Lately, we’ve been tasked to think of ways to market a product via social media without making the tweet or post sound “too salesy.” Sound familiar? After all, with nearly 60% of Facebook and Instagram users and 46% of Twitter users logging on every day, your brand better speak to the masses in the most optimized and likeable way possible. They want a relationship with you, not be subscribed to a news feed of hard-sell offers.

Though it’s easy to make every tweet or post into a blatant advertisement, that hard-sell method is also an easy way to turn off your followers. And that’s the thing: it’s easy — and I’m not one to take the road most traveled.

So what is exactly that sweet spot of getting your intention across without being too pushy? I’ve put together some questions to ask yourself before hitting send.

What’s in it for them?

Do you have an idea of who your target audience is on social media? If so, you should be providing value for your followers. They should be able to take away some sort of nugget from the content you push out.

Is it informational advice?

If you’re a service-based brand, offer a simple, “duh, why didn’t I think of that” tip to not only help them out, but also to keep your brand top-of-mind when the time comes. 

Will this possibly inspire someone?

The majority of the content should benefit the reader and appeal to their self-interest. Make your followers think about their potential and allow them to engage with your brand on another level.

Is my tweet or post interesting and relevant?

Keep your content on-brand, yet exciting. Users can identify tweets that are deliberately salesy, but are more forgiving when the content is at least relevant to the industry of the brand.

Is my CTA too blunt?

You’re pushing a product, so of course there needs to be some sort of call-to-action. Specifically on social media, avoid hard-sell CTAs that you would typically see on a display banner ad. Try CTAs that are more implied and aren’t demanding. Think about it this way – when you’re asking for a favor from a friend, you probably have more tact than to start off the conversation with, “Stop everything you’re doing and help me.”

Will this content resonate with the majority of my followers?

As community managers, we want to make sure our content is clever and on point with current events. But if the tweet or post is too obscure or too difficult to interpret, you might want to save that “humor” for your personal account. After all, if your sales attempt is lost in the midst of puns and memes, you can immediately turn off those followers that just simply don’t get it. This goes back to the tip on staying relevant and on-brand.

So fly free, community managers! Keep these questions in mind when you’re trying to push product on social media. After all, we’re all in the business of selling. It’s how we execute these efforts that makes the difference in our future successes.

TL;DR: Your social media efforts should focus on how to build your brand on social media to help you convert your audience into brand loyalists, not just consumers.