Newsletters, Street Teams, Advanced Reader Groups, Social Media, Oh My!

My marketing efforts for my novels needed to be organized!

One thing I had been confused about is all the special groups some writers have. I’ve read about street teams, advanced reader groups, and launch teams, but it left me confused…I already have a newsletter and social media fan pages, do I really need three more groups of readers?

And with these more specialized groups, what info do I share with them, and how often do I engage them? I can barely keep up with everything I do already.

At multiple points during my years writing and publishing, I bought into each of these team concepts at one point, forming a new group that I let fizzle out a few weeks later, because I didn’t understand what to do with the team of willing readers.

After doing a ton of research, I realized I was making the whole process way too complicated.  I demystified the teams, and I thought other writers might also be confused, so I’m sharing information on my idea of what the best collection of fan engagement platforms are. The ones that give you the biggest return for your time.


I’m still a huge fan of a Newsletter List. Many writers have multiple different ways to grow and manage their newsletters. Some writers only grow organically through visitors to their website and readers of their books, others utilize a reader magnet and service like Instafreebie or BookFunnel, while others participate in huge group giveaways. I’m actually a fan of all of the above.

I treat my newsletter like any type of paid advertising I do. It’s a way to engage established fans and attract new readers. What’s right is very specific to the writer.

There’s also the question of how often to send a NL. I know writers who send a newsletter daily…to weekly…to monthly…to only with new release edition. My choice is after an initial, weekly welcome series for the first month, I only send a NL out monthly unless I have a new release or something important to say in between. Monthly is enough to ensure the readers remember who you are, but doesn’t bog down their inbox.

I look as a newsletter as a consistent, typically one-way communication tool where an I can keep my subscribers/fans updated on what I’m working on, such as new and upcoming releases and remind new fans of my previous books they might not know about. To keep fans engaged, I do ask questions, share fun content like jokes and contests, share new project info, inside information on writing a certain piece, including deleted scenes, character interviews, etc, contests/games, other author book reviews, etc.


It works the same as a newsletter, only instead of the author pushing out the information, readers find the information when they’re interested in it. It’s a way to keep books organized and guide the reader to other stories they’ll enjoy. Plus, it’s nice to add a little bit of extra, bonus information.

I continue to blog a little (I used to do more of it)  for no reason other than I get enjoyment from the process and interaction. I don’t feel a blog is necessary, but do think every author should have at least a static web page.

Social Media Fan Pages:

Social media is another way to engage the reader. Successful fan pages have two way communication where the author connects with the reader on a nearly, 1:1 level. In my neck of the woods, Facebook is the most popular, so I utilize that one. I have other ones as well, but I don’t go to them routinely with information, but I utilize some integration so my blog and Facebook posts automatically go to twitter.

Early in my career, I tried to utilize too many social media sights, and I got overwhelmed and my posting frequency and content quality went down on all of them. Now, I’m focusing on Facebook. Ideally, posting every day. If some of my fans don’t use Facebook, they should subscribe to my NL or check out my webpage to find whatever info they’d like.

Advanced Reader Team / Street Team / Launch Team:

I’ve decided to combine all three of these into one team that I’m going to refer to as my Street Team. It’s too difficult to keep different groups based on what they’ll do for you, so I’m merging all my half-thought-out groups into one. With this, I have two parts. First is a “Street Team” email list and second is a “Street Team” Facebook group.

Both of which I don’t contact consistently, only when I have something to say. Most of these readers are on my regular newsletter list or follow my Facebook Author Page already.

I utilize this group to help me with specific tasks. In exchange, they get offered early, advanced copies of my books before publication.

I ask them to read and review copies of my books, to purchase the book (if they’re able) to help me with Amazon ranking and having their reviews show up as verified. I also ask for help with advertising by commenting and sharing Facebook posts for enhanced visibility, to help pick covers, provide blurb feedback, to test their interest in new book ideas, and to help spread the words of my stories by sharing them with their own followers and groups.

So…how does this all come together?

I send my Newsletter out once per month. (And an extra time if I have a mid-cycle new release.)

I’m working up to posting on my Facebook Page once daily. I pre-schedule posts a lot so I only need to work on this about one day per month.

I post on my Street Team Facebook Group whenever I have a decision to make… i.e. New series cover or concept, title feedback, etc, have an advanced reader copy of a book ready (I like to post the book 2-4 weeks before publication) and then during the first week of my launch with specific tasks (like leaving the review, liking/sharing posts, etc.)

