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Writing and Publishing

How Big is Your Platform?

A few years ago literary agent Amanda Luedeke quantified what constitutes a “solid author platform.” Frankly, her numbers are overwhelming:

  • If you have a blog or website you need 30,000 unique visitors a month.
  • Your Twitter and Facebook need to have 5,000 followers each.
  • If writing for e-publications, 100,000 people a month need to read your work.

This is daunting. Even more disconcerting is knowing that the number of blogs, websites, Twitter accounts, and Facebook pages is growing much faster than the number of people who visit, follow, and view them. This means that on average, everyone is going to have fewer visitors, followers, and viewers.

Regarding other platforms, she noted:

  • If public speaking, it must be 30 times a year to a total of 10,000 people (which equates to 333 people per speaking engagement.
  • If writing for print publications, the number is 100,000 per quarter. (The seeming implication is that print has three times the platform impact as online.)

How discouraging.

However, the emphasis seems to have shifted since then. Sheer numbers mean nothing without engagement. The number of friends, followers, and visitors account for little; it’s the amount of interaction that matters.

I’ve recently heard that an engaged audience of 1,000 is a start. Even a couple hundred really loyal fans can make a difference.

The old view was quantity; the new metric is quality.

I can do that. So can you.

Learn more about writing and publishing in Peter’s new book: The Successful Author: Discover the Art of Writing and Business of Publishing. Get your copy today.

Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, is an author, blogger, and publisher with over 30 years of writing and publishing experience. Check out his book The Successful Author for insider tips and insights.

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