Using Social Media To Promote Comic

Discussion in 'Creative Discussion' started by jynksie, Mar 25, 2017.

  1. jynksie

    jynksie White Belt

    This is a huge area of, I should say weakness, but truth be told, it's a huge area of what I call redundancy. I primarily use twitter as a promotional tool, but many comic creators also duplicate themselves on facebook, pinterest, instagram, tumblr, tinder, grinder and the list goes on. [two of those are unlike the others-grin].

    Do you find it useful to have yourself everywhere?
    Do you find one social media entity more valuable than others?
    Can someone explain to me how a friggin facebook page is supposed to work? I don't get how anyone can find you there. [I don't use facebook except for having a "page" and even w/ that, I.don't.get.it.]
     
  2. Anna Landin

    Anna Landin Purple Belt

    It's useful to have more than one platform, but you don't need ALL of them, unless you really, really want to. I stick to Twitter, Tumblr and a few forums (like this one! also; Tapastic). I'm considering setting up an Instagram, but I keep putting it off for some reason.

    Being in more than one place is good because not everyone uses every platform; you're bound to reach a few new people with each platform. But being *everywhere* means your social media activity eats up a lot of time you could spend drawing stuff, or relaxing, or whatever.

    They're good for different things! In terms of actually getting a response and getting engaged with the community, I think I like Twitter best. It's like hanging out in a very big livingroom full of likeminded people (LOTS of webcomic folks on Twitter!) - but Tumblr and Tapastic work well too, but in different ways.

    Nope, sorry. =.= I'm one of those people who have consistently refused to get myself a facebook account at ALL, much less one for my comic. It's a mystery to me.
     
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  3. J.M. Henry

    J.M. Henry White Belt

    On comic hosing site, yes, social media, not so much. Twitter's been a lot more responsive to posts than facebook for me, so I stick to it more. Also trying to use my Instagram more often for updates since responses are usually pretty high there.

    Whoops, answered all that in the first question ^^;

    It doesn't. Facebook is dead.(to me)
     
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  4. Shazzbaa

    Shazzbaa Blue Belt

    I don't put myself everywhere just for the sake of putting myself everywhere, but if I were to see a bunch of people using a new thing, I'd look into the thing and see if it'd be a good place to connect to folks.

    How it's SUPPOSED to work is that you make a page -- if you're an individual, you invite all your personal facebook friends to like your page; if you're a business, you advertise "we're on facebook!! Follow us for deals and updates!" and your customers like your page -- when your friends/customers like your page, it shows up in THEIR friends feeds that they liked the page, and spreads that way.

    The truth about facebook, though, is that not everyone who follows you sees your updates -- FB tends to try to show users what it thinks is the most relevant stuff, so when you update, only a small number of your followers will see the update, and if none of them interact with it (comment, clickthrough, like) then FB will decide it's not worth sending out to your other followers.

    It can still be worth it if you have an audience that's primarily on FB (artists who do a lot of crafting stuff can find their audiences looking for them on FB, for example) but ime it's not a super relevant platform in the webcomic world right now. I stick a "my comic updated" post on FB because that doesn't take long and I already have followers there from back when more folks used it, but it's not worth it to me to really invest in growing my FB audience.
     
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  5. Shaneoid

    Shaneoid Purple Belt

    Hi @jynksie :D

    My experience is thus...

    I've had a great time networking on Twitter, with yourself included. While getting those hashtags out there, there's also a few pages which will help you promote your comics such as Promote Indie Comics, Support Comics and Topwebcomics for starters. So if you upload a picture with your post, you can tag them in that. I see a lot of people doing posts saying "Hey I just uploaded a new page", which is fine, but when doing an promo, I try and make it appealing, asking questions or making it more elusive so potential readers would be interested in following the link.

    Instagram has been an interesting bonus. I have an IG for both myself, Heroes of the World and Beyond and Night Twink. I'm pretty open about my nerdiness on my personal IG and often make posts for my comics on there, along with a few flirty ones of myself, which hopefully pushes a bit of traffic through too :cool:

    Are you on Topwebcomics.com? I've been lucky enough to have been in the top 30 recently and I've definitely noticed a rise in hits over the last month. They have a new voting incentive thing so you can keep yourself a float (and any other artists you like) but it does mean voting on about 300 pieces of art a day :confused: Not exactly social media, but it's the top Google search for "Webcomics" so it will be the first port of call for anyone searching for them.

    Deviantart may also be a place you can promote your work. I didn't have much luck gaining a following for my webcomic on there, but that doesn't mean others wont. You can post links in the description section of any art you post, and then share it to corresponding 'groups' you may join.

