This is part 2 of ‘Facebook Book Promotion for Authors’. You can find the first part here where I explain how to create a great Facebook author page and how to get followers. In this article I will cover how to create good posts that will help you start selling books on Facebook.
Create Posts to Start Selling Books on Facebook
One you have some Likes, you’ll want to think about posting some quality content for them, to get them excited for your work. To type something, you’ll need to select the ‘Status’ box. Once you are in there, you’ll be able to type, and once you’ve completed the text, click on ‘Publish’ and it will go live. Here, you can post text:
Or even links. When you include a link in your post, it will likely come up with a thumbnail image to represent the website you are trying to send your fans to. Remember to post something about the link – your goal is to make the readers compelled to click on it.
As you can see, in the example I’ve shown below, I’ve posted the Amazon link to one of my books, and a part of the book cover has become the image:
Consider using Linkredirector when linking to your books. It provides smart links that takes your readers directly to the right book store, in the right country with one click. For example, if you share an Amazon UK link, that isn’t much use to someone living in America.
You can select to post this status right away, or you can schedule your post to pop up later. This is a good idea if you’ve noticed a particularly good time when your fans are active around your page. Getting the right time means more people will see what you’re posting about. Also, if you’re going away for a while, you might wish to consider scheduling some posts so that there is still activity going on your Page – just be careful, if people ask questions about the material, you probably won’t be able to answer them right away.
To do this, once you have completed creating the post, click on the arrow, located next to the ‘Publish’ button – found at the bottom right-hand corner of the Status box. This will bring up a dropdown menu of three options. You will want the ‘Schedule’ one:
This will bring up a box that allows you to set the correct time and date for your post:
You will see the option ‘Schedule Post End Date’, which can be activated by dragging the circle across the bar found on the left-hand side of the words, causing it to show a blue line (as above, next to ‘Schedule Publish Date’). This is for posts that are timely – for example, for a competition that has a clear end date.
Once you’ve set everything up as you wish, click on the ‘Schedule’ button, located in the bottom left-hand corner of the box. Once you’ve scheduled the post, the following box will appear under the status box, allowing you to view all of the posts you have scheduled at any time, by clicking on ‘See Post’:
When you click on the post, you’ll be presented with a screen that looks like this:
If you feel the post you have created is very important, and you want it to be the first thing that people see when they click onto your page, you can select to ‘Pin’ it. ‘Pinned Posts’ are given a higher priority and are very clearly displayed. This could be a website launch, a book release date, a cover reveal, a competition – anything that you’re extremely keen for your fans to see.
To activate this option, you need to publish the post, then click on the small arrow symbol, found in the top right-hand corner of the box containing your post. This will bring up a dropdown menu:
For this, you’ll want to select ‘Pin To Top’. This will reload your post, putting it at the top of the Page, with an orange ribbon wrapped around the top right-hand corner, keeping you aware of its status:
Using Pictures & Videos
In the ‘Status’ box, you can also post pictures and videos. To do this, you’ll need to click on the tab labelled ‘Photo/Video’:
This will give you two options ‘Upload Photo/Video’ and ‘Create Photo Album’. If you only have one picture to post, chose the first one. If you have a selection, it’s much better to pick the option of album.
If you choose the first option, a box will pop up, allowing you to pick images from the collection on the PC:
When you’ve double-clicked on the image you want to use, it will start to load in the Status box. As this is happening, you’re given the opportunity to write something about the picture, to make it more interesting for your fans.
When the picture has fully loaded, and you’ve written your text, click the ‘Publish’ button for the photograph to go live.
It is the same process for a video. If you wish to create a photo album, because you have a section of pictures to upload, then choose the ‘Create Photo Album’ option. This will bring up the same box, allowing you to select pictures from your PC collection. Only this time, you will be picking more than one. You can left-click and drag to select the required images:
Once you have selected the pictures, click the ‘Open’ button. This will bring up a new screen, giving you a few different options. Here you can name the photo album, makes notes about it, choose a location (if necessary), even comment on the pictures. Take time to consider all of these options before you click on the ‘Post’ button, found on the bottom left-hand corner of the screen:
You can go on to edit albums when they’re posted. This is similar to the screen you’ll see once you’re done:
To get back from this page, onto your Facebook Page, click the button that has your Page name labelled on it, found in the top left-hand corner of the screen:
Ideas for Posts to Promote Your Book
A lot of these apps are used for marketing your book, but there are also a lot of other things you can do to get your book noticed. This section is going to cover a few of these ideas you may wish to consider:
- Competitions – people always love a freebie, and they are extremely likely to interact with a Facebook competition (which will, of course, lead to many more people seeing your post). Try creating a Post, then asking your fans to Like and Share it – letting them know that after a certain length of time you will pick a winner at random. This type of giveaway is so simple and effective – you are extremely likely to see results. Luckily, as an author, you will always have books and eBooks available to give as prizes.
