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Social – applying the 80/20 rule to self-promotion

Social media is social by definition, and we’re there, because we enjoy sharing. But, it’s more about engagement. A selfie and updates about what you’ve been doing is ok, once in a while, but what’s really interesting is what they’ve been doing. Look at social as a way to bring them into your life, not the other way around.


When you look at your old blog posts and status updates, what do you see? If you really enjoy what you’re writing, you’ll be seeing enthusiasm, you’ll be seeing passion, and your unique personal voice. The reason you’re writing might be because it’s part of who you are; you want to share your knowledge. Or, the reason you’re writing might be a different one.

The reason why, is important. It defines your blog and the method you’re using when you’re writing. Your readers will notice, sooner or later. They’re there, at your blog, reading your words for a reason. You need to find that reason.

It’s a fine line between sharing knowledge, and doing too much self-promotion. We should share personal things about our lives, that’s the easiest way to create a unique voice and a strong relationship with our readers. We should talk about what drives us, what motivates us and what makes us tick.

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We need to adjust our voice and how much we talk. Other people won’t do it for us. We can talk all the time, 24 hours a day, and we can talk as loud as we want to. We are deciding. The difference now, is that people won’t be listening to us, if we continue to talk about ourselves.

The 80/20 rule

Create a system, using an editorial calendar. First, decide how many times you’re going to be writing about yourself and how many images and personal details that’s ok for you.

You might want to be using the 80/20 rule. 80% will be about other things than you, and the remaining 20% will be about you. That’s a good rule of thumb.

Keep updating your editorial calendar with all your blog posts, and all your status updates. Evaluate after each week, and see if you’ve been more focused on promoting yourself or if you’ve actually engaged enough with other people. Look at what works, and keep doing it.

What’s your opinion on self-promotion?

As a blogger, and in marketing, we need some self-promotion. We need a method to tell our story. But, how much is ok, and when is it too much? I believe that the 80/20 rule can be used, what’s your opinion?

6 responses to “Social – applying the 80/20 rule to self-promotion”

  1. Pankaj says:

    Hi Jens,

    You’re certainly right, social media is about building relationships not for promotion only. And the rule of 80/20 is 100% practical. If a marketer don’t follow it then won’t be able to achieve his/her set goals.

  2. Tim Bonner says:

    I’m not sure if I follow the 80/20 rule Jens but I always try and share more of other people’s stuff than my own.

    Since I started using Meshfire as well, my social media engagement has gone through the roof on Twitter.

    I’m talking and engaging with so many more of my followers, it’s amazing!

    Obviously we have to do a certain amount of self promotion to get our voices heard and it’s tricky to know when it starts to become spammy.

    I follow a couple of well-known bloggers on Twitter who seem to do nothing but self promotion and there’s no engagement. I think that’s certainly a mistake.

    So long as it’s done in moderation, self-promotion is absolutely the way to go!

  3. Carolyn Nicander Mohr says:

    Hi Jens, Yes, I really appreciate the 80/20 rule. I do try to follow that myself (Triberr helps) and like it when others do too. If someone is using their social media accounts only for self-promotion then it seems more like an ad feed than true interaction.

  4. Adrienne says:

    Hey Jens,

    I can see where that could relate to writing our posts too but I also think it depends on what you’re trying to accomplish.

    I say that because as you know I had another blog a few years back and I only wrote on that one once a week and it was every Friday. I promoted it the same way I did my main blog and got the same results and from two different niches.

    I shared what I was learning three times a month but on the last Friday of each month I talked about my stats. In each post I did include a bit about me because this was my journey but at the same time I was sharing what I was doing, how it was working and they were able to see the results.

    Some people would take that as self promotion because to an extent it was. That’s what I mean by that.


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