5 Creative Ways Authors Can Drastically Expand Their Fan Base

Photo courtesy of Marcello eM
Photo courtesy of Marcello eM

One advantage that musicians hold over authors is the fact that they are constantly on the road touring and performing live. They are out there interacting with their fans, making personal connections, and growing their fan base by touring the country. It's an incredibly expensive and, let's be honest, exhausting way to grow ones fan base, but it's a necessity in the music world. Touring isn't an option for most authors, but that shouldn't stop you from making personalized connections with your fan base and creating special situations for new and potential fans to interact with you.

Every author should connect personally with their readers because it will grow their audience in ways that social media alone can't. Here are five ways authors can connect directly with readers using online resources.  

1) HOLD AN ONLINE BOOK CLUB

If you are looking for a way to connect with readers, holding a monthly book club would be a fantastic way to a) get to know your fans, b) share books that you love, c) connect with them in a unique way, and d) give them a chance to meet your other fans. By creating unique situations online provides new outlets for you to tap into and create friendships with your readers. Keep in mind - this isn't an avenue for you to continuously push or promote your books. This is for you to connect with your fans. 

2) CREATE A GOOGLE+ HANGOUT 

If you haven't tapped into Google+ this might be a foreign concept to you. But it's one that is worth looking into. Google+ Hangouts are a fantastic way to easily connect with a small group of fans. It's a way for them to hear your voice, see your face, ask you questions about your books, and create a personal connection with you. You can even create your own "Community" where you can meet up regularly to talk about books and other shared interests. 

3) SKYPE WITH BOOK CLUBS 

Simply create a sign-up form on your website for book clubs to request a Skype session with you to discuss your latest book. It's an easy and inexpensive way to connect with a group of people and to dive a bit deeper into the characters, answer their questions, and get to know them. It's the personal connection that fans are thirsty for with authors. As an added bonus, maybe offer book clubs who sign up for your Skype sessions 20% off of the book or maybe a bulk rate. 

4) GOODREADS Q&A 

GoodReads is the holy grail for authors. You have at your fingertips a way to connect directly with avid readers who want more of what you have to offer…books! By taking part in a Q&A on GoodReads you can tap into their amazing audience to draw in new fans and connect with them.  

5) TWITTER CLUB 

Create a special #hashtag that your community uses to talk about subjects, books, topics, etc., that you all can contribute to. But be sure not to create this club and not take part…your interaction and involvement is the important part! 

By finding unique and creative ways to go that extra step to connect with fans on a deeper level will turn passive fans into diehard fans. Make that extra effort and connect with them! 

QUESTION: What are some unique ways you have connected with your audience?