that they can find you.

Facebook is a Tribe

On Facebook you want to be sure to set up an Author page. Read my previous post on 13 Ways to Utilize Your Facebook Author Page. Be sure to link to the page from your website and invite friends and readers to connect with you on this page. This is where your 'tribe' can come backstage with you. You won't have as many followers on Facebook as you have connections elsewhere. That's okay. This is where people who are already your readers will come to learn more about you and even connect with other readers.

Think of Facebook as a place where your tribe comes to hang out. They may have first connected with you on Twitter and now want more. Use Facebook to share more about who you are, what you write, links to other information your audience will find value. And of course have fun! Facebook followers tend to be people who like to have fun. :)

LinkedIn is a Professional Networking Connector

LinkedIn is a more professional setting, perfect for nonfiction authors. In addition to connecting with other professionals, you can join and participate in groups, and publish articles related to your topic. I use LinkedIn to deepen connections. I invite strategic connections to a free 15-minute phone call so we can learn more about each other.

Groups are a wonderful tool you can use to start or join in conversations and share your expertise. Writing articles also strengthens your position as an expert in your field.

Instagram is a Snapshot of Life

This social media platform is primarily about visuals - posting photos or images along with text and hashtags. You may want a separate business account for your book. Instagrammers want to know more about your life as an author. They want to see photos of your writing space, perhaps a book store you visited, your cat. Of course you can post about your book too. Just remember that the audience here is more interested in your life - not your book.

If you need some ideas for visuals to post on Instagram, check out this post.

So, which platform works best for you right now?

This may change at a later date so you want to revisit this annually.

  • Are you interested in a music festival and reaching a lot of people? Twitter's your thing.
  • Do you want your tribe to connect more personally with you and other readers? Use Facebook
  • Is your goal to connect with other professionals and deepen those relationships? LinkedIn is the place.
  • Would you like to connect with readers interested in a more personal look into your life as an author? Dive into Instagram

I'd love to connect with you on any of those social media platforms and hear your comments on this topic. Share a comment below and links to your platforms so I can follow you.