#RomanceAuthorUniversity - 5 Social Media Tips for Introverted Authors by Amy Pennza
If you’re a writer, there’s a decent chance you identify as an introvert. This might be due to the solitary nature of writing.
When you sit down to write a story, it’s just you and the keyboard (or paper, if you’re a purist). You can create entire worlds in your mind — and let them flow from your brain through your fingers. It’s a skill particularly suited to those of us who don’t mind secret nooks, cozy corners, or quiet cars on the train.
However, there’s a difference between writing a book and marketing a book. In today’s world, the bulk of book marketing happens online. Whether you’re an indie author or traditionally published, you can’t afford to ignore the internet — or social media.
These days, fans don’t just want to read your work, they want to interact with you, too. Many successful authors have launched their careers by cultivating a dedicated readership online. In some cases, their personal brand is what sells their books.
Any author can use this strategy. However, you’ll fare better online if you take the time to learn about the various social sites and what kinds of content work best for each one.
5 Tips for Using Social Media
as an (Introverted) Author
The nice thing about social media is it’s tailor made for individuals. In other words, it can be whatever you want it to be. You don’t need to conform to any specific set of guidelines or squash your personality into a preconceived mold.
However, there are a few tips and tricks that can help you make the most of your social presence as an author.
1. Avoid Too Much Promotion
The whole point of using social media as an author is to sell books, right? Well, yes and no.
Social media users are savvy folks. They recognize blatant marketing when they see it. If all your posts consist of ads and pleas to “buy my book!” they’re likely to unfollow you.
After all, they’re probably following you because they already read one or two of your books. If you repeatedly bonk them over the head with ads, they could get frustrated and leave.
This is where social media can be fun. Instead of focusing on promotion, use your platform to share things that interest you, inspire you, or make you laugh. This can be funny memes, quotes from famous authors, or a fascinating article you stumbled across.
Remember, your followers are also readers. Chances are, they share many of your interests. They’re following you because they like what you have to say. Don’t be afraid to share your thoughts or give them peeks into your everyday life.
2. Plan Your Posts
For an introverted author, the prospect of socializing online can feel a lot like socializing in real life — only with millions of people listening in. The very idea of it can make you want to run home, throw a blanket over your head, and spend the next few hours (or days) recharging.
But social media can actually be a perfect platform for authors. Without the pressure of face-to-face chitchat, you can take your time crafting exactly what you want to say.
When you “talk” on social media, you have the benefit of time. Specifically, the time to gather your thoughts before sharing them. For wordsmiths, this can be a gift rather than a burden.
On the other hand, the pressure to interact online can be overwhelming for introverts. You might fall into the trap of overthinking your content or worrying whether your fans will dislike it.
You can avoid this by scheduling your posts in advance. By pre-planning your content, you can dedicate an hour or two to scheduling your posts — and then spend the rest of your time focused on writing.
There are dozens of social media post scheduling apps out there. For example, Buffer and Hootsuite let you schedule posts across all major social networks. Both sites have a free version, so you can try them out before upgrading to a more robust account.
3. Know Your Audience
This may sound impossible, considering you might never meet your followers in real life. How can you ever really “know” someone online?
But I’m not talking about getting to know a neighbor or coworker. What I mean by “knowing your audience” is figuring out which types of content work best on each site.
This can be a subtle thing, and it definitely takes time to master. You’ll probably need to try a few different types of posts to get a feel for what works and what doesn’t.
For example, your Instagram followers might respond well to photos from your everyday life, while similar content doesn’t get much traction on Facebook. Your ads might fall flat on Twitter (which tends to move at a faster pace), but perform well on Facebook.
You might even end up creating a slightly different persona for each social site. Maybe your Twitter followers enjoy slightly edgier content, while your Facebook crowd is a little more conservative. Test out various kinds of posts and then tailor your content to each platform.
4. Don’t Post Duplicate Content Across All Social Sites
This is a mistake many businesses and other social users make. You’ve got a great piece of content or an ad you spent money on, so why not blast it across the internet?
