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Writing and Publishing

Six Tips on Using Social Media as Part of Your Platform

We’ve been talking about making your website the center of your book-selling, platform-building tool and not to depend on social media, which could change at any moment and thereby destroy your efforts. That doesn’t mean social media isn’t important, because it is. The point is not to make social media the star but instead, a supporting player.

1) Pick Social Media Platforms Carefully

Accept that you can’t be on every social media platform, or even the top five. No one has that much time. Pick a couple to focus on, and invest your time there. Choose ones you understand and like, but also look for where your potential readers are. It makes no sense to be active on Pinterest if most of your audience is on LinkedIn.

2) First Things First

Before you do anything, set up your full profile; don’t leave that for later, because if you’re like me, you may never get around to it.

3) Walk Before You Run

Learn how to navigate your chosen social media hangout. You won’t become familiar with everything until you actually use it, but proceed with caution until you feel comfortable. That way you can avoid rookie mistakes and look professional instead.

4) One Platform at a Time

With a good understanding of your first social media site, you may proceed to a second one, if you want. But don’t try to learn two at the same time. That’s just confusing and counter-productive. I know.

5) Include Links

Add links on your website to your social media pages. And most certainly, make sure your social media profiles point back to your website. That’s the main goal of social media.

6) Interact on Social Media and Redirect

Use your social media presence to engage people and then point them to your website, your primary online station, the hub for all your activity. Your website is home base for your platform, and that’s where you want everyone to end up.

Although an important part of an author’s platform, social media is a means to get there and not the end goal.

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.

2 replies on “Six Tips on Using Social Media as Part of Your Platform”

Sounds good, Peter. Not much luck with FB. Many “like” but few read or even link to my blog. Have been more successful with Twitter in making friendships without promoting my self. But seems most are doing just that. I need to work on my blog but avoid the challenge.

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