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Evaluating Your Social Media by the Numbers

It’s impossible to discuss social media without discussing the number of followers you have. It matters. Or does it?

Some agents who say it’s important how many followers you have. Most agents disagree. I’m in the category of most agents.

If you are writing fiction it does NOT matter. I do recommend you have social media for a variety of reasons that I’ve outlined in other blog posts*. Social media is important and if you’re not on it, get on it. Explore it, learn it and discover what you like, because as you build your author brand you’re going to need it. Have fun with it, but don’t worry about the number of followers.

Social media numbers will grow as your brand grows. That’s all that matters.

If you’re writing nonfiction, especially anything other than a memoir, numbers matter. Most nonfiction sales are heavily based on the author’s brand and like any brand, followers count. If you are writing a business book, a cookbook, or a personal empowerment book we will look at your audience. How many people know you well enough to want to buy this book matters.

No matter the numbers, what matters is the book. What we care about more than anything is the writing, the story, the plot and the characters. Worry about that and let the numbers worry about themselves.

To read more of my thoughts on social media check out the Implications of Staying off Social Media and Social Media as a Marketing Tool for Authors

Category: Blog



  1. How important do you think a social media presence is for writers of narrative nonfiction? If the author is an expert on a compelling subject and can prove via the proposal that s/he can skillfully write about it — but doesn’t have much a social media presence (because this hypothetical author doesn’t have the gift for snappy posts/gathering followers) — do you think many agents will see that as dealbreaker? Thanks for entertaining my question, and for all the great advice on this blog!

  2. That’s really reassuring, my dogs have more followers than I do and no I’m not joking.

    Having said that I do take it as a good sign that my hubby, who can kill tech by looking at it, can build a following for a couple of beagles. To around 1500 with no brand support or links and no social media knowledge.

  3. It’s always a relief to hear that the numbers don’t matter. I’m trying to work out how to focus my brand on Instagram which is enough to worry about without the number of people following. I’m @aussiecozy if anyone wants to have a peek.

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