Socially Awkward – Why Your Online Friends Don’t Buy Your Book

This post, by Catherine Tosko, originally appeared on The Self-Publishing Review on 3/19/13.

I have, apparently, 539 friends. Facebook tells me so.

I have a fan page for my book, with over 1000 likes. My Twitter is a healthy 600 odd and I have over 50 mentions on Google for the title. But you see, I know that not everyone rushed over to Amazon and picked up their copy the day it went on sale. I know this because I sold 23 copies on the first day. That was it.

So how the heck do I get every single one of those people to buy a copy of my book? Glibly “liking” my book page seems to be the done thing, a nod to my efforts, and a polite if awkward obligation by passers-by, as if I am at a cocktail party handing out flyers, a scenario something like this:

“Hey guy, do you know about my book? Here’s a flyer!” I cry, with my Facebook page.

This person, an acquaintance from 1997, who mostly likes kittens and memes about feeling positive, is kind of hampered to have to respond, but takes the flyer based on me two years ago, “liking” his band page (terrible band), and says simply ” Um, I’ll check it out.”

This is how my Facebook Likes seem to manifest. They are not what you call ” convertible” , i.e. they do not equate to a sale.

In the same effort, I respond to others. I write them encouraging messages, using emoticons. I hate emoticons. But if someone I think may buy my book, even out of sympathy, if I use them, I am all for the smileys.

Then I have my real life friends and family. Probably about 100 people on there.


Read the rest of the post on The Self-Publishing Review.