It’s me again, with another topic for discussion. This one is always a two-edged sword, and I look forward to your comments.
The topic for today is Social Media.
The dictionary gives this definition of social media: websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking.
I often ask myself if participating on social media platforms is a complete waste of my time and effort. Is there one platform that is more sound and effective than another? Where do we go from here? Is there a point where we throw in the social media towel?
It’s a convoluted maze.
I have attended many author marketing conferences through the years, and every marketing expert drove home the concept that in order to be a successful author, you must have a strong social media presence. So, I believed them. And I worked hard to establish a social media presence.
Now, I hear of some authors who have no social media presence at all and still sell books. Teri Polen recently shared a blog post about her author friend who does not participate in any form of social media. I’m not going to reiterate that post, so if you missed it, you can take a look at it here. Coffee With Larry and An Unexpected Surprise.
Perhaps Larry found the magic solution to hitting a bestseller list.
Then again, it may not work the same way next time.
That is the other frustrating part about all social media. In one instance, I will have a gangbusters book launch with great sales, and the next time, using the same formula, hardly sell anything at all.
I am on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, Pinterest, TikTok (although not for long), and maintain my website and blog. That’s a LOT!
But what do I drop? Each platform has its strengths. Likewise, each platform has its downside.
I like Facebook for keeping up with family and friends. I have both a personal and an author page. I often consider deleting one of them, but so far, haven’t.
I like Twitter for short blasts. I also like Twitter because you can follow your favorite celebrities (if you have any.) I follow some mainstream authors just because I think I might learn from them.
I use Instagram the least because it all has to be done on my phone, and to be honest, I don’t always remember to take photos to share.
I use Pinterest as sort of a storage facility. I save blogs I want to refer back to along with images for future projects.
I put book trailers up on YouTube and have put a lot of Rick’s music on that platform.
I never use LinkedIn, although my blog posts are automatically shared on that platform.
I got a TikTok account because it was the hottest new platform for advertising my books. However, I don’t think it is for me. I am not that good at putting together great videos, and that’s what it’s all about.
I will always continue to maintain my blog and website. If I were forced to choose, those would be the two I would most definitely keep.
I truly am baffled and overwhelmed by all these platforms, and trying to keep current and relevant on each. So, which ones do I drop? Which ones do I give the most attention to?
Should I stop it all?
These are all things I ask myself.
So far, I’ve done a total of 19 Book Marketing posts at Story Empire. I’ve explored a lot of different avenues, spent hard-earned money on each, and shared my thoughts and results. As I look back on it, I’m left to wonder if I learned anything at all. Did I draw any concrete conclusions?
I feel like I’m searching for a holy grail that doesn’t exist. I don’t think there is a single magic bullet to selling our books via social media platforms. What works today might not work tomorrow, and vice-versa.
Keeping up with it all gets exhausting at times.
If you’ve found a solution to managing social media platforms, I’d love to hear from you. Let’s share.