Community Member Q&A: Shelton Interactive

Shelton Interactive is an Austin-based full-service digital marketing and public relations firm. Founded in 2010 by Rusty Shelton, Shelton Interactive has represented numerous bestselling authors including Gary Keller (The One Thing), Katty Kay and Claire Shipman (The Confidence Code), and Tom Rath (Eat Move Sleep), just to name a few.
In addition to directing digital strategies for authors, Shelton Interactive is a proud Community Member of the Writers’ League of Texas. Read the interview below with Marketing and Sales Coordinator Wes Fang to find out more.

Wes Fang (3)Scribe:
Shelton Interactive offers public relations, social media strategy, web design & development, and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) for writers. Tell us some of the advantages for a writer working with a full-service digital marketing and public relations firm.
Wes Fang: It’s all about trying to make it as easy as possible for our clients. We are well aware of how difficult and time-consuming writing a book can be. Amidst trying to find time to actually write the book, the concept of also marketing the book can seem overwhelming.  That’s where we’re able to help out. Our full-service model is built to bring everything under one roof. That means seamless collaboration across all marketing services. As an author who doesn’t have a lot of time for marketing, it often makes sense to have one firm handle all publicity, social media, web development and design efforts, rather than try to juggle multiple vendors.
Scribe: When is a writer “ready” to explore your services and what’s the best way to get in touch?
WF: As a general rule of thumb, the earlier, the better. Some clients already have more of an online infrastructure established; others require a little more work. Regardless, the farther out we are from “launch date”, the more capable we are to offer guidance on what’s going to make the campaign a success. Often times an author will reach out and all we do is point them in the right direction. Our goal is to assist in any way possible, even if this means prolonging our work together and referring them to an agent, editor, or coach that best meets their needs.
Scribe: We hear more and more how important it is for writers to have a presence on social media and how important it is for branding. What’s your take on this?
WF: Social media is vital to building your brand. What we’re seeing nowadays is that individuals have the power to connect directly with their audience. We refer to this as micromedia, in other words, individuals viewing themselves as their own media outlet. Before, you could only be discovered if you were featured in Oprah’s book club or televised on TV. Nowadays, with social media, you can engage directly with your audience and more importantly, potential buyers of your book.
Scribe: What do you see are the one or two biggest challenges facing writers today when it comes to being heard in a crowded social media world?
WF: One of the biggest challenges we see with individuals new to social media is learning to use them as a listening tool. The common approach with social media is to use them as a way to voice opinions, share, thoughts, etc. This can be great unless no one is looking for what you have to say. More often than not, first time authors have little to no following on social media so op-ed style content falls on deaf ears.
Scribe: What’s your biggest piece of advice for meeting these challenges?
WF: The key to success in building a platform on social media is strategic listening; this is especially true for authors who don’t have a following. If an author isn’t sure where to reach their audience, places like Twitter and LinkedIn can be great resources to find thought-leaders, and more importantly, followers who are already engaged with their message. If you write about a similar topic, there is a strong likelihood that their following is the audience you want to build. Begin relationship building with these individuals by liking, commenting, sharing their posts.
Scribe: Pick one Texas-related book that has come out within the past year that you personally couldn’t put down.
WF: Brene Brown’s most recent book, Rising Strong, has been my jam. It discusses the power of vulnerability and how to rumble with emotions when we’re in the pits. It’s not necessarily a Texas-related book, but it’s by a Texas author – I guess that counts?
Scribe: What’s important to you about supporting the Writers’ League of Texas and being a community member?
WF: We support writers because they are the life-blood of creativity and learning. Every person’s message matters and we have the pleasure of helping spread the word.
Thanks, Wes!
Click here to visit Shelton Interactive’s website.
Are you a business or organization interested in getting involved?
Community Membership is a great way to connect with the Writers’ League’s membership base and share news and information about writing-related services and events. For more information on Community Membership click here or call our office at (512) 499-8914.

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