Saturday, October 8, 2016

9 Ways to Boost Your Social Media Presence

with Guest Edie Melson



Most authors have a love/hate relationship with social media. There are aspects of it that we love and others that we hate. No matter which side of the fence we land on, we all know it’s a vital lifeline for connecting with readers.

The thing most authors struggle with is how to boost our social media presence without losing valuable writing time. These 9 tips will help you do just that. Some take a little set-up time, but when your system is in place you’re able to work efficiently and effectively. That means no more than thirty minutes a day, four to five days a week. It’s definitely something we can each commit to.

9 Ways to Boost Your Social Media Presence

1. Develop a Brand. I can hear the groans from here and the post isn’t even published yet. But the truth is, if you share about everything under the sun, no one knows why they should follow you. Our social media followers want to be able to categorize us, just like our readers want that for the books we write. It’s fine to choose several topics to share about, but don’t wander too far afield or your audience won’t follow.

2. Vary Your Posts. This really isn’t a conflict to number 1. By varying the type of posts—not the subject matter—we add interest for our audience. These are the 4 types of posts I share within my brand:
·      An inspiring quote or Bible verse.
·      An intriguing question. This can range from, “How do you know you’re hearing from God?” to “Which book cover do you like best?” The idea here is to get people talking.
·      Something funny. It can be a funny video, picture, or personal antidote.
·      The link to something valuable.

3. Work it Consistently. Social media growth works on momentum. What we do on social media today affects how visible we are on social media tomorrow. If we choose the all-or-nothing method where we spend several hours once a week or so, then we lose all momentum. Every time we’re starting over and we can’t get any traction. One foundational key to social media success is the fact that as little as ten minutes a day—4 to 5 days a week—will get us much farther than several hours at a time once or twice a month.

4. Be Recognizable. By this I mean it’s vital that our name and the image (avatar) associated with ALL our social media accounts is almost identical. More and more interaction is done from the small screen of a smart phone. If all I have as an avatar is bunch of flowers or pictures of my pet, people are not going to be able to find me. Use a professional—recognizable—headshot, and a version of your author name that’s as close as you can get to what’s on your books and website.

5. Put Others Ahead of Yourself. I built my considerable social media platform by promoting others ahead of myself. I don’t like talking about myself, and when I began this journey I was new to the industry. By sending my audience to the expertise of others I brought value to my followers. Two benefits I didn’t realize were these:
·      First, I proved to my audience that I wasn’t all about me. This helped me gain their trust.
·      Second, by promoting others, I gained valuable promoters. That wasn’t why I did it, but it certainly helped build my platform.
Now that I do have some authority and credibility, I still follow Edie’s 5 to 1 rule with social media posts. For every 5 social media posts I send out, I then allow 1 post that’s self-promotional.

6. Don’t Try to Do It All. When I checked last week, there were approximately 246 social media platforms/networks. The time before that, there were 275. There is no way we can do it all when it comes to social media. I recommend focusing on two to three networks. I love Twitter, I’m on Facebook because that’s where the bulk of my audience is, and I enjoy Instagram. I don’t bother to work the rest.

BUT, I do have an account on all the major social media networks. I do that because: 1) If that network suddenly becomes wildly popular, I already have my name and account reserved. 2) Readers can find me there, and then connect with me on networks where I’m more active and visit my website. Here are the networks I consider major:
·      Facebook
·      Twitter
·      Pinterest
·      Instagram
·      Periscope
·      YouTube
·      Google+
·      LinkedIn
·      Snapchat

7. Get Organized. A lot of people want to know how I accomplish so much in only thirty minutes a day. My secret is a social media scheduling program. Hootsuite and Buffer are the two best. Personally, I prefer Hootsuite, but they’re both excellent options. I get up in the morning, schedule my social media posts to go live throughout the day, and check back in occasionally to see if anyone has commented or mentioned me. That way I have a presence on social media throughout the day, but I’m not tied to the Internet.

8. Guard the Trust of Your Social Media Audience. This is a tough one for most authors. After all, we have friends who are authors. Friends who expect us to support them by promoting their books. But let me propose a different way of looking at this. Let’s say my genre is horror or science fiction. My readers know that’s what I post about. Then a friend who writes sweet romance asks me to promote her book. Is my audience going to be interested? For the majority of them, no, probably not. Beyond that, the genres are so different that my audience may even be offended. Either way, I’m hurting my own platform by irritating my followers and not growing her reach at all.

Yes, we should support one another. But there are other ways. I suggest writing short reviews, subscribing to each other’s blogs, following each other on social media. But our social media loyalty belongs to those friends and followers who have give us their trust.

9. Remember They’re People, NOT Numbers. I saved this one till the end because I believe it’s the most important one of all. It’s so easy to get caught up in the hype of building a platform that we forget God is using us to bring light. He may plan for us to illuminate a small portion of the world, or a larger one. That is His part of the equation. My responsibility is to connect authentically with those I come into contact with. The thing to focus on is this—what the numbers represent. They are each individuals who can be impacted by what we write, challenged by what we say, and changed by what we share.

Social media is important an important part of being a professional writer. The key is to work smarter, not harder. Now it’s your turn. What have you found are the best ways to boost your social media presence?

Giveaway! Edie is offering one winning commenter her/his choice of one of Edie’s books (listed in her bio below).

