LinkedIn is a great place to sell books … if you do it the right way. I’ve received several emails via LinkedIn over the years from newly self-published authors who were advertising their books, trying to convince me to buy them. If you’re one of these authors, I genuinely applaud you for taking that important step toward self-promotion. That said, I’d like to share with you a more effective approach that will bring you more success in the future.
As the largest business networking site in the world, and the 13th largest social media site overall, LinkedIn acts as an online resume where you can highlight your expertise within your field. It is also a fantastic place to showcase your book. Don’t push people too hard here, though. For example, unsolicited email requests to buy your book are a no-no on this site. Build your audience gradually with relevant and informative posts.
Use the Publications Section on LinkedIn
Using a section of LinkedIn called Publications, you can link your profile directly to your book’s ecommerce storefront on Barnes & Noble, Baker & Taylor, Kobo, or even Amazon to promote it in an unobtrusive way. This is a great way to appeal to the audience that is already interested in you and your book. They’ve already chosen to visit your profile on their own. So, why not provide a link to where they can buy your book?
Join Groups on LinkedIn
On LinkedIn, you can join groups that are related to your field. You can share book excerpts or blog entries with other members of these groups. It’s a great way to drive more traffic to your blog entries—traffic in the form of people who have already shown an interest in your topic by virtue of the LinkedIn group you met them in. They may send you a connection request and eventually buy your book via the Publications section on your profile page.
Be Interactive and Professional on LinkedIn
Build your audience gradually by posting relevant and informative blog entries twice a week to groups that are interested in your topic matter. Only occasionally post them as status updates directly from your profile page. Engage in conversations with those who post comments to your blog entries and status updates. Let your audience get to know you by replying to their posts and answering their questions. Then let the rest of it happen organically. Always be professional.
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