Social media is the modern writers best friend. It's a fantastic marketing platform and allows us access to all corners of the globe. Sometimes navigating the tricky world of social media can be a daunting task, especially for people who are new to the scene. So here are a few quick tips to get you started.
1) Answer your comments. Seriously. If someone takes the time to connect with you on Facebook, Twitter, your website or your blog, have the decency to comment back. At least at first. If you happen to make it big, this will get increasingly harder, but still make an effort to connect with your fans.
2) Put your best foot forward. If you're going to go to the trouble to create an author page on Facebook, or create a twitter account, have a decent picture ready. It doesn't have to be a professional head shot, but under no circumstance should you use a self portrait that you took in your bathroom. I assume that you know at least one person that would be happy to hang out and goof off with a camera. Do that. I'd rather not see a bathroom selfie as the profile picture of an aspiring author.
3) You are under no obligation to follow back. As Amber Skye Forbes pointed out on her blog, social media is about interaction, it's about making connections. Only follow people you want to interact with. Having a ton of people in your feeds will only cause clutter and you'll miss interactions with people you actually want to connect with.
4) Time management. If you're spending all your time on social media, that leaves little room for writing. Set a time limit if you must. (Note to self--work on this)
5) Don't link puke. Link puking is the fine art of tweeting and posting nothing but links to your books or your blogs. Don't do that. People will unfollow you. People want to hear what you think about life. They want to hear that your vacation was awesome. They don't want to read 30 links to your book or your blog.
6) Have fun. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.