Author K.L. Hall
4 Ideas for Engaging Your Reading Fan Base
© K.L. Hall and www.authorklhall.com. 2020. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to K.L. Hall and www.authorklhall.comwith appropriate and specific direction to the original content.
Why is it vital to build strong relationships with your readers? After all, all you want to do is sell books, right? If you write it, they will come, right? WRONG! Believe it or not, engagement is a two way street. Coming alive online only when you have a book to release is simply not enough. Incorporating these four simple practices below may go a long way in helping you reach new readers and retain the ones you already have. So, grab that cup of coffee or that glass of wine, a notebook and get ready to take some notes.
Let’s get the elephant in the room out of the way first. PEOPLE LIKE FREE STUFF. Host a giveaway for a new book or a contest for your birthday or around the holidays. It’s always good to pour back into the community of readers that support you.
Make your readers feel like they are in an exclusive club when they sign up for your email list. Having email subscribers is a great way to send your readers sneak peeks of your new work, a free short story or even just a BTS (behind the scenes) look at your latest work in progress, a recent vacation, or your daily life.
PRO TIP: If you don’t have an email list just yet, create a private Facebook group and ask your readers to join. You can provide updates there, and best part about it, it’s FREE!
Use (Don’t Abuse) Social Media
Social media is a great tool to utilize to get (and give) instant access to your readers and the ins and outs of your day-to-day life. As convenient as social media may be, be sure to use it wisely. Find out where your community of readers are and focus on those platforms. For example: If you know your readers are primarily on Facebook and Instagram, don’t waste time posting about your books on LinkedIn.
Also, social media is a great way to get to know your readers. Join in on the conversation and say “congratulations” or “Happy Birthday” when you can. Everyone loves to feel special or noticed once in a while.
PRO TIP: Don’t rely on social media to do all of your engaging, especially if you don’t feel all the way comfortable posting on a consistent basis. One of the biggest (and free) ways to promote your work is still by word of mouth.
Get Some Face Time
Lastly, don't forget that engaging is about PEOPLE, not just selling your book(s). Use these various tactics interchangeably, but never underestimate the value of face-to-face connections. Personal chats at book club meetings, book events and signings (local or nationwide) are a GREAT way for your readers to see you outside of a computer screen. They get the opportunity to experience your personality live and in color, and nothing is better than making a great lasting first impression.