Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Forays into the world of social media promotion


I am slowly becoming more social media-savvy. It’s taken a while—I joined Facebook in June 2008, rather late compared to many of my American friends, and it’s hard to believe that I will be coming up on four years of social interactions that have changed my life in a very positive way for the most part. Joining Facebook pushed me over a wall that had been of my own making; it was easier to stand on the side of not knowing, of not reaching out, of not sharing, of being skeptical to all of it. But I’ve realized that as long as I can maintain some semblance of control over what, when and how I post, I can be a part of the digital age and actually be happy. I’ve also joined Twitter, mostly in a professional context—I enjoy tweeting about science and the little tidbits that I come across during my day, since I follow a lot of scientific journals and newspapers that write about science. It is an amazing daily ride through a huge world of other twitterers who seem to love what they’re doing. I don’t post each day; I simply don’t have the time for it. And as you have probably surmised, I have less time these days for blogging as A New Yorker in Oslo because my work life has changed (yet again) and now I am busy with new responsibilities that are actually quite welcome. I plan to keep on blogging, but I may not post as often as I used to. I hope you will keep reading in spite of the change.

In my more recent consultant work, I have discovered the power of Facebook ads to promote business pages, events, products, and whatever else one might dream of. For my own creative projects, I’ve created two Facebook ads, one to promote my book Blindsided—Recognizing and Dealing with Passive Aggressive Leadership in the Workplace; the other to promote my new page Books by Paula M De Angelis (https://www.facebook.com/BooksbyPMDeAngelis; you would have to be a Facebook member to connect to and ‘like’ the page). The ads appear on the sidebar of Facebook sites. You can choose your budget—25 dollars a day for ten days, or 500 dollars lifetime budget for one particular ad campaign. It’s a pretty amazing way to promote what you want to promote. You can choose your target audience. In my case, I target English-speaking countries, and in both cases, my target audience on Facebook was approximately 175,000,000 people over the age of 18. Daunting? Oh my God, yes. I have no idea if these ads will increase sales of my books. But whatever happens, it was worth learning about this promotion possibility. I also use press releases to announce the publication of new books, and they are also quite effective at getting the message out there. The point is that being an indie author means that you do all of the promotion work yourself. If a publishing house had released your book, they would be doing this work for you. I don’t mind doing the legwork myself. Again, I guess because I am a bit of a control freak, I like knowing what is going on and having some control over how fast it all proceeds. I’ll keep you posted on the eventual outcomes—how many people actually look at the ads, and if sales of my books increase.

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