So your Book+Main author account has been approved. You’re ready to start posting bites, but you don’t know where to start. Don’t worry—I’ve got your back with five quick tips!
Pick an Enticing Bite
Start off with selecting a scene from your book. Bites seem to work best when the scene is short but leaves the reader aching for more. The point here, after all, is to give readers a tiny taste of your story that’ll make them want the whole dessert. Pick a passage that doesn’t need a whole lot of context and ends on a sort of cliffhanger.
Choose a Relevant, Eye-Catching Image
You can’t post a bite without an image, and it’s the first thing that readers see as they’re scrolling through the site or app, so you need to make it a good one. (Friendly reminder that you must have the rights to use any images you post! Swiping pics from Pinterest, etc is absolutely not allowed.) Just like with teaser images, you don’t want to just slap any pic on your bite.
Some good practices for choosing stock photos for bites include:
- Use a horizontal image. Book+Main’s image uploader lets you crop, but vertical images can be tricky.
- Keep in mind that your bite’s title is going to go across the dead center of your image. As a graphic designer once said to me, keep that yuck off her—or his—face. Of course, rules are made to be broken; the image I used for this bite was too compelling to pass up. My best-looking bite so far, though, is this one, because of how well the text flows with the image.
- Speaking of titles, keep it short and sweet; you don’t want to crowd your image with all of that text.
- Per Book+Main’s rules, your image can’t have any text on it. No teasers or book covers, folks. However, if you have the original stock photos used for your cover, you can upload those. Check out how Staci Hart uses the extra photos from her cover shoots for her bites.
Add Your Books
This might seem obvious, but you’d be surprised how many bites I’ve read only to find that the author hasn’t linked the book to their account (or, worse, they linked the wrong book). To add your books, go to your Dashboard. Under My Books, click Add Book. You can add books by ASIN or ISBN.
Make sure you add both your Amazon and iBooks links, whenever possible. The goal here is to capture sales, and not every reader prefers Kindle.
Share on Social Media
Since Book+Main is just starting out, you might find that your readers aren’t there yet. It’s your job to entice them over to the dark side—I mean, website. Once you’ve posted a bite, share it on your existing platform: social media, email list, etc.
To really entice your existing platform, share bites that they can’t get anywhere else. B.L. Berry recently posted a bonus scene in the POV of a side character. Readers can’t see bites unless they create a free account, so give them a good reason to!
Book+Main says you can only post three bites a day. When I got approved, it was only a few hours before midnight, so I went wild and posted three bites back to back. Turns out you can only post three within a 24-hour period.
To use this to your benefit, take advantage of Book+Main’s scheduling feature. It’s actually pretty simple. Just choose the date and time.
Book+Main is still new, so no one knows its peak times… yet. (Meaning, when the most people are on.) Facebook’s seems to be 8:00 a.m. and Twitter’s seems to be 1:00 p.m. EST—your mileage may vary. At the moment, I’m scheduling bites for either of those times, to see if that makes a difference.
Test, Test, Test
Don’t be afraid to try new things (within Book+Main’s rules, of course). We have the opportunity to be the pioneers of this new site, so have fun with it! Make note of things that work and things that don’t.
Are you on Book+Main? Follow me and I’ll follow you back!