How to please the 2 main reader types on your FB author page

facebook-like-iconBig ‘news’ today about Facebook— it is leftist and doesn’t give a fair shake to conservative news stories on its ‘trending’ feature. I think that all conservative Facebook users other than a few people’s great-grandmothers knew that. But— back to our series about improving your Facebook author page.

To write posts that please your readers, you have to understand what kind of people are clicking ‘like’ on your author page. The two major groups are these:

  • People who have read one of your books and sought out your author page to find out more about you. These fans are your true fans— they really like one of your books and probably will buy another book from you.
  • Other authors with fan pages who ‘like’ your page because you are an author, too, and they want to network with you, or get you to ‘like’ their page, or get you to share some of the stories in their feed. And, oh, buy their books.

The first group is going to be easy to please so long as you keep writing books and giving them information on your upcoming books that other fans might not know. They want to feel that THEY are your friends, in an internet sort of way, and the best way to keep these fans buying your books is to treat them like friends.

The second group is more of a hard-sell. They are not interested in YOU or YOUR BOOK, they want to get you interested in buying their book. You have to win them over into being interested in your book. How?

First, ‘like’ all those author pages right back, with your personal account, ‘liking’ as your author page, or both. Then, check your news feed and when those authors have posted things about their writing life, post a short comment or at least click ‘like.’ Just doing that once to twice a month for each author actively posting on their author page can get you some attention.

Next, if one of these authors has really BIG news about their writing, particularly a new book coming out, consider sharing that big news on your own author page. DON’T do this at the peak time for your own original author page posts— you don’t want to compete with those posts that are most important on your page.

Instead, schedule the someone-else’s-news shares for a couple hours after your peak time. You can get in the habit of posting regularly at that time as well, sharing other author’s news or writing about what books you are reading.

Third, make sure your major posts— the ones aimed at your true fans— regularly give information about on what genre you write and what your books are about. Instead of saying ‘Bell Tower’ got several new reviews, say ‘my murder mystery ‘Bell Tower’, or perhaps give your book’s storyline (One sentence summary. ‘My book Bell Tower, a story about a ballroom-dancing hunchback who is framed for the murder of a mime, got several new reviews today.

So many writers don’t do this, they use their book title as if everyone knows about that book. Bad move. Most people don’t, and some of the ones that do may forget. To win new readers, you need to keep that basic information out there.

If you still aren’t getting attention from any of your fellow authors, go nuclear. Read their books. Many authors frequently announce on their author page when a book of theirs is temporarily free in ebook form. When such an announcement is made, and the book is in a genre you are willing to read, download it, read the first chapter, and then, as a comment on the post when the author announced the free ebook thing, announce that you downloaded it, read the first chapter, and say something positive about it.

Since many of the authors who read your page are indie or small press authors concerned about their book sales, you will have won a friend, especially if you write a review on Amazon.com promptly after finishing.

The preceding seems like you will be spending more effort winning over other authors with Facebook pages than with pleasing your true fans. Effort-wise, that may be true, but your author page should look as if your main focus is pleasing the true fans. Because they are what your writing life is all about.


Stuff I read online:

Lifezette: Trump v. Clinton … and Bush by Laura Ingraham
Dave Dubrow: SJWs and Content Creators: Ideological Purity Required
GirlZombieAuthors: Lizzie Borden, Zombie Hunter, The Reward

Get more visitors to your Facebook author page

facebook-like-iconSo, you have a Facebook author page. Your next task is to set about getting some visitors. Here are some ways to get started doing that.

  1.  Add original, quality wall posts daily/Mon-Fri. Original means stuff you wrote yourself, not shares of things from other people’s Facebook page. Quality? At minimum it should be correctly spelled, grammatical and understandable. Your blog posts, syndicated to your Facebook page, count. Other people’s blogs, memes, updates generally do not.
  2. If visitors comment, interact with them— comment back, at least with an emoticon or LOL, and ‘like.’ You want visitors to your page to feel like you are their friend.
  3. ‘Like’ other authors’ Facebook author pages AS YOUR PAGE. From time to time, share some of these pages on your wall with a comment or two about the author. You can also share them on Twitter. I have a list of FB author pages that you can use to get started. https://myantimatterlife.wordpress.com/facebook-author-pages/ More FB author pages will be added in time, so keep checking back.
  4. Interact with the Facebook author pages you have liked regularly. You can find the pages feed for your FB author page on the left side of the page under your profile pic, where it says ‘See Pages Feed.’ Read some of the pages, ‘like’ stuff, comment on stuff. Don’t overdo it by commenting on one page all the time, spread the love around.
  5. ‘Like’ and interact with other FB pages that relate to your genre, category or ‘brand.’ For example, a zombie fiction author might ‘like’ a few of the more active The Walking Dead fan pages, and interact there. If your fiction has a lot of conservative/libertarian political content, find a couple of related political FB pages and post some pithy comments there from time to time.
  6. Join some good FB writing groups. After you have interacted for a while, ask for the links to others’ FB author pages, suggesting that members can all ‘like’ one another’s pages. Be sure you do this on a day that you can keep checking back with the group so you can keep ‘liking’ pages.
  7. Be sure and ask your friends and family to ‘like’ your FB author page. That’s usually good for a few new ‘likes.’
  8. Be patient. Post original, quality content every day for a week and you may feel like no one notices. Do it for a month and your page may feel a little more interactive. Do it for a year, and who knows what might happen?

