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Authors: Where to Focus Your Social Media Efforts

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If you are like me, you love connecting with your Twitter and Facebook community and providing interesting and relevant information while trying not to offend your followers by overselling. But are we doing enough? Are we optimizing our efforts? Oy. Navigating through the social networking revolution can be overwhelming.

I recently spoke with David Turner, CEO of Boom Media to get a handle on where I should be focusing my efforts. David reaffirmed the concept that as authors, more than ever we have to go to where are customers are living. Here are the gems from our discussion.

Facebook fans are relevant to the author's content, which makes them valuable. How valuable? According to a recent study*, a Facebook fan is worth $71.84. This is the amount of money people who are a fan of a specific brand will spend compared to non-fans. So, if a book only costs $25, how is the FB Fan worth more? Your fans may begin by buying your book but eventually they become loyal to your message and purchase your future books, ancillary products and attend your seminars, etc. Your fans are relevant across all of your products. They usually are not, nor should they be seen as a single purchase opportunity. Social networking is about building relationships just as all of your marketing efforts should be.

Top 3 things all authors should be doing

1. Engage in traditional, real-world events such as speaking engagements and workshops coordinated with online events such as tele-seminars and webinars

2. Produce an online video or live web feed promoting all of your events

3. Participate consistently (daily!) with your online community through Facebook and Twitter. The recommended frequency is 1 to 2 times a day on Facebook (not including the all-important responses to comments). For Twitter, a combination of content, replies, and recommendation tweets 5 to 30 times per day, much of which can be automated.

What's New? Buzz and Brand Generator

Four Square www.FourSquare.com is a new, cutting edge application that works through your mobile phone. It promotes the ability to "check in, find your friends, unlock your city." FourSquare allows you to stay engaged with your social media friends while you travel around your own, or their city. For instance, when you go to a restaurant you check in on FourSquare and a message goes out to your network and tells them where you are. That way you can create a buzz or impromptu promotion such as "I have 30 free signed books if you come by and say Hi."

Another great way to use it is to connect with people at a large event. If you are attending a book marketing event, for instance, you can check in with Four Square and invite people to locate you and join you. Four Square is also being used by retail establishments to build loyal customers by offering rewards and discounts for frequent visits.

Yet another platform for staying connected to your community! I am working hard to take it all in and keep it all straight. If you want to learn more about how social networking and online marketing will help your book sales, check out the 21st Century Book Marketing Event. The principles of Boom Media will be presenting more valuable information for authors at the event. Seating is limited so plan your participation early.

*Read full article about How Much a Fan is Worth here.

Arielle Ford has launched the careers of many NY Times bestselling authors including Deepak Chopra, Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Neale Donald Walsch & Debbie Ford. She is a former book publicist, literary agent and the author of seven books. To learn how to get started writing a book please visit: www.HowToWriteMyBook.com