How a Social Media Strategist Saved My Book

In August, a radio interviewer asked me what I had expected to happen after my book, A Good Home, was published in 2013.

“Seriously?” I asked. “My plan was to go back to bed.”

She laughed.

agoodhome_cynthiareyesBut that was indeed my plan. I was in bad shape, from head to toe, injuries from a car accident. Completing the book was a huge task. Even speaking was a challenge at the time.

What saved  my book?

A skilled and caring social media strategist.

Lauren and Gentle Giant

Lauren and a Gentle Giant

Lauren was the person in charge of social media strategy for one of Canada’s biggest English language magazine publishing companies. She had helped magazines such as Style At Home,  TheHockey News and Elle Canada increase their social media traffic by up to 1200% year over year.

Blog Photo - Style at Home Kitchen

In other words, Lauren knows her stuff.

Image via Elle Canada

Image via Elle Canada

She patiently explained to me what was required.

I think I rolled my eyes at times. What was this thing called a “blog”? And who had time for Facebook, Twitter, Google +, Goodreads, etc. etc.

“Not to worry,” she said. “I’ll set it all up for you.”

It was a necessity: my ‘book tour’ stopped soon after it started.

I was in full-blown relapse and my doctor had firmly stopped all my book-related activities outside the home.

~~

Lauren designed my blog, Facebook and Twitter pages, etc.,  and taught me how to use them.

Blog Header

“Your blog should be informal and personable,” she said.

But I was too scared at first.  So, to show me what was possible, Lauren did my first several posts on WordPress and other platforms.

All the time, Lauren kept teaching me, sending me simple instructions till I took over the work.  She even created a marketing calendar that combined  social media with other forms of promotion.

Today I have an international following.

My blog alone is approaching 40,000 views in just over a year of serious effort on my part. I have more than a thousand followers on Twitter, and many more through the other platforms I use.

I value this outcome for the many books I’ve sold, yes. Even more valued, though, are the supportive social networks that I’m part of today.

My social media expert saved my book. In the process, she gave me so much more.

Thank you, Lauren. I’d have been lost without you.

*Lauren is also my daughter.*

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82 Comments

Filed under A Good Home, Books, Lauren Reyes-Grange, Social Media for Authors, Social Media Strategist

82 responses to “How a Social Media Strategist Saved My Book

  1. What a great mom and daughter team.

    • Hi Diane:
      Lauren’s fabulous. It is thanks to her that I can use my blog to shine a light on the work of others. I look forward to highlighting your new book, The Gift of Memoir. When will it be published?

      • Cynthia, it’s here! Am delivering copies to Penumbra Books in Grafton today, and arranging a book signing at Furby House in Port Hope. My hope is it will be useful for people who want to write memoir. Big smile as I write these words.

      • Thanks. CONGRATS. A lovely, very useful book. And where can we find it on amazon, etc? Please give us the link.

  2. Congrats on the growth of your blog and social media. It is nice to have expert help. I learned a little about what’s needed while working in the industry. I’m glad that you have such a good helper Cynthia. 🙂

  3. leemacleod

    What a talented family! You are so blessed! Lee

  4. What a wonderful daughter you have! So talented and so loving What more could you ask for?

  5. We love Lauren for putting you out in the cyber world! A big thank you.

  6. My heart warms when I hear stories like this one. I found you via your blog rather than your book but it sits in my book basket, awaiting a quiet hour to dig in. I hope this is just the beginning of success in publishing for you . . .

  7. What I meant to add, before we temporarily lost our internet connection, was that I too was amazed by the similarity of our posts which made me laugh. Somehow only the first part of what I had typed got posted.

  8. Margaret Mair

    I add my voice to those thanking Lauren. And I’m very glad that we found our way to each other’s blogs. It is always a pleasure to visit here!

  9. Wow, congratulations to you both. Love the dog, too.

  10. Thanks so much. Lauren deserves most of the congrats.

  11. Awww!! This is great!! <3! Thank God for our beautiful daughters!!

  12. Oh my .. How fabulous! What a wonderful combination. I just love stories like this Cynthia. Congrats to you both 🙂

  13. C’est d’autant plus réjouissant que ce soit ta fille qui t’aie tant soutenu et aidé, c’est ce qu’on appelle la force de la famille 😉 Sans doute tu les as bien éduquées 🙂

    • Merci beaucoup, Christiane. C’est vrai, oui. C’est aussi vrai que mes filles m’ont bien eduquee! (Many thanks, Christiane. That’s true. It’s also true that my daughters have educated ME well!)

