25 Tips for Posting on Social Media

posting on social media

Note: This is a completely version of a previous post.


Posting on social media can be a quandary for some authors.

Regardless of all the tips posted online, when it comes to a personal decision, many writers don’t know what they should say, especially once they learn that always talking about their books and blog posts is verboten (forbidden).

I get it.

Here’s my confession: I sometimes struggle with what to say on my Facebook profile. My life just isn’t that exciting, you know?

And I’m not into posting selfies. I’m just not that photogenic.

But when it comes to my professional social media accounts — my Facebook page, and Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, and Google+ accounts, I have no problem.

Why? Because I know that on those accounts I need to balance inspirational and education information. I want to encourage people, post images, and ask questions.

I have those platforms down, so to speak.

I want you to feel the same way. I don’t want you to ever feel insecure about what you’re posting or sit in front of a blinking cursor wondering, “What the heck should I say?”

So let’s get to it.

You Need Great Content on Your Blog & on Social Media

Sometimes content you found on the internet years ago can still apply. I know that I posting on social media use these tips that I found a few years ago from Search Engine Land. I consider their advice the meat and potatoes of everything I write online.

  • Is the content informative?
  • Is it authoritative on the subject matter?
  • Is it interesting?
  • Is it well-written?
  • Is longer content broken up into well-organized sections by headings? You may have long paragraphs in your books, but that style doesn’t work for blogging or for your social media posts.
  • Does the content make good and interesting use of visual elements? Remember, you need to include images with your blog posts. Multiple photos keep people reading your blog posts. On social media, pictures are a must.
  • Is the writing free of embarrassing spelling errors or remedial grammar problems? I use Grammarly to check my writing and punctuation. Are you using an editing application to check yours?
  • Is it written appropriately for its intended audience? How well do you know your audience? Are you writing for women in their 30’s or men 40 and older? You must know your audience if you expect to sell any books. The same is true for your audience on your blog and on social media.
  • Is the content free of industry-insider jargon, focusing instead on terminology your readers would use (and search for)? Get rid of all jargon and cliches before tapping the publish button.
  • When appropriate, does the content show your unique voice or even a sense of humor? Are your snarky or quirky? Don’t be afraid to show your real self. Being authentic will enhance your brand. Embrace who you are and don’t be afraid to show those sides of yourself online.

The above suggestions apply mostly to blog writing, but you can adapt some of them for social media.

You can also use these suggestions to evaluate blog posts written by other people you might want to share. Since 80% of the content, you discuss on social media will be from sources other than your own, ask yourself if that content incorporates the above suggestions.

If it doesn’t, don’t use it.

So what will you post 20% of the time when you can talk about yourself? When you think about it, you’re still going to be posting quite a bit of information that emanates from you.

What should you say?

posting on social media

25 Tips for Posting on Social Media

Here are some examples of great content for your social media profiles:

  1. Quotes
  2. Polls
  3. Statistics or data
  4. Questions
  5. Branded images
  6. Infographics
  7. Tips
  8. Recommendations of books you love (use the hashtag #FridayReads on Twitter when you do this)
  9. Request for advice
  10. TBT: Throwback Thursday image
  11. Sharing a meme or comic
  12. Sharing a testimonial for your book
  13. Contests
  14. Video
  15. Controversial questions
  16. Fill-in-the-blank posts (“If I were the boss I would _______.”)
  17. Ask for input on your next book cover.
  18. Ask for reviews.
  19. Ask for advice.
  20. Put up a photo and ask for a caption.
  21. Acknowledge unusual holidays.
  22. Ask for input on names of characters for a book you’re working on.
  23. Share a great sentence from a recent blog post you wrote.
  24. Share a writing prompt.
  25. Talk about what inspired you today.

I’ve been considering adopting a German shepherd. So what did I do?

I turned to Facebook and asked if anyone had a German shepherd and what they thought of the breed. (Until now, I’ve always adopted black Labs.)

The response was phenomenal. Friends posted pictures of their German shepherds.

One person queried why would anyone not have a German shepherd. According to her, German shepherds are the best dogs. Period.

My question is just one example of why I love social media. You receive so much support.

