Joyce Feustel, the Social Media Tutor on The Writers Hour - Creative Conversations with Janine Bolon

Joyce Feustel – Boomers’ Social Media Tutor24 min read

Janine Bolon: Hi, this is Janine Bolon and welcome to The Writers Hour Creative Conversations. And today I am with wonderful lady by the name of Joyce Feustel. Is that right? Do I have that, right?

Joyce Feustel: Feustel.

Janine: Feustel. Yeah. I’m so sorry. Anyway, what you think as many years as I have been podcasting, I would have that down but every once in a while a name will pop. But okay back to Joyce. She, in 2010, at the age of 61 founded Boomers’ Social Media Tutor. She went full time, full speed ahead, all systems go. In 2013, she retired from her 17-year career in sales and she just delighted herself by doing nothing but starting this business. She has finally found her professional calling and through her Tutoring and Training Services, she helps business professionals and job seekers to use social media, especially those fun-loving friends of ours, LinkedIn and Facebook.

She helps people use them more effectively and productively. So people who are over 50 or older than that even especially are drawn to her services because she’s a baby boomer. And her tagline is making social media simple, easy, and fun. So Joyce attributes her business success and basically because at the training she got us an educator, her leadership and public speaking experience in Toastmasters, and her extensive experience in writing and editing. So as a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and with degrees in both Business and Education, Joyce is now currently living in Denver and has done so for the last 25 years, welcome to the show, Joyce.

Joyce: It’s so much fun to be here. Thank you for inviting me.

Janine: Yeah. I have a lot of fun when I get to run into people like yourself who have like myself a varied career, multiple interest, multiple energies have been put into things. But after all this sales experience that you’ve had, you run out and you decide to write an e-book of all things. Oh my gosh. Do you mind telling us a little bit about the title? And what drove you to writing that book?

Joyce: Well, I have a colleague who is in video production, has her own company, and I would say by about 2015 certainly 2016. I mean people were really doing a lot more videos and their websites on their social media and I decided to invest money with her. We had created a series of videos, Just the Facts [inaudible], little clever name for it. And something got me thinking, there’s a lot of material in these videos. Maybe there’s a way I could take that information and put it into a very basic e-book. That would be primarily the videos already created with a little bit of setup. So there would be a combination of the text and then the video with a screen capture. So most of it you’ll hear my voice. You don’t see me through my talk.

So that way people learn differently. They can watch the videos. Some people are more readers. So that’s how I really started with a series of videos on my very first e-book with this title is actually called Tim Ways, and I knocked one out, which I don’t remember which one. It was first published in 2016. My fourth edition was done in December of 2020. So there was one year. I skipped it.

Janine: But one of the things that I really enjoy about your nine ways to stand out on LinkedIn is that I have a lot of people that are hesitant to get on LinkedIn. They love Facebook. They feel very comfortable there. But it’s almost like they walked into an academic library. When they walk in to LinkedIn and it’s like everybody’s very polite and they’re intimidated by the LinkedIn platform. And so how would you encourage authors to make use of LinkedIn as a platform that actually will serve them well?

Joyce: Really really good question. So the first thing off is going to be thinking about LinkedIn is their branding. Their branding as an author and then their particular book they’re wanting to feature right now. So I have this friend recently published a book called Lean Into Your Yuck. She is an editor and it’s really about non-fiction books. I’ll write them from an editor standpoint. So I was working with her just on Monday. We came up with the idea of having her background photo be the picture of the cover of her book. That’s attention-getting, right? That’s first thing I’d say.

Secondly, there is this lovely section called Featured that has only been out for about a year now. That’s right… kind of under the about section actually and there she could have again another picture of the book or even better yet a link to the landing page where people can order the book, say if she wants more people coming into her website because that’s better way for them to order the book as opposed to Amazon just saying. So she could have that link to that landing page be featured right there in her profile. So these are some easy visual additions to LinkedIn, which let’s face, it is boring.

I mean when you said come into an academic library, I’ve heard it said the corporate boardroom, whatever. Really where is all the fun stuff? Where is the vending machines? Where’s the video games? They don’t have it there, but you can bring a little bit of color and interest and then further down you can add more, you can always add yourself say as author. Maybe you have other income streams, but if you really want to present the most-est[?] author, make sure that that author position is at the top of all your experiences, all your different jobs, “your positions” that too will give great visibility and consider creating a company page.

Because in a company page, you the author have a company, essentially, that has a logo. Then the logo appears right there under your nifty background photo. So those are just some real basic things that come immediately to mind.