I email my Street Team Newsletter list when I have a new advanced reader copy of a book ready, then I re-email whoever received a copy as soon as the book launches, reminding them to leave a review.

That’s it. Not nearly as complicated as I made it over the past few years.

How about you? What works for you that I’m missing? I’d love to hear.

1000 True Fans – 14000 Readers in 10 Months.



Ten months has passed since I started my quest for 1000 True Fans. I was diligent in posting until an accident with my father had my life flipped upside down. Behind the scenes, though, I still plugged away, trying to grow my mailing list.

In these ten months, my mailing list grew to over 14000 readers…and is still growing, but, at the same time, I’m working on cutting out people that appear that they’ll never be a true fan. I want to maintain an ACTIVE list that sits around 10,000 subscribers. (Why 10,000? Purely a balance between being effective…and cost effective.)

So, of these 14000, how many are true fans?

Honestly, not that many…but enough. When I send out an email, only about 30-40% of the people open it…and 7% click on any links. So, of 14,000 people that’s about 4500 opening the email and 1000 clicking something…but mostly freebies/giveaways.

A good test of my true fans is to see how many of my newsletter subscribers clicked the link to purchase my latest new releases.

  • I sent Witch or Treat out to about 4000 subscribers. Of these, I had 211 click the link to purchase on Amazon.
  • I sent The Secret Lives of Superhero Wives out to about 10,000 subscribers, and I only had about 100 clicks…but many of my true fans are on my advanced reader team or ordered it on pre-order. All in all, I sold over 500 books in the month since it’s been released. (Still not at 1000 true fans.)

So, on this journey for 1000 true fans, this is what I’ve learned so far.

Your best fans come from slow, organic growth. Patiently waiting for people to read your books, fall in love with your writing style, and join your mailing list (or follow you on BookBub/ Facebook/Etc.)

  • I get a few organic sign ups every day…and that’s because I have stories out there. The more I publish, the more signups I receive. I adore little notes on how they fell in love with some of my characters or love my book.
  • The key here is to ensure joining your mailing list is visible in your printed books. I have a nice page in the beginning of the book and another link at the end (see the graphic I posted below.) I also have links on my Facebook page, website, and amazon bio about all the ways to follow me.If you enjoyed... (3)

Participating in anthologies, has been more effective than I expected in extending my reach. I have spurred a lot of new interest in my Superhero Wife World through my short story published in Witch or Treat. This brought me a lot of exposure to fans who enjoy stories like mine. I have another short story coming out in 12 Days of Christmas which I hope brings similar results. I’d love to have a full novel in a box set someday.

Participating in freebie giveaways is not a bad thing, as long as you don’t allow dead weight to sit on your list & cost you money. (When I say “dead weight” I mean those that use false emails or a separate email account they never use to redeem freebies. I love anyone who opens my emails, whether they click or not.) What I like about having some stories out there for free, is they attract readers I wouldn’t have run across any other way. I classify these giveaways into two groups: Individual downloads where a reader is interested in your book specifically and downloads the story or group email collection where a reader enters a contest to win free stuff and all the hosting authors receive the email address.

Either way, these are much faster ways to grow your list…and some, like the huge multi-author group email collections, can get you up to 5,000 emails in a few months. I was in a Science Fiction & Fantasy paperback giveaway this summer that brought me 5000 subscribers, but note, of these, only 1100 are still on my list…and of these, only about 300 have ever clicked a link. BUT, don’t discredit this. It’s a wide net, but if I end up with 100 true fans from this, I’m happy.

These mailing list signups that come from freebie giveaways are are like like running sand through a sifter. Most of the small grains pass through, but when all the dust settles, you’re still left with a few good pebbles…or fans in your sifter. Most of my Advanced Reader Team has come from this method, and they are wonderful to work with. I also have some close fans that sprung from a few freebies. Also note, many people sit on your list and haven’t had time to read your stories yet. Most of the time, they open an email here and there, and I appreciate the casual interest.

Another tip is a good automation/welcome series can help trim out some of the sand that is passing through. I send a three to four part series and if someone doesn’t open any of them, I send them one more titled Have you been receiving my emails? from a different email account. If nothing is opened, I remove them from my list. If they open the one from gmail, they get added to my “send from gmail only” list.

