We all do it – myself included. I do try for every promotional post to make four others that are just friendly. I actually rarely buy books that I’ve seen promoted via social media. That’s in part because I have so many books to read at the moment. I have forty hard copies waiting in the bedroom, about 256 on my Kindle and I go to the library as well. Occasionally, though, I am tempted to buy one I come across via social media. Below I’ve listed what makes this happen:
Really interesting blog / Twitter / Facebook post elsewhere
I guess here I’m buying the book because I’m interested in the person. Sure, the theme or topic of the book has to be interesting too - I’m not sure I’d ever go for a western but even here there’s an exception. Caroline Lawrence’s Roman Mysteries were so good that I’m tempted a little by her Western series. Sometimes it’s just curiosity. This person is saying a lot that is interesting here. Her books probably are too.
Right up my street
Maybe the book is very similar to something I’m writing, have written or am thinking about, or might be really useful as a research tool. However, if I’m proactively looking for something like that, I’m more likely to go directly to Amazon or a review site.
Twitter remains my favourite – just.
I love the power of this platform. Retweets can be awesome. You can soon get through the six handshakes if your post is retweeted and retweeted. I retweet often – especially when I come across gorgeous photos, links to interesting articles, amusing and inspiring quotes, the latest news and opportunities for writers. All too often though there is book promotion after book promotion and it gets a little boring. I tend to skip those and even when I do buy one of these books because I’ve found the writer interesting, I’ll tend to do that via another platform. I suppose it happens partly because I follow so many other writers.
The trick, I guess, is to make yourself interesting and also ensure that there is a way for your followers to find your books if they want to.
I occasionally like to read the meatier comments on Facebook though I initially found the whole platform counterintuitive. I like the business-like attitude of Linked-in and intend in future to keep my CV there. I’m using Pinterest for research and will try Instagram soon.
Some things do seem to come from nowhere. “How did you find me?” I ask a teacher who has booked me for a school visit. “I used Google and found a comment on Twitter relating to you blog post about school visits.” There you have it.
The point is, we have to keep up our presence on social media but never become boring. Now, there’s a challenge.