How to Start Building an Author’s Platform

beginning

We need a platform, right? That’s a place or opportunity for public discussion. Sounds like we need to find The Public and start talking, so where do we find them?

Social media. You know, the ones you spend hours on: Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. Pinterest. Snapchat. YouTube. LinkedIn.

But wait! I have a novel to write! I don’t have time to tweet, like, share, snap, follow, pin, comment and post!

That’s true. But, to find The Public, you’ll have to engage. You can be smart about how and where you invest your time, though. Here’s a few tips to help you find the right social channels for you:

1. Don’t try to be a superstar on every outlet.

Pick the ones that work for you and the brand image you are trying to create and focus there.

I am not a big photo-taker, and my writing is still in the draft stages. I don’t have much media to share, so Instagram doesn’t make sense for me right now. However, I can curate loads of content on Twitter and find new followers every day.

2. Go where you already are.

If you have thousands of Twitter followers or Facebook friends, then why are you reading this blog? You already have a platform! (Just kidding. A little). Use those numbers to your advantage. Find or create content that you can share with the people who are already paying attention, and share often.

3. Go where The Public will be.

Think about where to find your target audience, and then join in yourself. Where do they spend their time? What sites will they be on? Blogs, Facebook groups, and other online communities based on your niche are all great places to start. I have signed on to a couple of writer’s groups and blogging courses, and met one of my best friends and advocates that way, as well as a fellow writer.

Like I mentioned in my previous post, before I started this blog, I went ahead and set up a few social media accounts to get started. I purposely wanted to wait for January to launch the blog, but didn’t see a reason to wait for the others. Here’s what I chose:

So far, Twitter has been my best investment by far, followed by Pinterest. Instagram and Facebook have very little activity, though for different reasons. I’ll discuss each channel in more detail in future posts.

Until then, think of a site or two that you could get started on, and go do it! I’d love to see what sites you choose. Tell me where to find you in the comments so we can connect!

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