My frustrations!

Even with this solid mailing list, many of my emails to “true” fans are filtered out by the readers’ email service. Google throws them in their “Promotions” tab while other services filter them to spam because they’re from a mailing list. Its frustrating not to be able to contact my loyal readers.

To overcome this, I’m focusing more on growing different social media channels instead.

Facebook is my favorite, so I’m trying to use it more. I have twitter, but don’t find much engagement. Facebook has been good to me. I’m diversifying my posts to add more variety and interest. Check out my page HERE. I started posting about my life running a zoo. Cute/Fuzzy animals always gets some attention. What I don’t like, is Facebook still filters out who see’s your posts…unless you pay to promote it.

Also, I’m trying to grow other services. With each new release, BookBub sends an alert to my followers. Amazon does the same thing, so I’m trying to get my readers to follow me on these two platforms. (Shameless plug: Follow me on BookBub HERE and Amazon HERE.)

In Summary! (I know, this has been a long post.)

My goal is to filter out the dead weight on my newsletter and add in quality subscribers. What I’m learning is it’s a never ending process. New people in, old people out until your left with a tight list of loyal followers.

The best followers come organically…and the best way to get these is simple: WRITE MORE BOOKS AND BE IN MORE PUBLICATIONS!

Thanks for following my journey! I’ll update again when I learn more. If you’ve been following my growth, here’s how my audience has changed in 2017.

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If you want to get caught up on 2017’s journey to find 1000 fans, check out the 1000 “True” Fan Landing Page.

Do you have any tips for me? I’d love to hear!

I’d also love to answer any questions you have.


1000 True Fans – Extending Your Reach

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Happy June!

We’ve been at this 1000 True Fans project for over five months now. I’m changing the structure moving forward to one big project per month. (With only one post to go along with it.)

I’ve been measuring my fan growth by my mailing list growth, but not everyone is a fan of mailing lists. In fact, many people HATE email, but it’s clear in novel marketing that an email list is critical to sustainability and growth, but there are other ways to reach people…and different people than those who don’t mind being on a mailing list.

  • Facebook page likes
  • Twitter followers
  • Good Reads follows
  • Book Bub follows
  • Amazon Author follows

All these help diversify your message. Even if some of the people overlap, and appear on your newsletter as well, you’re just extending your reach. An important advertising principle: People need to hear something seven times before the act on it.

So…How do I grow my reach with the above?

With a similar method to mailing list growth. There’s no easy answer as it takes work.

Here’s some simple steps to grow the above.

  1. Ask people to like your social media/author pages. I have it on my blog, in my newsletter, email signature, and links on other social media as well. This does bring me some followers.
  2. Focus on consistency with posting on twitter (pre-scheduling some posts) and facebook too. (I’m up and down with this, but am adding pre-schedule posts to my monthly calendar.)
  3. Cross promote with other authors specifically for social media growth. Similar to how I’ve been using a free book giveaway and participating in multi-author giveaways to grow my newsletter, you can do similar things with follows. There are many authors out there looking to grow their reach as well. I found one to participate in for June, I can’t wait to see how it turns out. Here’s what it looks like that you can win $100 by participating. To find these authors, you need to watch Facebook author groups or coordinate your own. Another way is to guest post on other’s pages. Facebook parties/takeovers. Blog tours. Participating in a contest (using a service like Rafflecopter) is another option.
  4. Paid advertising. Using Facebook/Twitter Ads, Amazon giveaways, etc. I know that whenever I run a Facebook ad to promote a new release, a side effect is a whole bunch of page likes.

What ideas do you have? I’ll be trying these out during June and will report back on my progress in July.

For those of you following my newsletter subscriber growth, here’s how I’m doing so far:

Current Mailing List Subscriptions: 3371 fans / 1000 true fans (Up 1000 people since last week! I did it by participating in a group giveaway where we all share the signups. I expect a high unsubscribe rate as they pass through my new subscriber email automation, but perhaps some will turn into true fans.)

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 If you want to get caught up on 2017’s journey to find 1000 fans, check out the 1000 “True” Fan Landing Page.

