7 Ways to Build Your Facebook Community by Kirk Byron Jones, Ph.D.
If you could place a full page ad about your book in the world's largest publication each day for free, would you? It's a no-brainer; of course you would! Free advertising on the world's largest publication platform by far (500 million users and counting) is exactly what social network and mega-communication force, Facebook, offers.
By the time I published Say Yes to Grace: How to Burn Bright Without Burning Out with Outskirts Press in December, 2010, I had already been promoting it for two months on my personal Facebook page (1,900 friends) and a separate "Say Yes to Grace" page, currently nearing 12,000 supporters. After only five months, thanks to Facebook, my book is literally before thousands of faces each day, and nicely positioned to sell hundreds if not thousands of copies over the next few years.
Here are 7 ways to build a growing and popular Facebook community for your book:
1. Use your book title and cover as the name and profile picture for your page. Do not be tempted to do otherwise. Using your title and cover means that people will not only see them prominently presented on your page, but each time you post a comment on Facebook. Your title and cover are guaranteed multiple sightings each day.
2. Post regularly on your site. I post a "Grace Inspiration" each morning that usually results in over 100 responses and/or comments. When posting, keep it simple and clear. Enhance your post with a picture from time to time. Regular posts will help to make your site required viewing. Each viewer is a potential book buyer and promoter.
3. Respond to the posts of others. Build buyers through dialogue, and not just dialogue related to your book. Read each post to your page, "liking" and making brief comments as you go. Viewers should receive the impression that you are not only speaking, but you are listening as well. Moreover, their comments will educate you about the concerns and issues that really matter to people, providing inspiration and guidance for your future posts.
4. Post brief excerpts from your book. Though people will see your book cover each time they see your post, you do well to remind them of the availability of your book by placing the title at the beginning or end of a brief book excerpt. Make sure the excerpt you use is an example of your strongest writing. Here is an example:
"There are times when the most loving thing to do is to let go. Love releasing is a sign of love in its purest expression. Love, free, fine, and full has no needs; it is its own fulfillment." (From the book, Say Yes to Grace: How to Burn Bright Without Burning Out by Kirk Byron Jones.)
5. Purchase Facebook Ads to direct persons to your Facebook page. You don't have to spend money to secure significant Facebook exposure on a regular basis, but you can. And, it is cheap and easy to do. Facebook has done a good job of explaining the process on their site. My most successful ad is one that includes a striking image (a tree that appears to be dancing) and the question, "Where do you see grace?" Striking image and question is working for me. A "working ad" is one that captures the attention of a viewer in an instant and makes them "want" to click on your ad, and visit your Facebook page or website.
6. Run Special Offers. Your page affords a magnificent opportunity to make special offers to your supporters. Make sure to clearly state the offer, place a deadline on it, and encourage viewers to share with their Facebook circle of family and friends. Here is a sample offer that included a link to amazon.com:
HAPPY GRACE BOOK SATURDAY! Today Only: 1. Purchase SYTG at amazon.com. 2. Email your purchase confirmation to me at email@example.com, and request a free signed copy of one of my other books listed at amazon.com--You Choose! 3. Be sure to include a mailing address in your email in order to receive your free signed book. 4. Please share this post with your Facebook friends you think may be blessed by it.
7. Set aside time each day to post, dialogue, and manage your ads. Mornings, 7-7:30, has become my Facebook time. There are few investments that can match the yield of such a small amount of time. So, start today. Put on some soft music and start building your own Facebook community with these seven helpful tips!
(Kirk Byron Jones may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, www.sayyestograce.com and"Say Yes to Grace" on Facebook.)
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