6 Steps to Make Your Readers Excited
Step 1: Be authentically active on social media.
You don't have to be on every platform. Part of your authenticity is choosing which social platforms and channels of communication you most enjoy and sticking to them. But the most important thing to maintain authenticity is to make sure you are managing your own social media and crafting your own posts. When the captions lack personality, it becomes very obvious that you aren't actually the one behind the post. This may be more common for traditionally published authors rather than indie authors. But, regardless, it stands true. Be yourself. Be active. Be authentic. Social media is the best way to connect with your readers. Don't miss this opportunity or shove it off on someone else to do for you.
Step 2: Share your writing process.
This can be done through a blog on your website, like this one, through your email newsletter, and through social media. You don't need to do all three, but you can. What do I do?
I post graphics of my characters and settings on social media along with short excerpts (like 1 paragraph or less). In these social posts, I also give insight into my writing experience--was it a good writing day, a slow start, how am I feeling. Don't forget to let your readers get to know you in this way. Writing is hard work and it doesn't always come easy. I also take it a step further and will post polls in my IG stories, allowing my followers to help me name characters and settings. I'll ask them questions. I'll even let them vote on outfit inspiration for my characters.
I engage my email subscribers by sharing longer excepts (multiple paragraphs) and I go into detail about why this scene is significant, etc.
Here, on the blog, which is still in its infancy stage, I share more of the technical side of things. HOW am I writing vs. WHAT am I writing.
Step 3: Provide excerpts on social and in your newsletter (described above)
Step 4: Give your readers some control (described above)
Step 5: Write with your readers in mind.
In my post, 6 Steps to Plan a Novel, I talk about understanding your genre, tropes, and ultimately, your reader's expectations. This refers to the same thing, but it also takes it a step further. When you're writing a novel it can be easy to think about growing your audience. You hope to sell more copies of your next book than your last. You're in a mindset that has you thinking about how to attract new readers. But, don't forget about your current audience. If you've got a couple of books out, you know what your readers like. Don't sacrifice your current audience in the hopes of attracting a completely new one, unless you are in fact making a major genre shift.
Step 6: Shout them out!
Have you seen my "featured review" posts on my blog? I am always finding new ways of shouting out my readers here on my website, in my email newsletters, and on social media. This acknowledgment goes a long way in building a base that will stick with you.