    Facebook.... well. I have a page up on Facebook. However, what it's doing for me, I don't know. I occasionally get told someone is viewing my page, but nothing more. I've just stuck a load of links up and hope it serves as a portal to the main site. Twitter seems to reach a lot of people better in my experience.

    Pintrest and Tumblr do my nut in.

    I hope this helps and if you find any other ways of networking on your adventures, let us know! :)
     
  6. Donathin Frye

    Donathin Frye Purple Belt

    Here's how I like to think of the different Social Media platforms, and their strengths.

    Twitter: This tool is the most popular among comic book creators. Popular hashtags like #ComicBookHour #Webcomicchat #Indiecomics and promotional accounts like @PromoteComics are great aides to help your messages reach a wider audience. Insights here are pretty easy to understand and note, too. Twitter does a good job of letting you target market, and has a fairly good success rate with calls to action -- which is marketing speak for you posting something that asks the reader to click on a link and go and do something on another site (like buy your comic, or support your Kickstarter). The 140 character limit's either a blessing or an annoyance depending on who you talk to (I personally hate it). This is a great way to to connect with other creators, too, as we all tend to be very supportive of one another on Twitter.

    Advice -- don't just follow everyone, anyone to try to build your follower count arbitrarily. There are a lot of spam Twitter accounts that will never re-tweet your messages. Spam accounts, whether on Twitter, Facebook, or Tapastic are always bad and you don't want them -- they reduce your ratio of people engaging with your content to not engaging, and that becomes self-perpetuating. Basically, more people will see your stuff if you have followers who engage with your stuff. Take the time to build relationships on social media and Twitter, and follow real people who seem like they may engage with you if they follow you back.

    Facebook: For most, this is a great way to promote your work to people you already know on a more personal level. If you have family/friends/co-workers that you are friends with on FB, it's likely that they use the platform often as their primary social media tool. I've had less luck with "pages", but I've noticed that webcomics that focus on creating funny/share-able content can actually build pretty large followings on Facebook. If yours is the stuff of memes, it's worth putting in some time here, but Facebook is tough and designed to make you have to spend money to boost your views (which is also problematic and not really advised).

    Instagram/Deviantart: These are both great places to post your concept art, fan art, doodles, warm-up pieces, etc. That sort of stuff can get a lot of attention, and you can add messages to the content to encourage folks to follow through to your actual comic with calls to action. I think that, if you're an artist just starting to build your presence, Instagram seems to be destined to leave Deviantart in the dust -- but I know plenty of artists who still swear by DA.

    Behance: This is basically a site that lets you set up a page to be a freelancing artist, writer, etc. It's awesome, with a lot of features like reviews and pricing and portfolios to help build your professional brand as an independent creator. I highly recommend checking this one out.

    Tumblr: I'm not the person to ask. I'm awful at Tumblr, apparently. :p I'd love to know the secret, though!

    Tapastic/Webtoons/Becomics/Smackjeeves/Comicfury: These sites, and others, are basically similar in function to this forum ... except that they are attached to some sort of hosting site where you can post your comic, or a mirror of your comic. I find Tapastic's community to generally be the most pleasant, and it has a very active forum. However, I'm not much of a fan of the way its forums are set up -- it sort of makes it easy for your threads to get lost in the spam of new content. Still, if you enjoy forums, Tapastic's a good place to play around with -- if you create manga, slice-of-life, vertical scroll or BL comics, you're more likely to get attention there, but there are plenty of exceptions to that too! On the downside, Tapastic's user base appears to be shrinking and I do worry about its future.

    Meanwhile, Webtoons seems to be growing and new webcomics tend to get more attention there -- but it lacks a community element, like Tapastic. The same goes with Becomics, which is still in BETA, but has a fair amount of buzz and I suspect could be the new in site once they've refined their platform and toolset even further.

    I only have the time and energy to mirror my webcomic on one site, currently, and that's Tapastic. If I were starting out now, though, when Tapastic's reader base is smaller ... I might try Webtoons.

    This Site: Dig into it. Use it. It's an extension of a great Twitter community. And in terms of forums ... well, it's got a lot of momentum and the forum itself is quite powerful with a lot of great tools for creators.

    -----

    That's a lot! Hopefully any of that's useful. Pick the platforms that you're most excited about and seem like they'll give you the best return!
     
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  7. JamieMe

    JamieMe Administrator Staff Member

    Kind words from everyone regarding this forum. We'll build it up as a community, and starting Sunday we are all going to give readers a reason to join in!

