Social Media Assessment: What I Learned

In one of my posts last week, I shared my experience working with Frances Caballo of Social Media Just for Writers. Frances assessed my social media presence as well as my site. The outcome was beneficial in many respects, and Frances's comments brought greater clarity to how I spend my time.

A commenter suggested a post sharing the differences before and after Frances's assessment. Today I eagerly share those with you, beginning with the before:

Before Frances:

Literally, before Frances I was doing pretty much whatever I could understand about each social media site the best I could. Sometimes it worked. Sometimes it didn't. My greatest difficulties related to LinkedIn and Google+ and knowing how to effectively use each of them. Recently, I had decided to focus more on Twitter, but there again it was not altogether clear. Shall we just say I was living and working in a social media conundrum?

Here's what Frances found:

  • Twitter: Positives included my bio and my avatar. Negatives included the following:
    • Not tweeting enough images.
    • Needed more assertive attention to building a following
    • Banner image difficult to determine its significance, drab in contrast to my ebook.
    • Facebook: Negatives included:
      • Using my profile as a page. By taking down my Facebook page a few months back, I had stepped across the boundary between personal contact and professional contact.
      • I had connected Twitter and Facebook to send simultaneous messages.
      • Again, my banner image lacking personality and softness.
      • A big no, no--somehow email addresses visible on my About section. Yikes!
      • LinkedIn: Not so bad on LinkedIn, except:
        • Needing to communicate my mission in my headline.
        • Needing to post blog posts to Pulse, an area where blog posts may be published a week or two after originally appearing on LinkedIn.
        • Not sharing updates often enough. Share at least once a day.
        • Pinterest: No changes needed.
        • Google+: In my opinion, I have a miserable presence with Google+, and Frances saw that immediately:
          • I barely post here and should post three times/day.
          • Failure to always tag people, which I know I should.
          • Tagline here different from my site.
          • Same banner issues.
          • Lacking hashtag usage.
          • Tumblr: I've often wondered why I was on Tumblr, and I'm still not sure. Frances pointed out:
            • Focus here usually young adult and new adult writers.
            • Problem with tagline again.
            • Amazon Profile: The only comments from Frances related to a slight change in my bio and need to connect my RSS feed to my Amazon account.
            • Goodreads: I don't think I ever provided Frances with the link. Sigh...
            • Website: A few suggestions from Frances:
              • Change text and site of email subscription widget
              • Change to blog subscription call-to-action ("CTA").
              • Who is my site designed for--writers or readers.
              • Retitle one page to clarify what followers are signing up for.
              • Theme provides the top banner (large banner!) and at the bottom a larger than life footer. Distracting.

After Frances, or here's what I've done so far:

First of all, Frances does not leave you in the lurch. If you have questions about her assessment or if there's something not quite clear, she'll lend a hand via email. By and large, however, her assessment was clear and concise.

Website: 

After reading Frances's report, I looked at the overriding comments about my header on my site, which I use (or tried to use) on all social media accounts and my newsletter mailings. On my survey earlier this year, I had one comment similar to Frances's. Following a study of what was going on there (or not going on), I changed to the new banner I'm using above. I agree it's brighter, and there is clarity about what I'm doing here.

I also made changes to language about my newsletter and free ebook in the CTAs on my site. I eliminated the footer widgets, which I agree cause confusion when there is also a sidebar with other information. From what I had in the footer I chose what I wanted my readers to see and placed a few widgets in the sidebar only.

I also changed my tag line slightly, and I am trying to be consistent with it across the social media board.

Twitter:

Here I likewise changed the banner, and I disconnected Twitter and Facebook. I began following a goodly number of readers and book bloggers each day to build a following among those people as well as the writers and others I've followed for some time.

I am attempting to get more images out on Twitter each day. Frances provided a number of resources to gather images.

Facebook:

I have reactivated my Facebook page, Sherrey Meyer, Writer, using the same banner and tag line as my site. Personal connections are on my profile account and if you are a friend there and would prefer to connect professionally, please head over to Sherrey Meyer, Writer, and "like" my page. And yes, I eliminated those mysteriously appearing email addresses in my About Section.

LinkedIn:

I rewrote my headline to better communicate my mission or goal and revised my summary moving some bits to my work experience section. This draws the focus back to what I'm doing now, not so much what I have done before.

I am attempting to follow the guidelines Frances provided for posting on Linked In, but transitioning to a new way of doing things is sometimes difficult. Change is never easy even if it's for the better.

Google+:

Continued consistency with my banner and tagline. I'm working hard at posting more often here, using tags for people and hashtags for catching others' interest.

Tumblr:

I have eliminated Tumblr from my social media toolbox.

Amazon Profile and Goodreads:

On both accounts, I have revised my bio slightly to make it more "now" focused as opposed to "then" focused. I've also connected to my RSS feed on both.


I have attempted to share the before and after of my social media assessment with Frances. However, it is hard to put numbers to any of this as the changes haven't been in effect long enough to see the growth in followers. I do know that I have gained followers both on Twitter and with my Facebook page. I have also picked up a few more followers to the newsletter.

Yet we all know followers come and they go, like the tide coming in and then flowing out. It's a regular happening. And that's not necessarily because we've failed to do everything we could. It's because people's interests, preferences, and needs change.

I hope this has been helpful to you in some way. I know it's long but there's no other way to share what happened between Frances and me during our working together.

Are you concerned about your social media presence or the impact your website has? Do you need someone to help you in determining just what is missing? I highly recommend Frances Caballo of Social Media Just for Writers.