It was one of those things: a chance encounter filled with intrigue and temptation. He had intense, dark eyes with a powerful passion smoldering just below the surface. I was drawn to him. Next thing I knew, we were standing face-to-face, and he was saying things to me in French that made me swoon. Of course I kept my cool. I didn’t want Mr. Tall, Dark and Dangerous to know that he’d gotten under my skin.
Then, in his incredibly sexy Middle-Eastern accent, he said something to me. It was lyrical and captivating and it rhymed. “You’re the author K. S. Brooks. May I ask you a question about my books?”
“Of course,” I breathed, all sultry-like, seductively brushing my forefinger along my lower lip. Just between you and me, I was checking to make sure I hadn’t drooled on myself. Ha! My lip was dry. While he told me about his book, I imagined him riding across the desert on a fine Arab charger (thank you for that, Mick Jagger) and then when he said “I’m going to get an agent and a publisher,” I snapped back to reality. Then came the glare off his wedding ring, blinding me like a spotlight from a police car during a “routine” stop. Nice buzz-kill. Thanks a lot.
The more we talked, the more I liked Sam. We were the same age, yet he still had this innocent hopefulness towards the publishing industry. And he wasn’t letting me crush it. He was a worthy pupil indeed. He was also eager to learn. As we “talked” online, and I copied and pasted tutorial links for him, I realized this information would be helpful to any author who wanted to set up a writing empire. Because even if you are going to get that agent and/or publisher, they want an author to have an established following and social networking presence.
So, here is what I shared with Sam. Well, minus a few photos. I don’t want to talk about those.
First step: Set up your Amazon.com author’s page EVEN if you only have one book. You can find the tutorial for that here. Make sure to include your twitter feed, your blog’s feed, your bio, a photograph, and your book video trailer(s). Don’t skimp here. If you don’t have a web page (and frankly, I don’t see why you need one if you use this properly) this is your best resource.
Step Two: Your Facebook Author Page. Set it up, then email your friends and family asking them to like it so you can get 25 likes which will enable you to customize your URL. A tutorial for that is here. Make sure you have a folder with photos of your book covers, and your profile picture should be a professional-looking headshot. Yes, we have a tutorial for that, too. Once your URL reflects your name, go hog-wild inviting your friends list and whatever groups you belong to. Once you complete Step Three, you’re going to come back to your Facebook author page and set it up so that whatever you post automatically feeds to Twitter. Trust me, it’s easy and worth it.
Step Three: Your Twitter Account. Now, don’t just set it up with the bare minimum. Take a minute, read this tutorial and do it RIGHT. Do NOT follow anyone until you’ve set up your profile per that tutorial. People you follow receive an email notification – and each email that goes out without your purchase link in it is a lost opportunity. If you don’t “get” how to use Twitter – we have tutorials for that too. (Go to “tutorials” in the right sidebar and browse through.) But you don’t need to “get” Twitter because, as I mentioned above, we’re going to set up your Facebook author page to automatically post to your Twitter account. That’s one less thing you have to do, and it helps you build a following. Oh no, that’s not whining, is it? Yes, the Amazon.com author page link is long and it eats up a lot of your Twitter profile characters. Here’s how you can shorten that link.
Step Four: LinkedIn. Because I said so. I’m sorry, what? But you don’t talk about your writing to the people you used to work with? Buck up. You don’t have to say anything to them. Set it up correctly (tutorial here). Just make your connections and let LinkedIn do the rest for you. You’ll be surprised how many people say to you “you wrote a book?” and that’s when you go in for the kill. Make that sale. No one’s going to do it for you. The good thing about LinkedIn is you can set it up so your Twitter account feeds it updates. You will hardly ever have to go there.
Step Five: Goodreads. Your books are aimlessly floating around Goodreads unclaimed. Go get them. Here’s some info on Goodreads to help you get started. Goodreads is a heavily used web site which is craved by readers. You don’t ever have to go there except when you publish a new book – you need to add that to your list. You can set it up so your Twitter and blog feeds appear on your Goodreads profile page. Constant updating without any effort is a big win, and you have one more platform where you can gain exposure.
These are the bare minimum of what a new author should do. I’m sorry, are you whining again? You say you’ve set everything up, but they’re in a vacuum? We’re one step ahead of you. Keep your eyes glued to Indies Unlimited at 5 a.m. Pacific time on Wednesdays for our “like-fests”. We have them for Amazon.com book & author pages, Facebook pages, Twitter followers, LinkedIn exposure, and yes, even Goodreads…and more. We’ve got everything RIGHT HERE to help you build your empire.