Janine: And that’s very helpful. One of the things I’ve been very fortunate that I’ve run into so many great coaches like yourself and others who really have worked out the details of LinkedIn. And each one of you bring about a wonderful perspective because your demographics are all different. And so when I first ran into Joyce, I was just like, oh my gosh, this is fabulous. All these people over 50 that they think of a book as a hardcover book like I have to do a hardcover first then a paper bag, then I’ll think about an e-book. And then here I run into this amazing woman with all this Toastmasters experience this like what skip that noise. I started off with videos first. Then I went to e-books.

One of these days are making around right no one, but actually you have written one and it’s hard for some people to realize but e-books are a thing and ISBN number has to be attributed to them when you get ready to publish them. And so talk to us a little bit about what was your decision making because you could have made this into a book, like a hard copy, published book. Here, it’s an e-book. So what was the choice in that?

Joyce: I wanted it to be completely accessible. I didn’t want to be charging money. How do I use this e-book, you may wonder, it’s a lead generator for the most part. It is also if somebody’s thinking of working with me, I can say, “Okay. Here are the topics. I’m going to cover on LinkedIn.” So I send them this word document. Oh and by the way, here is my e-book you go and you look at this e-book and then they’ll get a sense of my personality by watching the videos, then we’ll say, “She’s kind of funny.” Or I don’t know, she’s a little forward whatever. But thank you, have a feeling for me personally if they’d want to spend an hour with me.

And the other thing is last year when I did a lot of pro bono work, I sent it out and I do it again this year as a way to have people get some DIY stuff covered first. Okay. So here all these things will say you do at least a couple of these activities before we have resumed session and then say we don’t have to spend our valuable time and something that’s really pretty straightforward. So that’s how I’ve been thinking I like to use it as really an adjunct to my tutoring.

Janine: Well, that’s one of the things that authors don’t realize whether you’re a fiction author or nonfiction author, you have wisdom to sell. You have coaching that you can do for others that love your work. And believe it or not, some of the best things you can do is basically teach people how to write books the way you write them because they love what you have written down. They are your readers. So what are you doing to capture not only those email addresses, but what are some freebies you can give?

So like for this talk about the fiction writers for starters. You can give out your character sketches. The character sketches that you think are only for your eyes, believe it or not, people will definitely sign up for your newsletter so that they can learn all about Mr. Frost who happens to be the side detective way off in one of your mystery series, but oh my gosh, there are somebody who is love with Mr. Frost. And would you please, let me know more about this detective. So we of course, focus on, Joyce and I focus on nonfiction authors because that’s what we write in and so we’re more about the how to and what does it weigh a perspective that you can look at things and so it’s easy to come up with like tip sheets and stuff like that.

But when it comes to using LinkedIn, how do you like to present yourself to people, do you like to present yourself as a problem solver? Do you want to be seen as an author, tutor? You had to walk through a process for that sort of branding. So what do you recommend for people to do, Joyce?

Joyce: I think you need to really do some pooling of the people around you, your clients, your close business associates. Say what’s my MO? Sometimes I’m too close to it. I don’t even know. And I have thought a lot about this topic. I have a couple of LinkedIn. I’ll call them colleagues who are really much more steeped in the platform than I am. And sometimes I can feel inadequate around them because they’re like how do they know that? How did they find that out? Okay, you know what, I am that person who is best for the beginning to intermediate user. I’m like this stuff ahead of my people. Keep it simple, Joyce. I’m looking to be the voice of… like I call myself a combination of your older sister or your mom depending on your age and the annoying English teacher you thought you’d never have to meet again. [crosstalk]

I trained as a teacher back in the 60s and the 70s. And once you train in a way, that’s how your mind thinks. You trained as an engineer, you think like an engineer. You trained as an accountant you think like an accountant. So we’re trained as an educator. My mom was an educator. So I grew up with that too. And I feel like that’s really my voice. My voice is that of an informed person but not to smarty-pants, you know, like kind of braggy but not super braggy like oh I could never measure up to her kind of bragging, just like a little full of myself kind of funny, but very friendly and very accessible.

One other thing I want to mention is I forgot in your other question, the way I build my mailing list and part is when people and I connect on LinkedIn outside to this with you I think, I send them a link to my e-book. And say, “Here’s a gift to you from me.” So you could learn more about LinkedIn and when you download this you get on my monthly
newsletter list. So I just want to mention that I have worked on that language quite a bit. So people don’t hopefully see it as salesy. I’m really doing it as a nice thing to do for them.

Janine: Right. Because you are such a giver and that I’ll definitely attest to. So well, let’s go ahead and talk about some misconceptions regarding LinkedIn. And again, this is for authors. I mean, part of your marketing campaign is putting yourself out there. You think you were done putting yourself out there in your book. Well, yeah, you may have a website, but then how are they going to find your website? And I love LinkedIn because those people are used to having business conversations. Facebook not so much. Facebook, you don’t know where somebody is when they start messaging. But on LinkedIn, what I love about that is that if I start messaging someone they don’t bat an eye if I say, “Hey, let’s hop on a Zoom call and let’s see if we can really support one another.”

