Social Media Tips

How to Use Social Media to Sell Books?

How to Use Social Media to Sell Books?
by Fauzia Burke
As I say to my clients, social media is not a sales channel. It is a networking environment. However, new research shows that social media may be gaining ground as a referral engine for sales. While networking remains core to social media, consumers are now using their favorite social networks to buy, buy, buy! That’s right, social media is impacting buying decisions more and more. Take note: 55% of consumers say they buy products online after finding them on social media. 

Connection. That’s the word of the year.

Connection. That’s the word of the year.
by Fauzia Burke
We live in a hectic, digital, social media-fueled world. Our days are filled with messages, content, shares, and the occasional meme. It’s no wonder that many of us forget to stop and connect with the person on the other side. Consider this: when was the last time you asked yourself, “Who is the person behind this retweet?” You might have 2,000 friends on Facebook, but what impact do they have in your real life? If you saw them on the street, would you even stop to say hello?

Zen Habits to Practice on Social Media

Zen Habits to Practice on Social Media
by Fauzia Burke
Have you ever had a moment where you’ve thought, “what did we ever do without our smartphones?” I’ll be the first to admit, life without smartphones, email, and social media seems unimaginable to me now and, quite frankly, more difficult. How did we ever get anything done? How did we stay connected? 

For busy authors, once laborious tasks are completed in just a few seconds. Yes, it’s true, social media helps us get more exposure and attention for our businesses and books, it directs traffic to our sites, and it builds personal bonds with our readers, clients and colleagues. However there is a dark side, too. 

How Facebook’s Changes Will Impact Authors

How Facebook’s Changes Will Impact Authors
by Fauzia Burke
Earlier this month, Mark Zuckerberg made an announcement that sent shockwaves through the social media stratosphere. Facebook, the largest of the social media networks, will begin to “prioritize posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people.” 

Simply put, this means Facebook, home to over two billion (yes, billion with a ‘B’) users, will begin to de-prioritize posts from publishers, organizations and businesses in favor of those from real people (i.e. your high school best friend and second cousin twice removed). For authors that depend on Facebook to communicate with their readers, this can be shocking and troubling news. 

Small is the New Big in Social Networking

Small is the New Big in Social Networking
by Fauzia Burke
Imagine you are hosting two birthday parties for yourself (I know it sounds indulgent, but go with it for now). At the first birthday party, you invite 50 people. Many of your guests bring friends and before you know it, there are 200 people in your living room you’ve never met. You end up being too busy to talk to anyone and ultimately ask yourself, who are all these people anyway? The silver lining is that everyone talks about how popular you must be.

At the second party, you invite 10 of your closest friends. You sit around a table, talk about old times, share laughs and there is enough food and drink to last hours.

Now that your marathon birthday weekend...

The Importance of Authenticity

The Importance of Authenticity
by Fauzia Burke
The advent of online marketing has made it easier than ever for authors to connect with readers. Gone are the days when authors had to rely on in-person events for the chance to interact with readers directly. Social media has leveled the playing field, giving all writers the chance to connect directly with readers. No longer does the author with the biggest marketing budget automatically win.

Just remember connecting with your readers is a privilege, so think carefully about what to share. How much information is too much? How do you set your online persona?

The answer: Be uniquely you. Aim for authenticity. Take some time to consider what you want people to think of when they think of you. This worksheet...

Where to Start with Social Media

Where to Start with Social Media
by Fauzia Burke
From all the talk of social media, you may think every author is active and enjoying it. But as I talk to authors one thing is clear, there are lots of them still sitting on the sidelines, lots still saying “I hate social media” and a lot of them wanting to start but feeling overwhelmed. One of the questions I routinely get from authors is, “What should I do with social media? I know I need to do something, but I don’t know where to start.”

It’s no surprise that I believe social media is a powerful tool for building and engaging with an audience--and I’m not just talking about Facebook. I encourage all authors I work with to build...

