Use social media, they say. Get yourself out there!
So I did.
I'm on Facebook, Twitter, Google+, LinkedIn, Goodreads, three blogs, and now Pinterest. I make friends and post fun pictures all over everywhere; create ads and memes and distribute them among all the sites that allow them. I respond to people who post, tweet, comment, follow, link, join. It's fun. And time consuming.
When a Trojan horse galloped through my computer and started gnawing on everything like it was pasture hay, I had a hard time getting things back up and running, and when I finally did, I discovered I'd used up the bulk of the 10Gs my internet service provider allots in my plan by mid-month. I either had to keep buying time or get off the internet entirely for a while. Because I had a client for my editing business, and because most of my resources for that business are online, I ended up having to do both. But I discovered something: Life off the Internet can be liberating.
During all that free time, I read books on book marketing and started developing a plan for when The Final Ride is released. I started outlining the entr'acte between Give the Lady a Ride and The Final Ride, called A Ride in the Shadows. I made the most of my time while off the 'net, and when I was on it, I did what I had to do and got off.
The best marketing tool for selling books is to write more books, and spending the crazy amount of time that is required for social media, when combined with real life and real life obligations, can severely eat into your writing time. Of the sites I've joined, Facebook is my playground, so I devote most of my social time to it. I have my primary blog 777 Peppermint Place, connected to all the sites I can connect it to, including my Amazon page, I have my Facebook and Google+ pages linked to Twitter, and Goodreads linked to both Twitter and Facebook. Everything links to everything else--which is no substitution for actually being on the other sites--but it is a great help for cutting down on social media time.
I have a scheduled time to run through all the sites (except Google+. I'm just not a fan), and give extra time to Facebook through out the day when I feel like rewarding myself with a quick visit to friends. If I'm being extra diligent, I set a timer to force me to move along. Because my job isn't socializing--it's writing. And the amount of time I spend writing should be far greater than the amount of time I blow playing on social sites.
How do you manage your social time?