This weekend my professional Facebook page was suddenly ‘liked’ by 6 people in the space of 5 minutes. I was sort of wondering what was going on, as it was a little unusual. It gets a few likes each week under normal circumstances but this was different.
A few minutes later I got a fb personal message from an author I met through Goodreads. It read:
“This LIKE is being sent along with another like from J***, on behalf of our friend, M*******. She left for a 6 week writing vacation, so we are wanting to surprise her with hopefully 25 more page likes. If you’ll like her page, you’ll get 2 fer 1, and possibly 3 likes for your one to her page.
**PS. Please remember to like from your personal page as likes from fan page to fan page do NOT roll the counter.
>Thank you in advance, especially if you’ve already liked her page. Best of Luck with your writing:)
I felt like I had just been shaken down for my lunch money. But then I thought, “This is a kind gesture on the part of her friends, but the wrong way to go about it.”
Don’t get me wrong, I like M*******, and while she writes romances, which usually don’t attract me, she writes well enough.
I just don’t like being coerced, and that is what I felt her friends did. It’s all about manners, in this business.
In my opinion, people will look you up and like your page as they become fans of your work. You will gain followers, just not real rapidly.
Identify your target market. Are you trying to sell books only to other authors? That is what you are doing when the only place you post the link to your page is in a page-swap forum. If the only people who are ‘liking’ your fan-page are authors, you are shooting yourself in the foot. You are limiting your visibility to a small number of people who most likely won’t buy your book, as they’ve books of their own to write, and you don’t write in their genre.
You need to make it easy for your fans to like your page by posting the link on your blog, and on your Goodreads or Smashwords profile. Have the link on your Amazon author page too! Those places are where people who buy your books will look, and that is how fans will find you.
Identify who your target audience is. Make sure your Facebook link is prominently displayed and let it do its thing.
We live in a society where instant gratification is the norm, and everything wonderful has to happen right now. I wondered, “Do we get some sort of award for having a lot of likes on our fan page?” Not that I am aware of–it’s only a number. The higher your number, the more likely fb will boost your visibility in the news feeds. You earn that visibility gradually.
But for those who are too impatient to wait, they can join a Goodreads page-swapping event, where the participants all go out and like each others’ pages. This is voluntary and I’ve been involved with that. I liked about 50 authors and 15 liked me back. 6 of them used their fan page despite being asked to use their personal page, and their likes didn’t raise my count.
So, that didn’t go as well as I thought it would.
Delete. Delete. Delete.
(Die! Die! Die!)
Most of the indie authors I know are lovely people, polite and sensitive. They have a basic understanding of manners. They are a joy to work with, and I would do anything for them because of that. They make up 98% of the authors I have met.
There are those few who are as delicate as battering-rams, and they ruin it for everyone. They are the same people professionally that they are in the real world–immature, selfish, and rude. They meet other aspiring authors in forums and then make all sorts of small requests, expecting that you will drop everything and go out of your way for them, because they are so damned important.
If you choose to be kind to them, don’t expect anything in return, because it’s just not going to happen. The next time you see them will be when they need some other small service from you. “Tweet my book.” “Interview me.” “I just need five more likes….”
The Facebook Fan-page is a thing we have to do in this modern world of self promotion, but it sucks.
I have one and I am keeping it, but I am feeling quite rebellious about it just now.