How to Engage Readers with Your Facebook Page

How to Engage Readers with Your Facebook Page
by Fauzia Burke
Just when you thought you were all set to promote your book on your website, I'm writing to you about making your Facebook fan page shine. Spending time on social media sites can feel like a time sink. I know, but there is a bright side. Your Facebook fan page (unlike a personal Facebook page) is accessible to everyone and the sooner you begin, the sooner you can build up your fan base. If you are new to using Facebook, you may want to read my blog on 8 Ways to Increase Engagement on Facebook first.

If you want to take your engagement to the next level, read on. As one of the top social media platforms, Facebook is a terrific...

11 Ways to Promote Your Book Year Round

11 Ways to Promote Your Book Year Round
by Fauzia Burke
I probably don't have to tell you that marketing your book is a year-round endeavor. Today's digital world provides you with endless ways to market your book and connect directly with your readers. Just like we all build relationships in the real world . . . with an investment of your time, you can build your readership online. As you put together your digital marketing game plan, here are some ideas for you to consider.

1. Get a jumpstart. Build up excitement before your book comes out by talking about it on your social media pages. Talk about the process of writing. Share a quote or two from your book. Do a countdown. Create buzz about your book before it's even...

5 Reasons Authors Should Blog

5 Reasons Authors Should Blog
by Fauzia Burke
Writing blogs can be distracting, can be a time sink, can be unproductive, and can be a waste of time. There, I listed most of the arguments against blogging. Now let me make my case. Being an author in 2013 is like being a small business owner. You need a marketing strategy or you will go out of business. If people can't find you, they can't buy your book. You have many choices when it comes to marketing. Here are some options from my blog on Marketing Options for Authors.

Having a digital marketing strategy is absolutely the best option in my biased opinion. Sure you can point to a few authors who don't do anything online and are still successful,...

Social Media vs Social Networking

Social Media vs Social Networking
by Fauzia Burke
Although most of us use the terms interchangeably, there is a difference between social media and social networking. For me, understanding the distinctions was a big aha moment. To develop a comprehensive and effective digital marketing strategy, it is helpful (even crucial) to understand the differences. Social Media Social media is the media (content) that you upload -- whether that's a blog, video, slideshow, podcast, newsletter or an eBook. Consider social media as a one-to-many communication method. Although people can respond and comment, you own the content and have to produce (write/record/create) the media yourself.

Your social media goal and strategy: Decide if you want to connect with your audience in the form of a blog, video, newsletter, podcast or eBook. Blogs are...

7 Great Ways to Promote Your eBook

7 Great Ways to Promote Your eBook
by Fauzia Burke
Today producing books (e or p) has never been easier, but promoting them has never been more difficult. There is a lot of noise in both online and offline media and trying to get attention is challenging for sure. However, publishing a book is a dream come true for every author so if you have finally finished your book, please take some time to celebrate. Just remember there is more work to do!

In order to get your eBook in front of as many eyes as possible, you will need some patience, a plan and some creative ideas. Here are seven to get you started:

Get Your Digital House in Order

Before you begin promoting your book, make sure that you have...

4 Ways to Create Compelling Content

4 Ways to Create Compelling Content
by Fauzia Burke
If your business blog is all about what you want to write about and what you want to market and sell, your blog, as they say, could be an epic fail. While it's great to generate regular content about your business and its niche, the driving factor for your content creation -- whether your blog or your newsletter content -- has to be centered around what your customers' want. To create compelling content your customers can't wait to devour, always ask yourself: Is this providing value to my customer base?

Here are 4 ways to ensure you are generating content that resonates with your target audience. Tune in to the social media channel. How do you find out what your customers want...

Cultivating Super Fans with eNewsletters

Cultivating Super Fans with eNewsletters
by Fauzia Burke
Social media is sexy, but the real power of your relationship with your fans is in email newsletters. The people on your mailing list are your "Super Fans." They are the ones who have given you permission to show up in their inbox. That invitation is very valuable.

Think about it, when was the last time you signed up for a newsletter. Probably not for a while. Once I asked an author that question and she said, "oh I don't do that." She's right we don't do that, unless we are Super Fans or the author/company is providing something of value.

Super Fans are the people who pre-order your books, are the first in line to buy your products, and recommend you...

