58. Day 11 of Launch a Bestseller: Using Social Media to Build a Platform

So, I have one action item down and about 17 more to go in Tim Grahl's Launch a Bestseller Book Marketing Checklist. The second step? Making more meaningful connections on the web through various social media platforms. 

 This is the book marketing 101 checklist from Tim Grahl's site.

This is the book marketing 101 checklist from Tim Grahl's site.

I'm aware that blogging is, in fact, a social media platform. However, I want to address popular social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and the list goes on.

One of the things that I've learned from book marketing expert Tim Grahl is that book sales are not necessarily converted via social media. Actually, he believes this is a huge lie because there're no stats to verify this. (I just love when numbers back up a claim). Therefore spending time searching for likes and followers will be an uber waste of time. According to Grahl:

Social media is not a way to grow your “fame”, it’s a reflection of your fame. Social media following will grow as your popularity grows.
— Tim Grahl

He also says that social media is more useful for connecting with others and leveraging other huge followings. I know for a fact that the latter is true. Well, they both are. I've had the opportunity to connect with awesome writers and other industry people via Twitter. Not to mention, I actually found Tim Grahl through someone else's blog. Honestly, if you have something of value to offer readers and you're good about keeping things updated and being consistent, you can gain so many more readers, especially via email list.

I don't get caught up in followers and thirst for likes and retweets. I only say this because tons of people are fickle online and just because someone likes what you say one time doesn't necessarily mean they've made a genuine connection with you. It certainly doesn't guarantee that they'll care about your books or other creative projects. 

The question now is, how can we make more meaningful connections on the web, and how do we use that to get out of this shadowy corner of the web. Just as Grahl suggests:

Find someone else's platform with a built-in following and be as helpful and consistent as you can possibly be.

I screwed this up horribly once and vowed that when I seek outside sources, I will make sure I'm passionate about what I'm presenting and that I'm consistent in all I do. The two sites I can immediately start posting things for are Blavity and Medium. These are sites where users can upload their own posts about whatever they want. This is an incredible way to get viewership, free marketing, and writing clips if needed. I've already started on Blavity, but not with the frequency that I'd like. So, that's next on the list: use platforms to elevate your craft and brand.