This month’s top five tips are for that dreaded thing social media. Love it or hate it, it’s a necessary part of a writer’s life these days. I’m not tech-savvy at all, but even I’ve noticed that when I tweet about certain things my sales go up, and when I post pictures to Instagram I get more followers – followers who might buy my books. Learning to use social media in a way that suits us and fits in with our time is a valuable skill for any writer looking to build their platform. So here are my top five tips…

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1. Link your accounts so you cross post

This may sound a simple step but if you’re not technologically minded it can be a bit intimidating. However, it’s worth persevering with and learning how to link your accounts so that when you post something to one account it goes to your others. The last thing you want is to have to enter the same information three times in three different places. It’s a waste of valuable time that you could spend writing, or watching YouTube videos in the name of research.

2. Schedule in advance

This is definitely worth doing! I spend one day a month planning my tweets for the month to come and then schedule them all. For the sake of one day’s work I can forget about social media and concentrate on deadlines! Having said that, I should just clarify that I only schedule my promotional tweets. I do tweet about random stuff that occurs to me and spend some time in the morning and evening going through my feed responding and retweeting. Which brings me nicely onto my next point…

3. Mix up your content

Using social media effectively (in my opinion) is all about connecting with readers, other authors and the writing community. It’s important to interact with others and not just sell otherwise people won’t follow you and will soon get bored of your feed. I’m not saying you shouldn’t promote, you absolutely should, but it’s important to reply to others tweets, retweet and engage. People want to know about you, what’s happening in your life, your good days and bad, the funny things you see and hear. For the best results, try and achieve a good balance of the different types of content.

4. Don’t worry about how many followers you have!

This is easier said than done, I know, but please, for the sake of your own sanity, try not to worry about how many followers you have. The numbers will grow naturally and, to be honest, one follower who interacts and loves you and your writing is more like to buy your book (and subsequent books) than twenty followers who are just following you in the hope you’ll follow back to up their numbers!

5. Retweet/Share!

Take the time to retweet and share other people’s posts because this is not only how you’ll build your community of writers and readers, but the more you do it, the more others will reciprocate improving the reach of your posts. It’s about being generous!

So there you go! I hope some of this has been useful. I’m still a novice at social media and there are loads of good posts on the internet you can read to learn more. If you’ve got any good tips then please share them in the comments below.

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