Author bio:
Find your voice, live your story…is the foundation of Edie Melson’s message, no matter if she’s addressing parents, military families, readers of fiction, or writers. As an author, blogger, and speaker she’s encouraged and challenged audiences across the country and around the world. Her numerous books, including While My Child is Away and While My Soldier Serves, reflect her passion to help others develop the strength of their God-given gifts and apply them during these difficult times. Her best-selling ebook has been expanded and re-released as Connections: Social Media and Networking Techniques for Writers. Her popular industry blog, The Write Conversation, reaches thousands each month.

In addition, she’s the Director of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference, the Social Media director for Southern Writers Magazine, Social Media Mentor for My Book Therapy and the Senior Editor at Novel Rocket. You can also connect with Edie through Twitter and Facebook.

Book Blurb
While My Child is Away
Parents and children are separated for many reasons: divorce, school, camp, even work. It might be for just a few days or indefinitely. These prayers give voice to all that you are hoping for your child when you can t be the one to meet their needs. Prayers of blessings, protection, instruction and grace. Or prayers for those around your child to choose wisely, see their needs, and love them as you would. Prayers for friends, teachers, coaches and mentors to step in and fill every need. Knowing that a loving Father God is caring for your child, even when you can t, gives you the peace and assurance that all will be well.





128 comments :

  1. Welcome, Edie! Oh, my goodness I nearly fell over laughing at the first meme. So adorable. LOLOL.

    So many excellent tips here. Thank you.

    Now must learn to streamline my social media attendance. I get lost in rabbit holes all the time. Maybe a timer would help!!

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  2. So good! Thank you, Edie!

    While I don't try to do it all, I'm consistent in the things I do--FB, Twitter, Pinterest, and LinkedIn. And I blog. AND I use the stopwatch/timer on my phone so I don't get sucked into the vastness. Lol

    Seriously GREAT tips today!

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  3. Welcome, Edie! Thanks for the great info. The one I see that I need to improve on the most is being consistent. I need to do more daily, even if just dropping by for a few minutes. I need to set a schedule!

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  4. Cynthia, that's a great idea to set the timer. I really do get sucked in, especially on Pinterest!

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  5. Wow, Edie--there is a lot to being an author that isn't just writing an excellent book! Thanks for outlining some of the important ways to connect with your readers, and best wishes to you! I have to admit, I'm very rarely on Snapchat myself, although my kids seem to enjoy it immensely. And Periscope? Huh? LOL! ;)

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  6. Edie, good morning and welcome to Seekerville! Thanks so much for being here for our ninth birthday party celebration!!!

    What great points you made about social media. Thank you for that... and I loved the one reminding us that we're dealing with people... and to put others first.

    That is a marvelous reminder.

    Can you tell us more about your books? I'd love to hear some details!

    And YES... I brought cake! Yellow cake with dark chocolate fudge frosting!!!!

    Happy birthday to us!!!

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  7. I'm not one for social media. I'm not sure if blogs fit this category, because blogs I get and like. As a reader I don't seek out authors on FB, Twitter etc.

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  8. Hi Edie, thank you for your post. I'm not big into social media. I have a FB page, a Twitter account, Pinterest, and some others, but I use them more to post book reviews then to 'visit' on. To be perfectly honest, if I start reading things on Facebook and Twitter before long a couple of hours have gone by and I can't afford the time. I see family members on FB all the time and well, it's really bad when you are trying to hold a conversation or enjoy dinner and they are following their FB account. I guess the key would be discipline.

    Happy Birthday Seekerville!

    Blessings,
    Cindy W.

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  9. Awesome awesome tips! Social media can really be addictive and I love that you said to just focus on a couple. Being honest and diverse is great!

    Thank you! Love that first meme! Those kids are adorable!

    Happy Birthday celebration and have a great weekend, everyone!

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  10. I find that keeping a brand in mind while using social media is difficult. I post things I'm interested in because I'm being social (shivers)... I'm being me and not necessarily promoting a brand. I thought that social media worked best if we don't use it to promote our books more than 20% of the time. I'm just new to instagram and not sure how to gain followers. Do hashtags help? Or following?

    Thanks Edie... and happy birthday Seekerville!

    I'm still using and loving my laptop I won years ago!

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  11. Hi Edie,

    I'm so glad you shared with us today. I've listened to you for over a year and finally established a website last month. I've worked on narrowing my focus as far as social media goes, and I'm doing better but not quite there. I'll keep working on it though. Thanks for these great tips!

    Have a great day everybody!

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  12. Welcome, Edie! These are all great tips. Since I work full-time outside the home, number six really resonates with me. My free time must go to writing first. I do enjoy the connections made through blogging, they seems more personable than FB or Twitter. Thanks for coming by today!

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  13. Good morning, EDIE! And welcome to Seekerville! Great tips!

    Like Jill, between a more-than-full-time day job and writing, my "work weeks" are never less than 60 hours a week. Quite often 70+. So my social media time is limited if I want to eat, sleep and say howdy to family or friends on occasion or write a blog post. LOL

    Your suggestions are really good ones! Thank you!

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  14. CYNTHIA H -- I'm a "timer person," too. While as a little kid I hated "clocks telling me what to do," my timer is now indispensable in keeping me on track.

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  15. Fedora, I got a Snapchat account just to do it with my kids. :) I admit I'm not very good at so far. LOL

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  16. Good morning, Edie!

    Thank you for the great tips.

    One thing I've learned is that there is no such thing as a "personal" page on Facebook! So I'm careful to treat both my author page and personal page as very public forums. But I do vary what I share on each page, and it seems to be working.

