Remember when the only way to contact someone directly was to call them on the phone or maybe stop by their house? I long for the days where my social world was limited by the cord attached to my phone or the number of doorbells I could ring.
Now, it’s up to me to master the myriad of social media options which seem to pop-up faster than a game of Whac-A-Mole. Moreover, I’ve got to integrate my social media connections in such a way that readers develop a consistent image of who I am as an author.
Does that sound like a pile garbage? Well, I hope so because my main character, CeCe Prentice, is a dumpster diver and I have to find a way to translate her wacky love of re-purposing discarded items across the social media landscape.
Jann Mirichandi, at Westchester Marketing Café, forwarded me a helpful social media exercise that I might be able to apply to my work. The exercise highlights the unique strength of each media option. Here’s Jann’s example using donuts.
FACEBOOK: I like donuts
TWITTER: I’m eating #donuts
INSTAGRAM: Here is a Polaroid-esque photo of donuts
YOUTUBE: Here I am eating donuts
LINKEDIN: My skills include eating donuts
PINTEREST: Here is a recipe for donuts
Perfect! Let’s see if it works for my book, Drawing Conclusions, a soft-boiled mystery featuring my dumpster-diving protagonist whose alternative lifestyle proves instrumental in solving a murder.
FACEBOOK: I like garbage
TWITTER: I’m eating #garbage
INSTAGRAM: Here is a Polaroid-esque photo of garbage
YOUTUBE: Here I am eating garbage
LINKEDIN: My skills include eating garbage
PINTEREST: Here is a recipe for garbage
Hmmm, I’m not sure this is what I envisioned for my social media strategy. However, I’m still intrigued by the concept of integrating social media in a way that optimizes each media’s strength.
Perplexed by this exercise, but eager to solve this social media mystery, I started to think about visual elements related to my books that are appealing as opposed to offensive. No one wants to see someone eating garbage, but I still love Jann’s example and I want it to work for me.
Should I take pictures of dumpsters and rate them on cleanliness? Maybe I could decorate my garbage cans on holidays and post to Instagram? Am I talented enough to create garbage art? Is it legal to search through strangers’ garbage for clues to a crime they never committed?
Before I get ahead of myself, I quickly realized my effort has to be easy to execute and easy to replicate. The social media world expects updates regularly! As it turns out, I’m not in a position to drive around town searching for dumpsters, nor am I capable of creating garbage art or crafting with garbage.
I do, however, welcome new ideas on how to present the topic of recycling in a fun, friendly, and visually appealing way. I’d like readers to say, “Verne. Her main character is the MacGyver of garbage, a green heroine whose resourcefulness helps solve the crime.”
All comments welcome!