I attended one more session at BEA 2013 on social media on Thursday. And I promise this is the last set of notes! It was a session I attended a version of last year, maybe part 2 of that session. This one is called Facebook 2.0. The speaker was Cindy Ratzlaff. I got stuck on the subway on the way down, and so missed the first 20 minutes, so can’t tell you how she framed her talk, exactly.
Shortly after this, I met Kate, Dana, Amalia, Becca, and Anna at Sleeping Bear, and things started looking up again, thank goodness!
BEA Notes, Part 3
- Be Yourself. All you can be is yourself–don’t try to pretend to be anyone else. People are growing accustomed to having a window into everyone else’s personal life, so while you don’t want to get on fb and (her example) say that you just joined AA and are sober, day three (unless your book is about struggling with addiction?), you should allow a little personal stuff to fuel your posts. Be upbeat, inspirational, live out loud!
- Always post a picture with every post you make. She suggested using clip art or other images in the public domain if you don’t have images of your own readily accessible. She suggested using Instagram in concert with facebook, or making it so that all of your Pinterest posts link to facebook.
- Unless you are only planning to publish one book, have a fb author page that is your name, and stuff about all your books on this page. This is because if you do a book page, when your next book comes out, that old book page will become “dead real estate.” Of course, you will notice above that Cindy’s fb post is her book’s name. It is because of her Facebook 1.0 talk last year that I have two fb pages that are specifically books. Sigh.
- All of your social media, including your author website, should be linked.
- Consider hosting an exclusive fb book club for your best fans, i.e. the ones who are both your “friends” and your “fans.” Offer these exclusive folks discounts, links to web events (I guess like Google+ Hangouts, although I am sure there is something that fb would prefer you use), first reads, free stuff.
- Ask this personal, exclusive book club to be your first reviewers–ask your publisher to give you ARCs for them.
- She uses Camtasia as her video editing software (she is a mac user) and suggests Screenflow if you are a PC user.
- She suggested that you consider paying to “boost a post.” She said that if you have more than 2000 fans, and don’t post once a week, that your posts don’t go to all of your fans. If you haven’t posted for awhile, you can pay to have a couple of posts boosted–meaning sent to all of your fans.
- She strongly encouraged people to pay for their fb pages to be advertised. Use a simple graphic on a white ground, and some terse yet pithy text. You can do as much as your budget will allow–$100 at $10 per day, say. Then you get Likes to your page(s). Then,
- She said, ultimately you want to have the email addresses of all the people who Like your author page–you want to “own” them. To do this, offer your fb fans something lovely and free, available to them if they leave their email address in the secure iFrame App thing that you can pay to have in a fb post.
- Animoto video is a free service to promote your book.
- There was a woman in the audience who was a senior editor, and asked kind of plaintively if there were any training programs for her new authors to learn to do this as she was finding it very difficult to get new authors up to speed, and that her authors who were savvy with social media were the ones who sere selling the most books. Cindy didn’t really answer her directly, except to agree that it was important.
- Finally, she said that fb does not want you to promote your book (or anything) on line. If you try to sell from your fb page, or anything like that, they will “close you down.” So collecting email addresses is kind of on the edge of this, as I understand it.
Friday I attended a couple other talks–the Middle Grade Editors Book Buzz, and Writing for Boys (Becca also attended this one)–and they were really fun. I didn’t take one note on either of those, but just drank them in!
Here’s a couple of giant “mini-figs” made of Lego that were in the DK booth at BEA…