Try out my 10-Day Social Media Challenge to build networks and increase engagement.

10-Day Social Media Challenge

Try out my 10-Day Social Media Challenge to build networks and increase engagement.

What’s more important than Google when it comes to driving traffic to your website, sales pages, and affiliate offers?

If you said social media, you’re right.

With billions of loyal users, social media sites like Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter and Instagram are now credited with more than 30% of all website traffic, according to a study by Shareaholic.

Clearly, we all need to pay attention to social media marketing, but if you’ve ever tried to put the power of social media to work for your business you may not have seen the results you wanted. Without a plan, it’s easy to flounder around, waste a lot of time, and not really achieve anything.

A good social media plan incorporates a mix of all the following elements:

  • Interesting and compelling content you create (your blog, videos, podcasts, etc)
  • Older content that still has value to your visitors (and you)
  • Other people’s content
  • Inspirational messages and quotes
  • Funny quotes and images
  • Events and offers
  • Personal stories

I will provide information and an assignment or challenge, each day Monday through Friday, for two weeks. You will have the opportunity to share ideas, ask questions, and learn along with others in a private Facebook Group as well as here on my website.

Ready? Click here to join the challenge now!

Not on Facebook? Send me an e-mail and I’ll get the information out to your inbox each day.

Questions or comments? Enter them in the comment section below.

Save

Save


Social Media Blog Hop Week 4 – Content of Posts

Social Media Blog Hop

This week we are discussing these questions:

  • What do you share?
  • Where do you find content?
  • Ratio of promotional/other

What do you share?

The content I share depends somewhat on the social media site where I’m posting:

Facebook Profile: Information I think would be interesting to my friends and family:

  • Some of my activities
  • Things that I’m celebrating
  • Inspirational quotes
  • Pictures
  • Links to blog posts and other information I find helpful

Here’s a post from my timeline today:

Thankful for a successful trip to Edmonton yesterday. I played many different instruments, some several times. (For fun, I even tried out a $200,000 Steinway, a $240,000 Bosendorfer, and a $50,000 Petrof!) In the end, we came home with a digital piano from Don’s Piano Place in St. Albert. (The same place I bought my own Samick grand over 15 years ago.) Looking forward to using the instrument for many years to come smile emoticon

Facebook Page: Information I think would be interesting to acquaintances, readers, and other writers

  • Links to helpful resources
  • Humour
  • Quotes
  • Recipes (because I like to cook)
  • Tidbits about me
  • Information about my writing and products

Here’s a link to a recipe I shared recently with the comment, “When you want some chocolate.”

Twitter: Information I think would be interesting to acquaintances, readers, and other writers

  • A daily quote graphic
  • Links to helpful resources
  • Comments about things happening in current events
  • Pictures of book launches, book signings, etc.
  • Tidbits about what I’m doing (These are very occasional, and quite general in nature, like “Just finished teaching music to 3 and 4 yr. olds. FUN!”)

Ruth_L__Snyder_on_Twitter___My_newest_book_Learn_Twitter__10_Beginning_Steps_is_available_for_pre-order_http___t_co_L9D23X4dxb__socialmedia_http___t_co_75YJQdtdOn_

Where do you find content?

Since I’m a writer, I tend to find content everywhere. I know that’s not very helpful to those who are looking for ideas, so here are some specific places I find good content:

  1. Twitter – I can type anything into the search bar and find interesting content in seconds.
  2. Facebook – When I enjoy something or find it helpful, I share it.
  3. Quote books – One I’m reading through right now is 1001 Ways to Leadership. When I find an especially helpful or thought-provoking quote, I use WordSwag to make a graphic to share, giving credit to the person I’m quoting.
  4. Books I’m reading – I read with a highlighter and pen, making notes in the margins. Learning is something I enjoy and share.
  5. Funny things that happen in my life.
  6. Other social media sites. Links are easy to share and help other people find information they want.

This post by Bethany has 50 content ideas for posts.

Ratio of promotional/other posts

I try to follow the 80/20 rule:

80 % of my posts are about other people, books, things I’m learning, recipes, etc.

20 % of my posts (maximum) are about my books, writing, etc.

I want social media to be about building relationships. When other people monopolize the conversation, I get bored and leave. The same is true on social media. If I want to build relationships, I need to focus the conversation on others. Here’s one of my favourite quotes:

“People don’t care what you know . . .

until they know how much you care!”

-Theodore Roosevelt

 


This is the last week in the Social Media Blog Hop. Please join in by adding your link below. Thanks for joining in the discussion!

[inlinkz_linkup id=516833 mode=1]

In a couple weeks we’ll start the next topic: Parenting!

  • Week 1 What do you find most challenging about parenting? What helps you get through the tough days?(May 7)
  • Week 2 What parenting tip would you give to new parents? (May 14)
  • Week 3 Share a family tradition with us (June 10)
  • Week 4 Share your favourite holiday destination and/or how you make long family trips more enjoyable (June 24)

If you’d like to join the Parenting Blog Hop, send me an email.


