I'm a new member. Thank your for the warm welcome! I know that this forum is dedicated primarily to blogs, but I'm curious if any of you use Facebook to connect viewers to your blogs. How is that working? We have a Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/BonnieLeeBooks (please "like" us!). We're trying to figure out how to best use it and how to then turn our Facebook fans into blog followers.
Any suggestions? Tips? I'd really appreciate it.
Facebook is a wonderful tool to talk about your book, remind viewers daily of the release date, the blog sites, your radio interviews, your reviews, and book signings. It's there at your fingertips and reaches multitudes. Go for it.
For people who use Wordpress, there's also the "publicize" feature that does just that. You can have your blog posts automatically show up on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn if you connect your profiles.
So far, I've just using my Facebook page to get the word out when I have new postings at my blogs Whispers in the Wind and Time Will Tell. I've seen other authors using theirs to let fans known when they're doing signings and to later show pictures from those signing. They also seem to post more fun and informal stuff on their FB pages than they would on their web sites or blogs.
The Facebook page should be part of an integrated strategy, preferably involving multiple social networking sites. There's a great tool called "Social Login" from a company called Gigya that lets you integrate the APIs for a bunch of sites (Google, LinkedIn, MySpace, Facebook, ++) so people can log in to your site using whatever network they prefer. They can also Like, +1, share etc. on all of the various platforms.
Frequent posts to the social networking page(s) are crucial. Even if you're not writing articles every day, try to post a link to something related to your blog topic during high-traffic times (9am, lunchtime, early evenings, after 8pm) and make sure your Facebook page is linked to your Twitter account so both networks get updated.
+1, like, share your posts using the Gigya plugin to every network you're a member of, again at high-traffic times so people actually see your posts. If you post at 10:30am chances are that people in your time-zone won't see you. If your users are scattered, re-post on Twitter and try to time your posts so they're scattered around the clock.
Cotweet and other Twitter management apps let you schedule tweets around the clock in a set-it-and-forget-it manner.
Facebook advertising is also amazingly inexpensive. You can find coupons for Ads on facebook.com all over the web. Make the ads point directly at your blog, (which should have a "Follow us on facebook" link somewhere prominent so people can join your fb page). Facebook has more traffic and/or lower per-click costs than most.
It may seem irrelevant how many people "like" you on Facebook, but people like to follow the herd even if they deny it adamantly and trumpet their individuality. The more people who like you, the more people who will like you, and the more readers you'll have. It doesn't even matter if a few thousand "likes" on your page are from people who never read. The size of your following will help people who do want to read and interact on your blog to find you.
Also, part of the point of using multiple social sites to promote your blog is that incoming links will raise your ranking on search engines, which gets you a higher profile, more readers, and (if you're using affiliate links) more ad revenue.
Alright, time to stop. Believe it or not I was trying to keep this brief, but it's such an involved topic that there really is no short answer to such an open-ended question.
I've got a facbook page, which is automatically updated through linkedinblogs when I update my blog. I've gained an audience through it but not a huge one. It's a learning curve and some PR is better than none. It puts you out there.