And so as an author, what are some misconceptions that I might have regarding LinkedIn?

Joyce: Well, I think that people see it only for the corporate world. They also think of it as primarily a job seeking site. So they really don’t see it as necessarily a place where you would engage with other people. They don’t always see it as a place where you can keep up with people where for example on Facebook you’re going to know when some is grandchild has arrived, but you don’t know when they landed a new job. I mean, they might say that it’s possible but with
LinkedIn, you will see when they got a new position, when they have five years with that business. So hard to start. And to me, I think LinkedIn is really like my small town on minimum population 1000.

And my little weekly newspaper, Mrs. Smith was over at Mr.– Mr. and Mrs. Smith wrote [crosstalk] this like goes and Sunday after you eventually get that. Everybody else relates to that. So it’s wife’s kind of an open book over there. So that’s what I think about LinkedIn. It’s such a great environment to really know what’s happening in the lives of people. So it’s so fun. And when someone has one of these post comes up, about five years, you can publicly honor them. You don’t have to just write the little personal like a congrats Janine. That’s just between me and you, right? But I feel like “Ooh, maybe that’s somebody other people might know. Maybe I want to throw myself into this wave of admirers and someone might see me. Then I’ll see all the other people who are also congratulating this person.”

So that’s kind of a fun thing when you think about it. I just think people want should expand their horizons there… What’s the word I’m looking? Just a view of LinkedIn. Their paradigm is the word I want. So they start to see it has a lot of possibilities.

Janine: Okay, so I’m an author. I’ve just written my first book or maybe I’m on book number nine. You never know where some authors are. And I’ve decided, okay. I’ve listened to this crazy Joyce lady and this crazy host Janine and they keep talking about this fine. So what would you recommend are the essential things that they should do on LinkedIn each week?

Joyce: Oh each week. One more thing I thought I should have mentioned earlier. I’ll get to the week. I was realizing there’s the contact info section, a very overlooked section is up there at the top right around the place where it says you have 500 plus connections. Hopefully, you have that many. Well, maybe you don’t. But that’s okay.
So then you click on there and there’s three websites that you can include. So we’ll see you can have your overall author website, but then you can have a link. I mean, broadly speaking any internet location. So there are two, these are clickable links, folks.

These are live links to where people can go and order your book. Maybe you have a Facebook business page. You can have that there too. So three out together. So I wanted to mention which they do every week on LinkedIn. Well, first they should go there. I mean, every week we’ll start with that. Secondly, they should see who wants to connect with them. Very important. And then have some criteria around this. I think I’d be somewhat open to new people. If you don’t feel comfortable just accepting a stranger, you can always click on that place where it says manage or select one of five or something. And then that goes to an interior screen where you can write them a little note and say, “Hey, Janine what prompted you, but thanks for the invite. What prompted you to reach out to me?” The Nightingale[?] conversation going with a potential connection.

Do you want to look for all those connections or pending invites? Secondly, you want to look at your messages. Your message back and forth on LinkedIn. Many people do. You think why couldn’t they send me an e-mail? This is so annoying. Well, get over yourself. Some people like LinkedIn more than any mail there on there. Anyway, Mr. and Mrs. Joyce. So look for your messages. And then go to those notifications because that’s where you can do a little [inaudible], “Hey, how’s it going? Congratulations?”

Also post. I mean, again people think like this is rocket science, but LinkedIn posting is pretty much the same as Facebook posting functionally. So say you put a post up and now you’re going to be seeing probably unless you change your settings, all the comments, you’ll see notifications of so-and-so commented someone so light that someone mentioned you maybe so you want to go in and you want to nurture those relationships by going to systematically through there to see what kind of response you’ve had to your post.

So putting a post up doesn’t take a lot of heavy mental lifting. We are writers. We certainly would have a tidbit from our book. Hello, you know how are blog post recently wrote? Just think of something that just happened to you interesting this week. People ask me how personal should I get, shall reveal my projects, things like that unlike then I’d be careful, but everybody has a point of view. Everybody has a voice. We all come from our own lived experiences we say at these days. So I think that’s the filter you can use with impropriety, then to share that, and to share from other people. So, those are things I would say, one post of your own and then share something of somebody else’s. And the invites the messages and notifications.

