Using LinkedIn as a nonfiction author is an effective way to increase exposure for your book and business. It is still considered a more professional platform than a social media platform such as Facebook. Authors need to be cautious not to use LinkedIn primarily as a tool for book sales.
LinkedIn’s platform provides nonfiction authors a place to showcase their leadership in their industry. As an example, are you a CPA who has written a book to support your business? Show your expertise by posting articles and sharing in discussions in groups around your book’s topic. At the end of your articles include a short bio, mention your book, and include link to where it can be purchased.
Your About section should include detailed information about your business and your book. Add your book to the Publications section as well. The Featured section can include links to videos and SlideShare presentations, and you can upload supporting documents such as a Tip Sheet, Speaker Sheet, or Author One Sheet.
Don’t forget to connect with people and expand your network of influence. Start with people you already know such as colleagues, clients, association members, classmates, family, friends. Then reach out to fellow group members. Since you are in the same group as these members, there is a common ground to build on.
When you add social media icons to your website so people can find you on Facebook and Twitter, remember to add an icon and link to your LinkedIn profile too.
If you’re a nonfiction author who has used LinkedIn effectively, please share your tips!
Every year schedule time to review and update your LinkedIn profile. When someone does a Google search for your name or industry, your LinkedIn profile may come up. Be sure it shows you at your best.
Take some time to build deeper relationships with your LinkedIn network. I make it a goal to reach out to connect on the phone with someone in my network each week so we can learn more about what another, what we do, and how we can support one another.
Use your existing network to find new connections and ask for an introduction. Explain to your connection why you want an introduction.
Take note of what your network is talking about on LinkedIn so you can participate in discussions and share your expertise. Write article and share to groups as appropriate. Before you share your articles to groups, make sure you’ve participated in the group in a meaningful way and commented on other member’s posts.
Using polls on Twitter and LinkedIn is one way to gather feedback from your audience. They are easy to create and similar on both social media platforms. I’ve gathered the information from Twitter and LinkedIn about polls in this post for easy reference.
About Twitter Polls
Twitter Polls allow you to weigh in on questions posed by other people on Twitter. You can also easily create your own poll and see the results instantly.
Vote in a Twitter Poll
To vote in a poll: When you see a poll in a Tweet, simply click or tap your preferred option. The results are instantly displayed after you vote. Your vote is indicated with a checkmark next to the choice.
You can vote in a poll one time. The current total vote count and the amount of time remaining in the poll are displayed under the poll choices.
To view final results: A Twitter Poll ends between 5 minutes and 7 days after it has been posted, depending on the duration set by the person who Tweeted it. The winning choice is shown in bold. If you vote in a poll, you may receive a push notification alerting you to the final results.
When you vote in a poll, your participation is not shown to others: neither the poll creator nor other participants can see who has voted or how they voted.
How to Create a Twitter Poll
Click into the Tweet compose box at the top of your Home timeline, or click the Tweet button in the left navigation bar.
Click the Add poll icon
Type your poll question into the main compose box. You can use up to the maximum character count (280 characters) in your poll question. There must be text included in the Tweet to post a poll.
Insert your first poll option into the Choice 1 box, and your second poll option into the Choice 2 box. You can use up to 25 characters for each option.
Click + Add a choice to add additional options to your poll. Your poll can have up to four options.
Your poll’s duration defaults to 1 day. You can change the duration of your poll by clicking 1 day and adjusting the days, hours, and minutes. The minimum amount of time for a poll is 5 minutes, and the maximum is 7 days.
Click Tweet to post the poll.
Note: Photos cannot be included in a Twitter poll.
About LinkedIn Polls
LinkedIn polls are limited to 140 characters. Like Twitter, you can have four options. Each option allows for up to 25 characters. Your choices for poll duration are 1 day, 3 days, 1 week, 2 weeks. LinkedIn does not allow requests for political opinions, medical information, or other sensitive data.
How to Create a LinkedIn Poll
You can create a poll from LinkedIn’s homepage. If you’re an admin of a LinkedIn Page, or a LinkedIn Group you can create a poll directly from the page or group’s homepage.