2015 Social Media Blog Hop Week 1 – Favourite Social Media Site

Social Media Blog Hop

This week we are kicking off the 2015 social media blog hop with the question: What is your favourite social media site and why?

Facebook is where I spend most of my time on social media. I have a personal profile and author page, belong to many groups, and also administer pages for Glendon Playground and Park Society as well as InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship. I appreciate the following benefits of Facebook:

1. My personal profile allows connection with an audience as large or small as I choose. Facebook allows me to decide whether I share information with specific people, only my friends, or everyone who chooses to access the information. I’m able to post plain text, pictures, and videos and so are my friends. Facebook is a great way to build connections with people I’ve just met as well as keep in touch with friends I’ve had for years. Some of my friends on Facebook are people I went to school with in grade 6 over 30 years ago.

2. Facebook Pages allow me to spend as little or as much as I want for marketing. There is no charge to have a Facebook Page. Although Facebook does regulate how many people see the information I post on my page, it does provide a free venue for sharing information. If I want to increase the exposure of a particular post, I’m able to pay to boost it. Facebook allows me to pick the demographics of the people I’m targeting with my content so that I’m not paying to send it to those who probably are not interested.

3. Facebook Groups provide an avenue for me to build closer relationship with a group of people who are all interested and passionate about the things that I’m learning about or doing. Through groups I’ve participated in Bible studies, received help and support in healthy living and marriage, and had the opportunity to learn and share about writing, blogging, marketing, my book launches and many more things. Groups can be public, private, or closed – allowing administrators to choose who belongs to the group and how far and wide the information is shared.

4. Facebook Events allow people to share information about upcoming events including anything from a baby shower to a drama presentation to a book launch. Event pages can help market the event, provide the possibility to participate either in person or virtually, and also provide a venue to share pictures, etc. during and after the event.

Some facts I try to keep in mind when I use Facebook:

  • Facebook is hosting my information and can choose to close my accounts at any time.
  • Although Facebook has security measures in place, I still choose not to post certain content because once it’s on Facebook I may not be able to control what happens with it.
  • I never post on social media when I’m angry or post anything that I would be ashamed to see on the front page of my local paper.

My second choice for social media is Twitter. But that will have to wait for another day!

What’s your favourite social media site? Why?


[inlinkz_linkup id=502441 mode=1]

Feel free to share the blog hop button on your site. Here’s the code:

<a href=”http://ruthlsnyder.com/2015-social-media-blog-hop-week-1-favourite-social-media-site/#.VPcPGHZks1Y” target=”_blank”><img src=”http://ruthlsnyder.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Social-Media-300×300-150×150.png” width=”300″ height=”300″ /></a>


5 Ways to Effectively Market your Book

Book Marketing Blog Hop

For the past several weeks I’ve had the opportunity to learn more about book marketing from many different authors. Dvorah Lansky put together The Book Marketing Challenge with a diverse cast of authors who took turns sharing marketing ideas which have worked for them. Some of the strategies I knew about, but having access to specific “how-to” posts was very helpful. My only regret is that I haven’t had time to try them all out. Here are five of my favorites:

  1. Host a blog hop – this is a great way to share information and increase your audience. I’ve had the opportunity to participate in several blog hops over the past few months. If you want some tips, check out my previous posts on hosting a blog hop and creating a button for your blog hop. You can also use a blog hop to run contests or have people enter for a free copy of your book.
  2. Create something of value to give away – This sounds counterproductive; why would you spend time creating something of value and then just give it away? If you want people to BUY products from you, they need to trust that you have something that will be valuable to them. Most people are willing to give you their contact information (name and e-mail address) in exchange for something free. I’m currently in the process of updating my blog/website. When I launch my new site, I’m planning to give away Twitter Tips and Tricks for Writers as a way of building my contact list.
  3. Create graphics to share on social media sites – Whether your book is fiction or non-fiction, you can find quotes or snippets to share. Go through your manuscript and highlight what you want to share. Then, create graphics using software like The Logo Creator or Logo Design Studio Pro. This can be as simple as using a plain background and placing the quote on it or pairing the quotes with pictures you’ve taken. Make sure you include the title of your book and the link to your website so that it’s easy for people to find more information. Once you have a graphic, you can share it on Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
  4. Interact with your audience on your Facebook Author Page – This is a strategy I’m just starting to experiment with. (You can connect with me at https://www.facebook.com/AuthorRuthL.Snyder). If you haven’t set up an author page yet, check out this tip page offered through the book marketing challenge. Facebook Pages give you the opportunity to reach a wider audience, “boost” posts you want more people to see, and receive stats that will help you determine how to use the page most effectively. If you want more information, check out The Ultimate Guide to Facebook Marketing on Copyblogger.
  5. Use press releases – I’ve found this to be a very effective way of letting people in my local area know about my books. When my novella, Cecile’s Christmas Miracle, was released I put together a press release and sent it out to four local papers. Three of the four responded. One paper printed an interview, another paper printed the information in the press release almost word for word, and the third paper highlighted the release of my book. For more ideas, check out Connie Dunn’s post on Marketing Your Book with Press Releases and 4 Tips for Creating the Essential Press Release by Sandra Beckwith.