39 thoughts on “Tuesday Tutorial: Setting Up Your Empire”
Great post Kat! Very important for authors to follow through. Now if you (or someone) would do a post on Shelfari/Library Thing/Google+. 🙂
I just put the top ones in here, Rasana. Next time, the others. 🙂 Meanwhile, Jim Devitt’s written some posts on Google+. Thanks for stopping by!
I happened by Amazon Author Central last night, in fact, and noticed that they’re now offering a custom shortened author page URL. I snapped mine up, of course. 🙂 Are they offering that to everyone now? This was the first time I’d seen it.
I don’t know when they started that, Lynne, but I noticed that when I wrote my tutorial and was quite surprised. It’d be nice if that was the permalink since unfortunately you have to log in to Author Central to get that custom URL any time you want to share it. Unless you’re organized and have it somewhere convenient LOL. 🙂
Funny you should mention that — one of my tasks tonight is to put that link somewhere convenient, lol.
Is there a good place, Lynne? LOL I always think I have one, but nothing ever seems to be convenient enough.
Get it right here. Your all-in-one tutorial for a positive media presence. Woo hoo. It doesn’t get any easier than that.
Thanks, Yvonne! 🙂
Stellar post Kat! Now gotta go over to LinkedIn…No whining here! 🙂
Awesome, Renee – that’s the spirit! Go get ’em! 🙂
Wicked awesome. Thank you!
You’re very welcome, Laurie. Any time, although I think you probably already knew most, if not all, of this.
You’re the best tutor anyone could ask for, K.S.
Thanks so much!
You make it sound so simple, great stuff. Just when I thought I had everything covered…
Hey, you’ve got things covered quite well. 🙂
Gosh, this is excellent advice – you are of the awesome, Ms. Brooks! Thanks for sharing this information in such an easy and accessible way too! :))
My pleasure, Jo-Anne! Glad it’s helpful. 🙂
Cool overview 🙂 I’m happy, and surprised, that I can tick them all! I must have been reading and listening! But Goodreads is still mind-bloggling! 🙂
Rich’s post is really good at taking the mystery out of Goodreads. Thanks for stopping by, Vickie!
Nicely assembled info to save (mine is every which way, and it’s always good to have on hand). I’m sending a glass of cyber champagne to help ease the pain of the blinding wedding ring.
Thanks Diana. Yeah, I think I need sunglasses, too. 😉
You. Are. Awesome.
Thank you, Tammie!
Fantastic ‘how to’ for an author’s instruction manual. Liked, Tweeted and will recommend this to other authors. Thanks for this!
You’re welcome, K.R. And thank you! Sharing is MUCH appreciated!
Great tutorial, thank you. It’s now safely bookmarked for the near future 🙂
Great! Glad you liked it. You’re very welcome! 🙂
Excellent post, Kat; as usual, you make things appear less complex than they actually are and, as usual, it’ll take me a minute or so (more like half a day) to stumble my way through and connect the dots. I’ve got most of it going (sort of) individually; it’s just getting it all to work in concert.
Thanks T.D.! Well, half a day – you know, it took me time to figure all this stuff out, stumbling my way through some of it. The beauty of it is, once you set it up, you’re done. Thanks for taking the time to stop by. 🙂
I know, right? Luckily this one will be easy to remember!
Great tips! thank you for sharing .
I coach authors how to get on TV and your advice is just what is needed to establish a platform that will make you appealing to a TV producer. Thanks, Edward Smith.
Thanks, Edward. Much appreciated!
This was very helpful, and I liked your funny intro. I’m learning so much from this blog and appreciate it a lot!
Hi! I’m still unpublished (working on getting there), so there’s only so much I can do. However, I did just recently go over 100 likes on my FB page and was able to use this tutorial to change the user name! Now it looks short and pretty! Thanks so much! And, even better, I can start checking out your tutorials here on your site. Once I get published, I can use that knowledge to really set up an awesome author platform! Thanks!
Great! Glad to hear it. Thanks for stopping by, Marlene – and don’t forget to check out our flash fiction challenge on Saturdays – it’s free to enter and each week a winner will win publication. 🙂 Here’s this week’s link: https://indiesunlimited.com/2012/09/08/flash-fiction-challenge-friend-or-foe/
Comments are closed.