Trying to track down photographs of the weekend at Genrecon and post them has made me realise how behind the curve I am on social media. Many writers were taking photos and posting them on twitter almost like a reflex action. Right on the spot in all of twenty seconds. In comparison, my efforts to grapple with the social media were more like some huge steam-powered mechanism trying to build up steam to move its grease-laden gears.
OK, I’ve managed to find two photographs. For the second one I had to dress up in my costume after I got back to Brisbane and get my wife Sandra to snap a one on her phone. It was only after I got back that I realised I should have been getting everyone to take photographs on my phone so I had some pics.
Below is a photo of myself with Alex Adsett and Paul Landymore, partners in crime (photo courtesy of Australian Writer’s Marketplace Online).
Here is the one I took when I got back to Brisbane. Six gun Chris!
Thinking about social media in general, I’ve decided it pretty much comes down to personality. Some people are just chattier than others and will find it easier to use those platforms.
One of the streams of Genrecon was on the publishing industry, including social media and author platforms. The advice is to try an engage people through dialogue, rather than making the conversations ‘one-way’. Good advice.
Another interesting thing that really stood out in my head was that there are optimal times to post to the Twitter and Facebook universes. Both Twitter and Facebook are at their most active during the working week. Based on USA Eastern Standard Time Facebook’s peak is mid to late week just after lunch. Yep – all those office workers logging on to see what’s up after lunch. Twitter’s usage was more spread out across the week, but – with the exception of early Saturday night when everyone is finding out where people are going – the peak was still in the middle of the day in the working week.
So in terms of maximising the effectiveness of posts, the advice was to ensure that you try to engage in these times. I did not even realise it, but you can schedule your posts on Facebook. For us poor social media cousins in the antipodes, we could do one post during our waking hours, then schedule another one for the USA peak times.
Other than that, the thrust was really just to try and create genuine relationships rather than talking at people. Find discussions and groups that discuss the things that interest you and make some real friends there. Get involved. Then when the times comes to talk about your new work people want to listen, and will be more inclined to promote you.
My biggest constraint is time, and the fact that I’m just not that chatty as a person. I’m the one at the party prone to having the deep and meaningful discussion in the corner. I guess I need to find the cyber equivalent of the comfy chair.
Anyone out there got any more tips for working with social media?
Cross-posted at chrismcmahons blog.
I like facebook, because I can think about what others have posted, reconsider what I’ve written, before hitting the return button, and write at length to hopefully be clear and understandable. Not that it always works, but Twitter, with short fast replies just doesn’t attract me.
I just did not get Twitter. When I registered for the recent Genrecon convention in Sydney, one of the questions was What is your twitter ID? and Do you want it on your badge? Wow, I thought. This thing is really mainstream now. For me that was the clincher.
Strangely (although I still haven’t really engaged with it), I think Twitter might actually suit me. Being time poor, a pithy one-liner is probably more my style than a longer post on Facebook. But I like both.
People certainly rave about Twitter.
No ideas here. I avoid all social media because of problems in the past with a stalker.
Understandable & sorry to hear about your prior negative experience.
One surprising thing did come across from the sessions I attended on social media. Although a useful thing to do to engage readers, the feeling was that social media alone will not actually sell novels. Interesting & I think there is some truth in that, which kind of lets me off the hook:)
I to avoid social media, although for me it is because I find most of what people post on there asinine. I originally got on facebook so that I could comment and follow a certian politician, who was using it like a blog, she was one of the early politicians to really use social media and used it successfully. Since she quit using it as a blog I almost never get on it. Most people post the most asinine things, which might be okay to listen to in a face-to-face conversation, but are not worth my time to log on and read.
Besides as someone pointed out recently (I can’t remember who or where) lost high school friends are lost for a reason 😉
LOL – “lost school friends are lost for a reason”. Nice one.
I have to agree regarding the typical Facebook posts. I look at what people typically post and think – ‘Really?’ Who would want to know what I am having for breakfast? or something similar. I guess it’s down to personality, but I just can’t help but think no one would be interested in comments so trivial – especially in what amounts to an online publication.
One of the TV shows here in Japan recently included what a young starlet eats for breakfast. Apparently her experimentation has led to the recipe of taking sembai (Japanese rice crackers) and crushing them in a plastic bag, then spreading the crumbs on rice. And pour cold cocoa (chocolate milk) over that. The other people tried it, and were surprised, announcing that it tastes like cereal.
Incidentally, I had toast with honey, and red grapefruit juice for breakfast myself this morning. Not terribly exciting. but it does start the day off right for me.
Thanks, Mike. I needed a laugh.I guess breakfasts really can be exciting!
BTW: oat bran with goji berries and chi seed, with soy milk. And leaf tea. Strong tea!