Rock Your Author Social Media Profile
How to Rock Your Author Social Media Profile
Mainly this post is regarding Twitter, but much of it applies across all social media platforms and will help you rock your author social media profile.
You may not realize how important your author social media profile is to your audience’s expectations, but it gives them a first glance at who you are and in seconds they make a decision about you – just by a glance at your profile. If you don’t have this part of your social media right, unless you’re already incredibly famous, there’s not much reason to concern yourself with your posting quantity or quality.
Get this right and you’re on your way to growing followers, friends, and fans – your audience.
Think about it, when you first glance at someone’s profile on Twitter – what makes you decide to follow them? If you’re just randomly following people then you really need to stop right there. You should be looking at their bio and photo for starters. And other people look at your’s too before they decide to follow you. If you have nothing written for your bio and no profile photo of yourself then chances are you’re missing out.
Some tips to get you started:
Your profile photo should always be recent and decent. Ideally this would be a clear head shot showing your smiling face and one that looks like you. Don’t go and get a photo done of yourself that is completely misleading and isn’t recognizable to someone if they saw you on the street, but you should look professional.
Some people say it’s a bad idea to use black and white, or sepia color options for your profile picture and I disagree with that. Sometimes it can look really nice and it also may be relevant to your genre – like a sepia for victorian novels would be cool.
If you take a look at my profile pic, I used sepia. I did this for two reasons. 1. It matches my website color scheme without turning my face blue. 2. I was wearing a bright white shirt with blue stripes and bright red lipstick – I looked like an American flag, …only I’m not an American flag, so I decided on the sepia color to tone it down just a bit. Later on I’ll probably do a better pic, but I like this one for now.
Your author social media bio, on any platform, should be clear and concise, describing what you do and who you are so that people can easily understand. On most platforms you only have so many characters to write about yourself, so you need to be able to word correctly. A good way to think about it is that you’re writing a short pitch, it shouldn’t be a pitch for your book, but about yourself, though it shouldn’t necessarily as salesy.
Try thinking of writing a headline and what keywords you might want to use that describe yourself and what you do. Also, you can try playing around with different words to see how it sounds. You can always edit your author social media bio to see what works better too.
On Twitter never use hashtags in your profile bio, this is a common mistake, but if people click on the tag it takes them away from your profile. Many people thing that it’s a good idea so that they get found easier, but it’s not the case. You don’t need hashtags to be found on Twitter or Facebook.
Here is a bad bio:
- Sally Jones
- I’m Sally Jones, the author of two kid’s books about a Kangaroo and a Koala.
- See more about my books here: link.to.book.com
Unnecessary words to have in your author social media profile:
I’m – Sally Jones – the – of – two – about – a – and – a – see – more – about – my – books – here
First, we already know you’re Sally Jones, it says so where your name is – wasted characters! The second ‘books’ is unnecessary because it was already used, but do you see all the wasted characters there? For a much better bio, take a look at the example further down.
Your author social media profile should always point back to your author website if you have one. If you don’t have a website, see Why You Need a Website here. On most platforms you can have a link in your bio section and then another link below. On some social media platforms the link won’t be clickable, so don’t bother putting it there. On Twitter and Pinterest it is, so you can use both sections.
If you are able to use a link in your bio section, this is a good place to put a link to your subscription page where you have a free giveaway for people to sign up on your email list. Alternatively, you could have a link to your book/s. Always use a shortened link such as from bit.ly on your profile bio to save space.
On all social media platforms there’s also a specific place to put a link to your website. In this section, if you haven’t already used the bio section to add your subscription page – do it here. If you already have, just use the main link to your author website. On this space you shouldn’t need to use a url shortener, and if you’re linking directly to your main website page you want to make it so people can see the actual link, so they’ll also remember it easier.
So a decent bio on Twitter, for example would be:
- Sally Jones
- Awesome Bio Pic – showing full smiling face, neatly cropped (use your imagination please)
- Author of children’s books for kids who love to read about wildlife in Australia. Parents love reading Kangaroo’s Pocket & Koala’s Tree – Free Pages – shortened.link.com
Take a look at the keywords in that, without being repeated – author, children’s books, kids, read, wildlife, Australia, parents, reading, kangaroo, & koala – all with readable sentence structure, a link to a free PDF (where they have to add their email), and in under 160 characters.
Do you see how I managed to get all those keywords while still making it read clearly? That’s the key to good social media profiles, and also good SEO.
