Are you engaging ALL your online marketing potential? Graphic courtesy

This is a common question among businesses as well as authors. With Facebook having such dominance in the social media space, is an author website really necessary?

In a word, YES.

Facebook is a great place to post your author website content, including:

  • links to your blog posts
  • specials or book giveaways
  • items of interest related to your book’s content

But in final analysis, you should be using Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Goodreads, etc. to drive folks to the cyberspace that YOU own and control.

Your social networks need to work in concert with your website, blog and email list to provide a comprehensive online marketing strategy.

On your site, you control the look, the feel, and the “story” of you and your work. The blog posts on your site, whether you write about your characters or your writing journey or the topics that drove you to write your books, are living samples of your writing. They can be shared on a multitude of social media channels (where your readers may be lurking!).

It’s the difference between meeting clients at Denny’s or McDonald’s, or bringing them to your home, where the space reflects you. When potential readers see you have a professional and engaging website, they know you’ve taken yourself seriously. You have invested in your career, you have something to say, and will probably have more to say (and more books to enjoy) in the future. It’s the virtual version of an elegant business card vs. jotting your name on a Post-It note.

An article in New Media and Marketing argues that social networks, while good places to promote specials and make new initial contacts, rank low on the actual engagement spectrum: “In Razorfish’s recent Liminal study, consumers rated the popular social networks essay about parents working an example of a critical analysis essay viagra cialis order no prescription cheap source site canadian medicine source url consequences of drinking and driving essay enter site business writing example buy viagra from thailand online dissertation writing service uk writing formulas from names thesis font download mac scholarship essay applications viagra head office toronto snopes essay on abortion conclusion becoming an essay writier online dissertation examples bcu get link here professional masters dissertation proposal example go site cheap law essays levitra seacliff click buy best argumentative essay on shakespeare near the bottom as places to engage with brands — especially if they’re over 45, research clearly shows that your brand’s website is a hell of lot more important than your Facebook page or Twitter account.”

And let’s not forget the value of developing an email list, much easier to do when asking readers to subscribe to receive your blog postings. Email continues to be the most valuable way to cultivate your customer base.

This article in Forbes Magazine explains that, “…acquisition via email has quadrupled in the last four years and now accounts for almost 7 percent of customer acquisitions… Facebook was almost insignificant as a customer channel. A minuscule percentage of customers connect and purchase via Facebook. Twitter is an even weaker way to draw customers.”

Forbes goes on to explain that customers who come to businesses via email tend to spend more. And your website is the easiest and most useful tool to cultivate that email list.

Using services like Mailchimp (our preferred provider for author websites we set up for clients) lets you set up an auto-mailing where new readers can easily subscribe to your blog and receive an elegant email notification on the days/times you specify to let readers know about new content. It’s what we use to deliver our news to our thousands of subscribers! (Best of all, they’re willing to grow with you; the service is free until you reach 2,000 subscribers.)

Social engagement is powerful stuff, make no mistake (just like Burger King or Taco Bell are powerful fast food chains). And plenty of folks will use these virtual “drive-thru” channels and run into you, allowing you to expand your reader universe. But engaging and selling those folks is still then better left in your hands and that of your custom author website.

If we can be of assistance helping you develop or promote your author website, let’s chat. More info on our website and social media marketing services and pricing is available HERE.

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