Today’s post is by Sydney Scrogham. She answered my call for guest posts from authors who have a uniquely interesting book/social media marketing story to share. If you’re interested in writing a guest post for my blog, send me a guest post of at least 1,000 words. And please explain your unique strategy in using social media to publicize your book. (Just send me a note via my Contact Me page.)
If you’re willing to work with WattPad, you can make it work for you.
Don’t have any idea what WattPad is? It is such a cool marketing tool for authors.
It is, in my opinion, the best social media platform for authors—next to Pinterest. You write your book, post its content in segments, and it becomes available to millions of readers. About 85% of those readers are interacting with WattPad through a mobile device.
But you don’t make any money off of what you put on WattPad. Instead, it’s a place to connect with new readers, writers, and get feedback on your stories or nonfiction books.
It’s also a place to grow your platform.Wattpad is a place to grow your author platform via @sydney_writerClick To Tweet
If you write young adult (or new adult) sci-fi/fantasy romance, you’re missing a huge opportunity by not having a presence on WattPad.
The majority of WattPad readers are 13 to 18 years of age, and about 35% are 18 to 35. The most popular genres on WattPad are—you guessed it—sci-fi, fantasy, and romance. Oh, and fan fiction.
That copyrighted stuff you could never sell in real life? WattPad welcomes it.
You don’t yet have a finished book? That’s okay. WattPad is a great home for works in progress.
Getting Started on WattPad
Okay, so you’re about to give this WattPad thing a shot. Sign up for free, fill out your bio, add pictures—make things look lovely on your home page. And then it’s time to create.#Authors: WattPad is a great home for works in progress via @CaballoFrancesClick To Tweet
You do everything yourself. The writing. The marketing.The press releases. The publishing. Everything.
On Wattpad, you can also publish a book in print even if it’s available for free.
WattPad has a copyright setting that you can select so you don’t have to worry about someone copying, pasting, or stealing your work.
Stellar covers make the best impression on WattPad. I’ve always used Canva, an online graphic design program, to make my covers for free. There are also people on WattPad who will make your book cover if you ask nicely.
Next, select appropriate genres, add tags so your story shows up in search results, write a few lines of catchy back cover copy (if you know what you’re writing about), and start posting.
I find this process quite rewarding. It’s instant gratification when you’re a writer.
Going Deeper with WattPad
You’ve set up an account, uploaded your writing, and now it’s time to start building your WattPad presence similar to other social media networks. Here’s a peek at what WattPad offers you.
- Community clubs where you can post in forums and interact with other writers.
- Contests such as Wattys2015, which is currently closed for the year. You’ve got plenty of time to get ready for 2016!
- Writing contests, which are a great way to meet people and grow your audience.
- Tips on how to be successful as a WattPad writer.
- If your readership grows big enough, you can apply to be a WattPad Star and WattPad will work with you to help take your writing to the next level.
- Stats on the readers that drop in to take a look at your work.
If you’re willing to work hard, WattPad is a wide open door of opportunity.
I keep mentioning “work hard” because WattPad requires time and effort just like any other social media platform. I don’t want to scare you away, but you should know what you’re getting into.#Authors: WattPad is a wide open door of opportunity via @CaballoFrancesClick To Tweet
To learn even more about WattPad, Joanna Penn did a podcast on this topic.
How Much Time Will I Need to Spend on WattPad?
I spend 45 minutes to 1 hour a day.
Whew, that sounds like a lot of time, doesn’t it? But that time can multiply and translate into hundreds, thousands, and even tens of thousands of readers. Don’t give up just because you don’t see quick results.
In that time, you can:
- Reply to comments people have written on your story.
- Read, comment, and vote on other people’s stories—what you give is usually what you get back. After all, WattPad is a community.
- Reply to followers’ posts, thanking them for following, interacting with people and being a social human being.
- Follow people you like.
- Schedule tweets/Facebook posts/Instagram messages/whatever it is you do with your WattPad content. People love free stuff.
- Write new content to post because people can get irked and won’t stick with you if you take weeks to post an update.
Is WattPad Right For You?
You’ll never know if WattPad is for you unless you give it a try.
If giving your work away for free makes you cringe, then don’t do it. If you aren’t having fun, don’t keep doing it. If you got stressed out just reading this, then forget it.
But if you got excited, give it a shot. Study successful authors with big followings. Pick their brains and ask questions. Do what they do while you’re trying to figure out what works for you and what doesn’t
Most of all, remember, this writing journey you’re on is supposed to be fun. Make adjustments to keep it that way.
I’m still giving away Social Media Cheat Sheets for free. Download yours now!
About Sydney Scrogham, the author of today’s post: Your dreams matter! It’s time to fight for them. I’m the author of Chase (YA fantasy and romance), I love my horse, and I #amwriting happy endings. Learn more about Sydney on her website.
About the Author: I’m Frances Caballo, an author, podcaster and social media strategist and manager for writers. Find out more about about my services and check out my Social Media for Authors podcast on iTunes.