If you are any type of writer or artist, you probably have created one or more of the following to promote yourself: blog, website, professional Facebook page, Twitter account.
How did you choose names for them?
As I’ve acquired friends and followers who are writers or book authors, I’ve met with confusion at times. Why would someone who writes and wants to be noticed and recognized choose different names for their various sites and accounts? (I ask this while posting on a blog named after one of my characters, but I have wondered if I made a huge error in judgment.)
Of course, if you own a site with content about a topic other than your books or art, the title might not necessarily include your name. But shouldn’t your name appear somewhere on the site? When I visit a blog by any title on any topic, I search for the owner(s) and author(s) of the posts. If I don’t find one right away–not even via the “about” tab–I tend not to follow. I mean, why should I trust what this anonymous person has to say?
I make it a point to “Like” my author friends’ Facebook author pages, but sometimes it’s so hard to find them! If a writer uses his real name (or close to it) as his author name, wouldn’t it make sense to title the author page with that name first? Then follow it by the word “author” or “writer” or “author of …” That way, someone can search by the person’s name first instead of guessing and typing variations of possible titles. When they type the author’s name in the search window, the author/writer page should pop up along with his personal page.
Some new authors use the title of their first book as the title of the Facebook page. That’s not really thinking ahead—or positively—because doesn’t any author want to publish more than one book? Sounds like he could end up with many pages to keep up with in the future. And unfortunately, some Facebook pages I’ve looked at don’t provide the author’s name anywhere at all. Huh? I’ve strained my eyes to read the author’s name on a book cover image to be sure I reached the right page. Some book titles are popular and found on numerous books.
I so appreciate an author using his name, in whole or in part, in his Twitter handle. That’s much easier to remember than a cute or clever handle, although when some of us joined Twitter, we weren’t sure what to do.
If you now have a Twitter handle different from the name under which you are published and also different from your blog or website name, and you are about to open an Instagram account, give the following some thought. I recently learned that it’s a good idea to use your real (or pen) name for Instagram so people can find you, and that it should match your Twitter handle. But if you plan to change your Twitter handle to your real (or pen) name, better to do it before you have a lot of followers and links to your Twitter account in places like your blog, website, and posts on other peoples’ sites. I think I’d leave mine alone rather than go through what I read one blogger had to go through to make the change.
Whew! There’s so much to learn about best practices in using social media for marketing, I struggle. I truly admire you guys who are experts at it.
Are you happy with the names you’ve created for yourself on social media? Have you tried to change any, and what degree of success did you experience?