    I do appreciate your 5/1 guideline for self-promoting. We have to do SOME self-promoting, but I'd rather just have fun. :)

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  17. Ruthy, CAKE FOR BREAKFAST! I love it!! :)

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  18. Mary P, we're glad you love blogs! :)

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  19. Cindy W, yes, it's good to limit the time! Pinterest is one that sucks me in before I know it.

    Speaking of family members... We always made the kids put phones away during dinner. And we were meanies--they couldn't be on their phones even on the way to dinner when we were on the way to restaurants. :)

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  20. Annie, I hope you have a great weekend, too!

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  21. Debra, I'm fairly new to Instagram and am still don't do a good job of it. I love looking at others' photos but haven't posted many (if any!) myself yet.

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  22. Jackie, your website is beautiful! Congrats on getting it set up!

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  23. Jill, I like blogging, too. And for me, FB is very personable as well. And though I'm not great about being regular on any of them, I do best on FB I think.

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  24. Glynna, I don't know how you do it! You're amazing!

    Although, I'm still trying to picture you saying "howdy." ;)

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  25. Jan, I'm really careful, too. And I do post different things on my author page and profile page. But I sometimes feel like I'm neglecting my author page. I'm better about posting (usually fun things) on my personal profile. I need to take Edie's advice on things to post about.

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  26. Wow! I'm so excited to be here. I'm going to start catching up with the conversation! Tina, Cynthia, and Missy - Seekerville is one of my daily must-read sites, so it's really a bucket-list moments to be a guest!

    Fedora, There is a lot more to being a writer than just writing. Remember, though, none of us learned it all - all at once. It's a process and it is possible when you attack it a few pieces at a time.

    Blessings to you All! E

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  27. Ruth, that one tip - remembering that they're people, not just numbers - really changed my attitude toward social media. I began to realize how excited I'd be if just fifteen or twenty people came to my house weekly to hear what I had to share and join a discussion. That helped me put the reach of social media in perspective and not push past the personal.

    Thank you for asking about my books! I'll share about the military family ones now and some of the others later.
    I still write regularly for military families and that's the focus of many of my books: Fighting Fear, Winning the War at Home When Your Soldier Leaves for Battle (Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas 2011). This is an anthology consisting of devotions that explore my experience while our son was a front-line infantry Marine. It also contains real stories from people who have dealt with fear while a loved one was away at war. Those stories range from WW2 up through the current conflict.

    While My Soldier Serves, Prayers for Those with Loved Ones in the Military (Worthy Inspired, 2015) Is a collection of prayers for our loved one who is away and prayers for the family member. This book began long before I ever thought about writing it. I kept a deployment prayer journal and a lot of prayers come straight from that previous resource. I found that I needed that prayer connection for myself as well as for my son - especially during those difficult times.

    While My Soldier Serves, Prayer Journal (Ellie Claire, imprint of Worthy, 2016) This is a prayer journal for those with a loved one in the military - whether they're deployed or not.

    Thanks & Blessings, E

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  28. Mary Preston, I respect that view. But the majority of readers are on social media. Even though we're not promoting our books, by being on there regularly, we are making our names more visible.

    Cindy, you're so right. The key to managing social media without disrupting our lives is discipline.

    Blessings, E

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  29. This post is packed with great tips! Thanks Edie!

    I am as of yet, unpubbed but I bought my domaine name. I'm giving a lot of thought to building my author platform. The question is, should I start a website? I don't want to blog so, I'm not sure what I'd put up! πŸ˜…

    Twitter is valuable but I don't get it.

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  30. Just Commonly, I found that picture on my favorite site for images - www.Pixabay.com and used www.PicMonkey.com to put it together. I find that putting some extra thought into my memes really draws readers in.

    Debra M, you are so right, we don't want to promote our books more than 20% of the time. That's why I use the 5 to1 rule. Like any "rule" though, there are exceptions. It's important not to get too legalistic about following all the rules, all the time in publishing! LOL. As far as remembering our brand, it's a thin line to walk. I want to be authentic, but I also want to be deliberate about what I post.

    Ruth, be sure to save me a piece of that cake! Blessings, E

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  31. EDIE!!! WELCOME TO SEEKERVILLE -- it's SO great to have you here!!

    Why? Well, aside from the fact that today's post is EXCELLENT, I have been following your blog for years, albeit as a lurker. All of us Seekers collect important/interesting links for Tina to put in the Weekend Edition, and over 50% of mine come from YOU!! So I (and Seekerville) have been promoting you for a while now on the sly. ;) I apologize for being a lurker and am thrilled to be able to tell you how much I appreciate you and your blog.

    Thanks for being our guest today!

    Hugs,
    Julie

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  32. Hi Edie, I find that it's so hard to keep up with Facebook, Twitter, email...etc. so I have to discipline myself to be sure I stop and get the writing done. I agree with your points on social media and like what you mentioned about what to post online. Social media and marketing yourself is a big part of writing. It's a leap of faith to put yourself out there. Thanks for sharing these valuable tips to all of us at Seekerville.
    These wonderful blogs keep coming. We are all so lucky to be a part of this special community. Bless you all.

