When the ladies at All The Kissing first asked me to write this post about social media platforms and their value, I laughed. Because, to me, all social media platforms are just different vehicles through which I might discuss my endless devotion to tacos, and whatever fun new part of my body is covered in baby spit-up on any given day.
But that is neither relevant nor professional. SO. Let’s talk about the different social media platforms at your disposal as a romance writer, and what you can expect from each.
3 Social Media Platforms for Authors
Baby spit up and tacos aside (but seriously, don’t take my tacos), here are the three primary platforms most authors use:
So now that we’ve got the obvious out of the way, let’s talk about how social media can work for you as a romance author.
With more than 2 billion users as of 2018, Facebook is the world’s largest social network. From teenagers to grandparents, Facebook has become this popular because it helps people stay in contact with their family and friends, and can be used to promote companies, products and ideas.
Here’s What You Can Expect
For authors, the best way to connect with followers is through a fan page, separate from your personal account. It is important to stay up to date with the page and post consistently if you want to gain a loyal following.
More and more, Facebook is updating its algorithm to reduce the organic reach of unpaid posts — they want fan pages to pay to boost select posts, or pay for Facebook advertising. If you have infinity dollars, awesome. Pay to play. If you don’t want to spend infinity dollars, however (Lord knows I’d rather spend my dollars on tacos), engaging consistently and frequently is the best way to ensure your posts will gain traction, and your fan page will thrive.
• • • Join All The Kissing on Facebook! • • •
Ahhh, my favorite. Possibly every writer’s favorite. Twitter is a fast-moving, meme-dealing machine through which users may post up to 280 characters of breaking news, pithy commentary, interesting links, taco haikus (don’t laugh, I’ve done this), and more.
Fun fact, there are more than 300 million active users on Twitter, and those users post an average of 400 million tweets every day.
Here’s What You Can Expect
Book Twitter is a rich community. People are welcoming and friendly, warm and inviting. Like I said earlier, though, Twitter moves quickly. Most tweets are gone from someone’s timeline within an hour, depending on how many users that person follows. However, if a tweet is performing exceptionally well and garnering lots of likes and comments, it will remain close to the top of followers’ news feeds with every reply.
You can use writing hashtags to find and engage with friends and fans. #AmWriting, #AmRevising, #AmEditing, #PitchWars, #OnThePorch, and, of course, #AllTheKissing — these are great ways to connect with others on Book Twitter. My personal favorite is, of course, our very own #FridayKiss hashtag and all its swoony content.
• • • Follow All The Kissing on Twitter! • • •
Acquired by Facebook in 2012, Instagram is a mobile app that allows users to capture and share photos and videos with their followers. Followers are gained organically, commonly through the use of hashtags. Users also now have the Stories option, for sharing video and photo content in a stream style, aside from their main profile content.
Beautiful aesthetics play well on Instagram, and it’s a great way to show your fans another angle of your life.
Traveling to a cool destination? Making something delicious for dinner? Catching up with friends? These are all great ideas for the type of content that plays well on Instagram.
Here’s What You Can Expect
Since Instagram is photo-based, pretty pictures are naturally going to get more attention. Try to use natural light, don’t over filter, and try to seek out visually interesting photo subjects (unless you are me, then just post different photos of your baby over and over and over…ya know, just in case anyone forgot what babies look like).
Like Facebook, Instagram also loves to adjust its algorithm. Previously, liberal use of hashtags was a fantastic way to increase your reach and gain new followers. Now, Instagram is cutting down on that, recognizing it as spam.
Hot Tip: Use a few targeted hashtags on your posts, but not dozens.
Additionally, I’ve noticed that when I consistently post to my Stories, my profile posts tend to perform better.
One thing to consider is that many of the most popular Instagram feeds—aside from celebrities—have a theme. This can be a visual theme, meaning one set color or mood that is used consistently, or a content theme, meaning you might discuss largely the same type of content in each post, whether it’s about books, coffee, funny memes, etc.
• • • Follow All The Kissing on Instagram! • • •
And here, just because I love ya, are a few key takeaways to keep in mind when posting on all platforms:
- Fans and friends appreciate interaction. If someone engages with you on social media, respond to them in a timely manner.
- Don’t only promote yourself, promote others. If all you’re doing is pitching your own work, you’re going to lose followers. Fast. If you share the successes of your friends, not only do you naturally vary your content, but it will likely be remembered and reciprocated when it’s your turn to share exciting news.
- No time to post? No problem. You can schedule content ahead of time using Hootsuite or Tweetdeck.
- Get more mileage out of your content by versioning it for each platform. Try not to auto-link your platforms. For example, if you send your Instagram image to Twitter, it’ll show up as a link rather than a photo. Take the extra step to keep your profiles looking as great as they can!
Happy posting, everyone!