You did it, your book is finished! It’s a moment worthy of celebration. But if you have dreams of finally setting your laptop aside for awhile, it’s time to think again: In today’s book world, the reality is that you’ll be busier than ever, looking for online ways to market your book. This is the next step for the savvy self-publisher.
In this ongoing blog series we offer genre-specific advice on selling your book on social media. Today, we focus on new adult titles.
When it comes to new adult books, there are countless groups with a devotion to the genre. Your task is to find these forums and engage with them. When using social media, it’s important that members feel you are a dedicated participant, not someone solely interested in promoting your book. So you will need to join in the conversations going on in each forum. Once you’ve established yourself, you can let members know of your book, even giving out special offers and so on.
Below are many useful resources. Feel free to share your favorites with us and we will add them to the list.
Facebook is invaluable for those marketing on a budget. You’ll want to start by creating a business page devoted to your new adult book. After that, you have to get people to like your page— the hard part. There are numerous webinars, books, and blogs devoted to how to do this. Facebook has an easy step-by-step guide to help you out with this: https://www.facebook.com/pages/create/
Keep in mind that Facebook has now become monetized, which means that while you can reach a small segment of your Facebook friends with any post, to reach a larger audience, you’ll have to pay small sums of money. Facebook calls this “boosting” your post. Once you post something on your page, Facebook will ask you if you’d like to “boost this post?” If you say “yes,” a box will pop up allowing you to decide how much you would like to spend and telling you how far your reach will go based on how much you spend. Once “boosted,” Facebook will send the item out to like-minded pages, where it will appear on those timelines. It’s a sure way to get your book on the feeds of people interested in your topic and to begin reaching out to those beyond your immediate circle.
One way you can start finding those people yourself is to join the Facebook groups that draw readers of your genre. Below are a few of our favorite Facebook groups for the new adult genre, with the groups description included. Most groups allow authors to promote their work on the page (within reason):
https://www.facebook.com/groups/408523459195653/ (NEW ADULT FICTION – 4.2k members) “This group is for ADULT FICTION. That means sex is totally fine.” Group members are free to post as often as they please but are requested to be respectful and not leave negative comments on others’ posts. There is little discussion here, mostly author promotions. When promoting your book here, they request that you link to your ebook.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/936229823097234/ (New Adult Scavenger Hunt – 177 members) A community built for new adult fiction fans and authors. Learn more about new adult authors, their books, and promotional opportunities as well as the biannual New Adult Scavenger Hunt.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/newadultnews/ (New Adult News – 196 members) This is a group for the promotion of New Adult books only.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/NewAdultNoireAUTHORS/ (New Adult Noire Authors – 130 members) This is the author collaboration group for New Adult Noir(e). NA Noire is a collection of authors who write dark and gritty science fiction, fantasy, urban fantasy, horror, dark romance, paranormal romance, sci-fi romance, fantasy romance, and dark SFF/H erotica. The group engages in cross-promos, joint giveaways, free book promos, series discovery promos, and other reader discovery projects.
https://www.facebook.com/groups/123991804470360/ (New Adult Authors – 611 members) A group dedicated to authors of New Adult in all genres. If you’re joining the group to specifically solicit sales this is NOT the group for you. This group is meant to promote discussion.
With posts limited to 280 characters, you’ll have to be clever —and brief— in order to effectively use this medium. And don’t forget that you’ll use up several characters if you want to link to your website. Moral of story: Think small. (Note: If you are linking your post to another site, make sure to use a link-shortening service like bit.ly. Bit.ly takes a long url address and reduces it to only a few characters, freeing up valuable real estate on your limited character allowance.)
Remember to use hashtags. These can make a huge difference in how many people see your tweet. A hashtag is used to show what the post is about or related to, preceded by the pound sign (#books, #newadult, etc.). Each hashtag has its own Twitter “address” so people interested in new adult novels, for example, might simply visit #newadult and look at all of the posts with this hashtag. Using multiple relevant hashtags, while not going overboard, is paramount to a successful Twitter presence. If you’re offering a Kindle deal for your book, be sure to add the hashtag #kindledeals, as many readers look there for inexpensive books.
Here are some relevant hashtags:
Instagram is a photo and video sharing social networking service. Once you create your account, you will post your photos and videos from the app on your cell phone, as Instagram’s website is viewer-friendly only, but does not let you post from the website. Users will post a photo (in this case, usually book related) to gain attention and then will caption their photo with whatever information they are wanting to share. For example, you could notify your followers about new chapters you’ve posted, etc.
Instagram doesn’t link to your website when you post a photo or video, however using hashtags in your post that are relevant to your community will help you gain followers and network with other people within your genre. Within Instagram, there is a sub-community known as “Bookstagram”. Bookstagram is a great way to connect with fellow book lovers from all over the world, as well as being able to share your own writing.
Here are some relevant hashtags:
Pinterest is a site of virtual bulletin boards. Each board is theme-based. You can find boards on everything from bathroom remodels to Indian recipes to every kind of new adult book imaginable.
Each board features images of the topic at hand; clicking on an image brings up more information. For example, on a book board, if you click on the image of a book jacket, that might take you to a review of the book or the author’s website, the book’s Amazon page and so on.
The site is used for sharing information, but too much self-promotion is frowned upon. So, when you set up your Pinterest board, you may want to set up a board devoted to a larger topic, such as self-published new adult fiction or favorite new adult fantasy books, and allow others to share their titles with you. Join in the fun of creating interesting boards that not only will promote sales, but will also be fun and engaging to others.
In addition to creating your own boards, be sure to search out other boards where you can share your pins (your images) and connect with others in the new adult community.
Here are a couple that we like and share our pins with:
One last platform to consider when promoting online is Goodreads. Goodreads is a website owned by Amazon that allows individuals to freely search the extensive user-populated database of books, annotations, and reviews. Users can sign up and register books to generate library catalogs and reading lists. They can also create their own groups of book suggestions, surveys/polls, blogs, and discussions.
Below are some of our favorite new adult groups on Goodreads. READ THE RULES BEFORE POSTING! Authors who only post promotions and do not participate in discourse in the community will be ejected.
https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/85934-new-adult-book-club (13355 members)
https://www.goodreads.com/group/show/105969-ya-na-romance (1985 members)
We hope you find these links helpful. They will certainly keep you busy for a while, but once you get involved with the social media world, you’ll find this is only the beginning.
Jenna is a student majoring in Journalism with a minor in English at the University of Kansas in Lawrence, Kansas. She is an intern at Blueink Review.
BlueInk Review is a fee-based book review service devoted to self-published titles exclusively. For more news and writing and marketing tips, sign up for our mailing list. And be sure and visit us at https://www.blueinkreview.com.