Facebook for Authors: Vocabulary and Basics

Facebook can be a useful marketing and branding tool for authors. Facebook allows you to connect with your readers and access over 1.5 billion users around the globe. You can share photos, host giveaways or contests, promote your books, post a simple "thank you" to readers, or answer fan questions.


If you're new to Facebook, you'll want to familiarize yourself with some basic vocabulary. Here are the most common Facebook terms:

  • About: A short biography about yourself, which can include your website URL, email address, and details about your life or writing career.
  • Boosted Post: A paid advertising feature that lets you boost individual posts and target specific sets of people (e.g., your followers, your followers' friends, or other targeted demographics) to gain more visibility in News Feeds. Visit the Facebook Help Pages to learn more about boosting your posts.
  • Comment: A user's response to a post.
  • Event: Organized gatherings on or off Facebook. You can set events to private or public and list essential information (e.g., date, time, or location). Use events to spread the word about book signings or other author events you're hosting.
  • Facebook Page: A public Page used for businesses, brands, and public figures—including authors—that anyone can view to get updates.
  • Facebook Profile: A personal page with adjustable privacy settings. Your profile acts as an admin to your Facebook Page.
  • Followers: The people who like your Page.
  • News Feed: A constantly updated feed where you can see your friends' posts along with posts from businesses, brands, and public figures whose pages you've liked.
  • Page Like: How a Facebook user subscribes to your Page's posts.
  • Reactions: Users can react six ways to your posts: like, love, haha, wow, sad, and angry.
  • Share: When a user shares your post to his or her own Facebook profile.
  • Status/Post: A message, photo, or video you post on your Facebook Page. This post can also show up on your fans' News Feeds.
  • Tag: Reference somebody in your post by typing the @ symbol followed by their name. When you tag someone, they'll receive a notification of the tag. Note: On your author Page, you only have the ability to tag other Pages, unlike your personal Facebook profile where you can tag friends and family.
  • Wall: The place on your Facebook Page where people can post links, photos, or videos.

The Basics

Your Facebook Page is a professional page where you can share information about your work and about yourself as an author. It’s separate from your Facebook profile, which is the page you use to connect with friends and family and share personal updates.

You’ll need a Facebook profile, using your real name, before you can start a Facebook Page. If you need more information, check out our breakdown of the difference between a Facebook profile and a Page.

A few simple steps will help you keep your content organized as you move forward with your professional Facebook Page.

1. Define Your Goal

What do you want to accomplish with a Facebook Page? An example goal would be "To build awareness for my author brand and books."

2. Define Your Audience

What kind of audience would you like to attract? Try to be as specific as possible. If you aim too broad (e.g., "people who read fiction"), you'll have a difficult time attracting fans.

3. Define How You'll Attract Fans

Will you host giveaways for your book? Will you allow your fans to contribute to your next book? Will you run one targeted ad per week? As you attract fans, you'll also want to think about what you'll do to keep them engaged once they've liked your Page.

4. Organize Your Content Schedule

What kind of content will you post and when? Once you define a schedule and post consistently for a while, you can adopt a more relaxed approach as you become comfortable on the platform.

Feel like you've mastered the basics? Dig into Facebook etiquette, when and what you should post, and how Facebook will affect your book sales.

Have questions? Let us know on Facebook.

How Mill City Press Helps

Our marketing department will help you create a professional-looking Facebook Page and provide you with a social media planning template to kick off your new Page. We can also assist with Facebook advertising to get your book in front of the people most likely to buy it.

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