Creating Your Social Media Plan

This month we spent a lot of time going through different aspects of posting about your book and your brand on social media.  Now that you know how to get started, make authentic connections, and discover topics, it is time for the most important part.  We are going to talk about creating your social media plan.

Structure Your Social Media Plan

None of the things you have learned so far will matter without a clear strategy and mapped out calendar.  For people who like to fly by the seat of their pants and hate linear structure, this is going to be annoying.   You may need a plan more than most, because without one you will not keep it up.

The great news is that you can automate some of the tasks.  However, you will need to sit down and make a calendar for each month in advance.  Ideally, you have several months of planned content laid out so you can produce it, schedule it and forget about everything but engaging and having fun with your new followers.  Here is how you put a plan together.

Your Social Media Outline

1.  Find a monthly calendar template that you think will serve you best.  Hubspot has one, and if you click on the link you will go to a page with a free download.  We use a customized version of it that has worked well.

2. Think about the forms of your content.  For example, we like to post a blog every week and our social posts include a feed post on Instagram followed by stories throughout the week based on the blog.  We try to create themed months and weeks, which makes it easier to organize content.  It also provides different formats for people who like to consume content in different ways.

3. Go back to your topics and themes.  If one of your topics is world building because you write fantasy, then think about creating content about your process, articles you find online, different resources you use, people whose work you admire, etc.

4. Now it’s time to get specfic.  Let’s plan a week of content on Instagram that includes a blog post about how you got interested in world building.  You can choose to promote that blog on your website via a feed post on Monday, followed by two stories on Tuesday and Thursday, respectively.  Mark those in your calendar.

You could also add a reel with a visual like a map and a caption that includes a mistake to avoid as you get started with your world.  Maybe you post your reel on Wednesday.  Mark that in your calendar.  Now you have a full week planned for that topic.

Getting Content Ideas Using AI

Many of us have ambivalent feelings about AI.  As writers and creators we worry that AI will take over our specializations and make us obselete.  Although some of this may be true or false, in the meantime we all need to be familiar with how generative AI works.  So, I am recommending that you try ChatGPT, prompting it with your world building idea to see what article headlines it generates.

You could also go to Google.  Type in “world building” and see what drops down from the search bar.  Scroll to see what topics are listed further down the search results pages where it says “People also searched for”.

You Can’t Break Your Social Media

If you are relatively new to social media with a modest following or zero followers, you don’t need to worry too much about how your plan is executed.  You can’t break your social media at this level.  What is most important is that you jump in and try out a system.  If you are stuck or want a bit of guidance, we do offer a free 30 minute social media overview.  You can also search our blogs or look through our Instagram feed for other posts and tips.

Attention Newsletter Subscribers:  In the February newsletter you will find a brief how to video for the ChatGPT process I mentioned above.  To subscribe to our newsletter visit the home page



Planning Your Social Media for a New Year

Are you ready to plan your social media for a new year?  It’s going to be a wild one, so hang on tight.  Here are some things to think about as you set up your content calendar for 2024.

Elections and Algorithms

You may think the election, way off in November, is not going to affect you.  Why should it?  You are just one person, marketing yourself and your work.  The amount of global activity that will affect Facebook, Instagram, and Tik Tok, for example, will create an uproar.  In 2020 we were banned from promoting a film that dealt with post-partum depression because it contained “social issues” and Meta’s algorithm was filtering for topics under that umbrella.  Getting around these filters will require creative messaging and still you might have some challenges.  Also, pay attention to any changes in algorithms that are made public.  Follow Reddit channels and check out websites like HubSpot (link to article from 2023 about TikTok) regularly for any news.

Generative AI

Welcome to the first full year of hype dedicated to Artificial Intelligence, which for our purposes is Generative AI.  Generative means that content is “generated” by AI.  You just prompt ChatGpt or Bard and the rest is easy.  Not so.  From time to time I will include some of my results from AI prompts.  So far I’ve found the content very basic and it needs a lot of editing.  However, many people use it to get ideas for blogs, articles and other longer form writing.  Keep an eye on TechCrunch, which is covering AI closely.

Know Your Audience on Social Media

According to, “There are 4.95 billion social media users globally.  This means 60.49 of the global population uses Social media.” The good news is there are tons of readers and customers out there to find.  The bad news is that you must know your audience.  In fact, you should have an image of the person you are promoting your book or business to from the very start.  Imagine you are having a conversation over a beverage (coffee is my choice).  Figure out what your audience really, really wants and needs and create your content to fill those desires.  Then nurture your group with a combination of experience based ideas and information.

