By Anna Patrick, Digital Publicist and Social Media Strategist
The following set of best practice tips appeared in the the latest edition of the MEDIA CONNECT newsletter. To view our fall newsletter or to subscribe for future editions, click here.
Pinterest has been hailed as the fastest growing social media platform of the last year, rivaling Instagram, by outlets such a Business Insider, CNN and Mashable. Content sharing on Pinterest jumped to 19.2 percent just this time last year, and is continuing to see a usage spike.
With this kind of popularity, more and more authors — and readers — are finding their way to Pinterest. Broken down, Pinterest is essentially a virtual pinboard, which allows users to “pin” images found on the web that can hyperlink back to websites.
Here are a few ways that authors can use Twitter to maximize book publicity:
Don’t neglect your “About” section. This is a critical element of your profile that will help Pinners identify and follow you. Be sure to include your name or penname, your titles, genres, and a compelling short description of your title(s). Make sure to add your author website URL as well as your Facebook and Twitter accounts.
Create multiple pinboards for your book. Instead of just creating one general board for all things related to your book, breaking up boards will help you gain a broader following by expanding your pins across multiple boards with different subjects. Pinterest categorizes all pinboards by subject, such as “Film, Music & Books,” “Quotes,” “Travel,” “Art” and more. For example, create a pinboard of quotes from your book, a board of “places” (locations or settings) where scenes in your book take place, articles and reviews about your book, and a board of upcoming cover art or fan art.
Create a novel comparison pinboard. Think of it as a “if you like this, read that” approach, where the vast audience of book lovers on Pinterest can see other novels that your book relates to. To maximize visibility and put this strategy into effect you’ll need to write the title and author of the novel in the caption, and make sure to add in your name and book title and indicate that it’s a similar read. If the comparison title is by a well-known author it can be beneficial to put a hashtag in front of their last name.
Hold a pinboard “wish list” contest. Similar to what some fashion lines do during their holiday season, encourage your followers on social media to get active on Pinterest and pin either pins from your pinboards or pins of similar books in the same genre they want to read with a single hashtag, for example #YourBookTitleWishList, and choose a handful of winning Pinners who will receive a free copy of your book.
Use the pin caption to your advantage. Use hashtags and keywords in your caption, and make sure to hyperlink any book-related pins you make regarding your book to your Amazon page. Including the book title, author name, and genre in your caption is helpful. It is important to note that hashtags are only clickable in a Pin description, not in your “about” section or board titles. Try to stick to just a few hashtags at most, as adding too many is poor etiquette, but here are a few to consider: #fiction, #bookquotes, #books, #booklist or #giveaway.
Related: 4 Ways Authors Can Use Twitter