The Myth Behind Social Media – Guest Post by Judy L. Mohr

As my loyal blog followers know, I’ve never had a guest post. Well, that is all changing right now. 🙂  Judy L. Mohr has been following my blog and commenting her useful tips on many of my posts. When she offered a guest post, how could I refuse? With all the help she’d already given me, I hope she can pass some of the knowledge on to you. –Joy

The Myth Behind Social Media by Judy L. Mohr

I remember quite clearly the thoughts that went through my mind when I started down the path toward publication. Time and time again, I would see a reference somewhere saying that all writers needed a platform. The jargon was bounced around every which way, and I was so lost.

Publishers and agents alike constantly pushed the concept of an online presence. The concept of building a following was just too much, and there was very little solid advice on what to do.

Then I learned the truth.

A writer’s platform is not a website or social media — for that matter, it’s not your books. A writer’s platform is everything that you do to connect with your readers.

This is where those building an online presence tend to fall down. Many writers push their latest book until people are sick of seeing the ads. For those who have yet to publish, it will be blog post after blog post. However, the connection with the readers is lost.

Social media is called social media for a reason — because it’s meant to be social. Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. are all about interacting and fostering connections that could be beneficial in the future.

Social Media is About Fostering Connections

Without those connections, you will struggle in a big way to get the word out about your projects. We need help. We can’t do it alone.

To be successful in your social media marketing efforts, the first thing you need to do is stop thinking of social media as marketing, because it’s not. Think about it as an opportunity to meet others, making those contacts that could lead to other opportunities.

The next step in building a presence on social media is to focus your efforts on the networks that you actually enjoy. Choose only the networks that will suit your style and main objectives. Everything else is a waste of time.

Every time I turn around, there is another social media site that many seem to think is a good idea for writers to use. However, if I was to sign up for every site in existence, I would either come across as a fully automated bot, or I would spend so much time on social media that I would never get any writing done.

There is an old saying that couldn’t be truer when it comes to social media and an online presence: it’s better to do one thing well, than to do a half-assed job on multiple things. Don’t spread yourself too thin.

Navigating Through the Social Media Maze

When looking into different social media sites, you need to ask yourself the following questions:

  • Does my personality fit this site?
  • Will the site fill a need that my other ones don’t?
  • Do I actually have the time required to service and maintain an account for this site?
  • What is the plan for content on the account?
  • How often do I need to post to the account to build a following and gain attention?
  • Do I have the budget to build the account?
  • What is the goal for the account? How will I know if it’s successful?
  • Why should I spend time on this particular site instead of other marketing activities?

So, what are some of the more common social media sites, and what are they actually useful for?


Facebook is designed for longer messages, using complete sentence structures. The site is ideal for networking with other writers or those with similar interests. Because of its longer post format, you can get help on an issue and share your knowledge with others. The sites networking features alone make Facebook a valuable social media site for writers.


Twitter’s short message nature (140 characters) has made the site ideal for those who don’t have a lot of time to carefully construct a full post. A quick hashtag search will narrow your feed to just the information you want to see, but you are not limited to just those you follow.

The writing and publishing community is strong on Twitter. Agents hover on the site, posting information about their manuscript wishlists (#MSWL), and any other tidbits of information that they might have. For writers, Twitter can be a valuable resource, even if you do nothing but lurk around gleaning information.


Instagram is the perfect playground for anyone who takes lots of photos and wants to share them with the world. Photos have short captions and are tagged to gather attention. That’s what the site was designed for: photos, photos and more photos.

If you are a budding photographer, then seriously look into this site. It could be a brilliant way to showcase your work.


Google+ was meant to be an alternative to Facebook, however, the community just isn’t there—not really. However, if you frequently use Hangouts, YouTube or any other Google-related product, you will want to ensure that you take a look at your Google+ profile, just in case.


Tumblr can be better thought of as the social media site for bloggers. It’s designed for the longer format posts that are light on copy but heavy on images. It is assumed that users of this site have a blog hosted on Tumblr.


If you are working on a book about crafts or a cookbook, then Pinterest might be the perfect site to connect with your readers. Many of the users on Pinterest gather crafty ideas and others posts of that nature. However, the ability to share posts is limited; it’s designed for sharing photos.


LinkedIn is a networking site for professionals, such as engineers, businessmen, doctors, editors, etc. This is where professional freelance writers and editors can connect with potential clients. However, fiction writers are unlikely to connect with their readers on this site.


This site is designed for photographers and illustrators. If all you do is write, and nothing else, then DeviantArt is not for you. Saying that, if you are looking for an illustrator for your work, many of the illustrators on this site have portfolios that showcase their awesome talent.


