Friday, February 21, 2014

Social Media Monopoly

Pinterest.

Twitter.

Facebook.

Blogging.

Instagram.

What else have I missed?

Photo Credit
There are so many social media sites out there and it only seems to grow “worse” with every new day. The thing with social media is it’s always changing. Always. We get one thing mastered—for many it was Facebook and Twitter—and now Instragram is on the scene as one more way to stay in touch and market/promote ourselves.

Newsletters are almost becoming obsolete because we stay in touch with our favorite authors and companies through Facebook and Twitter and get real-time updates. Even trying to reveal a book cover to only your newsletter subscribers can be tricky with there being so many ways it can leak out to the public early. We get one thing figured out and the trends have rotated and it’s time for something else.

Social media is not for the faint of heart or those who don’t like to change and adapt. You have to go where the crowds are and then make a place for yourself on the stage. This often is harder than it seems, but many also make this harder than it needs to be.

One of my biggest tips? See if the social media sticks around. Like buying technology the minute it hits the market, give it a couple years and let the company perfect their product. While we don’t usually give that amount of time to social media, I think it is wise to stand back and watch how quickly the fad comes and how soon it wears off.

Pinterest is going strong…and only getting stronger. It might be a good time to jump on that bandwagon. More publishers and publicity campaigns are utilizing this site to reach readers. The average American is on Pinterest and it’s a place to meet them.

Twitter isn’t for everyone. Yes, it’s a place to primarily promote and spread the word about a new book release or a blog post or a signing, but it’s also a great place for conversation. I’ve met and gotten to know good friends through Twitter. It’s not just a giant advertising billboard.

Instragram is a site I have taken to using yet, simply because I don’t take that many pictures and I don’t have a smart phone to automatically post to that site. But look into it. See what kind of readership you can connect with. Not as trying to push what you have to sell, but getting to know your readers. What do they post about, like, enjoy? What do they do on the weekend and read at night? A picture is truly worth a thousand words.
Photo Credit

Social media is not a time to mass promote your book sales. Though there is certainly a time and a place to do that. But balance your promoting with your relationships. These connections you make with real live people, like yourself, should be your number one priority. When the self promotion takes away from the relationships, it’s time to throw the self promotion out the window.

Social media is not about you.

Social media is not about you.

Social media is about what you can do for someone else. How can you help promote their new book release? How can you meet their needs? Get to know them as friends? In cultivating these solid, meaningful friendships, you’ll find a tribe of people willing to return the favor and help you out…without having to ask.

Social media is less about quantity and more about quality. Do one site really well before you join another. And if you’re succeeding where you are, stay there. Test the waters of other sites sure, but make sure what you do, you do well. That is the heart and key to social media.

So head to Go! Collect that $200 and let’s get started.


What social media do you plan to join or get better at in 2014?

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Casey Herringshaw is a homeschool graduate and has been writing since high school. She lives in rural Eastern Oregon in a town more densely populated with cows than people. 

8 comments:

Pepper said...

Great post, Case. Hmm, important tip I noticed is "Social media is not about you"

Btw, my daughter uses Instagram and loves it! It's like a mix between FB and Pinterest.

FB is quite enough for me...and I've just started trying to use Pinterest a little more. Love it...addictive - which is probably a reason I only visit once a week :-)

Casey said...

Pepper, spend too much time in pinterest and it will suck all your free time. Pinterest in evil! LOL! It's my favorite of all the sites. I'm still in social media for my own enjoyment, so I prefer that site over all the others because it's more edifying for me. It's all about where you are at right now. :)

Ron Estrada said...

There's the question we're all asking. Or maybe "which social sites do I plan to dump this year?" I've mastered facebook, tolerated twitter, and wondering where all the Google+ people are hiding. Pinterest is a nice place to drop a link and forget about it. I have to agree with a number of people much smarter than me who advise that we concentrate on writing and not get buried in the social media avalanche. For everything I post on facebook, I probably waste ten minutes scanning for anything interesting. Given that...it's much more important to engage with your followers in social media. If you only have time for facebook, then become the world's greatest facebooker. Your fans will know to find you there. If you only have time to check twitter once a week, it's probably not worth the time. My point after than bit of rambling: write, learn to write better, then with the five minutes you have left, engage on one social site. Don't go searching for new frontiers!

Casey said...

Ron, wise comment and one I completely agree with. DeeAnne Gist is one of my favorite authors to follow on social media, because like you said she does one media and does it REALLY well and engages many, many readers in this venue. And yes, writing good and learning to write well is definitely the key to help build a strong social media audience. I like social media the most because I get to hang out with people from all over the country. :)

Julia M. Reffner said...

I like Pinterest the best although I am really more of a recipe/idea poster so I'm not sure I'm really using it to best advantage as a writer. I've avoided instagram because I don't like putting up pictures of my family and where I live for security reasons. I'll have to think about it.

Casey said...

I'm not a huge fan of instagram, Julia. I think it serves more of those who have the fancy phones and tools to use it. I'd rather post a picture to twitter instead. :) Pinterest is just a place to get to know your potential readers and enjoy the fun yourself. Build a following even just as a friend and the rest will fall into place at the right time. :)

Mary Vee said...

I am looking at Pinterst. I find it a nice place to put my best photos from great places we've seen.

Sherrinda Ketchersid said...

I so love Pinterest. It is by far my favorite. But it is just for me. ;) Personally, I really don't like these social medias for marketing. It turns me off big time. :)