It’s spring! Okay, so I’m still wearing a big cardigan and the central heating is ticking away, but March marks the beginning of the new season. There are buds on the trees, the birds are getting randy, and the lawn-mower is on my husband’s mind. There’s no avoiding the fact that my house needs a refresh and a good spring clean. So too does my author social media presence.
March is the ideal time to refresh your social media presence because:
- it’s the last month of the first quarter of the year
- you have a couple of months’ evidence of whether your social media posts are effective
- a new season marks the beginning of new trends
If the thought of assessing your social media presence is bothersome and raises a sigh, don’t worry. I’m not talking about a major overhaul, just a happy little refresh.
Let’s get started then.
Mug shots, profiles, and banners
Let’s start with the mug shots:
- First question, is the profile photo you use on social media up-to-date? It doesn’t have to be from the last week or month, but it’s probably best to use a photo no older than six months. At the very least, make sure you still look like that.
- Second question, is your profile photo consistent across all your author social media accounts? You may have posted a more recent photo to one channel, but not the others. Using one profile photo across all your social media accounts helps readers to recognise you.
- Third question, is the quality of the photo sufficient? Is it a bit blurred or pixelated or badly lit? Is it cropped badly, perhaps with the top of your head chopped off so you’re all neck? Get a better photo.
- Final question about your profile photo, does it give the impression or mood that you want to get across to your readers?
Next, have a look at the information or bio on each of your social media accounts. You’re checking for three factors – consistency, relevance, and timeliness. Is your bio consistent across all your social media accounts, even if the allowed wordcount varies? Is your bio still relevant to the type of reader you want to attract? Finally, is your bio up-to-date? Have you released more books or changed publisher, for instance?
The same factors can be applied to your social media banners, but you might also want to consider whether there’s a seasonal aspect to them. Are you still hanging onto that Christmas banner, for instance? If the month, season, or nearest holiday affects the design of your banner, now’s the time to make it altogether more spring-like.
What’s working (and what isn’t)?
You have enough data from the beginning of 2022 until now to get a good idea of the type of social media posts that are having the desired effect and those that are doing nothing for you.
What that ‘desired effect’ is will depend on your social media goals. Do you want to build a following of the right type of reader, for instance? Do you want to increase traffic to your website? Is more engagement with your posts what you want to achieve? How you measure the success of your social media posts relies on what that success looks like for you:
- Build a social media following? Look at the number of new followers you have on each social media account.
- Increase traffic to your website? Use Google Analytics to find out.
- Increase engagement with your posts? This should be obvious from each of your social media accounts, for instance, likes, comments, shares. It may be difficult, however, to track how many people read your posts but don’t respond.
You can apply this to the social media channels you use too. Your Twitter presence may be awash with engagement, whereas it seems that you’re the only person visiting your Facebook page.
Has anything changed?
If you created your social media plan at the beginning of the year, or even last year, it may already be out-of-sync with the real world and also with you. For instance,
- the publication of your next novel has been delayed, so all those posts you intended to make about your book launch aren’t relevant for that month. What are you going to post about instead?
- a big world event demands your attention, and you want to post about it. How will you fit it into your social media plan?
- real life impinges on your time, and you have to simplify your plan
Don’t be afraid to adapt your social media plan and strategy. A healthy approach embraces flexibility.
If you found this blog post helpful and want to receive more social media tips for authors, why not sign up to my newsletter – Fi’s Content Catch-Up.
Now, I must be off. I’ve a whole lot of online dusting to do. Toodle-oo.
Photo by JESHOOTS.COM on Unsplash