Snapchat is a newer beast, designed for teasers. Messages are sent to followers, then disappear after a short period of time. The lack of longevity of posts means that followers might not see your messages. Unless you intend to have fun with teasers, I would be leery of incorporating Snapchat into any online platform.


The biggest attraction of Reddit is the feature revolving around asking random questions. This feature makes this site good for general public publicity. In addition, there are writing communities where you can get advice about publishing, etc. Exactly how this might work within your own platform—only you can answer that.


Periscope is meant to be Instagram for videos. The site is still in its infancy and is struggling to gain a hold. It is interesting to note that the live features on Facebook and Twitter came about because of Periscope.

Sites NOT Suited for Networking

While there are many sites out there for making new connections and fostering working relationships, there are many sites and apps that are NOT intended for networking.

ANY site or app designed for dating was never intended to advertise your writing. Do yourselves a favor: don’t go there.

Programs and apps like Skype, Google Hangouts and Facebook Messenger are great tools for having private communications with people on the other side of the world. However, these were designed to foster connections that already exist.


I know that it can all be overwhelming. At the end of the day, all I can really recommend is to start with only the sites that attract your attention. Build your network and following on those first. Don’t jump on the trend wagon because everyone else is going. Focus your efforts on the sites that will help you achieve your ultimate goal, whatever that goal might be.

Remember, social media is about making connections. Use the right site for making the connections you need.


About the Author

Profile_JudyLMohrKiwi Judy L Mohr is a writer of fantasy and science fiction. She is also a freelance editor with Black Wolf Editorial Services (, working on projects from writers around the world. When she isn’t writing, editing or doing something for writing within the local community, she is hosting her own radio show about science on KLRNRadio ( Judy is the author of Hidden Traps: A Writers Guide to Protecting Your Online Platform, which is slated for release come August 2017. You can follow her crazy adventures on her blog ( or on Twitter ( ).

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1000 True Fans – Providing Value


March’s focus in the 1000 “True” Fan blog series is KEEPING FANS. Last week, we talked about newsletter content. This week, we’re moving on to what’s value added and non-value added content.

Review of Past Week (Mission 9: Newsletter Content): Success

I still can’t come up with a catchy title, so I developed a contest in my April Newsletter, asking for help. If anything, I hope to engage a few people with the request. Also, I reformatted my newsletter for April and developed a welcome email for new subscribers, telling them who I am. I think both of these will work out nice.

I’m still participating in some newsletter building cross-promos, so how is it going?

Drum Roll…Ready?

Current Mailing List Subscriptions: 686 fans / 1000 true fans (Up 197 from last week.)


This Weeks Mission: Keeping Fans – Value Added vs. Non-Value Added Content

Okay, my years in management are coming out. Value added? Non-value added? What the heck is that?

As a manager, anytime we wanted to improve a process (typically, simplify it to save time), we first identified our customer (or audience, in this case). Then, we determined if what task we were doing added value…or didn’t.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this in regards to writing/blogging/social media-ing. Does my content add value for my audience? Am I doing too much? What can I stop to simplify things? What’s just annoying to everyone involved?

So, who is my audience? It’s you. Who are you? A writer. A reader. Just somebody who is trying to waste time and stumbled up my excessively wordy blog post? I have a mix of all the above. Do I have “fans” of my fiction writing following me? Very few–but this is expected for a newly published author. Each platform I use has a different audience, though some of you cross between a few of them.

  • Blog: Mostly writers–mostly NEWish writers. Writers trying to develop their skills, platform, or finish their first book. Some readers / book bloggers sprinkled in. (Tell me if I’m wrong, please.)
  • Facebook Page: A mix of readers, supportive writers I’ve stumbled upon, and some obligatory following of friends and family.
  • Twitter: Pretty much all other writers, trying to promote their own writing. Some writing friends I’ve met through Kindle Scout and other writing adventures I’ve done.
  • Newsletter: Mostly READERS. By giving away a free book in exchange for a sign-up, this has populated with readers.

What does my audience want? What does anyone want. They want to be entertained. They want to learn something. They want ??? I’m still learning this.

Knowing who my customers are and what they want, my next step is to determine if each task I do adds value to the customer. Does it give them what they want? Its a way to keep a loyal audience and to make sure I’m not wasting my time. The nice thing is each platform can tell you what topics bring audience engagement…by number of clicks, likes, opens, etc.

