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Making Time for Social Media

I never imagined how much time is involved in book marketing and building (and maintaining) your author platform. I work full-time and write part-time. Life gets in the way sometimes, but I make sure I build in time for the care and feeding of my social media sites. Here are my ideas for writers.

Social is the key word. You need to have a presence, and you need to be active on the sites you choose. But, you can't do everything, and all platforms may not work for you and your books. Decide what sites you and your readers like. And know the demographics of each site. The Pew Research Center has a good overview of each of major players. For my readership, I focus on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, and Goodreads. I occasionally post on LinkedIn, but that's usually about my work life.

Twitter lists are a big time-saver. They help me stay organized. The list gives me a newsfeed of just the accounts I select. There are a lot of posts out there. This helps me see just what I'm interested in.

Create a daily schedule for your social media time. I get up at 5:00 AM, so I check my sites during breakfast. I often check on them at lunch. In the evening while watching TV, I spend time catching up on posts. You need to respond to comments and participate in conversations. Social media doesn't work if you don't post or if all your posts are "buy my book."

Schedule Facebook posts (on your author page) and tweets to happen when you're not usually active (during the work day or in the wee hours of the morning). I've picked up followers from different time zones this way. I'm an early bird, but a lot of readers are night owls.

Look for blog/social media support groups. There are also quite a few hashtags that encourage support for writers and bloggers. I have joined several online groups, and we share each others' content and engage with posts.

For your social media to work for you, you can't just be a poster or a reposter of others' content. That's a good start, but you need to comment, like, and share. The interaction is what increases your reach.

These are the things that work for me. How do you manage your social media?

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