As a self published author, there really is no choice but to market yourself. I suppose you could have an amazing book that relied solely on word of mouth, but I’m not sure hiding under a rock and waiting for the world to embrace your tome is going to translate to great riches and book sales. The other side of that spectrum is the one I feel I’m currently inhabiting, which feels like social media overload.
This is a current list of what I’m updating (on a weekly, daily or monthly basis):
Pinterest boards dedicated to respective projects (currently 4)
Facebook page for Ann Benjamin
Facebook page for YA series
Tumblr account for Marching Arts Photography
Tumblr account for Hotels
SheWrites Account (rarely updated, but linked to my blog)
Amazon Author page (linked to marching Tumblr account)
YouTube – YA Series specific, very rarely updated
Fanfiction account – yes, this can drive traffic to my original work
Figment / Inkpop Account – for YA series only
Vimeo – YA Series specific, would expect to start account under Ann Benjamin once book trailers are created
I know for a fact that the marching Tumblr has translated into more (if not significantly more) sales for my YA works. The marching Tumblr has grown in leaps and bounds, and I am appreciative of each of my 2752 followers (as many of them have purchased my novels and given positive feedback). Given the demographic I’m targeting for my Ann Benjamin books skews higher than the average age of Tumblr (which I would guess is 19), I’m not sure the effort is going to pay off in the same way. Still, it’s the kind of mindless adding and reblogging that I can do almost anywhere, so I’ll probably continue it for the time being.
Having started Twitter in January, I’m not particularly convinced having an account is going to do something spectacular for me. Then again, maybe I’m doing it wrong. Basically, I’ve got Twitter in advance of contacting every hotel and travel connection I can once Room 702 is out for publicity. Until then, the effort seems rather pointless. Where Tumblr attracts people (and potential readers) interested in a particular subject, Twitter comes off as weirdly narcissistic and I feel like I’m back in high school, watching the “cool kids” (celebrities) exclude almost everyone else.
Facebook is ubiquitous and I would argue, at least worth having a presence. I’ve actually linked my Twitter (which is connected to the WordPress account) to the facebook page, so at least the account looks active. Additionally, a box for my Facebook page appears on both my blog and my Tumblr account. Again, as I’ve seen growth for my YA stuff from Tumblr to facebook, I think I’m happy to keep up the relationship between the two.
Finally, and most recently, is Pinterest, which has been getting a lot of hype among authors and other branding specialists. At the moment, I have dedicated boards to my various projects, but I don’t believe anyone is following them purely because of their interest in my upcoming work. However, I love being able to virtually collect all my ideas, so absolutely plan on keeping this account active.
What are your thoughts? Is there an obvious form of social media I’m missing? Or is a combination of sites the best way to build an audience?