Example for each platform:

  • Blog: I looked at my most popular posts and pages. I learned something interesting. My “About” page was at the top. Does that mean people want to know more about who I am? I don’t really talk much about what I do outside of writing. (i.e. carting my kids to whatever sport/birthday party/school function they are going to or whatever vacation we’re going on–next week it’s 12 days in Europe on a Mediterranean cruise.) Perhaps, I should sneak this in more, but I’m just not good about talking about myself…not that I don’t like to share. 🙂 Other popular posts were my Lessons Learned With Self-Publishing and this 1000 True Fan Series. Writing tips were way up there too. My book reviews/spotlights–not so popular.
  • Twitter: I tweet…and I tweet…and get minimal engagement. My tweets have to be NON-VALUE ADDED for my audience. I need to either change my tweets, change my audience, or just send Twitter to the bird house. (Though, my blog posts that flow to twitter get some interest, I think I may focus on these some before I give it up.)

My goals this week: Focus on my audience and simplify my routine. Review each task I do and ask if it is giving my audience value. Save time to be able to focus more on writing my current novel (Secret Lives of Superhero Wives.) Go through each social media and ask if what I’m doing actually adds value. (Noting that some add value to ME, and that’s okay.) Also, I’m going to schedule some of my historical blog posts as tweets this week–let’s see if I can get my engagement up.

Want to read more? Here’s a webpage to check out.

Next Week: I’m on VACATION! I won’t be blogging again until the 21st or 22nd. I’m coming up with a checklist for daily value added tasks to do to save time when using social media.

If you want to get caught up on 2017’s journey to find 1000 fans, check out the 1000 “True” Fan Landing Page.

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below.

1000 True Fans – What to do with a Facebook Author Page?


In my quest to find 1000 “true” fans, February’s focus is social media. If you want to get caught up, check out the 1000 “True” Fan Landing Page.

Review of Past Week (Mission 5: Is Twitter a Waste of Time?): My answer…perhaps yes?

Let me explain. Twitter is great for interacting with people (or other authors in my case.) I learn from posts, especially following hashtags. My take on twitter: If you like it, use it. But use it like it’s intended–social…with chatting, interacting, and helping others the best you can.

My BIG DISCOVERY this week: Hootsuite. It makes twitter so much more user friendly. It’s free software that lets your organize your streams (you can do Facebook too.) I have it set up simple, with three tabs/organizational areas. Having Hootsuite lets me interact more meaningful…and quickly. All I do is open it up, scan all my streams/tabs (interacting with whatever pleases me) and then move on. Here’s how my tabs are organized:

  • Tab 1 (Account Overview): Includes: mentions, messages, and new followers.
  • Tab 2 (Hastags I follow): Includes: Writing hashtags (#amwriting, #writerslife, #indiepub, etc), Reading Hashtags (#amreading, #whattoread, etc), Market hastags (specific to my next novel — #urbanfantasy, #vampires, etc) and blogging hashtags (#bookblogger, #blog, #sundayblogshare, #mondayblogs, etc.)
  • Tab 3 (Lists): I have a few lists I follow. Two I made… One is public of all the awesome people I’ve run across on multiple other platforms. The second is private, of those people who I’ve interacted with on twitter and want to follow-up with or interact again. I also follow two other lists, put together by other twitter users… Fantasy writers and Sci-Fi writers.

So…How did this week turn out in terms of mailing list growth (my measure of success)?

Drum Roll…Ready?

Current Mailing List Subscriptions: 38 fans / 1000 true fans (Up 7 from last week…but hold your horses, they weren’t from twitter. I am trialing instafreebies with mailing list integration for one month. I’ll blog about this when the free trial is over.)


This Weeks Mission: What to post on my Facebook author page…and passive growth of “fans”

Facebook is a FANTASTIC way to connect with other writers. I’m in multiple groups that I actively participate in. In addition to this, I love using it to create a smaller private group to coordinate events. My advice: Find a group, request to join, and BE ACTIVE! This is how you make connections.

Back in September, I decided it was time to create a Facebook author page. (Blog about that here.) Since then, I’ve posted 38 times…and struggle every time with what to post. What content should I share on my author page? My blog…and twitter function under my “platform” of discovering how to write…together. My Facebook author page is different. It’s about me as a writer.