So if someone is searching Google for “a kid’s book on kangaroos in Australia” – guess what, Sally Jones’ Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, and Website will all come up in the search results. A quick note – your profiles on all your author social media platforms and Amazon author page should not all be the exact same wording – try to mix it up while always conveying the same message – this is better for SEO.
Have questions or need help with your author social media profile? Just let me know and I’ll be more than happy to help in any way that I can!
Have an awesome day!
SEO for Authors – How to Rock
SEO for Authors – How to Rock
Do Authors Need to Worry About SEO Skills?
Simple answer – yes, you need to work on your SEO skills – even if you’re just an author trying to sell books. As an author SEO should be one of the top skills to learn if you plan on doing any type of self-promoting of any kind. Let’s get started on tips about SEO for Authors.
You need to get traffic to your site, no matter what you’re doing online and SEO skills are one of the most important aspects for organic traffic. If your site isn’t optimized for search engines, you’ll likely just be wasting your time, so be sure to get it right from the start.
SEO skills are also incredibly important for any kind of searchable book descriptions or author biographies, so you do want to be sure you brush up on them. The easiest way is to practice some blog posts on your website, focusing on SEO.
Afterwards, you may even want to go back and edit some of your descriptions and bio because just playing around with SEO gets the gears turning and for someone who already, most likely, has a love for words, you’re going to have some serious inspiration.
Don’t worry though, SEO for authors is easier than you think with a single, and free, WordPress plugin. You’ll be a pro at it in no time because YoastSEO is on your side and regularly updates to keep on top of new search engine rules and changes.
Even if you have a few posts and pages already, with YoastSEO, you can easily go back through them and edit them to spruce up your search engine optimization.
Sometimes I will go through old posts just to tighten up the SEO and find that old posts are getting lots of new traffic because of it. Plus, I actually really enjoy it and it helps to awaken new ideas and gets me writing.
As an author, learning SEO skills are a lot like learning grammar skills, except for websites.
You need to tell the search engines what kind of content you have on your site and what it’s about so that people can find it in the vast sea of information. It’s very easy to learn, takes practice, and becomes second nature when you regularly write posts.
When you’re writing a post, the first thing to do is decide what the main content of the post is about and draw out your keywords from it. Think of it as a pitch, but even shorter.
So, say you’re writing a post about golf instruction and you want it to be about *Making Your Best Golf Swing.
For your keywords you could choose ‘best golf swing’ and then you make sure those three words are together in the following parts of your post:
- throughout the content
- image alt tags
- featured image alt tags
- post and category tags
That doesn’t mean that you should use the exact phrase over and over again randomly, but in a natural way throughout. For image alt tags, I find it’s best to change things around, such as ‘Best Golf Swing for Pros’, then another: ‘Finding Your Best Golf Swing’ . You can see how they both have the three words together while saying a different thing. This way you’ll have different phrases that will show up when people type them in the search engines, while still having keeping focus on your keywords.
For practicing advanced SEO for authors skills you can easily find out what are the most popular keywords and phrases are and use them, using free online tools such as within Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Keyword Spy. There are loads of other keyword tools online.
I always try to make sure when I’m choosing keywords to think about what I would type in if I were looking for something. This is one of the keys to awesome SEO for your website.
And as always, the more content you post, the better you get, and the more traffic you get – you reap what you sow.
If even after using the free YoastSEO plugin, and trying to create some blog posts using keywords, and you still need help, just let me know, this is one of my services and I’m more than happy to answer any questions you might have.
*I know absolutely nothing about golf, so I apologize if that’s not a good example. Please don’t hold it against me, and please, no golf related questions – I won’t be much help to you.
Thanks and have an awesome day!
Traffic to Your Author Website with Awesome SEO
SEO Tips for Getting More Traffic to Your Author Website
First of all, you may be asking, what is SEO and what does it matter to me? I’m just putting my website up so that people can go there and see my stuff – right? Yes, it matters a lot, just as much as grammar and punctuation matters to writing. Here are some tips to get you started.
These are your basic areas to focus on for a well-rounded SEO strategy for your author website. Focus on all of these areas and you’ll have a secure foundation for all your traffic sources.
Keywords are the essential building blocks of your SEO strategy. To compare with writing, they would be your plot, and everyone knows you need a good strong plot to make great writing.
It works like this:
- You have your blog post. What is the plot for your post?
- Then you come up with a great headline that captures the main idea.
- You take your headline and break it down so that you capture the plot in just 2-3 words.
Those are your main keywords.