  14. I think this is the best post yet for me. I was musing about the combination of physical and spiritual beauty of this Lauren woman when I got to the bottom and saw the identity clue. Hehe. Love to Lauren…

  15. What a heartwarming story — and what a team! Beautiful! 🙂

  16. Congratulations and best wishes. You both make an awesome pair!

  17. What a wonderful way to get into the “main” stream. I wish I could post a picture here as I finally have your book in my hands and started it last night!! Very hard to put down and I’m looking forward to some downtime this week to dive in!! (I forewarned my mother not to say a think about it as she just finished it!!)

  18. Reblogged this on Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog….. An Author Promotions Enterprise! and commented:
    Following my recent posts and re-blogs about Social Media, Cynthia made THIS post 😀

    • A great honour, Chris. Thanks for all you do for us authors.

      Meanwhile, you inspired this post. It was your two recent posts on social media and authors that made me realize I had never written about the crucial role my social media strategist played with my own book.
      Thank you, kind Sir.

  19. Having a gentle helping hand is always a plus! It’s amazing to see how much you’ve master social media since you first started.

  20. I’m going to show this to my marketing-major daughter and then take a nap 🙂

  21. Wow, what a warming story! You’ve accomplished a lot, more than most people and even more with Lauren’s help. She is very smart and beautiful daughter too, like her mom!!! 🙂 I have a daughter named Lauren too!! 🙂

    • Hey, Michael: isn’t “Lauren” a great name? (wink, wink.)
      Thanks for your kind reply.

      It’s all Lauren’s doing! She set me up so beautifully and promptly answers all my questions. Then Hamlin takes the photos, as you know. I just write stuff, then act very queenly about the whole thing!

      • Just getting time to catch up on my email and blogging, I had to go to Atlanta for a few days but it was worth the trip!
        Lauren is a great name! Not sure if I have shared with you, we have triplets, two girls and a son, they are 29. Wow, makes me feel old when I tell their age!
        Lauren has done a great job and it shows as well as you! Pictures are great too!

      • Triplets! Wow. You and your wife must have had your hands full, but how lovely. And 29 means you had them when you were two, right? a major accomplishment….

  22. The book tour is the one thing I really dread about writing a book so in a way, you’re lucky to have had a valid reason not to do it. If only it could have been a little less painful though.
    Your daughter is a smart cookie!

  23. Congrats to both of you, and to the dog who surely had a positive influence here.

  24. Dan

    Lovely post, Mrs. Reyes! Lauren’s talents are boundless.
    I’d be lost without her, too.

  25. This is what I need, but can’t afford. So it’s just me. I wish I knew how to do a better job.

  26. What a lovely supportive daughter you have. I am quite mystified about how twitter works, but I do embrace blogging. It is a wonderful creative outlet, but the unexpected bonus is making blogging friends all round the world. That is a constant source of delight.
    I have ordered your book and am looking forward to reading it.

  27. Thanks for helping others by describing your experiences with Social Media.

  28. A happy post on every level! How great to have such an expert so close to home, and to have mastered blogging when you were given the nudge.

  29. Three cheers for you and Lauren! Social media is a must for today’s writers if they desire to reach an audience. And you do it so warmly. I love blogging and my other media sites because I’ve met so many lovely people and learned so much. Even if I never sell a book, I’m blessed being on this journey.

    Blessings on your author journey ~ Wendy ❀

  30. that is amazing!!!! Go Girl:-) Congrats that is a lot of people + look at how you reach them all:-)

  31. This is so true. I work in publishing and when we finish a book, our work is not done. We have to market it too! So nice that you worked with your daughter on this 🙂

  32. Ann Moser

    Wonderful blending of two amazing experts to catapult an international following. Great mother and daughter team work, congratulations Lauren and Cynthia.

  33. How wonderful that your daughter can help you in this way! At some point in the future, whenever it is that I am published, I know I will have to step up my social media game, and I dread it. If there are not enough hours in the day now, how will I manage? I guess focusing on getting published first, eh? Then I’ll be in touch with you and Lauren!
    Jeanne

  34. Probably true … people I know, who work full-time like me, AND have to do all this social media stuff are exhausted by it. But, yes, a plan would be smart when I get there. I was really kidding when I said I’d be in touch with you and Lauren, so I thank you for your generous response. I have a few local brains in the children’s book field I know I can pick when it comes time, but I still might have a question or two for you! Tx. Jeanne

  35. I *thought* I could see a resemblance! Lovely young lady & so wise!!!

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