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  33. MISSY and GLYNNA, yaaaay for timers! Social media takes discipline, for sure. I was a late adopter of Pinterest for just that reason. Now, I pop on for a while as kind of a reward thing when I complete my word count for the day or something like that. I have designated boards for recipes (LOVE!), but I also love Pinterest for story ideas and have boards organized according to my Heartfelt, Homespun Fiction "brand." I love brainstorming with pictures. :-)

    I also think Edie made awesome points about social media, particularly remembering people/followers are more than "numbers." When someone follows or friends me on social media and then immediately sends me a msg with "Buy me," "Like me," "Kiss my dog, Spot," it leaves me cold. Brrrr....

    Now, I'm off to do some early leaf-peeping in Branson. Have a great day, all!

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  34. I have my French vanilla coffee and an a slice of apple fritter bread for my Saturday morning breakfast and this generous Seekerville blog to keep me in the writer's world loop, what more could a writer want? (Except to be published, duh!) Happy Birthday Seekerville on day nine and thank you.

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  35. Debra M, I got sidetracked and hit publish before I answered your question. I use Instagram strictly for fun. I love photography and it's a perfect place to play. I follow people I find interesting - and I follow everyone back. I do use hashtags, but I'm careful that they relate to the image I put up. If it's a faith based focus - like one that has a Bible verse, I like to use #faith. #prayer is also a good hashtag. Finally, if you can put up an image and resist using one of the filters, Instagram purists love the #nofilter tag.

    I think we have to be deliberate about our social media, but it's also okay to have a network where we give ourselves permission to be the consumer only and play.

    Blessings, E

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  36. Jackie, your site is great! Keep working and don't stress. Jill & Glynna, I agree, social media time for most of us has to be minimized. Seriously though, 10 minutes a day, 3 days a week will get you so much farther than you ever imagined!

    Blessings, E

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  37. Edie, you always have great memes! I'm glad to hear how you do them. I, too, use PicMonkey. Although recently, I've tried Canva and like that too.

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  38. Josee, buying your domain is a great step to prepare!

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  39. Jan, you are so right, things on social media are almost never completely private! We have a saying - "What goes on social media, stays on social media." I'm super careful about what I post and do my best to stay away from things that put down a person, product, or organization. It's hard to do during this political season because most of us have pretty strong feelings. But years from now the election will be forgotten, but if we've lashed out and someone is hurt, that will be remembered.

    Blessings, E

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  40. Julie, I, too, have learned a lot on Edie's blog! I usually lurk but also share the posts on Twitter. :)

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  41. Suzanne, an apple fritter sound perfect to go with my coffee! Thanks for the birthday wishes!

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  42. Cynthia, have a great day enjoying the fall beauty!!

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  43. Josee, welcome and great question! I recommend that those earlier in their writing journey spend their money places other than websites. Yes, we need a place to call our own on the Internet, but a free blogsite provides every single thing we need. Up until this month (I'm about to launch my first website) I've built my entire publishing platform on Blogger. It's been entirely free, except for the fact that I bought my domain name, www.EdieMelson.com, at GoDaddy and have that pointed to my blog, www.TheWriteConversation.blogspot.com.

    Having a blog site doesn't mean you have to update it with a "blog". You can have a static home page with info about you. Then you can have pages with your books and other things.

    I will tell you though, that you should be blogging somewhere.

    The biggest reason is that we don't own the social media networks where we're connecting. A single small change in an algorithm can take our audience, from 20,000 to 200 in a single twelve-hour period. It has happened, frequently. That's why we have a blog/website. This allows us to "Own our list". In other words, we have a list of people that we can legally contact with information because they've subscribed to our blogs and newsletters. No algorithm can touch that list. Also, our audience can find us because we show up in their inbox regularly, whether or not we're in their newsfeed.

    If time is an issue, I'd band together with some other writers and start a group blog. Or find a group blog that's taking on new contributors and blog once or twice a month. The idea is that your readers and would-be readers need a place to connect with you on a deeper level. Don't worry that you're not experienced, most popular group blogs were begun before all the participants had books published.

    I have multiple pages, and I can use paypal and sell books there. Really up until now, it's done everything I needed. I do have a lot of information about on my site about how to build a blog and what gadgets and widgest are necessary. Or you can follow up with me privately. (My contact info is on my blogsite).

    Blessings, E

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  44. Julie, I just squealed when I read your comment! I'm such a fan of your books (yes, I have all of them) and of course of Seekerville! When I started writing, I was blessed to have so many people help me. Many of them don't even know the help they gave because I learned from their blogs, newsletters, and email groups. Early on, I made a decision to give back to the publishing community to honor the help given me.

    Thanks for having me during your birthday celebration!

    Happy Birthday, Seekerville!

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  45. I realize I never thanked Tina at the beginning for having me as a guest! Please forgive me and thank you for having me here on Seekerville!

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  46. Cynthia, Pinterest is deadly for me. I can loose myself for HOURS there. It's so much fun and there's so much too see. That's why I rarely visit. It's just too much of a time killer.

    Yes, timers are my best friends. They help me change tasks when needed, and give me hope when I'm doing something I don't enjoy. I really don't know where I'd be without them!

    Happy Birthday, Seekerville!

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  47. Edie, welcome to Seekerville! This is all such great advice. When I think back to my early years of launching a writing career, before the days of the Internet and email--and WAY before anyone ever heard of blogs and social media--the writing life sure seemed simpler. Now, it seems we have no choice but to divide our time between the actual writing and all this get-noticed-in-a-noisy-world stuff.

    I'm also a fan of Hootsuite for combing through relevant Tweets and scheduling mine (and Seekerville's) to post throughout the day. I spend maybe 30-40 minutes every morning perusing Facebook & blogs and getting my Tweets ready to go, then check back occasionally (and briefly) to see what's new. Without some discipline and restraint, the time can easily be devoured by social media!

