Facebook is my happy place. I hang out there a lot – I get paid to hang out on Facebook. One of the questions I’m asked the most is how much of your own content and how much content from others do you post?
There’s not really a one-size fits all answer because different audiences like to see and engage with different combinations of content.
Posting only your own content can make you appear narcissistic or one-dimensional (aka boring). Only posting content from others means your fans never see your writing skills. However, leaving gaps where you don’t post anything for days means Facebook won’t show your content to anyone. You need balance.
Profile vs Page
If you’re using a Profile (where you’re asked to Friend someone), be very careful asking people to buy things directly, posting picture after picture of your book cover, repeatedly posting about whatever boxed set you’re a part of. Facebook users have little tolerance for seeing the same content and they will report you for spamming.
Then you’ll be shut down without appeal (and I’m hearing about this a lot). You’ve been warned.
On a Page (where you’re asked to Like or Follow), you can post a lot more promotional content without penalty from Facebook, but your reach will be throttled if you’re directly asking people to: like, share, comment, buy, click here, etc. Be creative.
When Posting Links To Your Own Content
Make sure you craft a really great hook that will convince people to click through to your blog. With every link to your own content, ask yourself: what value is this content offering and would I click through on this hook? The image that appears with the link is super important, as is the post title. Edit accordingly.
Sharing Content From Others
Remember that each piece of content needs to have a purpose; know what you want it to do for you. You’re not posting this content to get clicks to a blog you don’t own, right? You’re adding value for fans or friends, so use it to get a conversation going.
Let people know why you’re sharing this content. Did it make you mad? Encourage you? Make you laugh? Ask a question to get a conversation going. Remember your brand. Unless you write about cats, or you’re posting a picture of YOUR cat, maybe don’t share cat pics.
Where do you find great content to share? I have two main ways I curate content. I create Interest Lists on Facebook so I can scroll through posts when I need something to share. I have the same strategy on Twitter and G+.
I try to set aside a chunk of time to curate links for the Pages I administrate and schedule them to appear throughout the week. I just find that’s a better use of my time. I always give credit and tag the original poster when I can. They would probably prefer I share it directly from their post, and when it’s timely I will, but I’m not breaking Facebook etiquette doing it the other way either.
How much of your own content do you share? How much of the content you post on Facebook is created by someone else? What ratio of your own content vs curated content works for your Facebook audience?
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Lisa Hall-Wilson is a freelance journalist and writer, and columnist. She writes dark fantasy fiction, and helps writers learn to enjoy Facebook as much as she does.
Lisa is teaching a live webinar called Using A Facebook Profile to Build Platform on June 10 from 7-8:30 US Eastern Time. WITS readers can use the code Lisa20 for 20% off the regular price.
Find Lisa on Facebook at