Don’t miss the next post in the series, ‘like’ my Facebook author page and be kept up-to-date. https://www.facebook.com/nissalovescats/

Why do writers need a Facebook fan page? #writing

NissaWnameWriters today are saddled with the task of promoting their own books and their own writing career. And most don’t know where to start. One excellent resource is something you may be using already: Facebook.

When you join Facebook, you get a personal FB page. This is not what I’m talking about. A Facebook fan page is what I’m talking about.

Why not just use your Facebook personal page to promote your writing? Personal pages are limiting. No one can see them without making the effort to become your Facebook friend. And you can only have 5000 friends. For a writer, that can be bad. [Facebook Fan Pages vs. Profile Pages: Which is Better for a Writer?]

For a FB fan page to work for you, you build it thoughtfully. This is how you do that:

  • Find a good name for your page. Stephen King, Writer or Stephen King, Author are better than just Stephen King until you get world-famous. You can’t change your page name after you get 100 likes for your page, so choose wisely. My page name is Nissa Annakindt, poet, Aspie and cat person— a little long, but it expresses my quirkiness and promises kitten pictures.
  • Your profile picture should be a decent author photo of you. Not your book cover. Your pic makes your fans feel like they know you, would recognize you if they saw you in Aldi’s or Walmart. My usual profile pic is above— it’s a selfie. I wore the cowboy hat to indicate my interest in the Western genre. Sometimes I change my profile pic to an old family photo of me at about age 4, wearing a cowboy hat also.
  • Your cover photo is where you can put one or more of your book covers, if you are published. Otherwise use a pic that says something about you as a writer. Perhaps a pic of you at your writing work area, at a library, on a zombie walk?
  • Facebook will ask you what kind of page it is. Choose ‘author.’ Even if you are not published yet.
  • Enter information into your ‘About’ section thoughtfully. (I haven’t finished filling out mine yet, must work on that.)

When you have your basic Facebook page set up, then it is time to work on a strategy for posting on the page. Perhaps write down some topics and themes that crop up again and again in your writing life, or in your reading life. For example, my writing, even my poems, very often has religious or political themes. So posting about political or faith-based things will attract the kind of readers I’m looking for.

Tell your writing friends about your FB page. Dont have any writing friends? Join a few good FB writers groups— ones that have actual discussions on them, not ones where the posts are just a series of author self-promos of their books. Interact with the other group members by liking and commenting on their posts. Do about 8-10 comments on other people’s stuff before posting something of your own.

Another trick with Facebook writing groups is to start a topic where everyone is invited to share one another’s Facebook author pages, so that group members can ‘like’ one another’s stuff.

Once you have even 5 or 10 ‘likes’ on your page, make sure you are posting things of interest regularly. In time, your page will grow.


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Kredu al la Sinjoro Jesuo, kaj vi estos savita.

Hints:
la = the
Sinjoro = mister, Lord
kaj = and

Facebook for Writers: Personal Page or Fan Page

Facebook

 

If you are a writer or future writer, you need to build a platform. Having some degree of popularity on social media can help. But it can be confusing to figure out what to spend your time on.

Blogging is essential, I believe— your blog can double as your author page and you don’t have to pay for it. A writer should try to write a blog post every week.

But the next most important social media is Facebook. People’s grandmothers are on Facebook. It’s a big place. And there is more real social interaction than on Twitter, which so far for me has had next to no social interaction at all except for the friends that I have from Facebook.

But there are two kinds of Facebook pages you need to be aware of. Many writers have BOTH. But if you only have time to put your effort into ONE, which should you choose.

I don’t actually have the final answer on this one, not even for myself. But here are some probably-rambling thoughts I’ve had about the two types of pages.

1. Your Personal Page

When you start a Facebook account, what you get is a personal page. Facebook wants you to use your real name, inform them about which schools you went to, what your job is, what movies you watch, and so on. To interact with a personal page, you must send a friend request.

Some writers use their everyday, regular Facebook personal page to interact with readers. Readers can send friend requests to them, or they can ‘follow’ the account. There is a 5000 person limit on ‘friends’ but you can have more followers than that.

