Self Promotion Etiquette


So as our communications change with all this social media we have an abundance of opportunities to share our views, ideas, and projects. The way to get the most visibility? Post your stuff everywhere. When does posting your stuff everywhere become spam though? Here are my thoughts and how I try to spread my blog and Facebook page to the masses without spamming or offending people.

First of all, I feel bad demanding that people “like and share” anything that I post (although I would sincerely appreciate it if more of you would do it). In the drive for recognition and followers and publicity – those of us who post our work or have a FB page rely on those likes and shares to spread whatever ideas or agendas we support. Especially if your project or blog is an income source. Those likes and shares represent income – so I can see why you want to post your new book on every post you see, however, I feel there is a right and wrong way to go about it.

Since I haven’t monetized my blog I don’t make money when people view my page, however, I love having those days where I post something and it is shared like crazy. My most popular blog so far has been Very Good Students and that took off like it did because I posted on the comments section of the article I read that prompted me to write it in the first place. That post ended up with over 900 views and over 700 new visitors to my blog and was shared on FB about 300 times (and it is still going). Obviously I wish every post garnered the attention that one did – but I also understand that part of promotion is relevance. I didn’t post a blog about puppies on the articles about the Steubenville rape trial. That in my eyes would have just been spam. I posted my reaction to their article with my article.

I am more than willing to promote anything on my blog or FB page, but when someone comments on a picture of Grumpy Cat with their latest Science Fiction novel;  I delete it and ban them from posting. Had they sent me a message and said, “Hey I wrote this book and I think your audience would like it can you please share it on your page?” I would have gladly posted the link if it was in fact appropriate for my audience. Or if I had posted something about up and coming authors – they could have posted their book in the comments and it would have stayed there.

When you post your stuff to other peoples pages and blogs – think about how you want people to promote themselves on your own page. I think every blogger and FB page owner has has to deal with spam and I am 100% sure that no one appreciates it. So why would you spam someone else’s work? When I wrote about depression, I asked FB pages that dealt with depression to share my posts. When I wrote about Women in Combat I shared it with the articles I was responding to and to other military affiliated pages that were discussing that particular issue. It is a matter of consideration for others and not just about promoting myself and my writing. Obviously I think everything I post is awesome and as many people should read it as humanly possible – however, just because we can share everything everywhere, doesn’t mean we should.

So the next time you want to promote your page, blog, or new novel share it in appropriate places. Ask people who share your sentiments to share it, and ensure that when you do post  links to your stuff in a comment stream make sure it is relevant to the conversation going on. Otherwise you are just being rude really and it makes people (well me) not want to help you out.

How do you guys deal with spam on your blogs and FB pages? What rules do you follow for self promotion? 





5 thoughts on “Self Promotion Etiquette

  1. I think that writing has to be about you first of all. When people start writing purely to get promoted then it’s gone too far. It’s nice to know a blog gets attention, but you don’t want to blog just for that following, you also want to blog about what you think needs to be said. To that extent, I don’t have a problem with people pinging back, I may check out their post and it’s actually pretty relevant stuff. I make sure that I don’t link to anything irrelevant either. I also use Facebook to share- but I only share once. I also try to keep the posting necessary- if it needs to be shared, I’ll share. I write when something needs to be said, I don’t write on a schedule. That helps to keep the blog “for me” and not “only to please others” I don’t feel obliged to post.

    • Jenn, thank you for reading and commenting. I blog for my entertainment, it’s like my own personal therapy. I also though love interacting with people about everything so I do want people to find this space who want to engage. I don’t care if there are three or three hundred of you – I write to an audience even if one isn’t there. 🙂 I also post everyday as a challenge to myself, not because the masses demand it. I’ve missed a few days here and there and there was no uprising! 🙂

  2. Pingback: Blogging Part 4: Etiquette Part II | SERENDIPITY

  3. My rule: Promotion, on social media, should sound like conversation, not advertisement. Anyone I promote to probably knows me on some level, and if I want them to read something I wrote, or something I read and like, I will ask them as a friend, not as an ad!

    Good stuff here.

    • Thank you! That is the rule I try to follow. Relevance and pursuing the conversation at hand. I am not posting my content on your page to promote my writing or my site. I am posting it because it is relevant to the conversation being discussed. Rather than engage in an argument on YOUR work, I will link to mine and let people engage me on MY site.

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