What have you found effective in marketing your books? Please share 🙂


So many stories and so little time

Exam_tnsI’m enjoying my interactions with fellow authors and readers on Helping Hands Thirsty Thursdays. (Check out Helping Hands Press Facebook Page for more details.) Last week the publisher announced a number of new releases. As the announcements were made, I responded by saying I was adding certain books to my reading list and made the comment, “So many stories, so little time.” Several of us joked around about using a time machine to help squeeze more writing and reading time in, but joking aside, finding time for everything is a huge issue for authors. We are expected to write, read, edit, participate on social media sites, blog AND fulfill our other responsibilities in life.

Balanced coverA couple days ago I was happy to discover that Tricia Goyer has released a new book called Balanced: Finding Center as a Work-at-Home Mom. The book is now on my iPad and I’m making time to read it, a chapter a day. I appreciated Tricia’s disclaimer:

This book may not be for you if you are looking for a simple how-to manual with only schedules, outlines, and agendas. You don’t think your spiritual life impacts your work and home life. You think the whole balance issue depends on you and not on your dependence on God. . . . as someone who’s been working at home nearly all of my twenty-four years as a parent, I’ve discovered three main things: 1. What I do isn’t as important as who I am. 2. What God can do in my life and what He’s capable of doing can be two very different things—I don’t want to limit Him. 3. My outward goals are only reachable if I submit my inward soul to God.”

This is the first year I’m focusing intensely on writing. I have a LOT to learn. Here are some things I’ve discovered already:

  • I’m human and it is utterly impossible for me to do everything and do it well. Therefore, I need to chose my goals carefully.
  • It’s very easy to get side-tracked by Facebook, e-mail, and social media. Therefore, I need to limit my time on these items.
  • When I’m writing, I’m intensely focused and “living” in a different world. I find distractions very frustrating because it takes me time to come back to real life. Therefore, I have to organize my writing time so that I’m writing when my husband and children don’t need my attention.
  • Large goals overwhelm me. (I admit it, I don’t like to make goals I don’t think I can achieve!) A novel of 80-100,000 words seems unattainable. However, when I break that down into 1,000 word scenes or 2,000 word chapters I’m able to enjoy the process.
  • As a wife and mother, I don’t often have the luxury of having all day to write. However, I’ve found that it’s quite easy to fit in 1/2 hour here and there. If I’m able to write 300-500 words every morning in 1/2 hour, that brings me 1,500 – 2,500 words closer to my writing goal(s) every week.

I’m still discovering what works for me, and probably will be for years to come. Tricia Goyer puts it this way:

“The only thing we can be certain of is that as soon as we achieve a small measure of balance, something is going to overturn the applecart so all our good intentions will spill out like crabapples, becoming scattered and bruised.”

What have you discovered in your writing journey? I’d love to hear from you.


4 Ways to Repurpose Content as a Writer

Recently I was able to participate in the online eBook Publishing Boot Camp organized by D’vorah Lansky. I shared my personal response to the boot camp on the InScribe Writers Online blog. Some information from the first session is included on the InScribe blog. The second session, eBook Editing for Maximum Profits, was presented by David Perdew. For more information, check out MyNAMS system, a training system for people doing online business.

Open bookIn his workshop, David Perdew explained how to take the content from a book you have written, repurpose it, and make it available in different formats that will encourage people to buy either additional products or your actual book. He used the image of a wheel with the hub being your book, and the spokes representing all kinds of additional content you can create from the book.

  1. CheckmarkSplit your book up into individual reports, using each chapter as a report. (This should give you 5-10 reports) These reports can be posted to Scribd.
  2. Make several articles out of each chapter and post them to Ezine.
  3. Pull quotes (approximately 100) out of your book. (If you use MS Word, you can highlight the quotes, then pull them out into a separate document.) Use these quotes for Tweets (which can be scheduled using Tweet Later, HootSuite, or Buffer) and also to make into images that you can share on Facebook.
  4. Make 2 minute videos from each chapter highlighting a problem, who it affects, the symptoms, how you diagnose the problem, and the solution. These videos can be made using Powerpoint and Camtasia or Animoto.

David Perdew says, “If you’re using short posts, short articles that you want to do on Facebook, start scheduling those posts. Get those things out there. They’re not doing you any good if you don’t get the content created and distributed.”

Make sure each report, article, quote, image, or video, is posted on the usual social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Linked In, pointing people back to your website where they can purchase your products.

Do you have other ideas about repurposing the content of a book?