Social Media Marketing Etiquette by Sara Raasch

Posted by on Aug 26, 2014 in Artistry of Marketing, Marketing and Branding, Pen and Muse Summer School, Writing | 2 comments

Social Media Marketing Etiquette by Sara Raasch

When Jamie asked me to participate in this, I knew instantly that I wanted to do a marketing post. My mind filled with grandiose plans to impart the plethora of knowledge I’ve acquired over the past few years of bookish insanity—until I realized that this would be only one blog post, and babbling on and on would go against Sara’s Marketing Rule #298:


Keep it short and sweet, you marketing genius, you.


Which ties in nicely with Sara’s Marketing Rule #176:


Talk to yourself like the badass MoFo you are, you glorious creature, you.


But neither of those rules are what I want to discuss with you. No, I have something much grander in mind, the one rule that, I feel, will most positively influence your marketing journey (yes, even more so than Rule #176. It’s that good).


Sara’s Marketing Rule #1: Let yourself be wonderful.



While of course I mean the “fantastic” definition of the word “wonderful,” I mean mostly the “full of wonder” definition.

See, the social media/marketing world is LOUD. It’s crowded, busy, and kind of smelly, and it’s full of people whose marketing plans include only promoting their book.

“But Sara,” you say. “Isn’t that the POINT of marketing? To promote my book?”

No, actually. The point of marketing is to promote YOURSELF. Books will come and go, unless the only book you ever plan on writing is the one you have now. YOU are the brand you are promoting, and promoting a person is a whole other beast.

An example: you’re presented with the option to read a book by one of the two following authors.


Author #1: You know how much their book costs and when it comes out. You know the title and the summary, because they post it frequently.


Author #2: You know this author ADORES your favorite TV show. They also recently read a book you loved, and post frequently about how obsessed they are with a certain type of food and how that obsession may or may not be destroying their life in the best way. You know the title/summary of their book, because you read a post they did about a movie they just watched, found it hysterical, and zipped over to see what other things they’d written.


Author #1 gets their information across, but Author #2 creates a lasting impact. If all your marketing interactions consist of “My book is on sale for X amount!” or “My book comes out on this day!” advertisement-type posts, readers will gloss over. There’s no interaction, and all of your marketing ploys will feel like heartless implosions of words. You become more a spambot than an author, which is the complete opposite of what you want to be to your fans. You want to be a PERSON to them, relatable and accessible.


Thus: WONDER. Join a fandom for your favorite show/movie/book; let yourself be deliriously excited for things; interact with other fans AS a fan. In doing so, you create relationships based on who you are as a person, and people are far more likely to support your writerly endeavors if they know YOU, not just your book’s info.

(PS: This doesn’t mean you can NEVER post advertisement-type things about your book. You absolutely can—but do so in less an “ad” way and more of a friend-to-friend “My book! Look! SO EXCITING!” kind of way.)

(PPS: Marketing shouldn’t stress you out. I promise, it shouldn’t. If ever an idea makes you dizzy with worry or panicked with anxiety, DON’T DO IT. Marketing is transparent—if you do something you don’t enjoy, people will be able to tell, and that lack of enjoyment will make you come off as stiff and generic. Sara’s Marketing Rule #98: Do only what makes you happy.)


Sarah RaaschSara Raasch has known she was destined for bookish things since the age of five, when her friends had a lemonade stand and she tagged along to sell her hand-drawn picture books too. Not much has changed since then — her friends still cock concerned eyebrows when she attempts to draw things and her enthusiasm for the written word still drives her to extreme measures. Her debut YA fantasy, SNOW LIKE ASHES, the first in a trilogy, comes out October 14, 2014 from Balzer + Bray. It does not feature her hand-drawn pictures.

Snow Like Ashes

About Snow Like Ashes

Game of Thrones meets Graceling in this striking fantasy tale of dark magic, dangerous politics, and discovering your true self.  Sara Raasch’s debut fantasy is a lightning-fast story of loyalty, love, and controlling one’s destiny.


Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. The Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been searching for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild their kingdom ever since.


Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, Winter’s future king—she would do anything to help Winter rise to power again. So when scouts discover the location of half of the ancient locket that can restore their magic, Meira decides to go after it herself—only to find herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics, and to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.


Join the Blizzard:
Coming October 14, 2014 from HarperCollins


  1. This post really speaks to me. I like thinking that the point of marketing from the writer’s perspective is to make friends with one’s fans. Be a person they can relate to.

    And thank you oodles for Marketing Rule #98.

    • Yay! Glad I could help :) Marketing can sometimes seem like a scary beast but it really doesn’t have to be. It can be quite fun!


  1. Pen & Muse Press Summer School 2014 Syllabus - @PenandMuse | @PenandMuse - […] Social Media Marketing Etiquette by Sarah Raasch […]

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