Why Do You Need a Facebook Author Page?
I just made myself a Facebook Author Page. It was a painless experience that I put off until today for two reasons. Firstly, I do not make much use of my personal Facebook profile. Secondly, I have not had much of a response from Social Media since I started publishing in 2012. However, there are strengths to a Facebook page that make it a valuable asset for an Author.
Most signficantly, a Facebook Page does not operate in the same way as a Facebook Profile. It is more like a public website posted within Facebook’s network. Anyone can view the page or subscribe to it, but not everyone can post to it. It has a certain amount of independence from your personal profile, and anyone viewing its content has chosen to do so. This means that you can be more businesslike in your treatment of your page, promoting yourself to your hearts content, because that is the very purpose of the page. It’s like having a second homepage, with the added benefit that it is completely integrated into Facebook.
It’s also worth remembering that Facebook has probably the widest audience of all the social networks. It isn’t just your Grandma on there making embarrassing comments about your photos, it’s everyone’s Grandma. And everyone’s Grandma just might love your latest book. Anything that gets your books further out into the world is good. Different social networks have different strengths, Twitter has immediacy, Tumblr has hardcore fandom, Facebook has the guy down the road.
Finally, Facebook is very shareable. You’re not limited to the amount of content and it’s easy for any of your readers to find your content, comment and share from your page. If you have fans on Facebook, making a page is the best way to put things right under their nose, and makes it easy for them to start promoting your content for you.
How To Make Your Author Page:
If you’re one of the last surviving souls on Planet Earth without a Facebook account, you’ll need to register with Facebook.com first. Once you’ve made your account, uploaded a terrible profile pic and opened unwelcome new avenues of communication with your parents, look for a cog icon on the top right hand side of the screen. There you’ll find a drop down menu that will give you the option to create a page. There are different categories of page, but you’re probably best going with “Artist.” From there you’ll be able to choose specifics like Author or Writer.
After that, you’ll be given the option to upload a picture. If you don’t want to use a picture of yourself, a book cover makes a pretty snazzy avatar. You’ll also be asked to fill in a description of yourself. This can be pretty awkward, describing myself is one of my lest favourite bits of self publishing. If in doubt, just go with the standard Genre and Book Title. e.g “Horror Writer, Author of Cujo, The Shining and many more.” You don’t need to be Captain Charisma yet, just functional enough to let potential readers and fans find you.
Getting the Word Out:
Once you’re done, Facebook will try and pimp its advertising service to you as a way to find fans for your page. I wouldn’t bother with that, Facebook advertising has its uses, but until it gathers momentum an Author Page is really only of interest to people who already know your work. You’ll have much better success spreading your page by posting it on your Facebook wall, inviting any of your Facebook friends who like your writing or otherwise support your writing career and posting it to your other social networks. (Hey Kids, Why Not Like My Facebook Page?) After that, it’s all a case of making good use of your page. Write good books and you’ll get good fans, post good updates to your Facebook page and they will make use of it.
Leave a comment and let me know how you’re getting on promoting yourself on Facebook.