With so many potential new fans scrolling through their smart devices almost 24/7, posting on social media may seem like the guaranteed path to success and popularity for you and your writing. But before you start contemplating how you’ll evade the paparazzi or make plans for spending your as-yet unearned royalties, the social media experts at Web Design Relief have a wake-up call for you. If you want to succeed in reaching new readers, it’s important to overcome any unrealistic expectations for social media.
How To Overcome Unrealistic Expectations For Social Media
Realize It Takes Time
With the rise of social media influencers, it’s easy to assume they built their followings overnight. In truth, they didn’t. Building a social media platform takes a lot of time, effort, and dedication. Don’t be discouraged if you’re seeing slow growth in your number of followers or engagements. Even a viral video was once undiscovered content!
Interact With Your Audience
You won’t draw new viewers to your social media platforms if you’re not regularly posting engaging content. It’s important to be active on social media in order to build your fan base. Research suggests posting a minimum of once a day if you want to reach more people who will be interested in your content. And your posts should be fun, informative, and appealing—not a barrage of sales pitches or “buy my book!”
Understand Engagement Is What’s Really Important
When followers engage with your posts, the social media algorithms work in your favor and share your posts with more people. The more your audience interacts and connects with your content, the more likely it is to be promoted by the algorithm. An easy way to do this is to simply ask questions in your posts!
Pay attention to who is sharing, commenting, or liking your content. It’s better to have fewer followers who actively interact with your posts than thousands of followers who never engage.
Don’t Compare Your Social Media Success To Someone Else’s
There will always be another writer with more followers, more platforms, more engagement, more posts, and so on. You can check other authors’ social media feeds for ideas, but remember, you’re not always comparing apples to apples. If you’re just starting out, you won’t have the same numbers or engagement as an author with a well-established audience. Author Neil Gaiman joined Twitter in 2008 and now has over three million Twitter followers; he also joined Mastodon in 2022 and gained 200,000 followers. If you just started interacting on social media six weeks ago, don’t beat yourself up for having a smaller audience!
Build Your Community
Do you want to build a community or collect empty numbers? While your total number of followers will always fluctuate, a community made up of real fans and readers is more likely to stick with you and your platform. When you interact genuinely, you’ll attract more true fans. These are the people who are interested in you, your writing, and your success, so focus on them instead of numbers.
Focus On Consistent Brand Identity Instead Of Trend Hopping
Trends come and go, and you don’t want your platform to be a fad. Instead, build your author brand and be consistent with your message. If something that’s currently popular works for your brand, you can certainly incorporate it into your social media. But if you’re constantly changing to follow every trend, you’re going to lose your dedicated followers.
And One Very Realistic Expectation…
Every writer should have an author website, and visitors will realistically expect your social media to be connected to your website. If you’re ready for an author website, the expert designers at Web Design Relief can create one that’s uniquely you—and that suits your budget! Contact us today to set up a free consultation call.
Question: What unrealistic social media expectations have you had to deal with?