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  48. Suzanne, that fritter sounds awesome! I'm in South Carolina (upstate, not on the coast) but I'm still watching TV as the hurricane buffets our state. It's a good day to stay in with coffee and goodies and enjoy the online party!

    It is a leap of faith to put ourselves out there. But I try to treat my online connections exactly like I do my in-person connections. I start by writing/posting to a specific person. It's like writing to a target reader. That person I write to isn't made up, for me she/he is real, and doesn't even know that I write everything for them. This keeps my posts personal and targeted.

    I also try not to overshare. Social media is sort of like being at a large gathering. I don't want to be that one person everyone avoids because they want to tell you their life story so you'll like them. I also try to avoid my tendency (in person) to find a corner behind a potted plant. It's easier for me to approach someone I don't know online (like a lot of you here on Seekerville) because writing down what I'm saying is my comfort zone. Sometimes I think if I carried notecards my introverted self would be more confident at a party. LOL!

    Blessings, E

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  49. Missy, I've begun playing with Canva and I'm loving it more and more! It's a larger learning curve, but you can do more with it.

    Myra, yes, there is so much more to do today with social media. But we also have more direct access to our readers, and to a larger group of potential readers.

    I love your schedule, it's almost the same as mine. I really couldn't do this without Hootsuite! Thanks so much for having me as a guest today!

    Blessings, E

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  50. but if we've lashed out and someone is hurt, that will be remembered. Edie, I have unsubscribed from blogs and quit reading an author's books because of this very thing.

    Your point about remembering the readers/followers are people and not numbers is fantastic -- I appreciate blogs/newsletters that remember I'm a person with limited time.

    Thanks for all the help you don't know you've given :-)

    Nancy C

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  51. Here's some more about my books. I also have a book for writers: Connections: Social Media and Networking techniques for Writers. This book comes directly from my blog posts. It's organized into sections: Blogging, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Each section has small articles that have a connection point at the end so the reader can practice the point I've just introduced.

    In July, my latest book just arrived, While My Child is Away, Prayers for When We're Apart (Worthy Inspired, 2016). This book expands on the prayer book format of my previous book and includes devotions and parenting thoughts. It includes prayers for everything from a young child's first day of school, to sleep-overs, learning how to drive, dating, and college. It also has prayers that can be used if there's a divorce situation or the parent is a foster parent.

    Next month, I'm branching out and my first novel is arriving. ALONE is a Christian science fiction book with Prism Book Group. This is actually the first book I ever wrote as an adult, so I'm beyond thrilled it's actually happening! The premise is this: Bethany has grown up expecting to die for her faith, but when her world is invaded by a race of giants she must decide whether or not she's willing to live for it.

    Thanks again for letting me spend today celebrating Seekerville!!! Happy Birthday!
    Blessings, E

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  52. I missed Josee's comment that she doesn't get Twitter. I totally get that! When I first clicked on twitter and the chaos that is the newsfeed, I was certain there was nothing valuable for me to be found here. I couldn't have been more wrong, but it took me years to figure that out.

    It was Hootsuite that helped me get to the value of Twitter. I use the Hootsuite streams (columns) to pull out topics from my twitter feed. I have columns for #Writing, @SKRVILL, #Faith, #MilitaryFamilies, #MilFam, #SocialMedia, etc. I can find what I want at a quick glance through these columns.

    The genius of Twitter is hashtags. These are searchable links that allow us to find and be found by people who have no other connection with us other than a topic. I've found so many valuable friends and resources through Twitter that it's now my favorite network.

    Not everyone feels that way, and that's fine. But it is valuable and it gets us in front of a younger audience than Facebook can.

    Blessings, E

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  53. Myra, I've been on Hootsuite for a couple of years, I guess, but haven't really used it well. I need to do a tutorial.

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  54. Welcome, Edie. As a reviewer, there are some great tips to keep. I'm one Facebook, and sometimes I do post other things besides reviews there. Sometimes it's just because I want to be able to find it again for myself.
    I mostly review fiction, though I do a few autobiography etc. I will be looking for your novel coming out,

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  55. Oh, MISSY! I couldn't bear to deal with Twitter without Hootsuite! I have mine set up for the 3 different Twitter accounts I manage, all divided under 8 different tabs, each containing a bunch of columns for individual lists where I've grouped the Tweeters I care most about following, plus my favorite hashtag columns like Edie described. I can quickly scroll through the lists I need to check at any given time and see the most recent Tweets.

    Wow, just explaining that is enough to make me crazy!

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  56. Edie, I'm excited you have a novel coming out!! I can't wait to hear more as it releases!

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  57. Myra, it sounds like I need to sit down with you to have you show me how to set it up. :)

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  58. Well, Edie, I just read your list of social media outlets again and realized I should probably reserve my name at LinkedIn. That's the only one I'm not on. So now I have a page. :)

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  60. I don't actually have a presence on social media (my parents are strict like that), but when I do end up getting one I will be sure to look up this post!

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  61. EDIE, where would authors be without the advantage of social media to let us readers know about their fabulous books?!

    HAPPY WEEKEND!!!!

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  62. Nancy C, I've done the same thing. Life is too short to spend on people who don't care! Thanks so much for the encouragement! Blessings, E

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  63. Marianne, you're finding a good balance in what you post! Thanks for applying these thoughts to review sites - very helpful! Blessings, E

    HAPPY BIRTHDAY, SEEKERVILLE!