A long-tail keyword is a keyword phrase where instead of saying “kangaroo” as your keyword you would use “children’s Australia book about kangaroos”. Long-tail keywords are more specific and when trying to come up with them it’s best to try and think of the phrase you would type in if you were looking for your book.
Always try to be specific with your phrase, but don’t use common words, such as pronouns and articles, as these are considered ‘stop-words’ and search engines are programmed to ignore them. So instead of saying “a children’s book about kangaroos” in your keyword phrase, you would simply say “children’s kangaroo book” and leave out the unnecessary stop-words.
When you’ve written a few blog posts on your site, chances are you’ll be able to categorize them according to topic. This is a great time to look at the common themes and make sure you put them into relevant categories. When you title your categories use keywords that describe your site’s main content.
Back to the kangaroos book, you could have some categories like this:
- Children’s Kangaroo Crafts
- Kid’s Australian Recipes
- Australian Nature Tidbits
- Kangaroo Books
When titling your categories also try to avoid using stop-words. Instead of writing “Australian Recipes for Kids” I dropped the “for” and switched the words around so that it still makes sense. It takes practice, but, as you know, all good writing does.
With every post that you write you should add a few post tags so that you can further maximize your SEO. Post tags are usually 1-2 keywords that you choose to describe your post without them having to be structured for readability.
- Post title: Australian Wildlife Facts About Kangaroos
- Category: Australian Nature Tidbits
- Tags: wildlife, australia, kangaroos
With tags, the words don’t have to be capitalized or any such thing either. They show up as separate links at the bottom of your post. When a visitor clicks on the word “kangaroo” it will take them to every post that you’ve written about kangaroos.
When you insert a graphic or photo on your WordPress blog post, there are several keyword opportunities that come up.
Editable options for images in WordPress:
- Caption – visible text beneath image
- Alt Text
- Description – visible on image info page
All of these can be changed to maximize your keywords within your posts. You can use your main keywords for the title and different long-tail keyword phrase for the rest. It’s best not to repeat your phrases word for word, try to mix things up a bit and think of different ways someone would search for the same thing.
You don’t have to use all four spaces, but I highly recommend using the first 3 options where possible, and Title and Alt Text at the very least.
Make sure your post URL contains your keywords or keyword phrase. In WordPress, the first thing you have to do is make sure your Permalink settings are set to Post Name. This is under Settings —> Permalinks.
Then when you first type out your post, you’ll notice that as soon as you finish typing out your title that the URL will automatically change to the title. You can, and oftentimes should, edit this, to remove superfluous words, especially stop-words to clean up your links.
Other SEO Tips
Outbound links are links that link to other websites within your content. Now, you may ask, why would you want to link to other websites when you’re trying to grow your audience on your website? The reason is ranking in search engines. When you link to other high quality websites in your content, such as in giving examples or further reading, you’re giving your own website authority. If you link to low quality websites, then you’re telling search engines that your content is also low-quality. So, you should, when possible, have a few high quality links within your content to show the search engines that your content is also high quality.
Using outbound links within your content increases and improves your authority and search engine ranking. It may not always make sense, but that’s how it works.
Tip: I always have my outbound links open in a new tab so that it doesn’t actually take anyone completely away from my website and they can easily come back to it for further reading.
So, if outbound links take people away from your site – what are inbound links? Inbound links are links to your own content, also known as “backlinks”, from other websites. Now, if you’ve got your social media profiles right, as discussed in This Post, then you already have several inbound links from around the web. This is a great start, but not enough to really increase your traffic.
To get inbound links to your website you have to start with finding where your audience is hanging out. What types of blogs do they follow and what kind of online communities are they a part of? These are the places you also have to go and hang out.
While you’re there, add your comments on some posts, with a link to your author website. Now, this goes without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway, don’t post spam.
Spam looks like this: “Great post!” or “thanks for posting this!” just as much as this does: “I’m commenting just to get a link to my website on your blog!” or “buy viagra at the lowest prices” – it’s all the same.
Your comments need to add to the conversation or topic, basically adding your two-cents. The link is clickable on your name, and that’s enough. Sometimes you’ll get people who will click on your name and go to your website, but the main point to start with is to give your website quality inbound links.
This also goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway. Your comments should be positive, polite, relevant, and not obnoxious, or this makes you look bad, and may even get your comment deleted, which defeats the entire purpose. People who do this are known as trolls. This can be a serious waste of your time and energy that could be spent in more positive pursuits. If you find you’re on a blog that you find too controversial, then find a different one that is more in line with you and your audience since you wouldn’t want to have your site linked to it anyway.
