It’s no secret that the Kardashian clan has a serious social strategy: millions of followers, trendsetter status, and apps. Love them or hate them, the Kardashians definitely know how to play the game and make it work for their brand. Authors should take note of their attention-grabbing tactics — even if you aren’t creating a book of selfies! Here’s how authors can keep up with the Kardashians:
1. You cannot be afraid to promote yourself. Out of sight, out of mind is incredibly true for authors so identify the opportunities that fit your brand – readings, volunteer opportunities and community events can all be great ways to connect with readers.
2. Never underestimate the power of good photos and assets. Putting your best foot forward starts with professional looking social media images. At a minimum, your Facebook and Twitter cover images should highlight your most recent book. Free design websites like Canva make it easy to design images with pre-populated templates, photos and sizes.
3. Be on the cutting edge of trends. To be truly effective on social media, you have to check in often, engage in current conversations and share relevant trending news. It’s okay to preschedule posts, but you have to check in daily and respond to trending topics. Doing so pushes you higher in your fans’ newsfeeds which means increased engagement on your posts.
4. Use your platform for good. Believe it or not, the Kardashians aren’t always all about themselves, and it’s important for authors to step away from book messaging from time to time. This break in the regularly scheduled promotional programming goes a long way in increasing the authenticity of your platform and your engagement. Share about a cause that’s close to your heart (without slipping in a book plug) and tag relevant organizations. Offering a heartfelt post on a trending topic increases your visibility in an organic way.
5. Take care of yourself. This is an important offline message too! Take a break, step away from social media for a moment and recharge. Think about what you’re posting, why you’re posting and if it lines up with your overall brand. Look out for #1 – that’s what any self-respecting Kardashian would do!
6. Have a professional team. Apps, non-stop selfies, multiple platforms … there’s no way to keep up with that without a professional team helping out. As an author, enlisting the help of a social professional simplifies your job dramatically. Your social manager can keep up with community building initiatives, track your metrics and present plans for building engagement. You get to focus on the big picture items like messaging and voice while your assistant manages the daily execution of your brands.
7. Rely on a glam squad. Sometimes, social media isn’t as much about what you say as how you say it. In addition to keeping your header and profile pictures looking polished and professional, your posts should be glammed up, too. This is where a social manager comes in handy again! Instead of posting a word of encouragement, design it into an eye-catching image. People are skimming their feeds constantly and something visual is more likely to stand out.
8. Start small and work your way up. Building a platform takes patience. Authors will typically see slow organic growth in the beginning. An easy way to accelerate growth is to look for promotional opportunities like a BookSparks Social Booster package. These coordinated packages are aimed at driving sales of your book and growth of your platform simultaneously.
9. Long term strategy. Social media is a long-term strategy. You won’t build a platform to rival the Kardashians overnight, or even over a year. Even The Skimm, which is wildly popular, was around for three years before it became somewhat of a household name. Again, creating a team and a consistent strategy are the keys to social success. It will take awhile but you’ll get there!
10. Play to your strengths. The Kardashians are queens of manufacturing drama that gets people engaged. They know what works for them and they exploit it every chance they get. Figure out what works for your social networks – are people engaged with giveaway posts, or with discussion posts? What do people expect from your network and how can you deliver more of that? It could be inspirational quotes, thought-provoking questions or funny commentary on daily events.
11. Give people a glimpse inside your life. Take people behind the scenes in your life – both as an author and outside of writing. This gives you more to post about (yay! free content!) and gives your networks an exclusive feel. You aren’t constantly promoting your book, instead you’re showing your authentic life. And book sales just happen to be a big part of that!
12. Family is everything. Whether you think it’s genuine love or brand preservation, the Kardashians are clearly focused on supporting each other’s endeavors. You’re part of an incredible family of female authors. Connect with other authors in your genre, look at ways to promote each other’s work, and be a team player.
13. Haters gonna hate. The more personal you get, the more likely you are to turn someone off from your brand. That’s okay! The most important thing is to stick to your brand voice – be you, all the time, no matter what. You’ll build an engaged, active audience this way.
14. Some things are hit or miss. Kylie’s lip kit came under fire when it was revealed her picture perfect pout was actually the result of injections and not her craveable lip colors. Kim’s constant selfies drew attention and she segued it into a bestselling photography book. Be honest, be you, and don’t be afraid to try something new. You never know what the next big trend is!
At the same time…
15. You can’t keep up with the Joneses. Or the Kardashians in this case. Constantly measuring yourself against others can be demoralizing. Remember – great social media is all about owning your brand, your voice and your style. You’ll attract genuine supports instead of fleeting fans.
16. Sometimes there is no rhyme or reason to what – or who – takes off. Who would have though a perpetually frowning cat would be an internet sensation? And yes, Grumpy Cat went on a book tour last year! BookSparks even built a wildly successful platform for Babs the Sock Monkey! Again, don’t get frustrated, define your brand and stick to it. Your fans are out there.
17. Moderation is good. The most notable indicator is a steady decrease in engagement and response metrics. Overposting drives people to either hide your from their feeds or subconsciously gloss over your posts.
18. Silence is NOT golden. Underposting can be just as detrimental to engagement as overposting. You’ll find what works for your followers, but we recommend posting to Facebook once or twice per day and posting to Twitter four to five times throughout the day.
19. Not all things are worth your time. You can only do so much and not every joint giveaway offer or sponsorship opportunity that comes your way is worth it. Set a goal of how many giveaways or partnerships you’d like to engage in per month and stick to it. Just say no, it’s the most important thing you can do when faced with too many opportunities.
21. Don’t have unrealistic expectations. Find the positive in every social situation! Your growth may be slow but it’s moving. There are a lot of authors and a lot of social accounts out there. Identify your niche and nurture it.
22. Share your struggles, wins and insecurities. Keep it real and people will be reall with you. The more you invest emotionally in your following, the more invested they’ll be with you in return.
Keep it real, and it keep social, Sparks!