At Weaving Influence, we’re well known for telling our clients that finding success on social or selling their book is more like a marathon than a sprint. But would you be surprised if we also told you that we think it’s okay to give up?
We’ve been launching books and supporting authors since early 2012, and during that time our team has watched trends come — and go. When you’ve worked hard to develop plans and processes, we know how hard it can be to give up on them. However, if you want to find success in the future, then it’s important to be honest in your assessment of what’s working and be willing to give up on what’s not.
Facebook is a prime example of how things change and why we need to constantly flex and adapt.
- Back in 2012, the commonly accepted “best practice” was to set up a professional Facebook page for every book. If an author had three books, that was three Facebook pages to organize, set up, and run; three pages to provide content for and get people to like.
- When this became unpopular, we created “evergreen” author pages. We renamed and reorganized and things picked up again for a time. We changed headers and profile images to promote launches and encourage sales, but engagement on pages was dying. So what next?
- Launch groups, of course! It required more in-the-moment engagement time and some extra planning, but it was absolutely worth it. People loved having direct access to the author for Q & A sessions. They loved feeling like they were a part of an exclusive club. That is, until everyone had a club and it no longer felt exclusive.
- In 2018 — if you hadn’t totally abandoned Facebook for Instagram — it was all about Facebook Live. And if you still have a page and plan to share content then you need to find a budget. Advertising and sponsored posts are what get you in front of the masses, at least until you do something that makes you note (or news) worthy.
The point here is — it’s always changing. What we’ve learned is that it’s not so much about “giving up” as it is about being flexible and connecting to your audience. Let’s face it, Facebook Lives are just the 2018 version of Tweetchats. People still want to connect with you, it’s just the way of doing it that changes.
But some things never change (nor should they), for example:
- Owning your home on the web. The only site you can totally control is your own, so create a site that will grab any visitor who stumbles upon it — whether they get there from Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn. We see no expiration date for this one.
- Graphics are king. No matter where you end up, we’re all short on time and everyone loves a visual, so get creative! Utilize tools like Canva to create graphics that will grab the attention of your audience, and can be repurposed when needed elsewhere.
- Showing up. We don’t care where you end up, but you need to show up if you’re going to be there. If you have a blog (and we believe you should), then you need to write regularly. If you just love LinkedIn, then leave comments, share posts, and reach out to contacts. Wherever you are — show them the real you. Authenticity sells.
If you’ve been trying to build an audience following on a specific social media site, but it’s sapping your time and energy and giving you nothing in return, pull the plug on it!
Don’t hold onto something that’s not working for you and your audience. Experiment, research what others in your genre are doing, step out of your comfort zone, and when you find what clicks — enjoy it while it lasts.
If you’re interested in receiving personalized recommendations for optimizing your channels and making the most of your online presence, consider contacting us to book a consultation with our team in 2019!
Carrie Koens joined the Weaving Influence team in May 2012 and has held a number of roles, including three years as the Book Launch Director (a title she stepped away from in June 2016 in order to focus on the needs of her growing family), and she currently serves the team as a Writer and Consultant. An INTJ with a penchant for culture, book stores, Parisian cafés, Indian curry, British mystery shows, and her passport, you can find her on Twitter @CGKoens.