August 10th, 2012

8 Easy Ways To Grow Your Social Media Footprint

Photo by Elizabeth Cooper ~ WANA Commons

by Jenny Hansen

A while back, I attended a free two-hour seminar on social media provided by Constant Contact (my new BFF). While it’s true that I attended for my day job, writers are their own small business so YOU get to benefit as well.

Look at this article from Business Week back in 2008 – Social Media Will Change Your Business. Look at how far things have come since 2005. (Light years!)

Now compare it to this L.A. Times article from last Fall, Social Media Giving Small Firms A Boost, which cites social media as a portal to success for small businesses.

Again, all us writers, particularly those who self-publish are a small business in charge of billing, marketing, quality assurance and – yes – social media.

Here are eight low-cost tips to help you expand your social media footprint:

  1. Voicemail If you haven’t added your Facebook address and Twitter username to your voicemail, you are missing out on some cheap easy marketing. Hundreds of people hear your voicemail each year and it could be the push they need to connect with you online.
  2. Your website Does your website have clear links to your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn page? What about to your blog? If someone finds your website, you want to make it easy for them to find the rest.
  3. Printed materials Do you have your social media information printed at the bottom of each letter and brochure you put out? What about on your business cards? It’s easy to make room in the address block for something so important. Try including this the next time you print any materials.
  4. Email Signature Do you have all your social media info in the signature blog on your email? It’s amazing how many people will click that link if you make it easy.
  5. Email marketing It’s a good idea to build an email list and use it for some email marketing. I didn’t say spamming. Once a month is fine for connecting. Once a day is not. Be sure to include all your links as well as a periodic promotion. You’ll be surprised at the results. Tools like Constant Contact can track this for you.
  6. Signage Do you have a sign up at bookstores or tradeshow events telling your customers readers how to connect with you via social media? It’s likely you’re missing out on some contacts you could have made. When people are browsing these places, you’ve got a pretty captive audience. I’m discussing QR codes next week to expand this idea.
  7. Business presentations Do you do any public speaking? Your social media contact information should be on each slide, in any handouts you provide and should also be verbalized at the beginning and end of the presenation.
  8. Cross-promotion between platforms It’s a very good idea to be sure that your  customers readers can find you anywhere. The easiest way to do this is to list your social media information on each platform – Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and your blog.

Remember, “Content is King” – nothing will replace good content (i.e. great books). But Social Media is Queen these days and small businesses writers should cast their social media net as widely as they can.

Are there any social media marketing tips you’ve found helpful? Which social media platform has worked best for you? What part of social media do you like or dislike the most? (p.s. I’m happy to answer questions down in the comments!)

Jenny

About Jenny Hansen

Jenny fills her nights with humor: writing memoir, women’s fiction, chick lit, short stories (and chasing after her toddler Baby Girl). By day, she provides training and social media marketing for an accounting firm. After 15 years as a corporate software trainer, she’s digging this sit down and write thing.

When she’s not at her blog, More Cowbell, Jenny can be found on Twitter at jhansenwrites or here at Writers In The Storm. Every Saturday, she writes the Risky Baby Business posts at More Cowbell, a series that focuses on babies, new parents and high-risk pregnancy.

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