I’m not saying to avoid controversy, because some can be good and bring you a lot of traffic, you just want to be sure that it’s something you’re alright with having yourself associated with, possibly forever.
You also want to be sure you post comments regularly, but not in the same post. You don’t have to reply to someone just because they replied to you, but you can such as in the case of they asked you, personally, a question. Regularly would be a couple times a week per blog. If you find several blogs or online communities you may only want to post once a week at each one. Just try it out and see what works for you.
Blog Commenting Tips:
- Find Where Your Audience Hangs Out
- Post Relevant, Polite Comments
- Add Value to the Topic or Conversation
- Include Your Website Link
- Use Your Author Name
- Never Spam
- Comment Regularly on Different Sites
Learning and putting all of these SEO tips into practice for your website will significantly improve your site structure, search engine listings, and increase your website traffic.
If you have any questions regarding these SEO tips, please don’t hesitate to contact me – I’m more than happy to answer your questions and help you in any way I can.
Have an awesome day & the best success!
Tips on Getting Traffic to Your Author Website
Tips on Getting Traffic to Your Author Website
Getting traffic to your author website isn’t luck, a magic formula, or any other such myth. Every aspect of your business, product, and yes, getting traffic to your website requires applying the necessary skills, and yes, work. You have to take the steps to get your links where people will see them, and then have them optimized so people will click on them.
We all want thousands of people on our websites each day – that’s what brings in the sales – right? Well, yes, and no. It doesn’t matter if you have thousands of visitors to your website every day if they aren’t interested in your books, products, or services.
Putting your website on places where you get lots of traffic, such as traffic exchanges, doesn’t work because you’re just taking a chance that maybe one person out of those thousand will be interested in your website. This is a total waste of time and it’s something that is going downhill fast on today’s internet. And if you don’t know what a traffic exchange is, that’s just as well.
1. Something to Offer
First, you must have something of value to offer. People don’t want to come to your website just to hear you talk about how they should buy your books. You have to give them a reason to want to buy your books and one of the ways to do that is to find out what interests your audience has that are relevant to your book.
For ideas on what kind of content to put on your author website – SEE THIS LINK.
2. SEO – Outbound & Inbound Links
The next thing you need to work on is your SEO skills so that you can get the most organic traffic to your author website as possible.
Organic SEO is, basically, the use of keywords throughout your content, image descriptions, headlines, etc., so that your website shows up naturally, (without paid advertising), in search results as high as possible so that people who are looking for your content can find it.
Organic SEO is extremely important and is the foundation of your content and traffic generation. You shouldn’t depend entirely on organic traffic, but you should focus on it from the beginning so that it’s already in place. Think of SEO as the grammar of websites – get your SEO right and you can focus on everything else. Depending on your strategy and content, this could be your main basis for your visitors coming to your website.
The number one free SEO tool for your WordPress website is YoastSEO. I highly recommend using this tool. Not only will it help you get your proper keywords in place, but it’ll also help you build your SEO skills.
Outbound links are links to other websites within your content. This improves your ranking quality when you link to other high quality websites.
Inbound links are links that bring traffic to your author website from other websites. Social media gives you some inbound links, but posting your link to other websites in comments or through link exchanging seriously increases your traffic.
3.Update Old Posts
When you have some old stagnant posts that aren’t getting any traffic, it’s a great idea to go through and update them where possible. Check post keywords, tags, and general wording to see if you can update them in any way. You may be surprised how an old post can bring new traffic with a few edits.
4. Guest Post
Guest posting is you posting a blog post on another website and is a great way to get quality inbound links and lots of traffic to your author website. When you do this you get credit for the article or post and you also get a link to your website. This is an awesome way to get traffic to your website when you can get yourself a post on a big name and high quality blog.
Many large blogs will have a link you can follow that gives you instructions and information about doing a guest blog post. Look for this either in the footer section or other informational section of the website. Some websites are entirely guest bloggers and these types of sites will most likely have such information readily available.
Where there is no information find the contact information for the website owner and send them an email asking if they would like a guest blog post. Give them as much information as is relevant. Sometimes you may receive a rejection, but don’t let that stop you, just try some other blogs.
Since you’re an author, you may also find, instead of blogs, online magazines who take submissions in your writing genre where you can regularly post short stories, poems, or articles. There are many such children’s literature magazines. Often they will also allow you to add your website link with your name as well. Some of these are also paid submissions where you can earn a little extra money along with growing your audience.
5. Social Media
This may seem like an obvious one, but there are some added tips that might help you maximize your traffic through social media platforms.
