You may not know it but Instagram (and specifically #bookstagram, an Instagram account dedicated to books) is a great way to promote your title.
There are over 1 billion Instagram users worldwide and it is so much more than a place to see dance trends and photos of people on holiday. So, how can Instagram work for you in promoting your book? Great question! Read through this article for 7 tips for you to follow in promoting and growing a following for your book.
Tip #1 – Think Business
Create a dedicated account to promote yourself and your book (you can find IndieReader @indie_reader). This allows you to focus the content on you, the author, and your latest work (getting tagged in a post of your sister’s dog eating dirt doesn’t look professional – save that for your personal account). All the posts you create can then be aimed at promoting you and your book. Also, the accounts you follow will be relevant to the book market.
Tip #2 – Hashtags
Hashtags are your greatest friend on Instagram if you are promoting something. People follow specific hashtags to stay up to date in the real world and in social media. Do some research into popular hashtags and include relevant ones—you can use up to 30!) to attract attention to people interested in that subject and/or genre. It’s also worth checking out successful author’s hashtag use. Don’t simply copy their list but use as a reference if there’s crossover to the genre of the book you are promoting. #endoftip2
Tip #3 – Teasers
Once you have started to build a good following and established some #links on Instagram, it is a great idea to reveal small parts of your latest release. This could be a part of a chapter, a character bio, a cliff hanger question, or some intriguing quotes from different parts of your book. “Creating a sense of anticipation will help to hook people in and encourage them to buy your book,” says Richard Hillson, a marketing expert at Custom Writing and Revieweal.
Tip #4 – Reviews
It sounds obvious but having some reviews of your book can help draw other potential readers in. Some well-chosen friends come in handy here or you could use a service dedicated to finding readers who will post their honest reviews or donate a few copies to a local book club or school. Just ask them for some honest reviews of your work for your Instagram page.
Tip #5 – Go Live!
Get yourself ready to live stream! Promote this on your business page and build up some attention in a “Meet the author in a Q+A”. Invite people to ask questions about your book, what it’s like being an author, ideas for future book, etc. Make sure there’s a copy of your book on full view – free advertising,” says Paul Milner, a writer at Assignment Help and Essay Services.
Tip #6 – Photographs
Grab your phone and take some photos! Avoid stock photographs and stick to ‘real’ pictures of you and your book. Carefully chosen settings and good lighting are key to creating great pictures for your book page. Don’t forget to add hashtags to these too! Experiment with different filters to show off your work at its best.
Tip #7 – Challenge Accepted!
We’ve all seen the posts that people use on their social media pages to encourage new followers, for example, ‘tag 3 friends and win a free meal’. Why not try it to help promoting your book? Offer a signed copy as a prize for a competition such as ‘Show us your favorite reading spot and tag 3 friends’. The point of this is to get people to engage with your account and to gather more followers – who will hopefully then buy your book!
So, there you have seven tips for promoting your book through Instagram. Yes, there are other ways to do this, like paying for advertising and employing influencers, but these all eat into your budget. Over to you…your book won’t #promoteitself!