Bookstagram for Authors and Book Lovers

Black Beauty Bookstagram

Bookstagram is an Instagram account featuring books with pictures dedicated to showcasing everything “bookish.” Bookstagram for authors and book lovers uses a series of hashtags, participates in special book events and themes, and posts images that involve bookshelves, book spaces, and of course, books!

Some of the best Bookstagrammers stick with a central theme. Many of them use props to enhance these themes, while others develop styles unique to their brand. Bookstagram accounts post book reviews and host book giveaway contests, too!

Bookstagram is great for authors looking to build a following and connect with readers and other writers. It’s also an enjoyable use of social media for avid book lovers who wants to connect with others of like minds, showcase what they’re currently reading, or highlight bookish nooks and corners of their homes.

Here are some tips for how to participate in Bookstagram, and how to use the platform.

 

Find a Unique Selling Point (USP)

  • This is important as your USP is what makes your book unique
  • Ask yourself what your niche is
  • The answer to that question is the foundation of your strategy to promote your book on social media


Promotion

The primary objective is to build hype about your book and show people what you have to offer, without giving away all the secrets you wrote in your new book. You can do this by…

  • Sharing teasers and updates from your book. Start with something small – a fragment of a photo, a corner of the cover – and work up to bigger spoilers. In the last few weeks before the book is released, you can share teasers of the book to show people what’s to come.
  • Keeping a healthy mix of content, from book trailers to newsletters and teasers. You’ll notice that there are a lot of video content online, so you’ll want to mix it up — this is because video content is usually more successful on Facebook and Instagram than static posts.
  • Offering exclusive content to people who sign up for your newsletter, or pre-order the book. Make sure you announce those exclusives on your social media pages, so that everyone knows what they’re missing!
  • Posting timely content, especially around the holidays. Even when a book isn’t directly related to an upcoming holiday, you can stage them in a festive setting to tie into the event and included relevant hashtags in the caption to position your title as a holiday gift.

. . . . . . . . . .

Prairie Fires

Photo by Anna Fiore
. . . . . . . . . .

Giveaways

Social media giveaways are very easy to set up. It’s as simple as making a post on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter or YouTube — and then using an app to harvest the comments and pick a winner (there are even multi-network apps that allow you to collect comments from several different social network sites).

The purpose of a giveaway is to get more attention and encourage sales from people who aren’t lucky enough to win a copy of your book for free. You can also use giveaways to learn more about your audience. For example, you’ll get a ton of statistics from the giveaway about which social networks are most active, what time your followers are online, and so on.

How to get the most out of a giveaway:

  • Create a simple, eye-catching graphic that contains the word giveaway with a photo of the prizes (in this case, your book cover).
  • Gather 5-20 fellow Bookstagrammers who will repost your giveaway graphic to spread the word.
  • Post to your Instagram account explaining the giveaway and its rules. Don’t forget to mention whether or not your giveaway is international or country-based.


Some rules for giveaways:

  • The user must be following your Instagram account
  • The user must repost your graphic to their page or story (so it will reach their followers)
  • The user must use your giveaway-specific hashtag (so you can find their entries later)
  • Optional: The user must tag people in the comments of your post to receive additional entry points (this helps extend your audience reach and also gives your post a ton of social proof, which boosts you in the Instagram algorithm)

. . . . . . . . . .

 

Jane Eyre Bookstagram

Photo by Anna Fiore
. . . . . . . . . .

Building a Following

Aim to begin your social media activity early on with the intention of creating a community that will turn into potential book buyers. You can build your community by engaging with your followers by asking questions, responding to comments, running polls, and trying to like your followers’ posts. Posting a few times a week is okay for posts, but you should try to keep your Instagram stories active by posting daily.

You should also aim to create a unique, specific hashtag for your book and encourage your audience to use your hashtag. Over time, that hashtag will become a landing page for users to view everything that is relevant to your book.

Sharing user-generated content (UGC), also shows that you value the dedication of your followers. UGC is otherwise known as content your followers create and tag you in that can be reposted to your own profile. Sharing any kind of UGC will help persuade your potential readers to purchase your book and also encourage them to share their reviews, giving your book more exposure.

. . . . . . . . . . .

The Moment of Tenderness

Photo by Anna Fiore
. . . . . . . . . . .

Using Instagram Stories

If you want to take your Instagram strategy one step further, try tying your posts and Instagram Stories together. Instagram stories are a great tool for cross-promoting content.

Prior to your book launch, you can share multiple variants of your book cover and request your followers to vote on their favorite. You can do this by using the polling feature in your Instagram stories.


Other ideas for Instagram stories:

  • Post screenshots of your favorite quotes and snapshots from your book
  • Share photos of yourself with your favorite books
  • Create a story about your writing process and or your book launch
  • Share photos from your initial draft, places you went for inspiration, and so on…

You can also encourage readers to preorder your book with an Instagram story promoting your preorder link. Authors are always asking you to preorder their book titles, and it is because preorders inform booksellers about what new books people are interested in.

 

Potential Partnerships

It is worth mentioning that it is crucial to connect with fellow bookstagrammers and gift them a copy of your book, especially if they have a large following. This is because by sharing your book with them, you are essentially garnering free reviews (which are a tremendous help with sales), and they are also indirectly promoting your book at the same time.

Contributed by Anna Fiore: Anna is a 2021 graduate of SUNY-New Paltz, majoring in Communications, with a concentration in Public Relations and a minor in journalism.

More information and sources

See more resources for writers on this site.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *