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POSTING TO TWITTER & FACEBOOK EFFECTIVELY
One way to learn how to do something effectively is to find someone else who is doing it well.
Amazon knows a thing or two (!) about marketing. So let’s see how Amazon uses Twitter and Facebook.
Obviously, Amazon has a huge advantage when it comes to building a following. People seek out Amazon because the company is famous.
But… just like everyone else, Amazon must tweet and post to Facebook effectively in order to engage that audience.
So what we might learn from Amazon is how to engage an audience with Twitter and Facebook.
Let’s look at two examples from Amazon. If you’re an author, these pages are actually relevant. They post a lot of helpful publishing tips, so it’s worth following these particular Amazon pages.
AMAZON KDP’S TWITTER & FACEBOOK PAGES
First, we’ll look at Amazon KDP.
You can check out Amazon’s Twitter page here:
Here is the Amazon KDP Facebook page:
CREATESPACE’S TWITTER & FACEBOOK PAGES
Next, check out CreateSpace.
Here is CreateSpace’s Twitter page:
Find CreateSpace’s Facebook page here:
HOW AMAZON TWEETS
At both Amazon KDP and CreateSpace, look at their recent tweets.
Here are a few things that I notice:
- About 25% of the tweets include images.
- Both KDP and CreateSpace post 1-2 times per day.
- The images in the tweets are consistent in size. They are 1024 x 512 (or 1024 x 576).
- The way the images are spread out and the same size gives a nice appearance.
- Most of their images feature writing or reading, consistent with the brand. These are publishing services.
- The images look nice. They also include a small quote or a little text, just large enough to read, but not imposing, out of the way of the foreground.
- The tweets provide links to relevant and helpful content for their target audience, i.e. the content relates to authorship or publishing.
- The tweets usually include a single, but highly relevant hashtag.
- Many of the tweets link to other helpful sites, e.g. articles, contests, or posts appearing on author’s blogs. (KDP actually linked to one of my blog posts a few weeks back, and CreateSpace did this with a different post of mine more recently; you can still find the link to my name readily at CreateSpace.) That’s pretty cool that they link to authors’ blogs.
- Most of the tweets going to other sites (i.e. not Amazon) specify “via” and include the @ to designate the author’s Twitter handle.
- The information found in the links is often very useful to authors. Content is king.
DIFFERENCES WITH FACEBOOK
Now look at the Facebook pages for CreateSpace and KDP.
I notice much of the same as noted above, but there are a few differences:
- The images are more square. They are usually about 940 x 748. Amazon knows which size works best for each.
- Every post has an image, instead of just 25% of the posts.
- Amazon makes its own image and uploads that image for the post. If you click on the links, you’ll see that the images on those pages are different. (If you simply insert a url into a Facebook post, Facebook automatically finds an image to show, if available. Amazon inserts its own image instead, and Amazon’s image is the one that shows.) Using their own images helps Amazon achieve a consistent brand on their site, and ensures a uniformity in size, too. (Plus, then there is no question about image use rights.)
- The Facebook posts appears to engage the target audience over a much longer period of time. I still get a few referrals from a link to one of my articles (about the use of color in cover design) that was posted by CreateSpace on Facebook over a week ago, whereas the referrals from Twitter dropped off after just a few days.
- Although KDP and CreateSpace post the same url links at Facebook and Twitter, they don’t simply feed the posts from one to the other. They actually take the time to post separately to both Facebook and Twitter. The wording is different. The photos are sometimes the same, but cropped differently so that Twitter’s photo is 1024 x 512 and Facebook’s photo is 940 x 748. (Don’t simply change the aspect ratio to do this. Crop them differently.)
WORDPRESS TO TWITTER & FACEBOOK
So we shouldn’t auto-feed our posts from WordPress to Twitter and Facebook. (I’ve been guilty of that. But now I’m seeing the light.)
- The image size that works best isn’t the same across all platforms. Amazon uses 1024 x 512 (or 1024 x 576) at Twitter and crops it to 940 x 748 for Facebook. The squarer look appears better at Facebook; the more rectangular look appears better at Twitter. Amazon has a uniform look on both sites by feeding separately.
- The auto-feed to Twitter doesn’t show the photo from WordPress. Note that Amazon only includes a photo with about 25% of their posts at Twitter, but 100% at Facebook.
- Amazon changes the wording of the posts from one site to the other. This way, people who follow you at both Twitter and Facebook get a little variety, even when both posts link to the same article.
Copyright © 2015
Chris McMullen, Author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers
- Volume 1 on formatting and publishing
- Volume 2 on marketability and marketing
- 4-in-1 Boxed set includes both volumes and more
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