Read – Social Media for Authors here.
Social Media Groups
You can either join or create your own groups in both Facebook and LinkedIn that are related to your niche or genre and have a place to grow your audience through a mutual topic. These groups can be extremely useful for directing traffic to your author website when you have an active group that regularly posts.
The only thing I wouldn’t recommend is joining groups where it’s an “advertise your book here” type of group. It’s not that they’re necessarily bad, but they aren’t very helpful. Everyone is simply posting their own book links and information and nobody else is interested in anything that anyone posts. It tends to be a waste of time.
For Facebook, you want to start, or join, an active group that’s on a topic of interest. For example, if you have your Kangaroo kid’s book, you might want to start a group about ‘animals of Australia for kids’ or something to that effect. This wouldn’t be relevant on LinkedIn.
The big difference with starting a group verses joining one is that usually the owner of the group doesn’t allow posting of sales links, but if you own the group, you can post your links or information, and make the rules.
6. Social Bookmark Sharing Sites
Websites like StumbleUpon can be extremely useful in getting traffic to your website. These are places where people post links to their websites and content that gets recommended to others. The potential is enormous.
There are a few others that are good to use as well, but StumbleUpon is generally the most used. You can read more about Social Bookmarking Sites, as well as other Social Media Information Here.
7. Interview Genre Related Authors or Illustrators
There are many authors and illustrators whom you could contact and ask if you could interview them. Most people will enjoy the opportunity and you can post the interview on your website and gain a significant amount of traffic from this. You can post the interview in either audio, video, or by writing it out as a blog post from a conversation.
If you were to make this a regular feature on your website you could even attract more well-known authors and gain an even wider audience than you ever dreamed and bring some major traffic to your author website.
8. Use Plenty of Images in Your Posts
Now, how does that help you get more traffic to your author website? Silly, I know, but what happens is the more relevant images you have in your post = the more likely it is to get shared = more traffic to your site. The main key here is relevant images. Your images and graphics should be related to your content and not random photos of people in order to go viral.
Images also show up in Google image searches when you use the proper ALT descriptions and captions in photos and graphics that you post on your website, giving you organic traffic as well.
How many pictures should you use in your posts? The ideal is one every 100 words or so. This breaks up the text nicely and makes your posts more shareable. *I can’t say that I necessarily follow that rule, but I do try to use lots of images.
There are tons of free image creation sites – see an Awesome List Here.
9. Host a Webinar
If you’re not a well-known author this can be a little tricky, but hang on. Yes, it’s true, if you have a very small audience it’s going to be difficult to host a webinar and get lots of traffic to your author website. But, there are other ways to do this. You could find someone who has a little more influence than you and ask them if they’d like to partner with you to do a webinar. Just be sure to let them know what you have to offer.
Even if you can’t find an influencer to partner up with, you still easily have a successful webinar by drumming up enough excitement through all of the ideas above. Just remember to go ahead with it, even if the first one only has a few people show up. I don’t recommend using a webinar software that shows the number of attendees when you’re just starting out.
For awesome webinar software – SEE HERE.
A great way to boost the number of attendees is to sure you have an awesome prize or free gift drawing for those who stay till the end. You can giveaway anything you want from a brand new iPad, a signed book, a toaster, Amazon gift card, anything you want. Amazon makes it easy to do this, even for your own published books. There’s a button at the bottom of just about every product that says “set up a giveaway”. You just select the number of items you want to giveaway and then you receive a special link. You draw a winner from your attendees and send them a special link. It’s that easy.
Alternatively you could giveaway a free PDF or other digital gift for everyone either who stays until the end or sign-up on your email list, and this won’t cost you anything. Just be sure it’s something that really grabs their attention and excites people.
10. PPC Ads
PPC stands for Pay Per Click and these are the advertisements that you see at the top and bottom of your search results in Google. These are ads that people and businesses pay to have shown up in certain search results. It only costs them something when someone clicks on the link.
These types of ads can be useful, but with all of the free options, can be a bit difficult to manage if you don’t know what you’re doing. As an author you want to be building an audience and PPC ads are geared a little more towards selling a specific product and are not very cost effective without a proper strategy. I would recommend exhausting all of the free options above before trying PPC ads for building your audience and selling your books.
Getting relevant traffic may seem like a daunting task, but when you get to thinking of how many ways there are to get traffic to your website, it opens the doors to amazing creativity. If you have any questions about getting traffic to your website, please don’t hesitate to contact me, I’ll be more than happy to help in any way I can!
Have a fantastic day!