Everyone always wants the magic beans.

Have you ever heard about a clever promotional strategy “too late”? By the time you hear about it someone has closed the loophole, or so many people are doing it that it doesn’t give the benefits it used to.

This is the biggest problem with clever promotional strategies. The second biggest problem with them is that they are usually sneaky or deceitful and come back to bit you on the ass. Remember the paid review scandal on Amazon? Or what about followback/retweet mafia on Twitter? (sure you get zillions of retweets but nobody actually read your tweet)

And that is why I hate them. Also, its why they are useless.

But, since I am a “social media expert” or, as I prefer to call myself, “author platform specialist” everyone always wants me to give them a magic strategy for promoting books that will solve all their problems and take 10 seconds so they can go back to writing their book.

There is no Magic Bean except Jelly Beans!

There are no Magic Beans except Jelly Beans!

Newsflash – There is no magic bean that will give you a platform without doing all the work. You still need to tend and water that beanstalk! Like all the time!

Here is the real secret of social media promotion: Use each social media site as it was intended to be used. 

It really is that simple. Use Twitter to have real conversations. Use Facebook to connect with people. Use Pinterest to post cool pictures you want to share and/or archive for yourself for later use.

Stop trying to figure out an angle. Stop thinking of it as a vehicle to book sales. Book sales will trickle in, maybe, if all you’re doing is posting “buy my book #buymybook” all day. But sales will gush like a burst dam if you are just a person people like to follow and pay attention to.

Have you ever thought: “Gee, who can I find to follow on Twitter who is gonna be posting about the books they have for sale all day?”

No way! If you are looking to actually follow someone on Twitter that you will pay attention to at all, you look for someone you find interesting.

Stop trying to figure out the latest gimmick. Let the clever promotional strategies die a meaningless death. Practice responsible social media. Focus on using social media sites the way they were intended to be used and you will find the social media success you are looking for.