- Q and A – set some time aside to allow your fans to ask you questions – just be sure to promote it heavily beforehand so people know it’s happening. Allow people to post questions on your Facebook Page, and answer them. This will generate interest in you and your books.
- Reviews – we all know the importance of good reviews. It’s advisable to give away free copies (e-copies if necessary) of your book to book bloggers and reviewers, to generate some opinions of your books. Keep track of what they say, and post them on your Page. People are more likely to listen to the opinions of others before buying.
- Share – connect to other companies by tagging (use @their name and the option will come up to link to their Page – they may then do the same for you), hashtags (#MustRead – normally associated with Twitter, but commonly becoming a Facebook element), fun posts, memes, caption contests, etc.
- Links – including links to your books or samples of your work is the easiest way to generate sales. Remember Linkredirector helps take your fans to the exact website they need, making that sale in even fewer clicks.
Comments, Sharing and Boosting Posts
You may have also noticed in previous images used in a post, that once you have posted something, you are given a selection of options along the bottom of the post.
The first one we’re going to look at is ‘Like’. This is where people can show appreciation for your posts. When someone Likes your post, it will also be shown on their timeline, for all of their friends to see – so the aim is to get as many Likes as possible. You can also click on this to Like your own post. You will get a notification if someone does this, alerting you to it. You will see this on your own Facebook homepage. It will come up as a red number by the planet symbol found on the right-hand side at the top of the screen. By clicking on this, you will find out what the Notification is, and by clicking on the information provided by this, you’ll be taken to the post that has been Liked.
People may also wish to ‘Comment’ on your post – maybe to discuss it, ask questions about it. You will also receive a notification for this. Try to keep on top of it – the most successful author Facebook Pages are the ones where the authors interact regularly with their fans.
The third option is ‘Share’. By clicking on this, you can select to share a post on your personal profile, your friend’s profile, in a message, or even in a group that you are a member. Your fans can do this also.
‘Share Now’ instantly shares the post on your timeline, and ‘Send As Message’ puts the link into a message. For any of the other options, chose ‘Share…’, which will give you these options:
You’ll also be given a chance to write something about the post before sharing it. When you’re ready, find the ‘Publish’ button at the bottom left-hand corner of the box.
For some reason, you may wish to Like, Comment or Share as your personal profile, rather than under your Page name. If so, chose the icon that included the profile picture you have used for your Page, and click on the dropdown menu.
The final option is the ‘Boost Post’ button. This function costs to use, so may not be something you want to consider. However, these are the options you will be provided with, just in case it’s something you want to examine:
This turns your post into a paid advert. You can select the target audience, the amount you wish to spend and the details you want to include. This will allow you to reach a much bigger audience, however you need to think about whether the people who see the post are going to buy your book. You want to make more money than you spend on this advert – a case that’s hotly debated by people who have used the feature in the past.
Important Takeaways for Authors
- It’s reported that on average, Facebook Like and Share Buttons are viewed across almost 10 million websites daily – so use them wisely.
- The time of day is extremely important to get the right viewing figures. Consider the time zones of your fans and think about lunch hours (1 – 3pm) and evening times for the highest traffic.
- Don’t create a separate profile to start up your author Page. Facebook has been cracking down on fake profiles, and if your Page is attached to it, you will lose that too. Your privacy is protected – the only way people will be able to see you, is if you Like or Comment on a post under your profile name.
- Remember your profile and cover photos are the first visual impression you will give your fans. Ensure they are recognisable and engaging.
- Don’t only post about your work. Include other interesting, related content and engage with your fans. Ask questions!
- Give your Facebook fans exclusive content and competitions – make them feel special.
- Review the popularity of your posts and learn from it. That’s what the insights are for.
- Remember not to worry about how much you’re posting – do whatever feels right for you. If you post nothing for a few days, that’s absolutely fine.
- Be careful not to make spelling and grammar mistakes – as a writer, this is even more important to you!