One of the best ways to interact with fans is to answer their questions directly. Did you know that you can easily host a Facebook Author Q&A? With 83 percent of all time online in the United States spent on Facebook (source: Comscore), the platform is a must for authors looking to build a presence and engage with readers on social media. Read on to learn about Facebook Author Q&As and tips for maximizing your presence on Facebook.
Establish Your Presence
Facebook is all about discoverability and dialogue. If you don’t already have a Page, now is the time to create one. This is not a profile (for friends), but a Page (for fans). You are a public figure, after all. Once you have a Page, you can connect your account to Instagram to share photos and videos with your fans.
Reach Readers with Facebook Q&As
The best way to interact with your readers is to make time to answer their questions through a live Facebook Q&A. Facebook Q&As increase your fan base, improve overall engagement, and allow unparalleled direct reach to your readers. Simply decide on a day (midweek is better than the end or beginning of the week, and anytime after 10 am PST is best) and promote the Q&A on your Page a few days in advance. A simple post with a picture of you at the computer works well.
You can answer as many or as few questions as you want. The “sweet spot” is thirty minutes, but many authors want to write for longer. Prior to your Q&A, make sure you have “replies to comments” turned on. Below are some examples of successful author Facebook Q&As. These are exemplary Q&As because the author gave thoughtful, witty, and honest answers to fans’ questions:
Document Your Day with #Dayinthelife
If you have a bookstore appearance, you can share that experience with readers using the Twitter hashtag #Dayinthelife. Include this hashtag to capture and share other moments with fans, fellow authors, and more. Include a hashtag for your new title as well. Users are able to search for hashtag feeds and browse through posts that use that tag. Get started by posting ten to fifteen photos on one day (on tour or researching your book) and use #Dayinthelife #YourBookTitle. Here’s an example from author Tamara Ireland Stone.
Here is a great document that highlights the Best Practice Tips for Authors on Facebook.
By Susan Katz, Strategic Partner Manager for Authors and Publishers at Facebook and award-winning Random House author