Not Everyone Uses Social Media

She was young, pretty, and a reader. I immediately knew she read a lot because she had three paperback books stuffed into her purse.

I wasn’t snooping. Honest. Her purse was open and the three books were sticking slightly out. They were crammed in spine down, so I could not discern the genre.

As I talked with this Young Adult just starting out on her life’s journey, I discovered that she does not fit the Generation Z mold. She told me that she is not on social media and she does not watch television. It’s not that she’s not tech savvy. She takes online college courses and met her boyfriend online.

Yet, here is a young adult who is not hanging out online—and she reads. Why am I pointing this out? Because it is important to remember.

Not everyone uses social media. Not everyone gets the majority of their information online. I am pointing this out because I want to remind you that a comprehensive book marketing plan includes both digital and physical marketing.

Most likely you don’t have a large marketing budget for your book. As a result, spending time creating content online and posting it on your blog and social media sites, as well as sharing it through email, is where you focus your attention.

That’s a good strategy, but you won’t reach all your potential readers this way. A better strategy is to include some print marketing.

There are still print newspapers, print magazines, and print fliers and postcards. These are all good ways to broaden your marketing reach to those who prefer print.

Expanding your marketing to include print venues does not have to cost you a lot of money or time. Start local. Focus on local newspapers and magazines that reach your target audience. Every community has these.

You can find local newspapers by keeping your eyes open as you go about your community. Often public libraries and grocery stores have a spot for free local newspapers and magazines. You can also use an online newspaper search engine like the one at www.usnpl.com to identify local newspapers.

Magazines and newspapers are always looking for fresh, interesting news. Be creative. Send a press release to your local magazine editors and newspaper journalists featuring you and your book. However, make sure your press release is not just about you writing a book. It needs to have something newsworthy such as a local cause your book is supporting, how your book ties into local history, or even an interesting journey you took to research your book. Tie your press release in with an upcoming local author appearance for better results.

Including traditional marketing with your digital marketing efforts will broaden your reach and help you secure more readers for your books. After all, not everyone uses social media.

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Photo courtesy of Miguel Runa.

How to Get More Attention for Your Books

When it comes to promoting your book on social networks, do you feel like you are wasting your time? You might be right… you really might be barking in the wind.

Recent studies show that social shares are way down. Recent studies by Buzzsumo and Shareaholic show that social sharing is way down. Due to algorithm changes on Facebook, social shares have decreased almost 50 percent in the past year.

Surprisingly, search engine discovery has made a comeback. In 2017, 34.8% of site visits were driven by searches, while only 25.6% of site visits came from social. Prior to last year, search lagged behind social.

So, how should you adapt your online marketing strategies to accommodate the decline of social shares on the Internet? Following are two strategies.

1. Share unique information that your target audience is interested in.

Don’t join the crowd. Often when a topic becomes popular, everyone jumps on it and adds their own two cents. This results in a large number of posts on a single topic, causing many to be lost in the crowd. So, while it is good to stay on top of the latest trends for your topic or niche, make sure your voice is offering something different that will stand out.

2. Write catchy headlines.

Whether you are writing headlines for a blog post, a video, a podcast, or other information you are sharing on social media, make your headlines stand out. When Buzzsumo analyzed 100 million headlines to determine which ones were the most successful in getting noticed and shared, they discovered that certain three-word phrases racked up the most likes, shares, and comments.

From their study, Buzzsumo shared the top 20 three-word phrases that received the most shares on Facebook. Check them out in the chart below.

The key to grabbing attention to garner social awareness and shares on the Internet is by writing headlines that grab attention. CoSchedule offers three great free tools to help you be more successful in writing headlines for blogs, subject lines for emails, and messages for social media to capture more attention for you and your books. Check them out:

Give these free tools a try. They can help you improve your messaging to gain more attention in the increasingly crowded digital realm.

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How to Make Your Social Media Interactions More Fruitful

My favorite soda is Dr. Pepper. Joining the almost 16,000,000 other Dr. Pepper fans on Facebook allows me to express my likes on social media and support something I derive pleasure from.

Most people follow businesses and brands on social media because doing so allows them to express what they like as well as stay in touch with the producers of the things they engage with on a regular basis. But, fans want more.

social-media-fruitfulStudies show that individuals who decide to follow businesses on social media do so for three main reasons.

  1. To find out more about the products or services these entities provide.
  2. To receive exclusive offers and coupons for these products and services.
  3. To give feedback through rating or reviewing the products and services they receive.

Readers follow authors on social media for similar reasons. Fans want ongoing information that enriches their lives. They want to know when you are releasing new books. They want exclusive offers for discounts on your books, and they want to give feedback on your books.

If you want your social media efforts to produce more results, keep these three reasons in mind when posting material on your social media accounts. Give your readers:

  1. Sneak peaks into upcoming projects.
  2. Additional information on your book’s topics to enrich your readers’ lives.
  3. Special offers—discounts on current books and on new releases.
  4. The chance to interact with you by answering questions or giving feedback on ideas.

Social media is a place for people to stay on top of news and express their opinions. Give your fans what they are looking for and they will remain loyal and recommend you to others as well.

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Photo courtesy of Gilles Lambert

Which One Are You?

Most people know about the 80/20 rule. 20% of the people do 80% of the work. 80% of a church’s budget is met by the tithe of 20% of the congregation. 20% of the users of social media post 80% of the content.

80-20-Rule-JPEG

I believe that the world would be a better place if we applied the 80/20 rule to our everyday lives. Imagine how different the world would be if everyone spent 80% of their time listening to what others have to say and only 20% of their time talking.

You might be thinking, how does the 80/20 rule apply to promoting a book? After all, you think, to promote a book, I need to talk a lot. I have to talk on blogs, talk in person, talk on social media, etc. True, promoting a book does take a lot of talk, but remember, part of promoting a book is “connecting” with your audience.So think of the rule as spending 80% of your time connecting with your audience and 20% of your time promoting your book.

This 80/20 rule is especially important for your social media communications. Since you may be part of that 20% of the people producing 80% of the content on social media, consider how you might spend more time “connecting” with your followers.

One way to do this is to keep 80% of your posts reserved for connecting with your audience by showing them you care. Showing care to your audience can be in the form of social media posts that:

  1. Share news that your target audience is interested in.
  2. Share tips that would make your audience’s life easier in some way.
  3. Share interesting and humorous anecdotes from your own life that people can relate to.
  4. Respond empathetically to your audiences’ posts, comments, and stated concerns.

Then, the remaining 20% of your posts can focus on promoting your books. Try not to do the “buy my book” routine with these posts. Instead, share what readers are saying about your book, share specials you are hosting, and share excerpts and tips from your book.

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Are You Paying Attention?

The average person’s attention span is 8 seconds while a goldfish’s attention span is 9 seconds. goldfish Yep, you read that right. Goldfish, while carrying a much smaller brain, have longer attention spans than people.

According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, consumer attention spans have decreased significantly over the past decade. In 2000, the average person’s attention span was 12 seconds. In 2013, it was measured at 8 seconds.

This is important information to know if you promote books on the Internet. If you want to capture people’s attention, you must give them information in bite-size pieces that they can easily digest in a few seconds. This is why visual content (pictures, videos, infographics, factoids) have become so popular. Visuals can be easily consumed and shared.

If you are not yet mixing in lots of visual content in your online marketing efforts, check out these six reasons you should start using more visuals. Visual Content

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