Thursday, September 12, 2013

Using MetaTags

If you want readers to find your self-published work, you need to know about Metadata.

Wondering what metadata is? It’s keywords that drive searches. When someone is searching for your book, say on Google, they enter phrases or words. It could be your name or book title, but it could also be something like “sci-fi historical romance.” If you know your audience, you can determine what your meta tagwords are.

Carla King, the author of an article, “A Self-Publisher’s Guide to Metadata for Books,” takes you through providing the metadata for your book. The article, though written three years ago, is still relevant. She covers these topics:
Identifying Your Keywords
Provide Metadata for Your Book on Bowker
Metadata in Documents and Other Media
Metadata on Reseller Sites
Metadata on Social Media Sites
The Future of Metadata

It’s a very interesting article – worth reading and saving for future reference. Using metadata points readers to your book.

How many of you use metadata? Did you know you can create metadata for your Facebook “like” page? Did you know when you upload your book in Kindle format to Amazon, you have an opportunity to create metadata that point to your book? Did you know that every Word document contains metadata?


Helen Ginger
is an author, blogger, and the Coordinator of Story Circle Network's Editorial Services and writing coach. She teaches public speaking as well as writing and marketing workshops. You can follow Helen on Twitter or connect with her on Facebook and LinkedIn. Helen is the author of 3 books in TSTC Publishing’s TechCareers series, Angel Sometimes, and two of her short stories can be found in the anthology, The Corner Cafe. Her next book, Dismembering the Past, is due out in 2013.

14 comments :

  1. Okay, Helen, here's knot in this post: 'When someone is searching for your book, say on Google, they enter phrases or words.' If someone ... anyone ... was searching for my book, I'd be floored.

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    1. Christopher, all a reader would have to do to find your books is search for "funny".

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    2. Or Funny Christoper - that should bring up plenty of hits! LOL.

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  2. Courtney Milan, in her talk about self-publishing, mentioned how important it was to have searchable key words in the first 2 sentences of your book's description. Likewise, your website's home page should be filled with key words. One thing I learned: the bots that find all these words don't see all caps. So, make sure your book titles are in normal title case. Bold is fine, as are italics. And stick more metadata into those 'alt' tags when you upload pictures, because bots can't see pictures, either.

    Terry
    Terry's Place

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Terry. The more we know, the more we can do!

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    2. Also in the subject line of your blog! Clever titles are okay for your human readers, but the search engines just want to understand. So a simple subject line that reads "Meta Tags" would probably be better than "Rocking the Hit World with Your Blog." Just as an example.

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    3. Terry I didn't know that about all caps—will have to go change that at my website. Thanks!

      And Dani, that pedestrian titling goes against the creative grain, but makes sense. Thanks for the reminder.

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  3. Good to know about FB "Like" pages. Can tags be manipulated by the page owner? I just went looking but can't see how. Thanks Helen!

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    1. This might make another good BRP post.

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  4. Thank you for this post, Helen. Metadata is something I've known I needed to learn more about and now you've given me the push to do so.

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    1. It's one of those behind-the-scene things that can go unnoticed.

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  5. Another essential area for this non-techie to explore... Will be updating websites in October, so this is great info, Helen.

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  6. Looks like I have some homework to do too... Thanks :)

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  7. One more marketing activity to learn. Thanks for this. I know we need to do it, but I just want to write! (I know, don't we all?) But I do recognise that we need to be active in this way, if we're to attract readers, which, after all, is what writing is all about.

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The Blood-Red Pencil is a blog focusing on editing and writing advice. Some of our contributors are editors, some are authors, and some are writing sheep. Yes, sheep.

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