Thursday, January 16, 2020

Dear O'Abby: How do I get the most out of my online publicity opportunities?

Dear O'Abby,

Thank you so much to Operation Awesome for featuring us in the Debut Author Spotlight. We’re so happy about it. Might you have any suggestions on how we can promote, share, etc., to get more exposure for the feature? 

Best,
New Authors

Dear New Authors,

When publishing the Debut Author Spotlights, Operation Awesome schedules a number of social media posts about the feature, each highlighting one of the questions asked in the interview or something interesting in one of the answers.  One of the best ways to promote an interview or review online is to share these social posts so a new circle of people see them or write new social posts linking to the interview.

If, in the interview, you mention other authors, book review bloggers or anyone else in the industry, you can tag them when you share or post and hopefully they will then share with their circles too.  

Using the most effective hashtags when sharing or posting is also a way to extend the reach of any publicity opportunity by making the post searchable for people looking for something specific.  For example, if, in your interview, you talk about diversity in your books, you may want to use a hashtag that indicates you're talking about diversity so people searching for diverse books will find it more easily.  There is a site that will help you find the best hashtags for your posts.

You can also mention your interview in other interviews if it's relevant.  If an interviewer asks something you have already answered in depth elsewhere, in your reply to that question, you can say something like "I actually already spoke at length about this very topic here" and link to the interview.

The most important thing to remember about social media is that it's social.  Your feed should not be just a constant litany of "read my book, read my book, read my book".  Share other writers' interviews too, if they are relevant or you find them fascinating.  Engage with other writers and readers on the platform by sharing their posts or commenting on them. Social media is about building a community and you don't build anything worthwhile by constantly spamming people with ads for your own work.

Another thing to think about is using images in your posts.  People scrolling through screes and screes of social posts are more likely to stop and look at something with an eye-catching image than a post which is just a bunch of text. 

This is by no means a comprehensive lesson on how best to utilize social media, but hopefully it will help you in making existing information about you and your book work harder for you.

X O'Abby

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