PUBLISHED NOV/DEC 2019
by Bruce Brown, Author-Publisher —
A few weeks ago, I was talking with a Generation Z’er about Facebook and social media. She commented, “Facebook is for old people.”
When the area is that of book writers, book readers, and book publishing, Facebook has potential value whatever your age and the believed (or perceived) age bracket of your book’s readers.
To an extent, a case can be made that if readers, reviewers, book bloggers, and so on for your book or books skew older, then you will want to take Facebook very seriously. If not, you could be leaving money on the table. Let’s cover two of the most important benefits of Facebook for authors and other book people.
First, you will need to get your Facebook page up, and I do not mean a personal page. Make sure your Facebook page is only devoted to promoting you as a book author and your book(s). Here are some points to consider:
- Start your profile by creating a community or public figure page, then enter your name and select “author” for your category. Consider including the word “author” in your page name, as well.
- Your profile photo is very important. A professional image on your page is paramount. Forget your friend just taking a quick shot with their smartphone or a selfie. To save money, consider looking at Craigslist or a local community college that has photography courses and post a request for a photography student.
For background photos and other photo needs, you can use one of the copyright free and no cost photo websites such as:
- freerangestock.com: A combination of photos and illustrations. Try searching books, publishing, or writing.
- pexels.com: A combination of photos and videos. Use the same search terms mentioned above.
- stocksnap.io: Photos only. Search the same terms as mentioned above.
Whenever possible, it is good karma to give the name of the photographer and website where the photo or video came from underneath the photo.
Pro Tip: Look for Facebook author profiles for well-known authors and other authors you admire and see what they have done. Do not copy the text or their pictures, but consider using their layout as a template for your profile.
The second topic I want to cover is author, book, publishing, and other similar Facebook groups.
There is an etiquette to being a part of these groups. How to behave is similar to the advice I provided in the article appearing in the January/February 2019 issue of this magazine covering LinkedIn.
While there are many Facebook groups dedicated to various types of authors, books, and publishing, below are some groups to look into if they pique your interest:
1. Independent Book Publishers Association: The official Facebook page of IBPA.
2. Where Authors Begin:Over 34,000 members consisting of writers helping other writers.
3. Indie Authors International: Indie authors, readers, and other kinds of authors from all over the world. This group doesn’t mind if you promote your book to them. The group offers a lot of support from around the world.
4. The Write Life Community: Over 20,000 writer members discuss the challenges of writing, share tips, occasionally find paid writing, support each other, and more.
5. Smart Passive Income Kindle Group: This is the Facebook of book writing guru and cheerleader Pat Flynn. This specific group supports Flynn’s working system that shows writers how you make a living writing and publishing e-books.
6. Calls for Submissions: With over 58,000 members, this group is a terrific resource for writers looking for freelance opportunities. The group gathers sources that are looking for submissions—everything from poetry to fiction and much more.
7. The Writers Group: This is one of (if not the) largest groups on Facebook, with over 130,000 members. It has all things writing and writers. You can ask questions, find requests for information, make jokes, etc.
You can only imagine how many hundreds, even potentially thousands, of other Facebook groups exist for authors, writers, and publishers. I only covered those mostly for authors and writers here, but if you want to find more, you can search on Facebook.
Just realize that a quality Facebook profile that is correctly utilized will be similar to having an additional author’s website as far as search engines are concerned. It gives you more exposure and more ways to promote you, your books, author signings, and even your other writing, in the same way a GoodReads or LinkedIn profile does.
Bruce Brown is an IBPA member and has four published books. He has both self-published (one selling over 85,000 copies by mail) and been published by Doubleday in New York. Visit his LinkedIn profile here: linkedin.com/in/bruce-brown-520870ab. For a limited time, he is offering readers of this article a free phone consultation. His three free reports to help writers write, get publicized, and market their book can be found at yourpublishedbook.com.