One of the hardest things to think about before using social media is how to choose your voice.
Your voice is how you choose to speak to your audience. Now you may think that choosing your voice is easy – it’ll be just yourself, you know how to talk right? Well it’s not that easy!
Choosing your voice you need to ask yourself a few questions.
- What are you trying to communicate?
- Why are you communicating?
- Who are you going to communicate as?
- How do you want to communicate to your audience?
What & Why…?
Some important questions to ask your self is what you want to communicate? What content will you choose to post to followers?
You need to be aware that if you’re online and post nothing, you won’t be visible and people won’t know who you are. If you post too much or ‘SPAM’ them people will be annoyed and will unfollow you.
There is a fine line between advertising yourself and SPAMing people. So if your reason to get online is purely to pimp yourself you may have to rethink your strategy. I have suggested to people I know that approximately 1 in 5 of your tweets or posts should be about your book or yourself.
Writing, posting or tweeting content about your book choice topic could be a good step. An example is Lisa Flaus who tweets about news article or information about the ’11: 11′ phenomenon which is a major part of her book. Think of creative content. Look at other authors and see what they do. Try to be different, try to be interesting. Getting people to follow you is part of the journey to a successful social media account. Keeping your audience interested and engaged will be the harder part of the journey.
Another suggestion is sharing extended content. As an example you’ve written a fantasy book. But maybe you get an artist to help draw up for you the characters within the book and you look to share these with your audience. How about many a ‘futuristic’ picture, almost like a snapshot into your characters lives. If a couple come together in your book, how about a picture of them at their wedding, or a picture of their children? How about some ‘unreleased’ side short stories? Having bonus material that your audience can follow you and get extras from you. That extend their enjoyment from the book you’ve written to the web, social media will ensure that they want to come back and chat or talk to you.
This is one of the main questions that will help you to determine your voice. Are you wanting to tweet as yourself, as the author? Are you wanting to tweet as one of your main characters? There are some interesting and creative things that you can do while in each of these personna’s or characters. This helps determine your voice.
Just a few warnings though if you will be your own voice as an author. I have a hard rule about having a personal/work social media account. No religion, no politics. Everyone has their own views and opinions. As an ‘author’ or ‘character’ voice you must not take sides, you must remain unbiased. You want all of your audience to be included in any update or post. As soon as someone feels preached to or like you’re trying to change their view/opinion they will unfollow you.
So once you have answered your what, why and who questions the last question is not so bad :)
So this question becomes easier because you should understand who your audience is and what type of voice you plan to use.
Well are you going to write a whole lot of content and look to blog? Are you going to only have small updates and look to Facebook and/or use Twitter? Are you going to video blog and look to use YouTube?
You should understand who your target audience is too and do a bit of research into what social media site they tend to hang out on. Look to do some targeted marketing through each of the social media sites depending on which target audience you’re trying to communicate with.
Just thinking about some of these questions can help set you on your way to setting up a successful social media account or blog. It’s all really about trying to keep your audience happy. They’re the ones who are at the end of your communications, they’re the ones who will read it and they’re the ones who will keep coming back if they’re happy.