Social Media Marketing: As Told by a Millennial

By Kelsey Megilligan 03/06/2015

As a twenty-something year old and a recent college graduate, one of the toughest battles I face professionally is the Social Media struggle (and let me tell you the struggle is real!). As millennials, we grew up in a world where we were constantly connected through technology. Our social interactions were consumed with AIM chats, text messages and emojis, so keeping up with the ever changing Social Media trends is a natural progression for most of us. The Gen X/Baby Boomers we work for, however, haven’t all jumped on the social media train just yet. So how do we convince them of the importance of Social Media Marketing? More importantly, what’s the benefit for us as professionals in the literary industry?

The art of social media marketing includes using social media sites to increase website traffic and/or brand awareness. The hard facts:

  •  There are 1.28 BILLION monthly active users on Facebook
  • 255 MILLION monthly active users on Twitter and 500 million tweets are sent per day
  • There are 200 MILLION monthly active users on Instagram with more than 50 million of those said users signing up within the past year

**According to Digital Insights

That means as a small brand we have billions of customers to interact with daily at the end of our fingertips (literally).

Social Media Marketing may be intimidating for some and at times can be a real time sucker but the truth is you are already a Social Media expert. Do you post on Facebook frequently with family updates? Or Tweet about the latest episode of #Scandal? You already know how to use Social Media regularly and naturally–the trick is applying these same concepts to your brand. Here I’ve compiled a list of my favorite tips for great Social Media Marketing:

  1. Be natural: Social Media is a fun and personal way to interact with your fans in a relaxed environment. DON’T be too formal, DO talk to your audience like you would your friends.
  2. Avoid Selling: There is no need to push the sale of your book. Social Media platforms give you an opportunity to be an ambassador for your book. Share your enthusiasm for your latest project with your fans, chances are the sale will naturally follow.
  3. Be visual and succinct: Photos are the most engaging posts. Additionally, posts that are short and sweet make for the best content. Try to stick to 140 characters or less when possible. On Twitter, cutting this number down helps attract retweets that allow for commentary as well.
  4. Engage: Don’t just push out content and call it a day. Each post should include a call to action. Encourage your fans to engage in the conversation. Ask questions, direct viewers to your website, etc.
  5. BE YOURSELF! This is the most important tip of all. The best thing about social media is the ability to be authentic. This is your opportunity to put your brand on display and nobody knows what your brand has to offer better than you. Be yourself and have fun!

When it comes to proving your social media worth to the top dogs, I suggest sticking to the hard facts. These guys love their numbers and with a little effort your numbers can do all the talking for you. Conduct a Social Media audit and draft up a benchmark report (Facebook Page Insights are a well of knowledge). Reiterate these numbers monthly and share your growth. It’s also important to remember (and remind the head honchos) that likes are not everything. When it comes to building brand awareness, the key focus is engagement.

Social Media is a learning process for everyone, including myself. As “communication” professionals in the literary industry (or any industry for that matter), we must continue to learn and adapt. I’ve included some of my favorite go to Social Media Gurus! Feel free to share your top tips or go to’s as well! #SharingIsCaring

HootSuite http://blog.hootsuite.com

Mashable http://mashable.com

Children’s Book Author, Jarrett J. Krosoczka @StudioJJK

Kelsey Megilligan is the current literary publicist for author J. Steven Spires. While new to the literary world, Kelsey has past experience in all things communication and events working in the nonprofit industry.

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