Who do I want to be? I’m a little quirky…ridiculous at times. So, I decided to share funny reading (sometimes writing) cartoons. I need to remember that while my blog caters to writers, my Facebook page is more for readers.

Like always, I did some research. Here is some ways to use your author page to connect with and grow your audience. I’m hesitant to just randomly ask people to like my page, I’ve read that this impacts the magical Facebook algorithms on who see’s your posts and who doesn’t (i.e. if less people are engaged, the less likely it is for your post to be displayed.) So my goal isn’t to grow in number of followers, but to grow in quality followers. Because of this, I’m not going out asking for some random page likes.

Here’s some suggested content for an author page: Goal – KEEP IT RELEVANT and ENGAGE THE AUDIENCE. (Also, a big rule of thumb: 20% promotion and 80% non-promotion)

  • Ask questions: I’ve had great success with asking for help with taglines, novel covers, and other things relating to what I’m stuck on. I think it would be good to engage your fans to…such as, “Who’s your favorite villain?” “What was the last book you read?” “Which novel made you cry?” Hmmm… I’m going to have to try these.
  • Photos of books / book events / relating to writing. I think sharing personal photos, not stock images, is the best way to engage the audience.
  • Book quotes: I usually do this in conjunction with a new release or a special deal…Or share a quote from a book you’re reading.
  • Upcoming events I’ve posted cross promos and release dates.
  • Book trailers / other videos I haven’t posted a video yet, but I know videos are taking over social media.
  • Really good or important blog posts. Not everything, but the ones I want everyone to see. I know my facebook followers are not loyal blog followers, but do check out the posts I direct them to.
  • Inspirational / Funny quotes & comics: Yeah, that’s just my quirkiness coming out. I have some of this in my newsletter too. I like to do more of these than anything else.

How often should I post? This is another question I struggle with. Twitter you can post a lot. Facebook requires some moderation. (Just as blogging does.) I know I don’t post often enough–once per week…maybe twice if I have a promo coming up. I think a good goal would be three times a week. (With at least two of them NOT RELATED TO MY WRITING OR BOOKS. I don’t have any science behind that, but that’s just my thought. Perhaps daily would be better? I’d love to know your thoughts. I personally think the frequency is individual based on the page owner’s own personality.

Facebook Author Pages have some challenges. For one, you can have 1000 page likes, but when you post, Facebook has some behind-the-scene algorithms as to who sees your posts. (Maybe only 10%?) You have the option to PAY for a post boost, where it’ll go out to all the people who like your page. Yeah, I hate that. That’s why some people use a personal page instead of an author page. I figure, if I have something that important to say, I’ll share it on my personal page and ask my fans to share it too.  (Or bite the bullet and just pay to boost the post if it’s THAT important. Facebook has to make money, too, right?)

And remember: If you get ANY INTERACTION AT ALL, make sure you interact back!

My goals this week: My goals are pretty simple.

  1. Post 3 times. One promotional post and two fun posts. (I’m heading over there now…as soon as I hit publish.)
  2. Come up with a daily routine to check twitter and interact in Facebook groups — without it sucking ALL my writing time away from me.

Next Week: Blogging!

Let’s learn from each other. What do you enjoy seeing on an author’s Facebook page? What do you post on your own?

(P.S. My Facebook Page is here if you want to watch me get a handle on it.)


Censorship Beyond School Libraries

Facebook pulled my advertisement! I’m in shock and disbelief. All I was trying to do inform people that my book is out in the world. Apparently, images of weapons are not allowed in Facebook ads.

Have you never seen a gun before?

I mean, come on! It’s advertising a novel. A book to stimulate your brain. A book that is mild compared to what’s out there…in novels and in real life. And don’t even get me started on movie trailers that broadcast on network TV!

So, if I want to advertise through Facebook (which many authors say is quite effective) I need to change my novel cover.

Is it worth giving in?

I know Facebook is a private company, but I still feel violated.

Old Attempted Ad:


My own personal modification I may try…if I EVER decide to give Facebook my money. Facebook probably has a clause somewhere in tiny, tiny print that if I try this ad, they’ll ban me from their site permanently.


I can still post images of guns on my author page and my personal page, I just can’t use their paid services. It’s their decision, but it’s still frustrating.

Can you hear me sigh? See me shake my head?

Thanks for listening to my rant. On to bigger and better things in 2017!