To create a poll from your homepage:
Start a post.
Click Create a poll.
In the Create a poll window, type your question and fill in the options.
There is a minimum of two options and a maximum of four options on a poll.
Click +Add option to add another option.
Select the Poll duration from the dropdown.
The default duration is one week.
Click the Edit icon to edit the post.
Select who you want to share the poll with.
You can add more to the post in the What do you want to talk about? field (optional).
Though similar, there are differences between Twitter and LinkedIn polls. If you would like to post the SAME exact poll on both platforms, I suggest:
Questions should be 140 characters or less
Options should be 25 characters or less (up to 4 options)
Duration should be 1 day, 3 days, 1 week, 2 weeks
No requests for political opinions, medical information, or other sensitive data
Have you used polls on either platform? I’d love to hear how that worked for you.
Using social media for your book or business helps you boost website traffic, reach a wider audience, and provides an opportunity for potential readers to learn about you and your book.
Some statistics from Hubspot’s 2020 marketing report.
Facebook: As of Q1 2020, there are 2.6 billion monthly active Facebook users. (Statista, 2020)
LinkedIn: LinkedIn is the second-most popular social media platform used by B2B marketers, ranking only behind Facebook. (Statista, 2019)
Instagram: Instagram is the social channel with the second-highest ROI among marketers. (HubSpot, 2020)
Twitter: The largest U.S. Twitter audience by age group, as of September 2018, is tied between 25-34 and 55-64 year-olds. (Statista, 2019)
Pinterest: During a survey, 25% of responding social media marketers at B2B companies stated they used Pinterest to market their businesses. (Statista, 2019)
Actively using social media helps you build relationships with your readers. So, instead of viewing it primarily as a way to pitch your book, think of it as a way to connect with people. Answer questions, inform your audience with relevant content, engage authentically. You will even start building connections with influencers who may even become your promoters.
Take the time to develop your brand so all your social media platforms have a consistent look and feel. Start with just one platform and focus on developing a strategy for that platform where you not only build a following, you really connect and engage with your followers.
It takes time and effort to find the right media contacts. Know what a journalist writes about before reaching out to them. If you your book is about managing finances, you don’t want to reach out to the beauty editor of a women’s magazine.
There are several ways to find the right media contacts.
LinkedIn is a great place to find media contacts.
Find media companies and then look at the People section or Employees section to find media persons to connect with. As an example, here’s the People section for the Chicago Tribune.
Visit their LinkedIn profile to learn more about them and see how else you can connect with them. You may find that you have mutual connections or are in some of the same groups. You can now connect with them with a note saying something like, “I see we are both in [NAME OF GROUP] here on LinkedIn. I’d like to connect and learn more about what you do” or “We have several mutual connections and I’d like to add you to my professional network.” Better yet, ask one of those mutual connections for an introduction.
Check their profile section “Contact info”. Often, you’ll find their Twitter handle there or other way to contact them as well. Once you’ve connected, start a dialogue and develop a relationship before pitching to them.
Once you find media contacts on Twitter, create a list and add them to your Twitter list. You’ll be able to quickly find all those contacts in one place. See what they are tweeting about and see if it ties in with your story. You can use the @ symbol and tweet to them to try to get their attention. You may or may not get a response.
Search the internet for media contacts. This can be time consuming and tedious. Be sure to keep a spreadsheet so you don’t have to go search again once you’ve found contact information for media persons.
Search for local area newspapers, radio, TV, etc. In the Contact section of their website you’ll often find a list of editors, media contacts, journalists, etc. Make sure you’re contacting the right person for your topic.
Help A Reporter Out
Sign up for HARO (Help A Reporter Out) as a source. You’ll receive emails with opportunities to respond to requests from journalists on a variety of topics. It’s a marvelous PR opportunity.
Be quick to respond for the best chance of being chosen as a source for a reporter. Several clients have used HARO and been included in round-up posts in various online articles. These articles can be promoted on social media—and it’s a great way to connect with others who write about similar topics that were included in the round-up posts.