Maximizing Facebook–What We Can Learn From Puppy Dog Eyes and LOL Cats
You may be surprised to see me guest posting here again after the totally-blown-out-of-proportion kidnapping thing a while ago. *rolls eyes* What good is a friend who isn’t willing to do a social media intervention every so often? You’ll notice Kristen hasn’t been as hostile towards Facebook lately.
Point for me! *pumps fist*
It’s all good. Kristen and I exchanged chocolate and GF cookies…and I used the cat’s laser pointer to distract her. Soooooo, while Kristen is chasing the red dot, let’s talk FACEBOOK.
The one question I get asked about a lot is how to increase engagement on a Facebook page or profile. Engagement is the name of the game. Every click, like, share and comment on the content you post tells Facebook that people find you interesting.
When you become interesting, Facebook assumes more people will want to see your content, and shows your content to more people. Yay – see why it’s important. (This is a simplified answer.)
Yeah – I get that. But how do I increase engagement?
You may have noticed the proliferation of photos on Facebook — 300million+ photos uploaded daily. There’s a reason for that.
Facebook assigns a weight (value) to different kinds of content.
Links have the lowest weight, then status updates, and photos are given the most weight by Facebook, meaning your photos are more likely to be seen than your links or status updates. Similarly Facebook assigns value to the kinds of interaction your content receives with clicks receiving the lowest weight, then likes, with comments and shares given the most weight.
Always vary your content, don’t go all hairy wild on posting photos, but interesting and engaging photos should be part of your strategy.
So by posting a photo, your content is potentially seen by more eyeballs than if you posted a status update or a link. When people engage with that content (likes are good, comments and shares are better), Facebook will make sure that content is seen by even more people.
Romance writers instinctively know how to leverage this because they post pics of men – inspiration photos for their characters, they encourage fans to post photos of their characters, etc. And these photos encourage a flurry of likes and shares. (They post other things too.)
But I’m not a romance author. That won’t work for me.
This works for any kind of author.
Here’s a snapshot of WANA Instructor Marcy Kennedy’s page from yesterday.
Marcy’s tagline says: “Fantasy novelist and proud geek. I blog about the intersection between fiction and life because fantasy is more real than you think.” She posts all kinds of geeky stuff her fans love. Every Thursday she does a Would You Rather post – a very geeky thing to do, but that’s her brand.
Instead of writing the Would You Rather question as a status update she turns it into a simple graphic. Images receive a lot of real estate in newsfeeds, and the nature of the graphics she uses invites engagement (comments) and builds community and her brand.
Part of the reason this works so well for Marcy is the kind of question she’s asking as well. She asks questions people have an opinion about, but opinions they can share and not offend anyone with. (**Bonus tip: Non-Fiction author and WANA Instructor Leanne Shirtliffe on her Ironic Mom Facebook page does this really well with status updates.)
Sharing Blog Posts
As I mentioned above, links have the least weight with Facebook – not to say you won’t get engagement with a link but more people will have the opportunity to see your content if you use a photo.
Don’t do this exclusively, change it up, but try this strategy. Instead of just posting a link and allowing Facebook to pull in the small thumbnail image for the post, upload the main photo from your blog post and include the link to the blog post in the photo description. Or take the extra step and edit the photo so the blog question is part of the photo.
Do you enjoy the photo sharing aspect of Facebook? Have you considered using photos to help build your brand on Facebook?
I’m teaching 2 short and sweet (and cheap) classes on using Facebook to build platform next week.
10 Essentials for Your Writer/Author Facebook Page on Tuesday evening. Everyone who signs up for the course can submit their page for a live critique during the webinar.
Using Your Facebook Profile to Build Platform is on Thursday night. I’m offering this course because so many people tell me they don’t want a page they want to use their profile. Bring your questions :D.
Thanks so much for joining me today! See you in class *waves*.
Thanks, Lisa for
kidnapping me the guest post, but I don’t think that red dot wants to be caught. Johnny Pocket and I have been working on it for the past hour.
OOH! SHINY! *lamp crashes*
Anyway, where was I? Oh yeah, I gotta admit, you, Lisa, are the only person with the powers to make me actually LIKE Facebook. I took one of your first classes and learned so much. So for my pals out there, TAKE HER CLASS. Facebook has a bazillion members, ergo is a powerful social platform. Lisa will help guide you to use time more wisely so you can get back to writing those books.
IT WRITES THE WORDS OR IT GETS THE HOSE! *pets fluffy white dog*
I love hearing from you!
To prove it and show my love, for the month of January, everyone who leaves a comment I will put your name in a hat. If you comment and link back to my blog on your blog, you get your name in the hat twice. If you leave a comment, and link back to my blog, and mention my book We Are Not Alone in your blog…you get your name in the hat THREE times. What do you win? The unvarnished truth from yours truly.
I will pick a winner once a month and it will be a critique of the first 20 pages of your novel, or your query letter, or your synopsis (5 pages or less).
And also, winners have a limited time to claim the prize, because what’s happening is there are actually quite a few people who never claim the critique, so I never know if the spam folder ate it or to look for it and then people miss out. I will also give my corporate e-mail to insure we connect and I will only have a week to return the 20 page edit.
At the end of January I will pick a winner for the monthly prize. Good luck!
I also hope you pick up copies of my best-selling books We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer . And both are recommended by the hottest agents and biggest authors in the biz. My methods teach you how to make building your author platform FUN. Build a platform and still have time left to write great books.