Several months ago, my Windy City Romance Writers group had a formal presentation on how writers can use Facebook. I remember some published authors wondering why they should go to the effort to create a fan page to promote their writing instead of using their personal profile for that purpose.
Recently, I've been helping a few Windy City writers set up fan pages, so the question has been swirling in my head.
Below are some rough thoughts on the subject. This is the same list I sent to members of my writers group. Comments are welcome.
Why create a fan page on Facebook instead of using your personal profile to promote your writing?
Your personal profile is meant to be personal. You probably have family and non-writing friends on Facebook with whom you'd like to keep in touch. Having a fan page helps you separate people you know from people you don't personally know and limit how much personal information you're potentially exposing to strangers.
Being a Facebook "friend" with someone is a two-way relationship. If I like a writer's work, but don't know the writer personally, I wouldn't presume to ask them to be a "friend". However, I wouldn't be afraid to become their "fan".
Your fans are interested in news about your writing career. That's why they became fans on Facebook. They hope to get rewarded with news about what's happening with your writing. If you have a fan page, when you post career-related news, you don't have to be afraid of inundating family and personal friends with too much self-promotion.
Fan page administrators aren't public. You can administer a fan page without revealing who you are or your personal profile information.
You can have multiple administrators for a fan page. This way, you can have someone else silently help you run your fan page and build community.
Fan pages look and act a lot like your profile page, so navigating one doesn't require much extra knowledge.
Fan page status updates stream to fans' Home pages, just like updates from their personal friends. It's hard to tell the difference when viewing your Home page.
Windy City Romance Writers on Facebook
I've started a collection of Windy City Romance Writer fan pages. Feel free to leave me a comment and let me know if I should add you to the list.
Susan Elizabeth Phillips