If your name is John Smith, readers will have a dickens of a time figuring out which John Smith to send a friend request to. So some authors have a second Facebook page with a ‘name’ something like John Smith Author or Mary Jones Writer. These pages still have the same friend limit as any other personal page.

You can find MY personal Facebook page at: https://www.facebook.com/nissa.amas.katoj     I accept friend requests from blog readers and fans of my poetry books, and I update about my writing life— you are welcome to make a friend request. It’s also the Facebook page my mom, brother, nieces and cousins use to interact with me. I also have an old FB personal account that was under a pen name I thought of using, but I decided not to use it so that account is for playing Facebook games.

2. A Facebook Fan Page

The second kind of Facebook page authors use is a Fan Page. You don’t send a friend request to these pages, you ‘like’ them. The advantage of these pages is that there is no friend limit. And also, for a reader to click ‘like’ is less of a commitment than to send a friend request. Facebook doesn’t like it when you send out too many friend requests and some people have been restricted.

There are some things you can do if you start a Facebook fan page. You can go out and ‘like’ as many pages related to your genre, writing in general, and also topics that are of interest to YOU. For me that’s conservative-libertarian politics, prolife and pro-marriage pages, Star Trek and Doctor Who, and the Catholic stuff. When you like pages as your page, you have a news feed that is specific to your fan page. If you visit the pages in your feed and comment on stuff, you might get people who like your comments to decide to like your page.

I have two different writing related fan pages. One is ‘Nissa Annakindt, poet, Aspie & cat person‘. This is about my personal writing and it does tend to get neglected. I’m trying to post more there. Please like the page?

The other fan page is a group effort together with other writers. It’s called Sci-Fi, Fantasy and the Christian Faith, and it’s a Christian (Catholic, Evangelical, other) look at the Sci-fi/fantasy world. One of my co-admins, author Declan Finn, actually does most of the posting on this page, at least right now. I REALLY want you to like this page. And share it with all your Facebook buddies. Cause this page is not just about me.

The hard thing about working on the Fan pages is that both as yet are small, and so I get more of a reaction to what I post on my personal page. I need to work harder on those pages.

 

For either type of Facebook pages, posting in the morning (US Eastern Time morning) tends to get more response to posts. But there is only one morning and mine should be filled with me, writing. So I am trying to go on Facebook in the evenings and schedule some good posts for the morning ahead. In fact, I should have done that last night.

Comments welcome!

What kinds of Facebook pages do you use in for your writing? Please include links to them in your comment so I can ‘like’ them. (Or ‘friend/follow’ them.)

Do you have any good tips for using Facebook as a writer or wannabe writer? Or do you have any questions that I or another reader might have the answer to? We’d love to hear from you.

A request.

I am trying to get an audience for this blog, so if you would like, perhaps you can share this blog post on Facebook, Twitter, or some other place. Thank you.

 

 

Bloggers: You’ve got to be a hooker to get ahead

Kitten Therese after her bath.

Kitten Therese after her bath.

You have a blog, and you’ve just written a great blog post. Or a not-so-bad blog post. Or a bad blog post with a cute kitten picture in it (that’s my technique). How do you go about getting people to read it?

I’m the admin of a Facebook group called Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers. Every now and again a new group member promotes their blog by cutting-and-pasting a blog post’s URL and posting it to the group. No intro, no explanation, just the bare URL and whatever Facebook puts up along with it.

Some people use their Facebook pages— personal or other— in the same way. They do it with Twitter. And they are all wrong.

People, sadly, are not born with an innate desire to read YOUR writing. And so, you need to give them a reason to read.

For example: “I just wrote a blog post about methods of toilet cleaning at [URL]. What do you think of it?”

Or, “Have you noticed in the past three days all Democrats have dyed their hair blue? Why do you think they are doing that? [URL].

Now, I post my blog posts to 2 Facebook pages— my personal page and my page Nissa Annakindt, writer, Aspie, cat person— using Networked Blogs so I don’t have a chance to be fancy with intros and such.

In this case, the only way to hook readers is through your post title. For example, in this post instead of talking about hooking your readers, I used the phrase ‘be a hooker’ to get the same meaning across. I’m hoping it might get attention. And I put ‘Bloggers’ specifically because I’m hoping to find some readers looking to get more readers for their blog.

On Twitter, which I don’t use very well, I no longer have it set up to automatically tweet my blog posts. I do that individually so I can make it interesting and put in a useful #hashtag. I also usually post the kitten picture from the top of the blog post on Twitter with the blog post.

So, the next time you decide to post a link to your blog post on Facebook or Twitter, stop and think first. How can you best hook a reader?