Facebook marketing is an organic resource for authors that can’t be overlooked. But from book updates to event pages to promotional content, the number of tactics you can use to interact with readers can be overwhelming. As an author, how can you be sure you’re getting the most out of your Facebook page? In this post, we’ll discuss 15 ways we’ve seen authors use Facebook Pages effectively to promote their books! We hope this provides you with inspiration when creating your own marketing plan.
1. Share excerpts to build excitement
When you’re in the prerelease stage of your book marketing, Facebook is a great starting point for building anticipation among your readers. As your book release date grows closer, consider sharing chapter excerpts through Facebook Notes, a strategy bestselling author Debbie Macomber uses.
Author Jasmine Guillory shared an excerpt for her new novel, Royal Holiday, another way — by linking to a Hello Sunshine blog post which includes the revealed cover, an excerpt, and a call to action to preorder.
Not only does posting an excerpt make your Facebook Author Page feel full of exclusive content, but it also entices readers to buy the whole book in order to finish the story.
2. Share updates and news
Your readers want to stay updated! Sharing a recent interview you’ve given, a glowing review of one of your books, tour information, or even just updates on the stage of your writing process can keep readers engaged and up to date.
The Kiss Quotient author Helen Hoang shared an interview with The Washington Post discussing her approach to romance writing.
On her page, YA author Becky Albertalli shared tour information for her novel What If It’s Us, tagging coauthor Adam Silvera in her post (as well as a link to a two-chapter excerpt, combining strategies!).
3. Count down to your next release
Countdowns can build excitement, boost preorders, and remind readers multiple times about your release date. Many authors create dedicated graphics to show the amount of time left until launch, which you can easily create using tools like Canva or RelayThat.
Stephen King used a compelling visual to share a release countdown to his newest novel, The Institute.
Author Lisa See combined many Facebook best practices in her countdown post to her novel The Island of Sea Women. She created an exclusive, engaging video, and tagged her publisher to boost visibility.
4. Host Facebook Live chats
Who doesn’t love being an insider? The personal touch of Facebook Live — being able to interact with viewers in real time — is a great way to connect with readers. In these videos, you could conduct a real-time Q&A, run a deep-dive book discussion, promote an upcoming event, and more. Some particularly impactful times to host Facebook Live discussions may be when you announce a new book, right before launch, or soon after the book’s release as the discussion will be exciting and full of new information.
Roshani Chokshi, author of The Gilded Wolves, hosted an interactive Facebook Live at last year’s BookExpo, inviting her readers to ask questions that she could respond to. She also incentivized their participation by hosting a book giveaway (which we’ll discuss later!).
Facebook Live can also be a great resource for publishers and book groups. BookBub hosts Facebook Live chats about the books we love, and some of these videos have garnered over 65,000 views!
5. Share recorded video content
Want to take your time and edit your video instead of going live? Prerecorded videos can engage readers as well. Through videos of interviews, book discussions, plot inspirations, and more, you can connect with your readers on a much more personal level.
Author Patricia Cornwell uses Facebook’s Featured Video tool to promote her thrilling book Ripper — and received over 19,000 views.
Author Lauren Blakely provides fantastic and varied content to her readers. Recently, she has been documenting the journey of turning her romance novels into audiobooks.
If you’re looking for more video best practices, check out our article on author video content inspiration!
6. Foster a community of engaged readers
Once you’ve attracted readers to your page, it’s important to maintain their interest through thought-provoking and fun discussions. Ask them questions, or even use the poll feature to get their opinions.
Deborah Harkness, author of A Discovery of Witches, casually polled her readers to find out their favorite opening line from her books, sparking a great discussion!
Daisy Jones and the Six author Taylor Jenkins Reid engaged with readers on her Facebook page by resharing a fan’s photo. This kind of engagement is more personal, and can encourage readers to tag the author’s page in their own posts!
7. Let your readers get to know you
Whether it’s Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter, one of the most unique features of any organic social media channel is the opportunity to share your personality! Humorous posts, reflections on your work, and snippets of your personal life let readers get to know the real you — not just your author bio on your book’s back cover.
Talking about yourself can be as simple as posting whatever’s on your reading list. Author Jeff VanderMeer shared a book recommendation; a hidden gem, The Hidden World of the Fox. Now his readers have yet another thing to discuss — apart from how much they love his writing!
Tomi Adeyemi, author of Children of Blood and Bone, shared a personal post with her readers, reflecting on her goals and lessons learned from her past year. Sharing glimpses of your thoughts and personal life can build a more personal relationship with your readers.
8. Join discussion groups
Along with cultivating your own conversations, there are hundreds of readers’ groups on Facebook worth joining, such as “Author/Publisher/Editor/Book Readers,” which welcomes authors promoting and sharing their books.
