If you’re like most authors and/or business owners, then you are well aware you need to have a strong social media presence in today’s world. Things have majorly changed since the dawning of social media! We have a free and easy to use tool right in the palm of our hands that can help us build our brands, but most people are doing it wrong!
During this post you will learn:
- The most common mistakes people make on social media & how to fix it
- How Facebook algorithms work, and how they affect your pages
- What type content you should be posting on your pages
- What type of content you shouldn’t be posting
Common mistakes on social media
If you are not doing well with social media, then you are probably doing one or both of these things:
- You aren’t posting consistently enough
- You post mainly promotional stuff
You have to be posting consistently. It’s part of how Facebook’s algorithms work (we will go over this later), and it’s also a way for users to get to know you. If you rarely post, they won’t recognize you, so they probably won’t care about your once-per-month promo post.
When you post mostly promo content, your page comes across as spammy–it’s that simple–but it also has to do with…yes….algorithms (again, we will go over that soon, I promise). Even though you may only have a FB business page solely for promoting your business, your page will not be seen by hardly anyone if all you do is post promotional stuff. It’s kind of silly FB does that, when you think about it, because like I said before, it’s really the only reason you have one! My recommendation is only 25% of your posted content should be promotional stuff, at most! I usually sit around 1 promo out of every 6-10 posts . Now you know only 25% of your content should be promotional, but what about the rest of your posts??
How Facebook algorithms work
The rest of your posts should be engaging, and it has a lot to do with Facebook algorithms. Before we get into what type of posts, let’s break these pesky algorithms down…
The way these algorithms work can be pretty complicated, so I’m going to explain it in a way that is super easy for anyone to understand. Every post has a “point value.”
- 1 like = 1 point
- 1 comment = 1 point
- 1 share = 1 point
If your post has 2 likes and 2 shares, then the point value is 4. If your post has 50 likes, 25 shares, and 25 comments, then your post’s point value is 100. The more “points” your posts have, the more Facebook will show your post to more people. The reason they do this is because they want people scrolling through their feed. If people are only being shown things they don’t like, then people won’t use Facebook as much. So, when FB algorithms notices a post that is very popular (has a high “point” value”), then they assume this is great content to show their users. If it has a low point value, they throw it into the Facebook abyss.
You may be asking, “What good does it do me if posts that have nothing to do with my promotional work are getting a lot of engagement, but my promo content is not?” It does you a lot of good! For example, if you post something, and I like it, FB thinks Oh, she likes this, which means she must like this page’s content, so I’m going to start showing her this page’s posts more often. So, you’re basically posting this non-promotional stuff in order to get more eyes on your future promotional content, but also to get your audience to know you more.
Like I mentioned earlier, you also need to be posting consistently, and preferably every day! The more high-point posts you have on a consistent basis, FB will push your page and posts out even further. It’s also important to note that if you’re posting consistently, but they aren’t getting any engagement, it will actually hurt you! I made this mistake, at first. I was posting promotional posts every day, but my engagement seemed to be getting lower and lower. It’s because FB recognized that and thought People don’t like what she has to say, so I will show this to my users less because I don’t want to show them low quality content. Remember, their main goal is keeping their users glued to their news feeds by showing them hot and trending content.
Now you know that you need your posts to have high point values. But, you may be asking, “how in the world do I create posts that have high point values? Whenever I post something on my business page, I’m lucky to get one like.”
Content you should be posting
Let’s get back to what I alluded to before…your posts need to be engaging! If you want people to like and comment on your posts, then you need to give them a reason to like, comment, or share it.
I will give you a list of different types of posts that usually get a lot of “points.”
When you ask your audience a question, they are bound to answer it. This is especially true if you are asking them a simple question they can answer in a few seconds. For example, “Coke or pepsi?” Or “Ebooks or paperbacks?” or “Would you rather read only your favorite book for the rest of your life, or would you rather never be able to read your favorite book ever again, but get to read anything else?” These are simple questions that people can answer quickly, which makes them more likely to engage with the post. Also, for some odd reason, people love these sort of things. I think they’re kind of silly, but even I can’t help but to respond when I see these! I do these posts for my own pages and for my client’s pages all the time. I also post questions on #ThursdayThoughts that are often more thought-provoking. For example, “Why do you think less and less people are traditionally publishing, and instead going indie?” This requires more thought and time from the users, and probably won’t get as many “points” as the quick questions, but it’s good to mix things up a bit.
People love the Facebook games! There are so many different types of games you can play on Facebook. You can say, “Tell me your favorite book in GIF.” These always get a lot of points. Click here to view more examples.
I try to do one giveaway every month. If you don’t have money to give things away, then you can always give away free e-books of yours. This will not only be a post that gets a lot of engagement, but if you do it right, you can get a lot more out of it such as, but not limited to: more fb likes, mailing list subscribers, more shares, sales, etc.
The way I do this is one of two ways: I either use RaffleCopter or a Facebook post asking people to like, share, and comment on the post to enter the giveaway. For the sake of avoiding turning this post into a novel, I won’t go into too much detail about these now, but later in the week, I will go into more detail about my giveaways. If you want to be notified about these writing resources I post, then click here to subscribe to my mailing list.
Everyone loves memes! I usually post these on #MemeMonday and randomly throughout the week. These type of posts are one of my highest “point” posts. Pinterest is a great place to find memes related to your field!
Other than posting engaging posts to get more eyes on your page, you should also be posting things that bring value to your audience. For example, every Friday, I send my mailing list subscribers a free fantasy book that I hunt down on Amazon. I then take the url to that email, and I share it with my social media audience. I also post writing tips, blog posts that are related to writing or reading, other author’s giveaways, books, etc. All these things don’t necessarily get me sales at that moment, but it brings value to my readers; which will get me more sales in the long-run because my audience will appreciate the value I bring to their life. It’s a way of building a relationship between you and your audience.
Another thing that is great to post, mainly if you’re an author, are posts regarding your personal life: Vacation photos, family photos, etc. One time, I shared my binge-eating story with my audience, which has nothing to do with my books, but I thought my audience would appreciate my raw honesty.These shouldn’t necessarily be a consistent thing, but readers love getting a glimpse into author’s lives.
What you shouldn’t be posting
Now that you know what to post, let’s talk about what not to post.
Don’t post your personal drama on your business pages. This probably seems really obvious to most of you reading this, but you would be surprised how many people apparently haven’t got this memo! I know I said to get personal every once in a while, but do not get that personal! You also should not be posting about drama in the author world, unless you’re bringing a solution or something positive to it. One thing I see authors doing a lot, which is beyond smh-worthy, is calling other authors or people in the industry out on their pages. If someone in the community upsets you, keep it yourself. I understand if they’re running some big scam that is victimizing a lot of people, but most of the time I see this, they’re posting about really petty things. If you are posting drama on your pages, it will turn people off. It’s tacky. Simple as that!
Try to keep most of your content related to your field, which in most cases for people reading this post, it will be writing and/or books. It’s okay to post things outside of your field sometimes, like games and memes, but if you post too much unrelated content, it will confuse your audience about your brand.
Now, you may be saying, “I now understand how to utilize my social media pages better, but I honestly just don’t have the time to achieve this.” I have a solution! I actually offer a Social Media Assistance service through my company, A Novel Connection. With this service, I take everything you learned today, and I simply do it for you! My prices are very reasonable compared to others who offer this service, and I tailor it to your needs and the genre you write in. If you’re interested in learning more, then click here, fill out the form, and I will get back to you within 24 hours.