8 Ways to Increase Engagement on Facebook

by Fauzia Burke
By Fauzia Burke

As of January 2013, Facebook has 1 billion users. 219 billion photos have been uploaded and there have been 140.3 billion friend connections. The average age of users is about 22.

Clearly Facebook is not going anywhere and although my teens hardly use it anymore, many of us visit the site daily. From a business purpose, engagement is more important than fans. You can have a 1,000 fans but if only 2 people are interacting with you very few people will see your posts on their feed. Take a look at the number of fans you have on your Facebook business page. Now note how many people are "talking about this." Your goal should be to increase the "talking...

How to Use Pinterest to Promote Your Book

How to Use Pinterest to Promote Your Book
by Fauzia Burke
By Fauzia Burke

You may think of Pinterest as a place where scrapbooking fans, home interior aficionados and fashionistas go to hang out online and share images, but Pinterest is a social networking site that can be used for so much more. A year ago, Pinterest increased its unique visitors by 155 percent in one month alone, according to HubSpot. Today Pinterest is evolving its features to include business -- and not just personal -- accounts. Pinterest is raising brand awareness and also driving purchasing decisions. So before you write off Pinterest as a crafty outlet you don't have time for, consider that Pinterest can be used as a social media marketing tool to help promote you and your book. If you...

Does Social Media Sell Books? Gillian Flynn's Agent Gives Her Perspective

Does Social Media Sell Books? Gillian Flynn's Agent Gives Her Perspective
by Fauzia Burke
By Fauzia Burke

Those of you who know me are probably shocked at the title of this blog. You know I am a true believer in digital marketing and publicity and always suggest to authors that they should spend time developing a relationship with their readers. So why am I asking this question? For a couple of reasons: One because I am seeing social media burn-out in authors and second because I realized that two of the top selling authors of 2012 did not invest much time in social media.

According to Publisher's Weekly, the three biggest selling authors last year were E. L. James, Suzanne Collins & Gillian Flynn. Neither Suzanne Collins nor Gillian Flynn spend much time on social networking....

7 Ways to be Effective on LinkedIn

7 Ways to be Effective on LinkedIn
by Fauzia Burke
By Fauzia Burke

All social networking venues are not created equal. Each has its own identity. What works on Facebook may not work on LinkedIn or on Twitter. While you can use all social media platforms for an integrated approach to market your book or business, you have to know your audience. The LinkedIn audience is where professionals connect and help each other to be effective, productive and successful. LinkedIn is a great way to build your network, relationships and your personal brand, but in order to do it effectively, you have to use LinkedIn in a professional manner. Here are 7 ways effective:

Stay professional. If you wouldn't put it on your resume, in your portfolio or say it in an...

12 Ways to Build Your Brand and Promote Your Book on Twitter

12 Ways to Build Your Brand and Promote Your Book on Twitter
by Fauzia Burke
An author recently reached out to me via email and said, "I've been tweeting for a couple of weeks and don't see a change in my Amazon ranking. What am I doing wrong?" I told him, "Nothing. Twitter is just not an instant fix. It takes a long time to build a community in social media." That's the honest truth, but there are still ways to make sure the time you spend on Twitter is as productive as possible.

You know the Twitter basics, right? You tweet. You retweet. You write Tweets in 140 characters or less. You keep your tweets short to encourage retweets and you aren't confused by the terms or symbols of #hashtags or @Mentions. So what else?...

4 Ways to Maximize Your Book's Content on Social Media

4 Ways to Maximize Your Book's Content on Social Media
by Fauzia Burke
If you are a published author, you've already done the hard part: You wrote your book and got it published. But don't stop there. If you want to become known as an expert in your field, you need to build your personal brand. There are all sorts of ways you can utilize the content in your book to market yourself in the world of social media.

As an author of non-fiction, here are four ways you can maximize your book's content: Tweet it. If you peruse your book, you will easily see quick sentences that pop out at you as quotable and are perfect for tweets. Look for those compelling quotes that showcase your expertise and are less than 140 characters. Find...