Social Media has definitely taken a hold and shows no signs of going away any time soon. As numerous statistics show, a huge amount of the population is active on social media, where they find most of the entertainment and information that they need. We no longer have to wait for a tabloid to show exclusive pictures or a TV interview to hear a quote from our favorite celebrities, as most of them post regularly on Instagram and Twitter. YouTube videos are a main source of entertainment for many people around the world and no serious professional would be caught dead without a good LinkedIn profile.
Given the fact that social media has such a huge user base, it can be an excellent way for artists, writers, bloggers and online businesses to promote themselves. Whether you are an entrepreneur or artist focused on making a name for himself, or herself, you should definitely master the basics of the different platforms and learn some effective tactics for increasing your follower/subscriber base.
Having a blog or official website can help greatly
It's important to note that while you can focus solely on social media - e.g. you have some books out that can be bought on Amazon and you are promoting them via Twitter and Facebook - it's best to have your own blog or website. The website is like your headquarters, where you present your work and merchandise and you can link to it through social media, as well as link to your social media profiles from the website. You can also add social media buttons and website URL to your email signature easily enough with free services like wisestamp.com. Think about setting up a blog where you can provide interesting content, so you'll have something to share on your different profiles.
This is a great platform for promoting your eCommerce website as it allows you to post videos of different products in use and their reviews. As far as bloggers go, you can add the occasional vlog post, film different destinations you've traveled to, do restaurant and food reviews, film your workouts, create tutorials and so on. There are more people watching YouTube videos now than there are tuning in to programs of major television networks.
People often wonder how much can be said in 140 characters and whether the platform can be truly beneficial with such a limitation. The short answer is yes - yes it can be extremely beneficial for promotional and networking purposes. Twitter allows you to share pictures, videos, articles from around the web and short gems of wisdom or humorous remarks. If you are creative this should be more than enough to gain a decent following and keep people engaged, so that they favorite and retweet your posts. The anatomy of a good tweet would be a short description, 1-2 relevant hashtags and a picture to go with it or a shortened URL of a relevant link and a picture to go with it. You can grow relatively quickly in a natural manner and add people from relevant circles, i.e. other writers, photographers, online marketing professionals, designers, entrepreneurs, industry influencers and so on. It is a common courtesy to follow back, but popular accounts often get a huge number of follows and only follow some carefully selected people. A good rule of thumb is to post 4 interesting and informative posts and retweet one influencer or relevant piece of content for every self-promotional tweet linking to your website, your work or an event.
This platform is excellent for aspiring and even professional photographers, artists and bloggers. However, anyone with a decent camera and a bit of creativity and skill can use Instagram to promote themselves and their brand. Increasing your following may take a bit of time and good amount of commitment, but as long as you are consistent with your content and interact with the community you can develop a decent base of core followers in a relatively short time. You can use it as a way to show some moments form your everyday life or some details related to your work - e.g. it is great for travel, lifestyle, fashion and fitness bloggers and those who are involved in similar industries and have some cool behind the scenes footage.
Here we have one of the biggest and oldest social networks in the world, one that is still quite popular and that a lot of people log onto regularly every day. Facebook has a somewhat more personal feel than you'd find with Twitter for example, although you can set up business profiles or have people follow if you've got a bit of a reputation in your niche. As you don't have a limit on how much you can write in a comment, it takes a bit more thought to come up with posts, although you should still keep most of the posts short and sweet. Studies have shown that Facebook posts in form of a question between 80 and 119 characters performed the best in terms of total engagement, i.e. likes and shares. You can take the time to craft a few such posts a day, keeping in mind the rule of thumb mentioned the twitter paragraph - 4 posts with interesting and informative content, 1 share and 1 self-promotional post, then rinse and repeat.
Creating a synergy and staying active
The last thing you should consider when focusing on promotion through social media is to branch out to multiple platforms. Do a few tutorials on YouTube and link to your website for more information, your Instagram for unique content and Facebook for any questions the viewers may have. In the same vein, you can link to your different social media profiles form your website, and link between platforms. The key is to have some unique content on each platform, so that people will be prompted to go there in search of information.
Good content will be shared and favorited as well, giving you extra buzz with no additional effort. It can be a bit difficult to keep up with all of this and manage to post numerous times across several social media site, and even try to engage with other community members, but adding an hour or two a day to this task will yield great results. You can do it while you kick back and relax, during a coffee break or while you're waiting in line at a fast-food joint.