    Facebook... winds me up, btw.
     
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  8. micahdraws

    micahdraws Blue Belt

    I am getting the most value out of Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, and to a lesser extent, G+ (when I remember to post there).

    That said, I really want to learn the secrets of social media guruing so I am going to keep an eye on this thread. I feel like I play by the rules everyone says to play by and get none of the results. So I'm going to watch and see if any new advice comes this way!
     
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  9. Funari

    Funari 4-Stripe White Belt

    I have made accounts on Deviantart (first-ever art account), Tumblr, Twitter, and even Facebook (an actual Page, though if I recall, it's for the previous draft of my comic). With this forum as an exception (since we're using it right now and all lol), my personal experiences have been like this:

    Deviantart: Good place for getting your style noticed, though it's more noticeable if you start with fan art, of course. Once you start going Original Content, though, it could go both ways - if you were popular enough in the fan art stages, you'll get a decent initial supporter group for what you do (may not be able to fund, but at least there are fans you like your work no matter what at first), but if you do it TOO suddenly (like I did) then poof! There go the followers...I'm still trying to pick myself back up on that site after switching to OC. At this point, though, only the same 3 people fave my OC works, and the only way I get more reactions from other arts is if I use the Groups system (especially all the yuri/lgbt groups I'm part of...but some of those folks are just looking at the individual art rather than giving the Artist Comments a view - where I link the comic, basically)....As it currently stands, my DA account is the slowest to update now BECAUSE I've just not seen as much interactivity or even reactions as my other sites. (Also, Wix acquiring the site recently makes the future an uncertain one, indeed)

    Tumblr: Second place I went to chronologically, during the Ask Blog explosion (I thought I could get some follower-ship via having one of those; it kinda worked! Got some followers to this day that met me through an MLP Ask Blog I did despite me not being in to that anymore). Another good place for fandom stuff, but because Tumblr is also into diversity and the like, people like seeing OC stuff that features diversity in some form. The best pieces that go viral there are the ones with little to no commentary underneath the images (maybe links to other sites at most but the less to read after seeing the pic, the better?) and if you use tags like "artists on tumblr" or "comics on tumblr" and the like, since there's a slim chance your work MAY get featured on the log-in page or the sideblog things alongside your dashboard. But then again, there's stuff like Tumblr Savior, which some people DO use to just block any specific fandom content or even original content they don't want to bother with. One could avoid that problem by not using tags, but that just opens up another can of worms...

    Twitter: I had an account since I left high school, apparently, but I didn't actively use it until just last year. And boy, did it pick up FAST! I still don't have MUCH of a following there right now, but compared to how slow it took to get noticed on DA and Tumblr, this one has a quicker follower reaction. And while the 140 character limit does have its, well, limits, it is very useful for quick one-liners and questions anyone may have and one can easily talk to just about anyone there, even if it ends up being one-sided (others may notice your commentary, too, thanks to the @s and the #s!) This is also the easiest to just have on your phone and make quick updates without feeling like you're taking up precious creating time.

    Facebook: I tried. Genuinely tried. It died off within 2 weeks because 1) I only use my main FB account for family contacting and 2) All those algorithms and stuff REALLY hurt you if you're just up-and-coming. Also, as I learned over the years, a lot of my followers don't even use FB, so it wouldn't go far signal-boost-wise anyway...So my page just kinda fell into oblivion. And then I deleted it.
     
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  10. micahdraws

    micahdraws Blue Belt

    On the subject of deviantart, I've avoided using it for the past several years.

    With the advent of the Groups system, I found that people are much more likely to follow groups than individual artists. This makes it really tough to find people who will invest in your original work, let alone any fan work you create. I have heard DA is incredible for anyone who can make it work. Unfortunately, it seems like the only way to really get noticed there is to throw your art bodily at any and every Group you can find. It's a lot of effort and I feel like it's not a lot of return on that investment.

    On Tumblr, I've found the best luck by making friends within fan areas. The people most excited for the Sparrow on Tumblr are people I connected with through other fandoms (most of them Green Lantern, but a few from elsewhere). That said, don't let your follower count on Tumblr fool you. I have over 900 followers on my art blog but most of my pieces are still lucky to get more than 5 likes/reblogs from my followers. If I draw fan art and tag it these days, it often makes the rounds but most of the time it feels like only a very small group of my followers even notices my posts.
     
