How do we use social media to market our books?

We at Multilingual Matters/Channel View Publications are very active on social media and have built up substantial communities across all our accounts. We enjoy interacting with our authors, publishing contacts, readers and people with a broader interest in the topics on which we publish, and have strong followings on both Facebook and Twitter, with nearly 2,000 contacts across our Facebook pages and over 15,000 on our two Twitter accounts.

Social media has also become an integral part of our marketing campaign for each book that we publish. In the weeks and months leading up to and following a book’s publication, we in the marketing department use our various social media channels (Facebook, Twitter, this blog and YouTube) to announce its publication and publicise it as much as possible. It’s the easiest and most effective way of getting news to lots of people at once and on top of that, it allows people to engage with and discuss our publications, both with us and amongst each other. Of course, social media doesn’t come at the expense of our traditional marketing strategies and we still follow usual marketing techniques such as catalogue mailings, email newsletters, sending information to the book trade, attending conferences and book fairs and so on, but it does offer something new and different to our marketing repertoire.

Commissioning editors with books published in January

When using social media to market a book, it’s a real advantage if we have an author who is active themselves on social media and can help us to spread the word. Authors are best placed to reach their book’s key audience as their own colleagues and peers are likely to be those interested in the research. We often find that some of our bestselling books are ones where the author hasn’t been afraid of get stuck in! For example, you could create a Facebook page for your book like our authors Christian W. Chun and Leanne White did, where you can keep people up to date with the book’s progress and share useful information and news, including the 50% preorder discount flyer we create for all our books. In addition, if there are any relevant events that tie in with your book’s publication, do let us know! For example, we’ve previously promoted Hongliang Yan’s book, Heritage Tourism in China, in conjunction with World Heritage Day. Facebook is also the main place where we post photos of office goings on, so your book may well end up in a photo like the one above of our commissioning editors with their books published in January. If you have any ideas for a relevant photo opportunity for your book, just let us know and we’ll see what we can do!

Twitter is a great place to get book news out to the right people, and we do try to “mention” relevant accounts with publication news where we can. If you have any ideas about popular hashtags used by the community you’re trying to reach or users who would be especially interested in your work, let us know on your AQ and we’ll include them in our marketing plans. Each of our books are assigned three or four tweets during the month following its publication giving a taster of what to expect from the book, and we also announce it on both Twitter and Facebook on publication day. By using relevant hashtags, the word about a new book gets out to people who might not have heard about it otherwise, and we often see people mentioning friends or colleagues with recommendations of our books.

We ask all our authors to write a piece about their book for our blog, which we schedule to coincide with its publication. This is a really good way to publicise the book and provide interested readers with a “behind the scenes” insight into how the book came about, giving authors a chance to sell their book beyond the blurb on our website. If you can send us photos or even videos to include in the post to grab readers’ attention, even better! We always announce new blog posts on Facebook and Twitter ourselves, but again, the braver authors are about sharing their post and telling the world about their work, the greater the number of views and the more engagement we see.

One of the videos to accompany Optimizing Language Learners’ Nonverbal Behavior

For those authors that are feeling especially creative, we also have a YouTube channel where we post videos authors have produced to accompany their book. For example, we recently posted a video by Wayne E. Wright and Colin Baker where they spoke about the latest edition of Foundations of Bilingual Education and Bilingualism and one by Janet Enever and Eva Lindgren introducing their new book Early Language Learning. For their book, Optimizing Language Learners’ Nonverbal Behavior Tammy Gregersen and Peter MacIntyre produced a series of accompanying videos, such as “Say it with your Hands!”, all of which can be accessed on our YouTube channel. If you’d like to do something similar for the publication of your own book, just get in touch with us to discuss your ideas.

Nowadays social media is an invaluable tool for getting publication news out there, and we do our best to publicise your book as much as possible, but there’s no doubt that the more active the author is in promoting their book through their own channels, the better. So get Facebooking/Tweeting/Blogging/YouTubing!

