Discordant Marketing

When it comes to marketing your work, everyone seems to have a different opinion. No matter what “experts” tell you, that’s all it is—their opinion. Different things work for different people. Various people have told me so many things over the years that’s become impossible for me to keep them all straight.


Social networking as, over the past few years, become the center point, the focus, for most marketing strategies.


It’s the opinion of some people that you need to keep your business pages and profile exactly that—business only. They claim that, by doing anything less, you won’t be taken seriously as an author. Others, at the same time, will tell you that it’s okay to mix business and jocularity on the same page. Many such pages readily mix best-selling authors, and LOLCats.


I used to keep my work pages clean of everything but promo for my writing. The response from my fans were messages saying things like, “We get to see your work, and learn about it, but never get to learn about you personally. We want to know the person behind the books!”


Some people are of the opinion that it’s best to link all of your social networking pages and profiles together. You post something on one, it cross-posts to others. I especially like doing that with Facebook and Twitter. With Twitter, you’re limited to 140 characters. Not a lot of promo posts fit within that constraint. By linking your accounts, you can post a far larger piece on Facebook, and it’ll cross-post to Twitter. What shows up on your Twitter profile are the first few words of the large post, and a trail off to a URL. Anyone interested in reading more than the first few words can simply click the link, and visit the post on Facebook. Doing this allows you to share things on Twitter that you’d normally not be able to.


Contrawise, other people are of the opinion that such linking of social networking site would never, ever be done. Why? They see the redundancy of the posts as the equivalent of bashing people over the head with a message. Also, depending upon how you’ve done the social network site linking, you might end up posting the newest Grumpy Cat photo on Facebook, and it could wind up on you Twitter profile—thus contaminating your heretofore professional, work-only Twitter account with a moment of humor.


It isn’t just the marketing “experts” who will take sides on issues such as these. Fans, too, have different likes and dislikes. Some want authors they follow to use linked accounts. This way they’re far less apt to miss any posts by the author—or other professional—in question. They also like the simple convenience of not having to make it a point to keep checking in with one given social networking site to see the latest posts by people they’re interested in. Believe it or not, not everyone has a Facebook account. Of those who do, not all of them devote every waking second to the site. Often, these fans like to be able to take a glance at Twitter, Linkedin, or whatever their favorite such site is, and get updates that way.


At the same time, other fans naysay such social network site linking. They express the same opinion as some marketing people, and view such repeat posts as being bashed with a message.


Games are extremely popular time-wasters on social networking sites. Facebook alone is loaded with them. Other authors have told me that they use these games to reach fans and prospective new readers. Basically, they play the games, and, while doing so, chat with others who are playing. Others, however, view such things unprofessional and a total waste of time. I’ve tried this method. For me, personally, I saw a bit more traffic to my website, but no extra sales.


I have two Facebook pages. I have my fan page— https://www.facebook.com/ScottHarperAuthor —which I strive to keep to nothing but work and other book-related things. I also have a regular profile that it’s attached to. That one I refer to as my “goof-off” page. I’m also on other social networking sites. I did have them all linked together. I’m trying some new things based on the opinions of a publicist my fiancée (best-selling, critically-acclaimed paranormal author Desirée Lee— http://www.desireelee.com) and I are working with. So, currently, they’re unlinked. If I don’t notice a positive difference, I’ll switch back to the set-up I had going.


All in all, I would have to suggest simply finding a method that works for you, and then keep doing it. Some people have personalities are that more coldly professional. Some are able to seamlessly blend book promo, tidbits from their daily lives that their fans may find interested, and maybe even Grumpy Cat, on the same social networking page. I mean, let’s face it—Grumpy Cat is a riot. If you can’t appreciate a good Grumpy Cat meme, why are you even on the Internet?


Scott Harper



  1. April 29th, 2013

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