Recently, I had to unfriend someone on Facebook who goes way way back to childhood because she was attacking Israel for firing on Gaza, saying that all the deaths Israel has causes will haunt her and she will burn in hell. This freaked me out. I couldn’t for the life of me, understand why would my friend go to such great lengths to create this negative space on my Facebook wall?
After a lengthy debate, I decided to unfriend this Facebook friend because of her political diatribe. I’ve come to the conclusion that people who are only interested in spreading their political diatribes and views on someone else’s wall, only want to spread their own opinions. There was nothing in my Facebook friend’s post on interacting with what I had posted about Israel; it simply triggered her own thoughts and views. Little did she realize that her Facebook friend would soon cut her off…
You might be wondering well, what the heck does this have to do with being an author and spreading your message on social media?
The opposite of attack in the social media world is ENGAGE.
So the answer is quite simple. Just like you can’t attack people and always expect them to listen, as an author, you can’t just plaster on your wall, “buy my books!”
I get it. I really really do. I know how hard it took for you to write that book. I’m in the early stages myself of revising my memoir, and I realize how much blood, sweat and tears are needed to just get a “healthy” quality book out there. So naturally, you feel validated and worthy as an author in someone else’s eyes when someone purchases your book.
But here’s the problem I’m seeing. I’m noticing a very disturbing trend happening all over the “social media globe.” People for instance, have become numb to the fact that there is a person on Facebook with a face AND feelings. That same person, who is you and me, are looking for somebody to engage them. However, these same people who are looking for validation, are sending me barrages of emails of “buy me this” and “book me for that” without engaging me. So I cut them off. Why would I buy your book? Is there a reason? Have you engaged me with your book’s message?
Since I’m a writer, naturally, I would want to use my words to inspire, impact and engage my community. (I’m very leery of groups with words “promote my books, and maybe after reading this post, you’ll reconsider the way you view “promoting” your books.) If you really want your reader to actually start listening and paying attention to your books, you need to find a way to engage your community. So this social media story I just shared with you, inspired me to write a post on how to personalize the world of social media especially regarding authors.
1. Change the way you see social media. Imagine social media as as a sea of unknown faces from your podium. In Twitter, you have “followers” and in Facebook, you have “fans.” These are your attendees. They’ve come to listen and hear your speak because they know you have something important to say and they look up to you, so use that space wisely.
2. Personalize this space. When you “tweet” or share Facebook posts, imagine you are reaching out to your ideal Twitter follower or Facebook fan. Post as if you are speaking directly to them.
3. To engage your tweets and posts, really ask questions from the heart. What’s troubling your peeps? What do they need?
4. Whenever possible, use a story to help engage your peeps. It’s how people remember and good storytelling is needed even more now online.
5. Use visuals whenever possible to help capture a moment or a feeling. If you are writing about a person, include that person’s picture. Studies show that attractive visuals lead to higher engagement.
So as you can see, a lot does need to happen before a prospective clicks on your “buy now” button. Use these techniques to engage your audience and watch your engagement (and sales) soar.
How I Can Help
I know you’re passionate about your story in some way otherwise you would have probably unsubscribed from this list a long time ago….
So here’s my question for you:
What would it take for you to take that courageous step? Would you start keeping a journal, read more in the genre you want to publish, outline and write the beginning chapter of your memoir? Would you start thinking about what kind of information to include on your About page of your site?
If you need help, I offer a FREE 30 minute phone consultation. There are many ways I can help either through private or group mentoring or writing services. To set up an appointment, click here. Together, we’ll decide which program is best for you.
I’d love to help you take those next big courageous steps to help you give voice to your story.
To make that change, one must look inward and do some deep soul searching. What would it seriously take to find your tribe and what would it FEEL to you if you could find happiness again?