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  64. Edie,
    Thanks for the great suggestions! Of the social media sites you listed, I'm active on all except: Periscope, YouTube, Google+, and Snapchat. Are all of these really necessary?

    Blessings,
    Edwina

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  65. Rose, thanks for stopping by!

    Nicky, there's plenty of time for you to build social media. It's more important to stay safe and respect your parents' wishes! This gives you time to focus on building a library of your writing.

    Caryl, I agree. We do live in a blessed time!

    Missy, even if you never use it, it's good to have a LinkedIn page. Connect your blog, accept connections from those who offer, and ignore the rest!

    HAPPY WEEKEND!

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  66. EDIE, welcome to Seekerville! Thank you for this savvy, encouraging post. I badly need more of a presence on social media. I go out to Facebook most days but say very little. My problem is I don't feel I have something unique to share. I'm a social person so that's odd. Perhaps its stage fright. Maybe if I use your suggestion and speak to one person that will make posts less intimidating.

    I write historical romance and have visited some great living museums, museums, mansions, cemeteries that are worth sharing and part of my brand, but I don't post while I'm there as I don't want to admit I'm not at home. Then once I'm home, the visit feels like old news or readers might respond as if I'm there now and that feels slightly deceptive. Perhaps all this is an excuse not to put myself out there. Sounds like I need an intervention! LOL Do you feel there's any risk to sharing news that suggests you're not at home?

    Janet

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  67. Janet, you are VERY wise not to post information that tells people you're away from home. I would share your photos and info after you get home. Begin your post/updates with something like, "I was recently at..." or "Last week I had the opportunity to visit..."

    As far as what to post, the people you meet online will be just as interested in you as the people you meet in person. Take a chance and give yourself a few weeks to get your bearings and I believe you'll find you enjoy the interactions.

    Blessings, E

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  68. Edie, thanks on the advice for LinkedIn! I don't even know how it works yet. :)

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  69. Nicky, yes, saying safe is most important! I still don't mention my children by name usually. Well, I think I did start naming my oldest once he got married. :)

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  70. LOL, Janet! I'm the same way. Once I get back it feels odd to share. But after this year's vacation, I decided to share some photos afterwards, and readers seemed to enjoy them.

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  71. Edie, I'm in awe! You're amazing! Somewhat like our Ruthy and Tina!!!

    I'm an Army wife and my son has had 5 deployments! God bless our military heroes! Thanks for your son's service...and for all you do to support Army families. I'm sure your books for parents have helped many during those difficult times when their children are deployed. The first time my son deployed was the most difficult. I remained in prayer, got teary every time I was in church and probably aged ten years! Of course, each homecoming has been so joyous, and I continue to thank God for protecting my son through it all.

    I recently attended a workshop on FB at a writers' conference, and the speaker cautioned about posting anything religious. I had to quietly chuckle! Of course, she didn't write for the inspirational market. Nor did she realize how God works through social media. I love being able to connect with folks through FB, to learn of their prayer needs and to lift them up to the Lord...or to rejoice with them when a need has been answered. Times of joy and times of sorrow are both common themes I find on my feed from FB friends. Plus, I enjoy posting daily scripture and Sacred Art, usually paintings from the Old Masters.

    So glad you could be with us today! Hugs!

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  72. What a wonderful article! Thank you for sharing. Makes me want to sit and write (I'm traveling and haven't had the opportunity for a while).

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  73. What a wonderful article! Thank you for sharing. Makes me want to sit and write (I'm traveling and haven't had the opportunity for a while).

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  74. Edie, thank you for such a wonderful list. I relate to the throw everything at my peeps all at once then disappear for days at a time. I know that's not good form. :( It's much the same with my housework, yard work (scratch that...I haven't done yard work in YEARS other than the occasional pass with the mower, so probably shouldn't even list that chore), writing, grocery shopping, bookkeeping.

    Yikes!

    My life is just one continuous cycle of huge chunks of time on one task before moving to the next fire. I really admire those who can juggle multiple tasks in tiny 5-10 minute increments every day. I really need to work on perfecting that.

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  75. Tina, I had the same thought about a timer. But I'm afraid I'd just turn it off and keep working on whatever I'm doing. I do have the time on right now, though. Meatloaf in the oven and squash on the stove. I burned the squash the other night...

    Yes, I was deep in something on my laptop and let them cook too long and had the temp too high. :(

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  76. Debby, I love your Scriptures and artwork!

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  77. Pam, I'm the queen of burning things--especially when I'm broiling garlic bread. I'm the butt of many family jokes about it. :)

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  78. Edie, I didn't have time to comment on your book when I was here last night. Gorgeous cover and what a wonderful and needed book. Congratulations on your release.

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  79. I probably love LinkedIn and Twitter most.

    I actually learn a ton from them both. And since I started lists on Twitter I can don't waste nearly as much time. Boy and those agent #MSWL are invaluable for published and unpublished authors.

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  80. Oh, I forgot. I have a reminder to pop up twice a day on my phone to remind me to go to Twitter and check my friends and Seekerville. It works great except when I've just gotten the grand baby done for a nap, and even though I put my phone on silent, Angry Birds (Twitter, get it?) starts blaring across the room, and I'm scrambling to shut it off.