But this strategy can backfire. Again, social media users are pretty savvy. If you constantly post the exact same meme or ad on every social site, it can start to get tiresome. The “unfollow” button is easy to click.
Don’t make it easy for people to unfollow you.
Instead, mix up your content. This doesn’t mean you have to create all new posts for every single platform. Instead, take a piece of content and modify it just enough to make it “original” for each social site.
Let’s look at an example.
Maybe you save the bulk of your book excerpts for Facebook, where it’s a bit easier to post longer content. But you can use part of your excerpt in other places. Pull a short quote from the same excerpt and incorporate it into an image you can share on Instagram, which is friendlier to visual content.
You started with one piece of content and made it work on two different platforms. People who follow you on both sites got a unique experience in both places. Good job!
There are plenty of tools to help you make images and ads. Many authors love Canva, which makes it easy to create stunning designs — no graphic design skills required. Book Brush is another design app that caters specifically to authors and has a number of tools that let you drag and drop your book cover into premade templates. Both sites have a free version if you’re on a budget.
5. Offer Followers Something Meaningful
Social media has its pros and cons. At its worst, it can sow division and spur on arguments.
But it has a good side, too.
At its best, social media truly does bring people together. It can help us connect when physical distance or demographics might otherwise keep us part.
As an author, you can harness social media as a force for good by offering your followers something meaningful.
This doesn’t have to be a free book or a gift card, although you might want to run the occasional giveaway as a thank-you to your fans.
Most of the time, however, meaningful content is deceptively simple. It can be an uplifting quote that moves you or a photo of your pet doing something silly. Other times, it’s an excerpt from one of your books or a quick story that inspires hope or laughter.
You’re a writer, aren’t you? Use social media to do what you do best: tell a story.
Ready to Get Social?
As an introvert, you’ve probably been told you’re inherently bad at socializing. But this isn’t true. As Susan Cain, the author of Quiet, pointed out at her TED Talk about the power of introverts, some of the most admired leaders and thinkers throughout history have identified as introverts. Bill Gates and J.K. Rowling are both introverts, but they also have a powerful presence on social media.
You can, too. All it takes is stepping outside your comfort zone — and I promise you won’t have to leave your house (unless you want to).
Amy Pennza has been a lawyer, a soldier, and a copywriter. She's worn combat boots and high heels in the same 24-hour period--and she definitely prefers flip flops. Actually, she prefers going barefoot while writing steamy romances about strong women and alpha men with hearts of gold. After years in Tornado Alley, she now makes her home in the Great Lakes region with her husband and kids.
Visit Amy Pennza's Web Site.
What a Wolf Dares - Lux Catena Book 2
An alpha's daughter in need of a safe haven
As a werewolf Alpha’s daughter, Sophie Gregory was raised to understand she has two important purposes in life—to be wed and bred. When she fails at the first, she wants nothing to do with the second, even if it means spending the rest of her life alone. After fleeing a disastrous arranged marriage, she seeks shelter with a neighboring pack. There's just one problem. Her new pack is home to the handsome, roguish Remy Arsenault: serial dater and notorious womanizer. Remy makes her laugh…and her heart pound. She’s not looking for commitment, but she might just be up for a fling. That's all Remy is offering, anyway, right?
A werewolf telepath ready to find his mate
Remy has a reputation for being a player, but in truth, he's ready to settle down. Too bad that's the very last thing Sophie is interested in. He will do anything to win the heart of the woman who makes his head spin with lust—including seducing her with the most delicious sex imaginable. Sophie wants a fling. But what if he's ready for so much more? She needs to feel safe, loved, and protected. That's a job description he's more than willing to fill. But when a threat from Sophie's past threatens to keep them apart, he might have to fight for their lives before he can fight for their love.
What a Wolf Dares is book 2 in the Lux Catena werewolf romance series. It can be read as a standalone, happily ever after guaranteed.
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