Welcome to Social Media Saturday!

In The Coffee Break Guide to Social Media for Writers I talk about how the core of social media is to actually be social. But how do you do that in the age of automation and spam?
Here are five tips to social media success:

1. Posts that actually provide real value.

A button on a keyboard that says the word value

If you write about historical romance than I’d bet a bunch of your fans are interested in…drumroll please…history. Same goes for any and all genres. Add some posts to your social media routine about something cool or interesting that you found when researching your book. Pictures, links to articles (especially if you’ve blogged about it), videos or anything else your readers will also think is cool and interesting. That’s adding value.

For a great example check out Coreene Callahan. She writes paranormal books about dragons. Part of her social media routine is to post cool pictures of dragons and I’m in love with her Dragon Tip Tuesdays. A great example of providing value to her fans.

2. Engage with others and Build meaningful relationships
Yes, yes and yes. This. Whichever social media platform you’re on you should actually be social. Reply to someone’s tweet, comment on their Facebook post, comment on their blog, share their YouTube video and tag them in your post about it so they know you’re engaging with them.
Make friends with people, even if you’ll never meet them in real life. Other writers and fans can become lifelong friends and proponents of you and your books.

3. Act the way you would act in a real life situation
It’s easy to get all up on your soapbox when you’re hiding behind a keyboard and monitor. If you wouldn’t say something to someone’s face, don’t say it on social media.
That leads nicely into the next tip.

4. Don’t be an annoying spammer
When you meet someone in real life do you say “Buy my book!” as soon as you meet them? Or do you ask them to buy your book a hundred times? That would be really weird, so don’t think that’s okay to do on social media either.
Would you say “Nice to meet you, check out my book on Amazon – here’s the link.”
Umm, again, that would be weird unless you were at some sort of awesome book speed dating event.

But, when you meet someone in real life and you’re getting to know each other of course you would and should mention that you’ve written a book.

Yes, tell people you’ve written a book and where they can get it, but do it at the appropriate times.

5. Don’t spend too much time on social mediaA red coffee mug that says Take a Break on it
We all know it can be a serious time suck. Don’t let it. Set a timer, stick to the rule of three (three scrolls through the feed, three engagements, three posts). If you spend a coffee break or two actually engaging with people and putting up valuable posts you’ll be golden.

Have any other great tips?
I’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment or start a discussion. We can really learn a lot from each other.

Happy Writing,