“Check out my blog” I tweeted, and almost nobody did – I got exactly what I deserved

But I learned my lesson.

So a day or two later, I tweeted the following: “Why telling the truth rarely works,” along with a link to my post, Does Your Copy Tell or Compel. That’s when a fair following of people clicked through to my blog.

  • My first tweet was all about me, no matter how humbly or simply I worded it, so few readers responded.
  • The follow-up tweet promised an interesting read on a topic my audience cared about – it was all about them and they responded accordingly.
  • In both cases I got exactly what I deserved

Here’s how this works outside of Twitter headlines

Let’s say you own a local restaurant.  If you have a FaceBook page, what do you think should be on it?

Of course, you’ll likely have some pictures of the restaurant up, and maybe even the menu, but what should the majority of your status updates focus on?

If you’re aiming to deserve social media success, here’s what I’d recommend:

  1. Announcement of FB-friend only specials. Doesn’t have to be a savings or sale, it could simply be an off-menu special that only your FB friends know about.
  2. Pictures of your guests (posted with their permission). Take photos of your patrons and diners and ask them either for their FB names so you can tag them in the photos, or encourage them to Friend you and tag the photos themselves.
  3. A few behind-the-scenes pics and comments to let people know about the extra effort you go through to make sure the food is outstanding.  Let them see some of your passion without making too big a deal about it.

Notice that 2 out of 3 recommended updates are focused on your customers – it’s all about them – and that even the last item is indirectly about the customer, as the customers are the focus and beneficiaries of all the hard work and passion the suggested updates would be documenting. Former Grok readers will recognize this as a case of customer-centric versus we-we copy.

And the great thing about this near universal principle?  You can test it for yourself with almost no risk or investment. Social Media provides near-instant feedback and your test can be as close as your next tweet, status update, or blog post.

Give it a shot and see if these principles don’t work for you.  I already know they’ve worked for me and for my wife’s photography business.


  1. Carlin on 10.26.2009

    Hi Jeff
    Thanks for writing such a clear, simple to understand post about how to make Social Media work. I found your blog through the Wizard’s rabbit hole. Now that’s a phrase hopefully lots of people can figure out, eh?
    Best wishes