What social media accounts does an author need and what should they post on them?
Set up accounts at Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google+, Goodreads, Tumblr, Youtube and if you are an author of non-fiction, LinkedIn
Here’s what to post on each:
Set up an author page and a personal page. Facebook frowns on users having multiple personal pages and now asks for a phone number to verify accounts. In both pages you’ll need a suitable page header. Here’s the sizes you need:
- Log in to your MailChimp account and in a separate tab to your Facebook page
- On Facebook, search for MailChimp and ‘Like’ the page.
- At the top right, select from the profile dropdown ‘Account’ then ‘Integrations’.
- From the integrations directory select ‘Facebook Add a signup form to…’
- In ‘Page to use’ select the author page you’ve created.
- Select the appropriate ‘List to use’, select the ‘Yes’ of ‘Use signup form tab’ and save the choices
Get the aspect ratio of any pictures you use right. Each should be twice as wide as it is tall or it may be cropped. You don’t see this cropping but other tweeps will! Here’s an example of a tweet image which created the wrong message because it was cropped.
|What tweeps saw|
|What the original poster expected them to see|
Video has proved more effective than static images but keep video short. Originally you were limited to 30 seconds. You can use longer video now but that 30 second limit is still worthwhile. Here’s one I did using MS Powerpoint
What else should you tweet?
- A maximum of 15% promotional tweets
- interest articles
- retweets of other’s tweets
- links to blogs – especially your own blogs with subtle links to your books
- comments or replies to other tweets
When and how often should you tweet?
An average Twitter user will check their Twitter stream for just a short time each day. If they have lots of followers then each tweet is shown for just a short time. Most of your tweets won’t be seen! Twitter is very much a numbers game and only becomes effective when you have thousands of followers. 10,000 seems to be the magic number here. You need to tweet often to be seen. The more often the better. You can’t do that by sitting at your computer 24/7 so you must automate.
Here’s what I do:
- I collect items to tweet—none dating news, comments, interest items, humor, quotes, images, facts, trivia, video, music. Currently I have about 5,000 in a spreadsheet. I constantly add to this list and remove old items.
- To this list I add 9% promotional tweets.
- Periodically I randomize the list of tweets and produce a text file of them.
- I use a Java program on an old laptop to tweet from this list at random intervals of 2 to 17 minutes. It works 24/7 and takes about a month to get through the list before repeating. This means any follower is unlikely to see the same message tweeted too often.
- Every day I spend about 30 minutes responding to people who have re-tweeted me, replied to me or mentioned me. I’ll also spend some of that time scanning my Twitter feed for interesting items to re-tweet and interesting books other authors have tweeted about.
How do you collect items for your Twitter list?
What about that non-author account?
- A Vested Interest Tweets – Where I post copies of promotional tweets, often with a comment and a little humor.
- Pure Fun – exactly that.
- Religious humour – Every religion should be able to stand a little fun poked at it (Yes that’s how we spell ‘humor’ in the UK.)
- Cute – exactly that.
- Books worth reading
- Art – the sort that appeals to me
- My style – a mixture of everything
- Favorite Places & Spaces
- Screen wallpapers
- Adverts (good ones) – Usually ones which make me laugh
- A Vested Interest Ideas – a private board where I keep ideas for stories I’ve come across
- A Vested Interest Covers – My book covers
- Exactly as described – you’ll have to look to understand
- Nostalgia – old pictures.