When my dog Dixie died in June, the outpouring of support was tremendous and comforting.

On your Facebook author page, remember to narrow your focus and become known for always posting the best and most up-to-date information in your field.

8 More Tips for Posting on Social Media

  1. If you’re writing a cookbook filled with delicious, gluten-free recipes, you can also post the latest findings in Celiac disease or about new food manufacturers making it easy to follow a strict, gluten-free diet. Don’t forget to post pictures of your gluten-free dishes and baked goods, too.
  2. Did you write a novel featuring a woman entrepreneur or CEO? Write posts about issues that women in business face.
  3. If your novel is set in France, look for information about the particular era you write about and look for dreamy images of France on Pinterest and the specific cities where your characters live. Create pinboards for each town your characters visit or live in and the clothing you imagine they would wear. You can even create a board of your characters’ favorite authors.
  4. Do you love to hike? If your book is about hiking, look for information on new equipment that makes camping and backpacking easy, discuss great hiking trails, and post images from areas you’ve hiked in.
  5. If you write historical fiction, you might want to post information about current political events in the country featured in your novel and images of the clothing the people wore in that era.
  6. If you love to write about the 1960s, create pinboards on Pinterest that include retro bell-bottom pants, white boots, flowered skirts, and peasant blouses.
  7. Do you write about vampires? Review movies that feature vampires and zombies or explore myths about the walking dead.
  8. Do you write poetry? Include quotes from your favorite poets. Repin image quotes from poetry or create some yourself – for Pinterest. Also, post excerpts from your own poetry and created backdrops for your poems using copyright free image sites and Canva.com.

Remember to narrow your focus and become known for always posting the best and most up-to-date information in your field.

On your blog and your social media accounts, your reputation rests on the content you disseminate.

If you write nonfiction, become an authority in your niche. If you write fiction, network with your colleagues and readers and strive to become known for your content.

Remain objective and stay clear of the potentially alienating arguments that can occur in some pockets of social media. Your blood pressure will thank you.

What questions do you still have about social media content? (Yes, I’d really love to know!)

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, and finding new readers. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

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Comments

  1. Sorry but I disagree re this timing thing. As an author I have a worldwide audience who are awake 24/7 by limiting my interactions on SM by my local time I’m limiting my audience.
    Sumall also shows me & my mentions reveal that my Twitter is MUCH busier on weekends when my readers have free time to have fun on SM. So I recommend weekends which last around the planet for at least 3 days.

    • The social media calendar I shared is generally true but as I mentioned, it’s important to look at your analytics to determine the best times for your readership. The calendar is really just a general guide that a lot of social media people use. The true test comes from looking at Insights on Facebook or signing up for SocialBro or Tweriod to find out when your readers are online. I’m so glad you’ve figured out when your readers are online.

  2. Love it! So sharing it! My dilemma is still ‘the timing’ of posts because I engage with folk who live in the UK and US West Coast. I post for my Eastern time zone and at funky hours to accommodate theirs. Twitteroid helped me discover most Tweeps are online at 11:30 am ET, so that helps me focus Twitter.

    • Tweriod is great! Glad that app has helped you. I think we all face this problem that’s why it’s a good idea to post tweets as early as 4 am PT and into the evening. Thanks for leaving a comment!

  3. I found most of these suggestions helpful and the information somewhat enlightening, especially scheduling social media posts. I do find many of the Forbes suggestions to be off-base, however.

    If I see tweets of many of the things the Forbes’ article suggested tweeting, such as statistics, polls, etc., more than once or twice by the same person, whether it’s a writer or someone else, I mute them, or if they are re-tweeting, I turn off their RTs. If I mute them, I won’t see their tweets announcing their new books, new reviews, giveaways, price cuts on Kindle, etc., because they posted too much of what I perceived as spam and basically cut off their access to me as a consumer.

    I would actually prefer to learn about the writer’s personality through interesting original posts, such as a few words of commentary on life, or something I can relate to, such as why do people drive slow in the fast lane. I find I make a connection to a writer (or actor or singer, etc.) by the person letting me a little bit into his or her brain and personal life–but not too personal, that gets creepy. I admit it’s a fine line.

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