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  81. Edwina, I recommend you are only ACTIVE on two, maybe three sites. But you should have an account on all the major ones. We really can't be active on more than that and get any writing done! At least I can't! LOL! Which sites are most valuable depends on who your target readers are. The median age of those on FB is 53, Twitter is younger, and Instagram younger still. I hope this helps, great question!
    Blessings, E

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  82. Missy, I had a strawberry cheesecake shake for breakfast. ;)

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  83. Nancy said: I appreciate blogs/newsletters that remember I'm a person with limited time.

    Nancy, this is it in a nutshell for all of us... or at least everybody I know. So if all my friends and family are burning the candle at both ends, it stands to reason that everybody else is too.

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  84. Debby, we are sisters of the heart! Thank your husband and son for their service for me! Where would we be withou them and others like them!!!

    I'm excited to be here and get to share some tips. That's so funny about not posting anything religious! But I've seen a lot of that on the secular side. Truthfully, I'm awed by the fact that God put me in this timeframe when He could use me to reach so many. There are difficulties (like learning how to use social media) but God is always able!

    Happy Birthday Seekerville!!!

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  85. #MSWL is new to me, TINA. What's it stand for?

    And I haven't really done much with LinkedIn except try to sort of maintain my profile over there. Would appreciate some ideas on how to make better use of it.

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  86. S. Tietsch, I hope your having tons of fun! Traveling is when I stockpile things. I take images I can use for blog posts, sociak media, memes, etc. I fill up my creative tank by gathering idea. The productivity comes later - because of getting out of my everyday setting!

    Blessings, E

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  87. Pam, my personality has made me have to learn to work in small increments - it doesn't come naturally. But it has been a huge overall time saver! I have to ignore the feeling that I'm not accomplishing anything and rely on the hard data - growing social media etc.

    Happy Weekend!

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  88. Tina, thank you! I love what Worthy did with the book cover. It's definitely been a book of the heart! Blessings, E

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  89. Myra, it's ManuScript Wish List. Things they want to see. I LOVE hashtags! It's like getting the inside track on so many things! I admit it, I'm just a social media nerd. LOL! Blessings, E

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  90. Welcome Edie!

    I'm not a writer, but the only social media I'm more active on is Facebook. It keeps me connected with my family since I live so far away. And of course my author friends and street/launch teams I am a part of. I do have Twitter for contest entries & Goodreads to leave book reviews and books I want to read on. Then I do do get several blogs in my email of all the authors and fellow reader bloggers I like to follow. It can be quite overwhelming at times, lol! But I love it, I feel connected to people I've never even met in person.

    Thanks for the great tips :-) Happy birthday again Seekerville, I lost count on what day it is!

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  91. Myra,

    I follow a few groups and organizations who regularly post good stuff. So generally when I go to post on LinkedIn each day I also see some very excellent articles. They pop up right before I post. Usually, for me, they are from Undercover Recruiter, Forbes, and NYT. I would not normally make time to go there. The articles are on time management and success tips. So for me it's helpful. While not directly writer related, they are on a business management level.

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  92. Who knew! Well, obviously you and TINA--LOL! Thanks, EDIE! Must add that column to my Hootsuite tab.

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  93. Thanks, TINA! Must look those up. I'm sure I'm missing out on a lot of good info.

    Or would if I didn't have you to steer me in the right direction!

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  94. EDIE, thanks for your wisdom and encouragement. I'm promising myself I'll do better. The only place from here is up. :-)

    Blessings back at you.
    Janet

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  95. S. Tietsch mentioned traveling!!! Enjoy your time away!

    I just got home from a week-long trip to Montreal. Loved the city. Loved hearing the beautiful French language. Loved the town's history, churches and waterfront.

    You're so right, Edie! Traveling provides great photos and input for future blog posts. Plus, it's so much fun to learn how other folks live as well as their history and culture.

    We attended a lovely concert at the Basilica of Notre Dame, which has the largest organ in all of Canada! It dates from 1891 and has 7,000 pipes! Spectacular!

    Hockey is king there. Lots of folks on the subway trains in their team jerseys, heading for the rink!

    We were on the go from early to late so no extra time for social media. Much reconnect with my FB friends over the weekend. Perhaps Hootsuite would help for those days when I'm traveling. From your post, Edie, it sounded as if you return to Hootsuite to check for comments you've received at the various social media sites. Did I get that right? Or do you access comments the regular way, by going to the various media platforms?

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  96. EDIE SAID: "Julie, I just squealed when I read your comment! I'm such a fan of your books (yes, I have all of them) and of course of Seekerville!"

    OH. MY. GOODNESS!!! Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!! YES, that's ME squealing back because I am such a HUGE fan of YOU that your comment blessed the socks off of me, girl! Do you have Love Everlasting, which just released?? If not, you do now, my friend -- just send me a FB message with your email address, and I will send you a comp ecopy, okay?

    Hugs and more hugs!!
    Julie

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  97. Tori I, you are a great friend to authors, THANK YOU!

    Tina, I follow a lot of business sites for marketing and business info too. I try to be a clearing house for authors so they don't have to read everything that doesn't always pertain.

    Janet, small steps, big gain!

    Blessings, E

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  98. EDIE, thanks so much for the valuable info on your post!! I'm not a writer, but use social media to promote the books I read and review - your tips are helpful to me also.

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  99. Debby, I use Hootsuite to schedule things when I'm out of pocket. I can catch up with comments and mentions in odd moments or when I'm back to work. Most of the time I answer straight from Hootsuite, other times from the site itself. It's nice to have options!

    Happy Birthday!

