Social Media Basics with Skillshare

My goal with every video and post I make is to give you guys helpful advice and recommendations. Each one is created with you in mind. I’m making this post because I genuinely believe Skillshare can help you with author marketing.

Yes, this is a sponsored video, but I wouldn’t have agreed to do it if I didn't whole-heartedly believe in it.

I’ve been using Skillshare for over a year now (which, holy crap time flies), so I know how great this website is. Seriously.

Sign up for the free trial and read my video recommendations. Trust me, watching these videos will introduce you to an instructional rabbit hole.

I find I have to actually save videos I’m interested in because I fly through them and just keep clicking on more (YAS to increasing video speed…which makes me feel like normal speed is snail paced!).

A lot of writers are introverts and the thought of putting yourself out there so far on any platform is horrifying.

But it’s easier than you think. The fear of getting started will hold you back—if you’re a writer in today’s world, you need to be online. Your audience needs to see you and your book. These course recommendations will dissipate some of that social media anxiety you might be experiencing. Understanding something is a large part of that!

First up really quickly, the first 100 people to use my promo link with code VIVIEN will get their first 2 months free, then it’s as low as $10 a month after that to continue learning if you like it. Or cancel if you don’t, there’s no risk. That link is down below, and seriously, get the 2 free months! Edit: this promo has been exceeded. Use to sign up!

Without further ado, let’s jump in with my recommendations!


Introduction to Social Media Strategy by Brian Peters

NUMBERS. I’m so happy this video has statistics and Brian is so eloquent! This is a great place to start to understand why using social media is so important and how setting goals can help you focus your content across all of your social media platforms. Also, he has worksheets! YAS! Make sure you check out the “Your project” tab to get those worksheets!

He also talks about some tools he uses that I had never even heard of before, in addition to Buffer, which is where he works (I use Hootsuite, but they’re the same thing!)

It’s important to establish your goals and “pillars” as Chris says, to have a game plan and a focus. The most successful businesses have one main purpose or vision, so that customers always know what to expect from that business.

As writers, many of us have the same ultimate goal with our author brand: to sell our books and connect with our readers, so future launches are more successful.

But a writer launching an author brand with a focus on self-improvement will have a different mission than an epic fantasy writer. It may seem silly to set a “vision” or “values” as a writer, but you want to connect with your readers. To do that, you need to be clear on what you content you’re providing.

Brand Management: What sets you apart by Chris Bolman

  • This one seems to apply to large businesses that already have a foundation; this course is great because it gives you a foundation and a focus before you start your author brand.

  • This video applies a lot to those who want to use a website platform, or social media to gain followers while not marketing your actual books, like me for example. Self-publishers have to know a lot, have to do a lot and be constantly learning. Since there’s so many topics that self-publishers have to master, it’s easy to pick one and make that sort of your specialty.

  • For example, if you’re artistically inclined, perhaps you’d find a market for giving tips on graphic or website design. While you’re not marketing your books, you’re putting your face and your name out there as a professional source that readers can recognize.

Video notes:

  • Defining your brand – understanding what it means and that great brands build and reinforce memories

  • He points out that you’re not just broadcasting your brand, it’s more of a conversation, so a back in forth rather than a one way street.

  • Another great point he makes is to think to the future – important as self-publishers, where the market and social media is changing so much. For that reason your definitions of your brand should also change.

If you’re interested in marketing something other than just your books (and I recommend everyone try to at some point) to get your name out there, then definitely check out Chris Bolman!

Honorable mention for this category:

Building Your Online Presence: Personal Branding Through Social Media by Kate Arends

  • Some great tips she has: your brand replaces your resume, which I thought was a cool way to think about a brand.

  • She also has some really nice worksheets to help you if you’re still stuck with defining your own personal brand.

  • Kate also gives great tips on how to communicate with your viewers or audience and the importance of being authentic, so she gives tips on that.

  • And a huge part of building your online presence is by giving to others and contributing to the community.

I seriously feel like I’m underutilizing Pinterest in a horribly bad way. None of my videos are on Pinterest, and half of my website posts aren’t either.

Signing up for courses about Pinterest made me realize how much work I have in store for my Pinterest boards!

Pinterest is a search engine, it’s not just a social media platform. How many times have you found yourself using Pinterest over Google? Searching for recipes or home décor or clothing looks?

My top recommendation is:

Pinterest Perfect by Amber Kane

While some of these tips obviously won’t apply to writers or authorpreneurs, there are some GREAT takeaways from this course.