by Stan Faryna
This may or may not be part of a series of blog posts about online personal branding for authors (not just Zombie authors) that desire to be known. If it is, this is the second blog post in the series. The first is here:
Social media marketing is a long term strategy unless you have serious ad and marketing spend at the ready. Even if you have a million dollar war chest for online advertising and marketing, the results are still not guaranteed. I’d like to tell you all about a 500 Million dollar TV campaign that produced no trackable and no visible results but then I’d be violating a confidentiality agreement.
A reasonably successful social media marketing strategy requires you to build enthusiastic and supportive relationships with other human beings on social media – especially with those persons who are themselves obviously exercising a smart social media marketing strategy. Don’t spend time, attention and interest on the curious and fickle. Most likely, they won’t be around in six months in continuation of the mutual support and benefit that is critical to your getting known.
Of course, there is nothing wrong with being helpful and kind. In fact, I encourage reasonable exercises of those things just for the sake of character and growing you.
Long term and long tail
According to best-selling author Mark Schaefer, getting known takes anywhere from two to five years. I would round that up to three to ten years. If you are discouraged by Mark’s or my assessment, stop wasting your time on the sand castles. You could use all those hours of curious and half-hearted experiments for better purposes: loving on family and friends, reading better books, and writing better books, for example.
Practical tricks and tips
This section is an interruption of the business plan that I want to explain to you. But I imagine it is necessary because who doesn’t want a glimpse at the how to’s of effective strategy?!
Most Author-related FB posts and Twitter Tweets are poorly designed direct marketing prompts for a sale that is unlikely to happen; they too often present like the untrustworthy slogans and barks of a used car salesman in a cheap suit. I make that mistake, myself, when I’m pressed for time, a deadline, coming short on milestones or didn’t plan the week/month strategy.
If I make the same mistake twice in the same week and on the same channel – it actually means I’m losing the hard won credibility that I have worked so hard to build. Don’t do this.
Here’s what a bad selling post looks like. Please don’t ask, expect or encourage people to share a post that looks like this. It’s just really bad mojo for everyone.
Here’s what a better designed selling post looks like. But still, I can’t use/recycle this particular post more than twice a month without my feed looking spammy.
Here’s another. Do notice, however, that even these better ads don’t get much traction in terms of likes, shares and comments.
Here’s an example of a poorly designed, generic post that authors can “relate” with. Still, it was shared 118 times without me having to personally ask people to share it. Memes can do some serious lifting but don’t go overboard.
Start thoughtful (or exciting) conversations.
Time, design and technicalities
Doing things in an ok manner takes time (attention and work), design (money) and some awareness of the technical challenges and work arounds. A smart group will figure out ways to solve most of these challenges. For example, if a group can keep talented graphic designers and editors in paying work, they can negotiate lower rates. This is especially an important to do for getting graphics support and the development of generic graphics that everyone can use.
On the other hand, if everybody does their own thing in their own way, ain’t nobody got time for that. Literally. Ain’t nobody got time to market and sell books all by their uninformed and ornery lonesome.
Do you want more blog posts about an online strategy for getting known as an author?
Here’s what I need to see to be convinced that this unpaid effort of mine is meaningful to you.
1. I need to see 30 or more comments on this blog post. Comment with a few words of thanks, ask a question, or give me intelligent heck with sufficient evidence of my error.
2. I need to see 30 additional shares of my pinned tweet for my YouTube reading of the Desiderata (link below) because 7000+ shares is not enough. [grin]
Have you heard about my novella, Francesco Augustine Bernadone?
“This fast and furious LitRPG, sci-fi book packs a punch like Saitama, the One-Punch Man, while giving us haunting glimpses of the near future and our existential predicament. With subtle hints of Dostoyevsky, Tolkien and The Walking Dead, this story is more delicious than the world’s greatest chimichanga. Sorry, Deadpool.”