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  100. Julie, that's the only one I don't have! Thank you! I'm off to message you now.
    Blessings, E

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  101. Thanks for the great tips. I am a fan of social media but I do tend to lose track of time when I check my different accounts!
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

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  102. Thanks for the great tips. I am a fan of social media but I do tend to lose track of time when I check my different accounts!
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

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  103. Thanks for the great tips. I am a big fan of social media but I do tend to lose track of time when I check my accounts.
    Connie
    cps1950(at)gmail(dot)com

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  104. Hi Edie:

    "While My Child is Away" is such a good title that I'm amazed I haven't seen such a title years ago. Will you have a sequel for 'empty nesters'? (That is, a more permanent solution.)

    I was just fascinated by the blurb about "Alone" on Amazon. Are you that Edie? I've read "Dune" and all of C.S. Lewis SF. "Alone" would fit right in! Have you read those two authors?

    Please put me in the drawing for any of your books. I think I'd like them all.

    BTW: the ability to increase one's presence on social media also can greatly increase the power of peer pressure. I think a prayer book for "Dealing with the Negative Power of Peer Pressure" would be welcome in parentland!

    Vince

    P.S.
    May I suggest another way to phrase your leadin to the second way to increase your social media presence?

    Always be entertaining and fun to read!

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  105. This post is so good! And convicting me. Haha.

    Unfortunately, my internet presence has all but disappeared, since we economized our internet package. I try to do some when I drive to the library, but usually I spend most of that time doing email triage. :D Hopefully this is temporary. I miss hanging out at Seekerville! :'(

    Thanks so much for sharing your wisdom with us, Edie!

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  106. WOW! Such great information! I truly appreciate it. It is easy to lose track of time on social media. These are great tips.

    I would love to win either your social media book or Prayers for your Child when they are away.

    Have a great week.
    Becky

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  107. Super advice! Maybe I can actually get a handle on social media now.

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  108. Super advice! Maybe I can actually get a handle on social media now.

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  109. Thank you for these great pointers Edie! And I'm inspired that you accomplish so much as a writer, mom, and military spouse. I've just started Buffer and am giving it a trial but might try Hootsuite to compare.

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  110. I have actually started thinking that way and have notes on the back of my boarding pass, a napkin and a bookmark! Lol! Thanks again!

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  111. I'm back! My husband and I went to see Deep Water Horizon. Very exciting movie, and moving.

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  112. Pam, I live by reminders from my phone. I need to try it with social media!

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  113. Thanks, Tina! I'll follow those groups on LinkedIn.

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  114. Connie, thanks for stopping by! I think most of us fight the time issue.

    Vince, thank you - great suggestions!

    Natalie, that does make it tough. You might find that you can schedule a couple of things over the course of a few days when you do have access.

    Blessings, E

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  115. Thank you, EDIE! I've wondered about some of these social media outlets - this was very helpful. I have a Facebook writer page, but don't have many followers yet, and I have a Pinterest page, with even fewer followers, LOL. Still working on both, especially knowing exactly what to post and where. Will check into some of the others sites you mentioned. Thanks again!

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  116. Becky and Barbara, thank you!

    Laurie, Buffer is a great option too. And I'm the mother of a former Marine, not a military wife. I admire those amazing women and would never want to impersonate one!

    Blessings, E

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  117. I sm a little late ,but just printed this out. I have not had a very fun last 48 hours with a reaction the flu shot on top of my already symptoms for Meneires. When my whole body violently shook for 2 hours on Thursday night and my friend who I had called and decided to stay on the phone until I was better. We kept trying to figure out what was going on even the next day after two calls into the doctors office and when I remiminded the nurse I had a flu shot the day before in their office. She told me it was a reaction I am still shivering and getting ready to go to bed. I was planning to start a blog this week but that will have to wait. I am on facbook, twitter and instagram and pinterest. I am not very good at hose but signed up to help authors and then when I'm published whenever that glorious day occurs I will be ready hopefully to use them.

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  118. Yes, it's late, but I wanted to stop by and say "Hi, Edie!" and tell you how much I appreciate the social media tips. I'm definitely not a SM rocker, but the points you made about branding and protecting your audience are points I can use anywhere. So good to know there are clever folks out there willing to share their wisdom with those of us who may not be so creative!!

    Now, back to the top and start reading the comments!

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  119. Wilani, I'm so sorry you had that reaction! I hope you feel better.

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  120. Natalie, we miss you too! I hope you're able to get more internet time eventually.

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  121. I forgot to add to my comment earlier....I don't read non-fiction so no need to enter my name for the books. Thanks!

    And I sure liked the embedded comments better...I could have replied right under my first one....lol!

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  122. Hi Edie. You DID hear me groan, which s so funny. You pegged it correctly with love/hate relationship. I am going to try some of your suggestions and appreciated knowing that you don't actively work at all the different social venues simultaneously. Wish me luck! πŸ˜€

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  123. Edie, great post! I too have that all-too-familiar love/hate relationship with social media. Your article has given me plenty of ideas on how best to utilize social media (which, for the most part, is free!), and get past my fear and hatred of it.

    Blessings,
    Deb Harper

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  124. Hi, Edie! and I enjoyed reading the social media tips.

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  125. As far as my fav cake...tonight, I'm feeling like a slice of angel food cake with a light lemon glaze and a glass of milk sounds perfect.

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  126. Edie,
    A belated thank you for the answer to my question! Makes perfect sense and good to know that I'm doing something right!

    Blessings!

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