The book is written and ready to publish. So how do you and your publisher spread the word, create excitement and ultimately drive people to take the action of purchasing and reading the book? These days a well-rounded social media strategy must include Twitter. Twitter is a nimble, real-time megaphone ready to create both ambient awareness (“Oh, yeah, I heard about that book…) and advertorial awareness (I read a great review of that book).
Twitter is to a social media campaign what PR is to a book marketing campaign.
Twitter, however, is not a marketing campaign. Twitter is part of a full strategic campaign and acts as a megaphone to blast your message to millions of people and invites them to your website, Facebook page or other venue for a deeper conversation. A book marketing campaign needs distribution, point of purchase display, publicity, an advertising concept and a highly motivated author. With those things in place, Twitter can:
- Share the author’s excitement with followers in real time.
- Direct people to a link to buy the book.
- Blast out late breaking news such as media appearances & live events.
- Share excerpts from the book either in short snippets or via a link to a longer passage.
- Encourage others to spread the word.
Here are 5 quick tips and techniques that any author or publisher can use right now to enhance a book marketing campaign.
1. Move content. Use Twitter to move content from your Blog and your Facebook posts to your Twitter fan base by installing the Twitter app on your Facebook fan page. This will auto-tweet everything you post on Facebook, with a link back to your Facebook fan page to read any post longer than 140 characters. If you are auto-importing your blog to your Facebook fan page, it will also be tweeted out to your followers automatically, again with a link to continue reading. This serves a couple of purposes. First, it shares content on three different sites, increasing the number of potential readers for every post. Second, it invites Twitter users back to Facebook to become fans whenever they click on the shorten Twitter link. Third, Facebook will have a live link to the post on your blog through Networked blogs. So one post introduces your Twitter fans to two additional points of interaction with you.
2. Increase SEO. Each Tweet is a unique URL and is viewed by Google as fresh, unique content. This Google juice makes it more likely that potential readers and fans will find you and information about your book. Google now serves up Twitter mentions and references on page one for most searches. Strategically include the name of the book, the name of the author, the genre or topic of the book in your tweets. These are your keywords for search engine optimization. Think about it this way. What would someone enter into a Google search to find you or your book? Those are your keywords. Use them strategically in your tweets to help readers find you.
3. The Big Ask. Bestselling authors such as Seth Godin, Gary Vaynerchuk, Jeffrey Hayzlett and Guy Kawasaki all give their fans an emotional shareholders stake in their book projects. They talk about them for months before publication. They ask followers opinions on titles, book jacket design and topics. They share nuggets of what’s to come. They thank followers for helping them through the process of creating a book. Then, when the book comes out they simply and honestly ask their fans to help them spread the word about the new book, and people do, by the thousands. Creating a community that is emotionally invested in you and your work is a powerful marketing strategy but can’t be faked. Authors must be engaged and genuinely enjoy conversing with their followers about their area of expertise. They must have, and display passion. And, this kind of loyalty and relationship building cannot be done overnight. Authors, especially authors with multiple book projects, should consider Twitter engagement to be a regular, daily practice.
4. Google’s Real Time search: Google now allows you to search something called Real Time. So Google your name or the name of your book and in the left hand navigation bar, choose Real Time. There you’ll see if any Twitter conversations include your name or the name of your book. Next authors and publishers can click on each Twitter account mentioning the book or author, follow them and thank them for their comments. A savvy author will then engage that Twitter account in a deeper conversation, turning the casual chat into a fan building opportunity. All of this is, of course, done on a very public platform. The advantages of this are that other Twitter users see you, the author or publisher, engaged in fun and interesting discussions about your book, your passions, your travels and your life. This becomes an opportunity to attract new fans and new readers. Followers are surprised and delighted when authors notice and thank them for their support. This strategy can create a life long fan who will help you spread the message about your work.
5. Tweet Ups: Whenever an author is speaking, doing media or making a bookstore appearance, there is an opportunity to create a Twitter event or a Tweet Up. Plan ahead, just as you would for any event and use an event organizer like Eventbrite or MeetUp to manage your guest list, RSVP’s and invitations. Create a real call to action for the event such as making a special announcement or having a desirable guest speaker or even a high end sponsor offered door prize. Giving followers an early heads-up about a special event with the author is like a VIP pass. Followers want, and need to feel they have a special relationship with the author. Now, here’s the most important thing. When you create opportunities for followers to meet authors in person, the author must be willing and able to engage in conversation, thank the followers for their support, and spend some time with them. These are mixers and they are social. Authors who cannot or who are not willing to be social should avoid this strategy.
You’ve no doubt noticed a theme in this post. Twitter is a cocktail party and the author can be the guest of honor. But, it’s better if the author is the host and treats his or her followers as the honored guests.
If you found this post useful, please leave a comment. It’s important to me to know what you think so that I can create articles that are useful to you. For more Twitter tips, techniques and strategies, click here. And, thank you for finding me and reading this. I appreciate the time it takes to follow a link and read a blog.