Be Consistent and Check Your Metrics

Set up your calendar and follow it.  Today my calendar says I need to write my Happy New Year blog.  I’ve been taking notes on what I want to say for a couple of weeks.  My team has to write three more blogs this month, create reels, a how-to video for our newsletter subscribers, a newsletter, and regular posts.  We check each item to see how it is doing and we make adjustments so that we reach the right people with the information they need and want.  Sound familiar?  If you haven’t set up a schedule for the month with your topics and content types, do it now.

No, really, I mean right now.

Check out this link to blogs on AI from 2023 and subscribe to our newsletter for exclusive how-to videos and news about upcoming courses, webinars, and more.

AI Writing: Parasite or Partner

Artificial Intelligence (AI) writing is not new.  Tech platforms have been using it to finish our sentences in Google Docs; to recommend headlines for ads; and to pull relevant keywords from an infinite number of potential combinations.  However, in a way the AI we know today is “new”, especially since Microsoft invested $1 billion in Open AI and then bought exclusive rights to the technology behind Chat GPT 3 in 2020.   Fast forward past a marketing and public relations campaign and we strongly feel the conflict that makes us excited and appalled at what AI can do.

When AI Writing Doesn’t Work

I believe that AI writing for book, articles and other long form writing will create a homogenous and boring world. Yes, there are definitely uses for AI, especially in the business world.  Who wouldn’t want a technology that could write form letters, contracts, privacy policies, and corporate boiler plates.  However, when it comes to writing there is so much that can be missed.  Here are four pitfalls of AI that I say should comfort writers.

  1. Just the facts.  How can you rely on an expert’s knowledge and advice if you suspect that AI is doling out the facts?  AI does not fact check itself.  It’s up to a human to do that.
  2. Misinformation.  Similar to not having the fact, AI can pull from thousands of opinions and false content to come up with something.  A user could be embarassed by something they publish that is more myth than reality.
  3. Innovative storytelling.  To Kill a Mockingbird, Little Women, 1984, Catch 22, The Color Purple, and Beloved are all stories that broke barriers.  That’s something that writers and creatives do.  They ask us to see the world in a different way thereby provoking thought, ideas, and discussion.   Does AI have an imagination?
  4. Personal stories.  Many writers start with what they know for their first books.  They write memoirs.  I suppose AI could write a book based on a person’s life, but that person would have to write it first.

Positive Uses of AI that Save Time

Now that I’ve pointed out why writers need not break their pencils and throw their laptops out the window just yet, I should also mention some areas where AI is likely to help and/or replace some of the things people do for the better.

  1. Content creation for social media.  There is a rule I read in a book on content marketing that says you should be able to create at least ten pieces of content based on one thing. That’s a lot.  For marketers writing multiple posts to support press releases or articles, an AI partner could be a time saver.
  2. Internal marketing departments in big companies.  Eventually, you may not need writers to develop annual reports and other marketing collateral that is generated in house.  You could feed data into an AI program and have it write the language that is common to these types of documents.
  3. Writing back ad for book jackets, catalog copy, and other items that summarize a book’s content.  You could upload a manuscript into an AI program and ask it to write a summary. The question is, do you trust an open source software to observe copyright laws and protect your story?
  4. Prompts and ideas.  Generative AI may be able to help with writers block.   Give ChatGPT a prompt and see what it writes.

A Writing Prompt Result

In this example I asked ChatGPT to give me the first paragraph for a “mystery novel based in Scotland”.  I rejected the first try.  This is the second.

“The rolling fog blanketed the rugged Scottish Highlands, shrouding the ancient hills and eerie lochs in an ethereal mist. In the heart of this mystic land, a solitary figure moved silently through the gloom, his footsteps echoing on the cobblestone streets of a forgotten village. The wind howled, carrying with it the secrets of centuries past, as if the very whispers of ghosts were woven into the fabric of the night.

Detective Elinor MacGregor had returned to the land of her birth, a place steeped in history and legends. She had come in search of answers, drawn by a cryptic message from her estranged father, a man she hadn’t seen in twenty years. The message was simple but enigmatic: “Return to the Highlands, and you shall find the truth.” Now, as she ventured deeper into the heart of the misty wilderness, she couldn’t help but wonder what truths awaited her in the shadows of her ancestral homeland, and whether she was prepared to face them.”

What do you think?  Is it a keeper, or should we ask it to go back to the drawing board?

Writers Lead, AI Follows

From what I’m reading about AI writing, and other disciplines, people are still going to need to drive the bus.  So don’t ignore or fear what is happening.  (I do recommend paying attention to developments around copyright protections for your work). Learn how to play with it or use it in a business setting so you can take the lead.  You are the creative mastermind behind your material You know how to make it as impactful as it can be.

Some articles of interest include our blog on AI and Art, and this one from 2015 about Google’s win in a court case that allowed them to digitize all books.