Finding your Way: Discover Yourself
Social media can be an excellent way to promote yourself and help readers discover your work. It’s relatively cheap, if not free.
It can also be a huge drain on your time and resources, both of which you need for your books, short stories, and/or the products you hope to make some money off of.
So, how can you make social media work for you? How do you use your time online to reach that special group of readers who will follow your work and spend money on it?
There’s no one answer to these questions, not that fits all authors. Not if you want your work to stand out and to create a brand that’s uniquely you. A brand that reflects your work and communicates what you write in a clear, direct fashion.
This is the point where many of you may groan and roll your eyes, wondering if I’ve got anything useful to share. Don’t panic. This may seem like the safety net has been clipped beneath you, but there was never a safety net to begin with. Writing is a risky business. We throw ourselves into our art and gamble that someone out there will find us.
Yes, it’s risky, but in this risk is a huge opportunity. An opportunity to take the same creativity you pour into your writing and apply it to social media.
First, you’ve got to discover what you want.
- What are you trying to accomplish via social media?
- Who are your readers?
- What will appeal to them?
- What are some fun ways to catch their eye?
- What is your writing about?
- How can it link to your social media identity?
- Do you even want your writing to be directly linked to your social media identity?
You may not know the answers to these questions, not all of them, but keep them in mind at all times, mulling them over while you go exploring.
- What social medium appeals to you the most?
- Where do you think your potential readers hang out?
- How can you reach them?
You may need to play around a little bit, to find out which suits you most. Look for things you like, which connect with your own ideas and creativity. Thank the people who shared these things. After all, we’re all trying to attract attention in these platforms. Nothing is more gratifying to those putting themselves out there than realizing someone appreciates their efforts. Become an appreciative participant. Seek out posts you appreciate, but don’t forget your goals when you do.
As a writer, there’s something you want to accomplish. Social media is a tool you can use to get closer to that objective. It can also show another side of yourself not revealed as readily through your writing. These are both methods you can use to promote yourself.
The more you use these tools with your goals in mind, the clearer your path will become. Just don’t forget to write while you’re exploring social media. (I’ve fallen into this particular pitfall.) It’s only too easy to get distracted with this shiny, multifaceted toy. Hours can go by, playing with it. Make sure you set aside some time to write, perhaps before you go exploring. Recalling your goals will help with this. They can bring you back when you’re distracted. Don’t get me wrong, shiny is great. This wonderful toy can be an ample source of inspiration in itself. Take time to use it and channel it into your work. Let it guide you to your accomplishments rather than lure you away from them.