Guest Post: Giacomo Giammatteo

How to network online to promote your book

I chose this topic for two reasons:

•             It is perhaps the biggest problem facing all authors today,

regardless of whether they are published by traditional houses, or


•             It is the single most difficult problem for me. It’s like facing my

own worst fear, so perhaps writing about it will help me as well as



This is not a “how to” for social media. I’m not qualified to do

that. This is more of a sharing of my stumbles and mistakes. Maybe it

will help someone else.


I have no problem writing. I’m fortunate in that I never get writer’s

block. I don’t run out of stories to tell, or plots to work on. My

‘blogs to write’ list is endless…but…I have a terrible time with self



This has been a rude awakening for me. I’ve been in sales of some

sort all my life. For the past thirty years I’ve been a headhunter,

and when you run your own business you are always a salesman, always

promoting yourself. But when it came time to promote myself online, as

an author, I froze up. I waited until the last minute to even get a

Twitter account. My Facebook page consisted of a few relatives and

friends. And I had never even heard of Pinterest. I still don’t know

how to use Google + or Tumblr.


So why was I uncomfortable selling my book? I was confident of the

writing. I knew it was a good book. It got great reviews,

but…selling the book was like selling me. It was too personal, too

close to me. And it felt too much like bragging.


A few weeks into the launch I ran across the World Literary Cafe, a

group run by Melissa Foster. They have several wonderful programs that

help authors learn, and get comfortable with, social media. I have to

say, it was a lifesaver. They have Tweet teams that allow an author to

market other people, while the other people market you.


This fit my style perfectly. I don’t mind marketing the heck out of

someone else; I just don’t like doing it for myself. So while I’m

touting these other authors, they are telling their followers about me

or my book.


They also have programs to help with Facebook and Goodreads, and many

other areas.


So right now, here’s what my social media strategy looks like:


Twitter: I use “Tweet teams” to help get the word out. I dedicate 20

minutes in the morning to adding new followers and tweeting, and

another ten in the afternoon or evening to sending tweets.


Facebook: I spend ten minutes each day, interacting with people on

Facebook and liking other pages. Most ‘like’ back.


Pinterest: I’m just building this network, but I am mostly posting

pics about the animals from our sanctuary.


Google +: I haven’t done much here yet, but it’s on my list.


Goodreads & Library Thing: I believe these two have the most

potential. I think reviews are the single biggest issue (after

visibility) facing authors. Every author needs to have a substantial

number of reviews if they are to be taken seriously. Reviews are

difficult to get, but places like Goodreads and Library Thing make it

easier. Authors can sponsor giveaways in exchange for (hopefully)



Being sociable: This is perhaps the most important, and one that

might take the most time. I believe you have to truly interact with

others over an extended period of time, and develop relationships.

Once you have a network of true relationships, you can start helping

each other. That’s when things will click.


Other things: Blog, Linked in, Tumblr, etc…



After three weeks of using Twitter, when I never thought I’d ever use

Twitter, I am slowly getting more comfortable with it. I still look to

retweet other authors’ tweets more than I do my own content, but

that’s okay. The way I look at it, it all comes back to you in the

long run.


On my blog I do the same kind of thing. I’m not comfortable talking

about writing, or telling others what they should be doing. Who’s to

say that what works for me is right? Not me. So I talk mostly about

the animals on our sanctuary. And I try to tie the stories into

writing, or reading. Mostly though, I just tell stories in hopes that

someone will enjoy them. Not much different than writing a book.


Does this strategy work? It’s far too early to tell if what I’m doing

will have any benefit. Ask me next year and we’ll see.


~Giacomo Giammatteo, author of Murder Takes Time 

2 thoughts on “Guest Post: Giacomo Giammatteo

  1. Great Post! When I first started out, I felt the same way. I was very insecure about promotion and secretly hoped that I could find someone else to do it for me. 😉 As with anything, though, the more you do, the better you get. Now, I actually enjoy it! Keep on keeping on! Sounds like you’re doing everything right. When that’s the case, you can’t help but be successful! ;D

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