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But What Do I Do With Social Media? Five Ways Social Media Can Boost Your Writing Career by Rochelle Melander
This is the first in a series of articles on using social media for writers. The series will help you decide how you want to use social media, discover the best social media platforms for you, develop a social media strategy, and create a system for evaluating your social media strategy. Today’s article talks about five uses for social media platforms.
“But what do I do once I’m there?” That’s what my clients and students say when I teach social media. Most writers know that they need to use social media to be successful. Still, they are not really sure how social media will help them write better, connect with other writers, and build connections with people who might buy their books.
Social media offers writers access to people, information, ideas, and tools that were previously unavailable to most of us. In the olden days, so to speak, writers who wanted to meet their favorite authors or interview a CEO had to chase them down at conferences or pursue them through traditional channels (e.g., an agent, administrative assistant, or publisher). Thanks to social media, we all stand together on the same platform. But before you start jumping up and down and screaming how great you are on Twitter, think about how you want to use social media. Here are some of the many ways authors and other people use social media successfully. Check the ones that apply to you.
1. Connect. Social media provides the opportunity for you to connect with colleagues, current clients or customers, potential clients, editors, agents, experts in your field, and so forth. Think about using social media to:
*Connect with others around shared interests.
*Ask questions about or find insights into writing topics.
*Search for resource people for your article, book project, or organization.
*Connect with colleagues, future colleagues, customers, or employers—or the people who will connect you to them.
2. Monitor your name and brand online. Social media allows you to listen to the conversation online about you and your brand. You get to hear what people are saying about you, your blog, your article, or your book without holding a glass up to the wall!
3. Research. Social media provides a valuable opportunity to discover the latest information and talk to the most important experts on the topics you write about. Use social media to:
*Understand your market, clients, readers, and customers.
*Keep up with new information and developments in your field.
*Find resources, experts, and information.
*Connect with people to interview for your project.
*Connect with people in your market to do market research.
4. Build personal loyalty. When agents and editors talk about platform, they are talking about building personal loyalty to you as an author. Social media gives you the opportunity to connect with lots of people and:
*Increase the number of people who know and trust you and will listen to what you have to say.
*Increase the number of people in your networking circle who will recommend you to potential clients or employers.
5. Provide information, inspiration, and encouragement. The writers who see social media as simply a way to talk about themselves or their book have missed the boat. In order to succeed in the new world of social media, you need to be someone who provides information, inspiration, and encouragement to those you connect with online. Remember:
*Social media gives you the opportunity to inspire and encourage more people than you can reach through your books.
*Social media gives you the opportunity to be a resource for your colleagues, clients or customers and anyone else who is interested in you or your field.
*Helping others by providing information, inspiration and encouragement will increase your value online.
What else? What have I missed? How else do you use social media to boost your writing success? Leave your ideas in the comment section below!
WANT TO USE THIS TIP IN YOUR EZINE OR WEB SITE? You may, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Write Now! Coach Rochelle Melander is an author, a certified professional coach, and a popular speaker. Write-A-Thon: Write Your Book in 26 Days (And Live to Tell About It) is the 10th book authored by Melander, who teaches professionals how to write fast, get published, establish credibility, and navigate the new world of social media. Get your free subscription to her Write Now! Tips Ezine at https://www.writenowcoach.com and sign up to be a member of her Write Now! Mastermind class for professionals at http://www.writenowmastermind.com