Post This, Not That: Social Media Edits That Make A Huge Difference

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Want to know how to improve the response rate and reach of your Twitter tweets and your posts on your author Facebook page? Our social media experts are here to share key insights about how to write posts  and tweets that will engage readers, build fans, and boost your reputation as a writer!

Post This, Not That: Tips For Writing Effective, Share-Worthy Tweets and Facebook Posts

Original: What do you like to write with?

Edit: Which is better, pencil or pen?

Why It Works Better Now: We’ve used a simplified example here to make the point that asking “multiple choice” questions can generate a bigger response than asking open-ended questions. When people are multitasking by viewing Facebook on smartphone screens, they’re not focused enough—and may not have the time—to offer an answer that requires a lot of thought. Provide your fans and followers with a choice of answers so they can easily interact with you! Questions should be easy, direct, and able to be answered immediately.

That said, there’s no need to take this suggestion as a rigid rule; sometimes, you should ask open-ended questions to generate lively discussions—when the topic calls for it. But if it is possible to use “multiple choice” phrasing, consider that option.


Original: I love reading while on vacation. #reading #vacation

Edit: Enjoying the sunshine and reading a great book. Does life get any better?

Why It Works Better Now: Most people know that it’s dangerous to say you’re on vacation—so if you can help it, don’t. And if you must say you’re on vacation, follow these social media vacation safety tips.

Social Media Secret: Research suggests that while hashtags are wildly popular on Twitter, they don’t resonate as strongly on Facebook.


Original: Just got out of work. What a crummy day.

Edit: Just got out of work. So glad this day is over! Bubble bath, here I come.

Why It Works Better Now: Tweets and posts that embrace a positive attitude tend to resonate better with audiences than those that are negative. So if you want to post about your bad day, feel free. But try to do so with thoughts of silver linings. Learn more about Facebook etiquette.


Original: My new book is out! I’m so excited that I just made the bestseller list. Go me!

Edit: My new book just made the bestseller list. I could really use your help to spread the word. If my book [link below] sounds interesting to you or someone you know, will you share it? Thanks for celebrating with me!

Why It Works Better Now: Sure, our edit is a little on the long side, but where the original post sounds like bragging, the edit gets the same information across with more humility. Where the first post sounds like Facebook advertising and makes readers unsure of how to respond, the second offers a clear directive for what to do next.

Social Media Secret: There are conflicting philosophies about posting calls to action on Facebook. Some people claim that Facebook algorithms penalize posts that use phrases such as “please like this post.” But marketing experts continue to stress the importance of giving your audience a clear directive. Experiment to decide if the trade-off may be worth it to you.


Original: The news that came out about [author name here] last week is so crazy!

Edit: I’m so excited about [author’s name]’s new book coming out next week. I will be standing in line at the bookstore, for sure!

Why It Works Better Now: The first post is vague and outdated. On social media, five minutes is the equivalent of a century! The revised post is specific and offers a positive spin that anticipates exciting news (and for some readers, it might even be new information). People love sharing “new” news.

Want To Write Better Social Media Posts? Think Like A Writer

Writing is a two-step process: First, you generate ideas (without limitation or censure). Then you tap into the analytical, left side of your brain and make your edits. When you approach your social media with a writerly philosophy, you could see your engagement rates climb!


Question:  Do you use social media to promote your writer brand?


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