Follow us on Twitter: @Multi_Ling_Mat / @Channel_View

Like our Facebook page: Multilingual Matters / Channel View Publications

Check out our YouTube channel

A-Z of Publishing: T is for…

T is for TwitterT is for Twitter. We are active on social media and have Twitter and Facebook accounts for both imprints. If you use social media, please like or follow us to keep up-to-date with our latest news. The links to our listings are: MM Facebook page, CVP Facebook page, MM Twitter page and CVP Twitter page.

This post is part of our ‘A-Z of Publishing’ series which we will be posting every Monday throughout the rest of 2015. You can search the blog for the rest of the series or subscribe to the blog to receive an email as soon as the next post is published by using the links on the right of the page.

Social Media and Minority Languages

Elin Haf Gruffydd Jones, co-editor with Enrique Uribe-Jongbloed of Social Media and Minority Languages, the first collection of academic essays on this topic tells us a little about how the book came about…

Social Media and Minority Languages

This collection of essays brings together writings by over thirty scholars working in the field of minority language media studies. Some are well established researchers having contributed to the development of this specific area of study over several decades, while others are new entrants, either as newcomers to academia itself or as researchers who are now embracing social media as an integral part of their work in other disciplines. Minority Language Media Studies is itself an interdisciplinary meeting place – as the many conferences and seminars held over the years have shown – drawing on the discourses of sociolinguistics and media studies. Yet, new approaches to linguistic diversity, the pervasiveness of social media, as well as the impact of convergence in the creative industries require a rethinking of research questions, methodologies and theoretical frameworks as we aim to enhance our knowledge and understanding of these phenomena.

Most of the contributors to this book met up at the Mercator Network conference on Linguistic Diversity and Media Convergence held at Aberystwyth University in Wales with the support of the European Commission. Since 1988, with the support of the European Union, the Mercator Network has brought together academic researchers, practitioners, activists and policy makers in the fields of education, legislation and media in the context of minority languages communities. The Mercator Network is currently working on a three year programme of expert workshops and conferences (LEARNMe), funded by the European Union and Mercator’s host institutions: the Fryske Akademy (NL), Aberystwyth University (Wales), CIEMEN-Barcelona, the University of Stockholm and the Research Institute for Linguistics at the Hungarian Academy of Sciences.

The book was developed within the framework of Mercator European Network of Language Diversity Centres funded by the European Union through the Lifelong Learning Programme of the European Commission in 2008-2011.
The book was developed within the framework of Mercator European Network of Language Diversity Centres funded by the European Union through the Lifelong Learning Programme of the European Commission in 2008-2011.

Working in an international context is an indispensable part of minority language studies: the condition of being a minority – or minoritised – language community, can mean that the very issues that are significant to the community are often marginalised from and peripheral to the mainstream public discourses within the state. This also includes academic discourses and collaborative work with colleagues in different countries is necessary, in order to create innovative research frameworks and rigorously debate findings in comparative contexts.

Since its creation in 1988, the Mercator Network’s philosophy has been based on the following principles:

  • an engagé approach: aiming to improve the conditions of minority languages through research based on critical distance and rejecting attempts at a false neutrality of observationalism;
  • a bridging approach: create a dialogue between the scholarly study of minority languages and practitioners, professionals, policy makers, advocates and activists;
  • a grounded approach: located in the geo-political areas where minority languages are a lived experience and to use the languages as widely as possible;
  • a multi-disciplinary approach: recognising a wide base of knowledge and varied methodologies;
  • a comparative approach; to produce research paradigms that can usefully link theory and practice across a range of different social realities;
  • a networked approach: to create and develop sustainable networks of organizations and institutions active in this field and to enhance contact between people by hosting and supporting events and fora that facilitate discussion and the exchange of knowledge and ideas in order to create new discourses that engage with minority languages beyond the confines of state borders.

We hope that this book will contribute to dialogue in this field and we would like to thank all involved in its publication.