On the flip side, getting involved with the writing community on Facebook can be a wonderful way to connect and request blurbs/reviews! Unsure of the value in connecting with other authors? Read through our insights on how fellow writers can boost one anothers’ promotions, and look here for ideas on how to use readers groups to build book buzz! In the meantime, check out these Facebook groups:
9. Set up your own book club
Along with joining existing Facebook groups, you can start your own! Starting your own reader group or book club combines many of these tips — organically promoting your own books, letting your readers get to know you, fostering an active discussions — into one fantastic strategy.
In author Brenda Novak’s Book Group, she hosts a monthly book club — with nearly 15,000 members — spotlighting her own books as well as books from guest authors. She also highlights and celebrates her readers on “Member Monday,” adding a sense of community and appreciation to her group.
Author Colleen Gleason has a more hands-off read-along group, the Gardella Vampire and Colleen Gleason Hang-Out Page, to promote her series, The Gardella Vampire Hunters. Moderated by a few admins, Gleason checks in to comment and engage with readers.
10. Create event pages
Don’t miss an opportunity to publicize your events. Facebook makes it simple to put together an event page for speaking engagements, book signings, release parties, and more! You can even link to your ticket sales right in the bio, as well as invite all of your page’s followers.
YA author Jason Reynolds invited his Facebook followers to attend a public interview he gave discussing his thoughts on writing.
Karen Marie Moning shared her book signing and Q&A event for her novel High Voltage. The event photo was a nod to her book cover, and she clearly listed all the information for her event so her readers could bookmark the event, share it, and chat with other readers who were going!
11. Don’t forget giveaways!
Whether you’re in the prerelease stage or have just launched your book, giveaways are a great way to attract new readers and collect early-stage book reviews. A best practice for book giveaways is to keep it simple — encourage readers to like and/or comment on your post for a chance to win, set a deadline, and then contact a randomly selected winner. Also include a graphic to catch readers’ eyes!
Romance author Debbie Macomber shared her giveaway post for an advanced reader copy of Twelve Days of Christmas with all of the details in the caption, also making the details for entry very clear and easy to understand!
When running giveaways or contests on Facebook, be sure to familiarize yourself with and follow Facebook’s promotion policies.
12. Tag other pages to boost visibility
Tagging other pages, whether they be publishers, booksellers, agencies, or other authors, can boost the visibility of your posts, exposing your page to new readers.
Children’s book author Gail D. Villanueva tagged her publisher and her literary agency in her news update, offering them the chance to reshare her post and boost her views.
Author Mark Oshiro tagged a bookstore that would be hosting an event for them and three other authors. Now, fans of the Books Are Magic bookstore could be exposed to Mark’s page as the event may now appear in their own newsfeeds (seen as “Books Are Magic was tagged in…”) — and might follow Mark as well!
13. Link to your other sites
Make it easy for visitors to your Facebook Page to learn even more about you, and follow you on your other social pages as well! A simple way to do this is to keep your bio updated with links to your Instagram, Twitter, author website, and more.
Kellye Garrett linked to her website and other social media profiles in her bio, so readers could easily find them any time.
You can also boost your book sales by linking to your books’ retailer pages, like romance author Bella Andre did in the post below. Whenever she promotes her novels, Bella includes links to all of her online retail locations, giving readers an easy way to click through and purchase!
On her feed, author Adriana Trigiani linked to her book’s page on BookBub, calling attention to her discounted price promotion.
14. Add the shoppable feature
Since you’re already putting in the hard work to optimize your profile, why not let Facebook make you some sales? Facebook Shop allows you to list as many products as you’d like, view customer insights (more on that later), and even have your products featured in the Marketplace — bringing new eyes to your books. Note: You can only add a shop if your Facebook Page is listed as a business page.
Here we can see author Clarissa Goenawan’s shoppable feature, featuring her novel Rainbirds. Though she’s only featuring one book, she has it listed in multiple formats: hardcover, ebook, and as an audiobook!
For more clarity on whether Facebook’s shopping feature might be a good match for you, check out their detailed guide. To further explore the capabilities of Facebook tools and learn about best practices, check out our comprehensive guide to online marketing!
15. Use Insights to track activity
Don’t forget to track how your author page is growing. With Facebook Insights, you can track the performance of both individual posts and your overall page growth — with figures such as reach, engagements, and clicks, as well as data that taps into the demographics of your audience.
By knowing your readers, you can anticipate their interests, allowing you to cater your content to be that much more engaging! This can also be a great way to discover exactly who your target market is — and then you can capitalize on reaching the right readers.
Do you have your own Author Facebook Page? How do you use Facebook to promote your own books?
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