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  11. Funari

    Funari 4-Stripe White Belt

    Oh yeah, I forgot to mention the porn bots that are all over Tumblr, too. They'll swarm you whether it's a tag that TENDS to be nsfw at times (ex. I use 'yuri') or if it's just a general tag that is popular at the moment (ex. if you decide to jump on a meme bandwagon)...Whether it's reblogs or follows, they will get to you x.x

    I've had less of that experience on Twitter. Bots exist, of course, but they don't hit you as often as the Tumblrbots do.
     
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  12. Wakaxo

    Wakaxo 4-Stripe White Belt

    I don't know if it's useful to be EVERYWHERE, but I think it's practical to promote on at least a few sites, as not everyone uses the same sites. Like I never go on Facebook, so if you only promote your comic there, I would never see it.
     
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  13. jynksie

    jynksie White Belt

    The theme developing from these responses are definitely what I was hoping to hear from all of you. I do agree that using several different platforms can only help you gain exposure, my struggle has been on which ones are worthy of investing my time and efforts. Facebook seems convoluted and I found my attempts to make anything work with it, wasted time. I think I can feel confident now about my desire to give Facebook the ole heave-ho!

    I have been reading your discussions in another thread on webtoons vs tapastic and that's something I may want to touch more on over on that topic at some point. To me, those make sense for attempting to pull in readers, more-so than networking w/ peers. I've always used twitter as more of a networking tool for connecting with creative peers, than to find readers, although twitter does do a great job of collecting both peers and readers. I'm not a huge user of social media, but twitter, it's my number 1! I know I need to expand beyond it.

    You've definitely given me better alternatives to consider, so thank you for that! Much appreciated.
     
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  14. jynksie

    jynksie White Belt

    I'm trying to figure out a way to be smart about this, so that I'm not wasting my time on entities that are just a waste of time and effort. I tend to have a mindset where many of the social media options are a redux of one another. I don't want to spin my wheels, if twitter can do more for me, than say facebook or google+. Or that tumblr and instagram can do more than pinterest. etc. Thats not even taking into account comic portal sites, like tapastic/webtoons/comicrocket/inkoutbreak etc. Thanks Anna!
     
  15. Screaming Rat

    Screaming Rat White Belt

    Re, Facebook: I tend to find that a lot of the erm, older audience, are on facebook more than anything else. If you write a campy YA webcomic then maybe that's not the thing for you, but I know for my etsy and pet portrait related stuff being shared into the "Facebook Mum" circles is invaluable.
     
  16. midlandiania

    midlandiania 4-Stripe White Belt

    Wot, no Myspace?!

    For older folk Facebook has turned into something more like a free-to-use version of Friends Reunited. It also serves as the successor to those 'round robin' letters your parents probably used to get with Christmas cards from someone they haven't seen since the 1980s.

    There aren't many things I would say I hate, but Facebook is one of them, and from a quick skim-read of this thread, I feel a strange pleasure in seeing that I'm not alone in that.
     
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  17. Shaneoid

    Shaneoid Purple Belt

    I've found (and joined) some Facebook groups for Webcomics, and they have thousands of members, apparently. However, most are closed groups, so any posts you make wont reach the general populace as Twitter does, and also there are only two groups I've found where the staff make any effort to keep people interacting o_O Like most forums, it's mostly creators with the same old questions ricocheting back and forth and feels (to me) more insular, so without the option to promote yourself (against the rules) it doesn't seem to take off as much as Twitter does.
     
  18. Screaming Rat

    Screaming Rat White Belt

    I have a question that's sort of related, but if it's too tangential I'll make another thread for it.

    Has anyone had any luck finding work through social media? I know some film people who use facebook a lot to share job opportunities but I've never really seen a similar thing in art circles. Does anyone actually use LinkedIn?
     
  19. Ashley

    Ashley White Belt

    I'm pretty sure LinkedIn only exists to send you 100 emails a day for the rest of your life after making an account.

    In my experience Facebook is big for writers (and the poetry scene, surprisingly?) but not so much for artists (understandably I think, cuz FB is horrible). The biggest networking successes for art I've had have all been on Twitter! A lot of folks in comics will post calls for artists there, and you can gain a lot of traction by responding with your portfolio/sample images. Not always a guaranteed job, but it puts you in front of more people who might want to hire you.
     
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  20. R:ILPERSONA

    R:ILPERSONA Blue Belt

    Facebook is horrible and their pay for play system is seriously suspect (fake traffic suspect)...I only keep up my marketing effort on there because I'm obsessed with consistency, otherwise I wouldn't bother. I mainly like it to become cool with other creators now honestly lol.
     

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