Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Author Notes - Facebook groups aren't for spamming

This post introduces what a series of posts in this blog, which I will be calling 'Author Notes'.  All Author Notes posts will be easily identified by the graphic at left, which will accompany each post.

These posts will be me sharing things I've learned, about being a writer and pursuing a writing career.  If you have any suggestions for an Author Notes post, just hit the contact link.  Thanks and I hope you enjoy the first of these posts.

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Facebook groups aren't for spamming

I have several facebook groups of my own creation.  Most of them have some tie to books and/or writing.  Plus, I've been a member of many other writer groups on facebook.  The main problem that admins of these writing related groups face is --
authors who ignore the rules and spam the group.

In fact, I had such an issue with one person, in one of my groups, just today; which prompted this post.  We had some errands to do yesterday, and I didn't get on the computer much at all, and didn't check my groups.  In my absence, he had joined my group and spammed it with about a dozen promo posts.  I found out about it when a member messaged me complaining about the posts.

Now I certainly didn't mind the member messaging me about the posts, and in fact, I appreciated it.  But the spammer, his posts were deleted and he was permanently banned from my group; and he won't be allowed in any of my other groups either.  I sent him a short message, informing him of this, and his replies were rather rude.  I ended up blocking him on facebook.

Authors, before you post in a group, take the time to visit the group in person and find out what the rules of the group are.  Some writing related groups allow promo posts, and some don't.  Know what you are allowed to post where.

The worst offenders of facebook group rule breaking that I have encountered are, without fail, WRITERS!  And this is truly sad, because we are writers!  What?  Can you write but not read?  Or is courtesy and manners just simply lacking in some writers' makeup?

Also writers, consider as well, ROI - return on investment.  Your time, and how you spend it, is an investment.  What kind of return are you getting on the time you invest in posting promo posts in facebook groups?  Would your time be better spent elsewhere?

I wanted to be a writer back in 1979, when I graduated high school; but publishing was a different world then.  But in 2012, tired of being jealous of the advantages available to aspiring writers today, I forged out and started pursuing my high school dream.  And over the past 3 years, I have paid close attention to what writers do; trying to learn what works and what doesn't.

Over these past 3 years, I've learned a lot.  One thing I've ran into was a lot of writers, running around, chasing their tail, promoting their books in facebook groups mainly frequented by other writers.  When I asked some about this, their response was rather hostile, and their main comeback was, 'writers read too'.  But other writers aren't your target audience.  Readers in the general public are.  And you want those readers to become fans of yours.

Now you certainly won't endear yourself to anyone by spamming facebook groups with your 'buy my book' promo posts.  You may even get yourself kicked out of or banned from the group.  This won't do anything to create a good rep for yourself as an author.

There's an old saying:
You catch more flies with honey than with vinegar.
Meaning, being nice and considerate will get you further than being sour and rude will.  So remember authors,
facebook groups aren't for spamming.

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