Dawn Colclasure's Blog

Author and poet Dawn Colclasure

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

How to Use Social Media to Market Your New Book: Guest post by Marcela De Vivo

Writer Marcela De Vivo is a guest on my blog today. She took the time to share with authors some tips on how to use social media to promote your book.

How to Use Social Media to Market Your New Book
By Marcela De Vivo

What is Social Media

As an author, what better way is there to promote yourself other than social media? No, really—as a seasoned writer, you have all the tools you need to create successful social media outlets, as social media is all about snappy prose (and catchy graphics and images, if you’ve got that in your tool belt as well).

Social media is a great way to personally engage with your audience. It’s like free advertisements and you control the content. Set up a Facebook fan page, a Tumblr, Instagram account, Twitter, a WordPress blog—or all of the above.

Having various outlets is incredibly helpful; not only do you now have multiple ways of getting the work out on your new book, you can also use them to promote your promotions of yourself (like a Matryoshka doll of social media!). For example, you can post links on your personal website that will lead others to your Twitter or posts, your Tumblr, your Facebook fanpage or any permutation that you can think of.

Where to Start

One of my favorite authors as a teenager was Meg Cabot, best-selling author of The Princess Diaries.  Now, she had quite a following (and a movie deal) by the time social media became in vogue, but that didn’t stop her from utilizing what is a valuable resource for many: she started writing weekly blog posts.

As an avid reader of her works, I also became an avid reader of her blog. She wrote about her day-to-day life, but also included tidbits about books that she was currently writing and editing. Her website was a great way for her readers to stay in touch with what she was working on.

A personal blog is a great way to start your foray into social media—readership of your blog will soon translate into a readership of your work. Plus, you already have the necessary skills as a writer!

To further promote your website, you can hold contests (perhaps with a free copy of your book as a prize), add social share buttons (so people can share links to your posts) and Facebook commenting (so people can share their thoughts on your work!).

Successful Social Media

Probably one of the most notable authors for social media is young adult writer John Green.  John Green is something of a social media juggernaut: he’s on Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook and perhaps most notably, on YouTube. He runs a popular channel along with his brother (their channel is aptly named “VlogBrothers”). Video can be a great way for your readership to get to know you “personally.”

Personally, I’ve never read his books, but his posts that make their way onto my dashboard on Tumblr are so funny, that I often find myself wanting to pick up one of his books—and isn’t that the ultimate goal?

Measuring Activity

Once you have your various social media outlets set up, you can use a tool to track the activity on the sites. Certain tools are capable of tracking visitors, leads and customers.  Tracking such activity is a great way of measuring the effectiveness of your social media outlets in promoting your new book.

So, get out there and create that blog! And Twitter account, Tumblr, YouTube and Instagram accounts. It’s a great way to get a loyal following.


Marcela De Vivo is a freelance writer in the Los Angeles area whose writing covers a range of industries, including marketing, tech, gaming, health and fitness. She uses various social media outlets to successfully promote her blog.   

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