2 Myths about Social Media Author Platform Building

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When things don’t work exactly like we want after following an expert’s book marketing advice, we can easily become discouraged.
Don’t get me wrong, we need to listen to what they say and watch what they do. We need to read and grow and improve our social media skills. If we want to sell our books.
A lot of what they have to say is on target and has broad principles that can easily be applied to multiple brands. However, there are a couple of things I have heard and seen implied by marketing techniques that can lead to quick discouragement.

#1 “If you’re spending more than 30 minutes a day on social media you’re doing something wrong.”

I actually read this one somewhere, but it is not a true statement across the board. It depends on your goals. If you are simply using it as a tool to make announcements or already have a large platform (or an assistant) then, yes.
HOWEVER, if your goal is to build relationships, then I have another version of the story. It takes time. Either a tiny bit at a time over a longer period or more time in a shorter period. It all depends on where you are in your platform building.
This is a good reason to start building your platform early. You CAN spend just a little bit of time each day and make it happen. But if you wait…and need that platform “yesterday”…then I hate to tell you, it will take more time than 30 minutes a day. It does not happen overnight.
Bad news: It takes time to build a platform.
Good news: A little bit every day can work if you have time to spread out your platform building, and start before you need it to be in place.

#2 “It worked for me and if you follow this formula you will have success.”

This one is more implied by all the ads for methods and classes and seminars out there. After a while all the blogs about building a platform start sounding alike. Really. But one size does not fit all. If it did – EVERYONE would have a quickly built, huge online platform. Granted, one size will fit a lot of people, but if you’re the one it doesn’t fit, it can be discouraging!
There is so much more to building a platform than someone else’s technique. Yes, there are principles that work across the board that you should keep in mind, but you have to personalize it. Make it fit your audience, your message and your style.
Here is a formula for you:
Audience (know who they are and where they are) + message(content) +style (voice) + social media platforms (and there are tons!!!) + technique = building a platform
Each element has multiple variables. And there are certainly variables I haven’t mentioned! This creates multiple ways to build your online presence. See how un-one-size-fits-all it is?
Bad news: you have to figure your own way to some degree.
Good news: this means you don’t have to be discouraged when someone else’s way doesn’t work for you.
What does this mean for you and me? It’s kind of like writing. You have to learn how social media works before you can make your own rules. Find your own voice in the world of social media so you aren’t drowned out because you sound like everyone else. I hope that encourages you like it does me.
Have you ever been discouraged be a piece of platform building advice you heard then applied to only find it didn’t work for you?

Have you found a way to truly connect with your readers that gets around the above two myths? I would love to hear from you.

Angela D. Meyer

Angela D. Meyer

Angela D. Meyer lives in NE with her husband and two children whom they homeschool - recently graduating their son. She has taught Bible class for over 35 years and is on the leadership team of her local Christian writers group. She loves God, her family, the ocean, good stories, connecting with friends, taking pictures, quiet evenings and a good laugh. Someday she wants to ride in a hot air balloon and vacation by the sea.
Angela D. Meyer

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