How to Promote Your Research on Social Media

In my experience there are two types of researchers promoting their content on social media. Those who do nothing, and those who say “I’m so excited to announce my paper on [something] was published [somewhere]. If you want to do more than that (and I recommend you aspire to better than that) here are some tips:

  1. Prepare in advance.
  2. Make as many options as you can (not just one).
  3. Include pics, words, and a link to your paper.
  4. Add audio or video right in the post (not a link).
  5. Focus on what you want to do next.
  6. Tag others.
  7. Use hashtags.
  8. Give me a reason to read.
  9. Use a scheduling tool.


One of the things that researchers often struggle with is effective ways to promote their research on social media. I’m not saying that you struggle with social media. But after one post perhaps you think I’ve done my job in terms of posting on social media or perhaps even you’ve been told you need to post more but you don’t know how to do it more effectively. So, here are 11 tips that you can use to improve your social media game.

The first is to prepare in advance. So that would mean to me sitting down and writing a bunch of tweets or Instagram posts or whatever it might be that your chosen social media channel about your topic of interest. That will help ensure that when you sit down to actually send them out that you’ve got something to go.  

The next is to draft as many as possible. So, a lot of people start and stop at 1 or 2 or 3 or whatever number they might think of but I’d rather you sit down, and spend say, 20 minutes drafting as many posts as you possibly can. That means you’ve got heaps in the gun ready to go to post on your social media channel.

The 3rd tip is to make sure that each post has something it has 3 components. It should have a photo or a video. Some text obviously, and a link to your paper. So, every post should have those 3 things. If you 

wanted to get taken to the next level, the video might also be an audio or you might have a video instead of a picture, and you would potentially link and tag other people or include other people include a discussion perhaps in your post.  

The next thing to think about with your social media is to focus on what you want to do in the future. So, let’s say you’ve got a research paper that has a few different research approaches, a few different methods, and some results, and you work with a bunch of people. So, let’s say you liked working with people and doing the method, but you didn’t like the topic specifically.  

Then I would focus most of your social media posts around the people that you worked with, and the methods that you use. That way when people start seeing your posts, and they start associating the topic of your posts to you, they’re associating things that you want to do in the future. Make sure you tag your co-authors, and you can also do things like tag that the journal that you’re in. Tag the university that you work for. All of those things will help improve the reach. It’ll also give credit where it’s due appropriately online as well.  

Finally, in terms of the copy that you use. It’s not finally I should say, point 9, the copy that you use should include a reason for me to read the article. So don’t just say, “I published an article about a topic in a journal.” Say, “I published an article about a topic in a 

journal and here are the results.” or “If you want to find more come and read.” or “If you want to see more, read.” or whatever it might be. You might also say, “When I found this out I was really excited.”, and to tell me about the feeling that you felt but don’t bury the lead. Don’t put the reason you might read the article. Only in the article you want to put it in your social media post because ultimately you want to have a high number of people who view your social media posts. Knowing that they want to click through and then read. So, you don’t want people to click just because they don’t know what it’s about. You want them to click because they are interested in the topic. So, they click they download, they read, they cite. Those are the things that you want.  

Point 10 is make sure you use hashtags. So obviously, I’m presuming you know what hashtags are but you know a series of keywords, and test out what keywords or what hashtags people are using in your area. So obvious 

ones are like academic research article, ECR, PhD but you might also find that there are other hashtags that are really worth taking. Like I said before, if you like the methodological approach that you did then you might use that as a hashtag. If you like the journal. If you like the people, you might tag things like collaboration or something like that in your post.

Finally, if you really want to step up your game, I’d encourage you to use a scheduling tool. So, if you’ve made a long list of drafts that you want to use, you don’t want to be spending ages on your phone trying to set all those drafts up. Instead use the scheduling tool. There’s plenty available around if you use your favorite search engine to search the internet for a scheduling tool. I’ll call it social media schedule tool. You’ll find plenty around. Don’t spend forever trying to work out which one is best. Just pick one that’s free that covers multi like 3 channels. That’s probably the best you can get for free, and then away you go. That means you’ll cover LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook for example or you’ll cover Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Those are the ones that mainly people are covering.  

So, there you go about 11 tips to help you improve your social media game. Let me know how it goes.