|Image Courtesy of Gratisography|
Indies, there's no getting around this; if you want to be successful in your endeavors, you will have to learn to leverage social media.
The good news about this is that this is nowhere near as scary as it sounds. I know social media can seem like some daunting, troll-infested monster that exists only to chew you up and eliminate you (and to be fair, a lot of it is), but the truth is, once you sift through all the spam and crap, you will find it to be your most invaluable marketing tool. Especially since you can do a great deal of it for free.
Here are some quick tips to get your started.
1). Find Your Favorite Platform.
Twitter is where I'm at my best, followed closely by Facebook. I maintain presences on LinkedIn, Pinterest, Google Plus, and I promote the end of domestic violence and child abuse on Tumblr. Try each of the different social medial platforms to learn which one you're most comfortable with. Be yourself. Be authentic. Be genuine. You'll run into scum, sure, but chances are you'll meet some like-minded people and that's what you're looking for.
2). Promote the Holy Hades Out Of Everyone Else.
This is the most important step you can take. Promote others and do so relentlessly. With tweetdeck, I have columns dedicated to the people I engage with the most and another labeled "#amwriting" so I can engage with the hashtag I'm most active in. I'll take a second to check out the tweet or headline, I'll read the article, and then I'll retweet it. I'll do this for as many people as I can. Doing this has allowed my twitter following to engage at a clip of nearly one hundred new followers per month, and opened up a lot of new relationships.
Promote others before you begin to promote yourself, I cannot stress this enough. The people who blow their own horns all day quickly become ignored and irrelevant, because no one wants to hear that all day. But if you're promoting someone else, contributing to the success of others with no thought to your own, and if you're patient, I promise, you will begin to see results.
3). Use Sites Like Triberr.
Triberr has been an absolute boom to my marketing. This is a site where you upload your blog, join various "tribes" that match your interests, and others in said tribe share your posts across their networks, and you do the same.
Triberr is a site in which you get out what you put in. I blog on Mondays, so I tend to jump on roughly every other day to check for new updates. Not only has this given me a reach of three million people who see my posts, but it's also allowed me to meet a ton of new people and improve both my writing and marketing skills.
To summarize, good marketing isn't so much about getting your stuff in front of as many eyeballs as possible, as it is about ensuring everyone else has the same chance. The more you do for others, the more they will do for you. It doesn't happen quickly, or overnight, but if you stick with the process, it does eventually happen.
Thanks for reading. Good luck.
UPDATE: Anna Simpson put together this excellent post on marketing for beginners over on her blog, Elements of Writing. If you're not reading her blog, you should be.
Avery K. Tingle is a brand-new writing coach and author of multiple short stories across varying genres. Epic fantasy “Era of the Scourge Book 1: The Ring of Asarra” was named a recommended read by Amazon and is available as an ebook or audiobook. Ask how to get a free copy of the audiobook!
Scifi/Romance “The Anniversary” is available in print as an ebook from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Apple, Oyster, and Page Foundry. Ask how to get a signed copy!
You can also read urban drama “The Price of Justice” for free.
Sign up for thenewsletter, never miss another post, and get more free stuff and discounts than his business manager is comfortable handing out.