Social Media Best Practices for Authors in 2024

From Writers in the Storm:

Most writers have a love-hate relationship with social media. It’s consistently the best way to promote your author brand and books as well as build an engaged community of readers who love you and your work for little to no cash outlay. For many of us, though, the ever-changing platforms, algorithms, and best practices can be disheartening. Even on the best days, social media is often a distraction rather than a tool.

In 2023,

  • AI-generated content and tools took center stage as a trending topic and created change in how we use social media and create content.
  • Twitter became X and has made many changes, both positive and negative, in the first full year with Elon Musk as owner.
  • Meta launched Threads in July to much fanfare and record-setting, but since then its daily active user count has dropped 82%.
  • YouTube video podcasts became the most popular talk shows, and often sources of news. As per YouGov: only “25% of US adults now say that TV is their primary news source, down from 31% in 2019. In the same time, Americans who say social is their primary news source have increased from 12% to 18%, while for Americans under 34, social has already usurped TV as the top new source.”

. . . .

I ran this article in sections through’s AI Content Detector, and the various sections were rated between 35% and 98% human-generated. I personally wrote the entire article myself, but because I focused on the facts and data, rather than my personal E-E-A-T, some sections ranked lower.

. . . .


Facebook has become more user-friendly over the past year and has reversed some decline that was being observed a year ago. The biggest changes, however, are in Meta Ads. Still one of the top options for paid advertising as far as cost and customizable targeting, Meta is currently rolling out AI assistance in creating ads, and has recently partnered with Zapier and HubSpot for CRM integrations. While these tools are exciting, what you need to know is that if you use Meta advertising, make sure your ads look and feel like a personalized post or Reel, and be sure to follow the Google E-E-A-T protocol.


Instagram is probably the best at keeping its users up to date with changes. Adam Mosseri, the head of IG, posts regular weekly Reels letting us know what’s rolling out, what’s in development, and why. He also has a Broadcast Channel for creators where he shares even more behind-the-scenes info that is relevant to us.

  • The big takeaway for authors is that Instagram has reset the algorithm to rate reach and engagement based on the size of your account. There are five size tiers, so the small accounts (under 500 followers) are no longer competing with the Kardashians for impressions. And while Reels are still important, they are not all important. 
  • Your IG strategy for 2024 needs to include a mix of Reels, Carousel posts, Stories, DMs, and Static posts– in that order of priority. Getting in the DMs with your readers and followers will very much help you in the algorithm and get your posts seen by more followers and new people. 
  • The hashtag strategy is still adjusting. I encourage you to experiment. While some accounts are dropping hashtags altogether, others are finding the full 30 are still giving them the best exposure. Mosseri is currently recommending using, on average, about eight very specific and relevant hashtags at the bottom of your post to help the algorithm correctly classify who you are, what you do, and who your target audience is.


TikTok, while still rather new among the leading social media platforms, is evolving quickly. They’ve released a customized-for-you feed, 15-minute-long videos, shut down their creator fund, and expanded “out of phone” TikTok ads to show on billboards, cinema screens, and elsewhere.

  • Their more intrusive privacy policy released in early 2023 caused renewed censorship among many countries, businesses, and government entities. If you haven’t yet, I encourage you to read the privacy policy for yourself. TikTok updated it again on 24 January 2024. 
  • One point of discussion among social media marketers is the issue of higher vanity metrics for creators and businesses, but lower conversion rates compared to other platforms. If you are not already, make sure you track your sales relative to the content you are putting out on each platform.

Link to the rest at Writers in the Storm

PG opined about social media in an earlier post today.

How much of a working author’s time should be devoted to learning best practices and creating promo content best suited for each social media platform and audience on a regular basis?

How does the author determine which social media platforms do the best job of reaching her/his current and likely readers? Social media platforms are in constant combat with each other and today’s best platform for reaching readers may not be the same as the best platform will be in six months.

Considering the value of an author’s time, if an author believes she/he can make more money by advertising on one or more social media platforms, is it cheaper to pay for a social media marketing expert than for the author to spend work time to learn and keep up with current best practices on multiple social media sites?

Is it possible that an author might get more bang for the buck by experimenting with using smart computer-savvy kids from the computer clubs at local high schools to run social media ad programs? If PG were to experiment with this type of strategy, he’d talk to the smartest computer teacher at the local high school about helping to set up such a group. It might not be a bad idea to offer to pay the teacher to help oversee the students’ work.

PG suggests structuring this activity so it qualifies as a legitimate educational activity might be a reasonable goal.

1 thought on “Social Media Best Practices for Authors in 2024”

  1. About THREADS: network effects rule.
    Sure, certain advertisers and …uh… culturally-focused(?)… outfits might be willing to drop X/Twitter but they aren’t enough to prop up a new PR distribution channel and once that became clear, most that left grudgingly and quietly returned. Hence…tumbleweeds.

    The same applies to the other “social media” channels. What is out there, is entrenched and it will be nearly impossible to replace. Best tactic is to find a different way to gather people’s attention other than tweets or ad hoc discussion groups or videos or…whatever.

    And that, of course, assumes any such has a positive ROI, which is unproven on a long term basis.
    Odds are the best way to deal with social media is…don’t bother. Spend the time writing.

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