Kimber here. So excited to be able to share a guest post from Linda Ulleseit, author of The Aloha Spirit (Read our review here.) It’s called… Well. You read the header. You already know what it’s called. But Linda’s getting some help with this post from her good dog, Leia. Aka: My new best bud! Cuz she’s PAWsome!
More on that in a min. So let’s go!
Enhancing Your Social Media With Pets
By Linda Ulleseit (with some help from Leia)
Anyone who has an active social media presence recognizes the constant need for content. Whether you write a blog or have a Facebook/Instagram, everyone knows regular and frequent postings are critical to success. I’ve had a sometimes blog for many years, long before my first book was published in 2012. My initial Facebook posts were solely personal, like most people’s were at first. Two years ago, when my historical novel The Aloha Spirit was published, I began to get serious about using social media to promote my books.
Mom, this is getting boring. When are you going to talk about the dog? Me. The dog.
This is called an introduction, Leia. Your part is next. I started an Instagram account around that time. It wasn’t long before I was desperate for content in order to keep posting every day. Let’s face it. Most authors don’t have book happenings every day. Even if they did, no one wants to read a sales pitch that often. I looked at the feeds of other Instagrammers and saw many beautifully designed feeds with a unified color, or a theme, and a lot of pets.
And you happened to have the perfect pet for stardom. I agreed to be shamelessly exploited for way fewer cookies than I should have demanded.
Leia, shush. I’m telling this story. I began alternating photos in my feed—something bookish, then my yellow Labrador. That was not an easy feat since Leia prefers to eat the phone rather than pose.
Creative differences. I prefer to have some say in how I am portrayed to my minions.
Did I mention she’s named after a princess? Moving on. Early in my social media career, I heard a marketing person say that you should only be on social media platforms that you enjoy. It is, after all, about the engagement, not the posts. I enjoy Instagram, so I spend a lot of my time there. I also like Facebook, where I’m an administrator in a historical fiction group called SHINE with Paper Lantern Writers.
Hmph. There aren’t any dogs in that group. Just a bunch of books.
A Place to Connect
Even so, it’s a good place to connect with historical fiction readers and writers. I’ve always believed social media is a place to make connections, not only to potential readers, but also to other writers. I loosely follow the 80/20 rule, where 80% of posts are something other than my own books. That’s why finding content is so important! Besides providing content to post, Leia provides a talking point as people stop scrolling to comment on her photos.
Mom’s top post is a reel featuring me snoring with my tongue out. Not flattering, but people like it.
That’s true, Leia. There’s always a chance that a pet will completely take over an Instagram feed, but I’ve managed to contain Leia to every other post for now.
But you have to find a cute pet on your own. Mom and I can’t help you with that.
So in closing, remember that social media is intended to be social. Use it to show off pets, or display favorite colors, but make sure you engage with followers more than you.
Sort of a virtual pat on the head.
Mom’s got a new book coming out in June 2023. Kimber’s mom is going to review it for us. I like it because it has a dog in it, a handsome Newfoundland named Nero.
Thanks, Leia (and Kimber’s mom). The book is The River Remembers, now available for preorder.
* * *
Currently Linda is a member of the Hawaii Writers Guild and Historical Novel Society. She is a founding member of Paper Lantern Writers. Linda’s books are the stories of women in her family who were extraordinary but unsung. For more information about Linda, visit her website at ulleseit.com and follow her on Facebook, Bookbub and Instagram.