social media tips, social media engagementRecently I’ve noticed that a new author is dominating my news feeds and email in-box. It’s a great accomplishment, and as a fellow author and ghostwriter, I understand the pride and excitement to share the finished product and spread the word.

A Big Social Media DON’T

The trouble is – these posts and emails are only about book sales and where you can purchase the book. You probably already know where I’m going with this. Tuning. Out.

A big part of the social in social media is engagement. It’s difficult in real life to start establishing a relationship and in social media it’s even more difficult. Everyone, everyone, myself included, looks at emails, posts, articles and blogs, (yes even this one) through the WIIFM filter. What’s In It For Me?

To be blunt, why should I care? How does your post, blog, tweet, email or message help me? How does it solve my problem? Who is this person behind the messages? How can they help me and would they even if I don’t spend the $14.95 to buy the book? What do they really care about?

It’s just like getting stuck with that person at a party or networking event that can’t stop talking about themselves. On and on they go. It gets uncomfortable and you find yourself looking for a quick exit, or thankfully, an alert host can step in and redirect the conversation. At least on social media you have the unfollow or delete option.

I read a lot of books; I’ve bought a lot of books. Those that resonate are ones that truly serve and I often look for more from the author. Thankfully, they provide – whether it’s extra content, helpful posts or encouraging messages and memes through their social media. They also give me a glimpse of who they truly are beyond the product.

A Big Social Media DO

As you promote your book, blog, product or service – don’t make the tragic mistake of sounding like a carnival barker shouting at everyone to buy your stuff. Remember the first rule of social media – engagement. Ask questions, start discussions, and participate in your colleagues or readers’ platforms. Be a giver. Be a real person, share your challenges, not just your wins. Invite discussion. Give a tip or two. Be that graceful host that pays attention to how their guests feel.

If you are trying even harder to reach followers and they seem to be turning away, stop and take a closer look at your media presence. Are you shouting too loudly? Is it all about you or is there something in it for them.

If you need a fresh perspective, I offer a complimentary 15-minute strategy call where we’ll focus on your message – across the platforms of social media, website copy, articles, blogging and more. To schedule a call – click here. I’d love to help you put a Spark in your message.


Susan M Sparks offers copywriting, publishing services and coaching for aspiring authors. She is the author of four books and ghostwriter for many entrepreneurial non-fiction titles. She can be reached at