OLD POST ALERT! This is an older post and although you might find some useful tips, any technical or publishing information is likely to be out of date. Please click on Start Here on the menu bar above to find links to my most useful articles, videos and podcast. Thanks and happy writing! – Joanna Penn
Facebook has more than 175 million active users worldwide. If Facebook were a country, it would be the eighth most populated in the world, just ahead of Japan, Russia and Nigeria. The fastest growing demographic is those 30 years old and older (and you can bet a whole lot of them read books!).
It can therefore be a powerful place to promote your book and yourself as an author. Here are some ways you can use it for book promotion:
- Set up your own personal profile and start making some friends. If you are a complete beginner, check out these “How to use Facebook videos” on YouTube.
- Set up a Group. You can set up a group for your book or for yourself as an author here. You can also get a memorable URL instead of the incomprehensible one Facebook gives it.
Here are some related groups to check out:
- How to publish a book – a new group from me and best-selling author Dale Beaumont. Weekly updates, links, videos, articles and information on writing and publishing.
- Creative writing sites on Facebook – an Index of other creative writing sites – excellent resource
- Writing and Publishing – International Association of Authors
- Aspiring Novelists
- A place for writing
- There are also author groups e.g. Vikas Swarup who wrote the book Q&A which was made into the Oscar winning movie Slumdog Millionaire.
3. Set up a page. If you are a business e.g. self-publisher, you can set up a Page for your business which can be found from the internet without people needing to actually have a Facebook account. You can create a page here. I have setup a page for The Creative Penn as an example here.
4. Advertise on Facebook. Facebook profiles contain far more information about a person than general web searches have access to, so you can target your audience more specifically. If you set up an advert, you can specify who to show it to, for example, women aged 20-45 who like “books” or “reading”. You can also use this to search for how many people like a particular subject e.g. if 140,000 people in New York like horror, then that is a good target group for you to advertise to if you are a horror writer. There is lots more information about advertising here. I use it quite successfully to give away my workbook and build my email list, so I do recommend it (and certainly it's more targetted than Google Adwords).
5. Find your niche with Lexicon. This is a tool that searches for specific topics so you can approach people to connect with you based on what they are posting about. I haven't tried this but it sounds interesting!