Janine: So really you can get that done and probably an hour a week. Too much hassle because you’re you’re already creating content on your blog what have you. And one of the things I like to recommend is for the fictional authors out there, when you have a fiction book and you may think it’s a little harder. Well, what you can do is I know one of your characters whether you’re in outer space or you live underground or no matter what, you can find a house on the internet somewhere that it has been designed or created or something and and take a screenshot of that and say hey grab this from XYZ website.

This is totally the house that my fairy king princess, whomever would live in. What do you think? And you can get the ball rolling with that kind of content. So a lot of times my fictional authors will say was it nonfiction and you got it easier than we do, are you kidding me? I’m like, you can go anywhere in your in your creative world and talk about any of your characters and then find some artists that you really dig on Instagram or something like that and put that in your LinkedIn page.

But then for the nonfiction authors, one of the things I highly recommend is yes definitely go to your favorite author somebody who inspires you believe it or not. They’re on LinkedIn. And then you highlight them and say, “One of my most inspiring passages was from so-and-so’s book page XYZ.” And whatever the edition was and then link it and then say thank you so much, so and so for that so one of my guys is Jeff Goins and Jeff doesn’t know me personally, but I assure you that his marketing team does because they’re constantly cross-referencing me and I ended up getting an interview on a podcast show from my second favorite author, which was Josh Turner because I was commenting so much and telling him how much I thought he was so fantastic. I ended up on a show. So these are things that you can do. Just letting people know how they inspired you to write what you wrote. And then that’s the one thing you can do for the posting.

And then on your own stuff like Joyce was talking about, for your own stuff, definitely talk about your characters and conversations you have with them that never made it into your book. For your nonfiction authors, you have a lot of wealth between your ears, and I know that there were tips just like Joyce talked about tip number 10. She doesn’t even remember what it was, but had she been on LinkedIn, tip number ten would have been something she could have posted about. What are some things I’ve talked enough towards? What are some of your suggestions for people?

Joyce: WelI, I want people to realize that they can tag just like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter somebody they’re not connected with. So some big-time author. Maybe you’re never connect with them only to maybe they don’t even allow people to connect with them only follow them unless they’ve gone in somewhere deep into their settings, chances are you can still tag them. So what does that do that associates you like you said with this well-known author, this is something even I really admire. I read your stuff all the time. And that way people say, “Oh she’s that kind of a writer.” And who knows like you said their marketing teams, who is this person constantly tagging?

So I think that is such a neat idea and I only actually recently realized that maybe like a year or two ago, I always thought we had to be see on Facebook. You have to be friends with that person to take them. It’s different on LinkedIn. You are allowed to tag these people or tag a business page is called actually a company page. Only did you few feel there’s some value, there’s probably more for the nonfiction people. You want to give somebody some publishing company maybe or whatever it might be, some media outlet that’s another thing that you can tag and reference so you can reference them as part of your book.

That’s how you’re going to get more readership of your post. People are always saying why don’t I get more eyeballs on my post. Well, let’s get some energy to it. Let’s let’s do some taking less-. You can even go and ask your closest, you’re willing fans, all those people say would you be so kind to comment on my coach? All you have to do place where you where it says, I can’t think the exact words, but in the three little dots it’ll say get the link to this actual post. And when you send that an email, just paste it into the email then they click on it and then write at your post. So that way your fans can make that comment or share to their LinkedIn people.

Janine: And that’s something that authors can definitely do in their newsletters. If you have a post that you really want to bring to the forefront that isn’t so much marketing. As you just want to highlight maybe as a fictional author one of your characters are as a nonfiction person, you’ve been invited to an event, a networking event where you’re going to be speaking. This is a way to get some attraction with that particular post. So before we wrap up this this interview and thank you so much, Joyce, for sharing so much about you know. You got me rolling and that’s always exciting when we can share and really give the different perspectives on marketing.

What are some other tips or any last thoughts that you want to share with our listeners?

Joyce: Well, when you started talking about events that got me thinking, it’s picky with COVID, right? However, we see, I guess Zoom screens, or whatever have you permission from people. But any visual is so important as I think by know most people know. Maybe you have that picture of that well-known author coming to your… speaking of your book group or you’re reading this particular book. You are that little known author of the book group is studying. So anything where you can have some kind of visual that’s associated with your post. I think there’s permissions and legal things, again, I want to be careful here. Well, I think that’s that’s something that I like to think about whenever I put up any post at all.

And like just this morning, I was at a great talk about Google my business page and there it was on Facebook so already posted so I’m honoring the speaker, honoring the guy that hosted it. So think of LinkedIn as a big old gratitude platform, that’s when it comes to mind. It’s a wonderful place to really honor people that we’ve learned from [inaudible], episode drops[?] and I can just… finger[?] praises to the high heavens so then that’s another time you always wanted… knows that people that set you up for success and and really be a giving community back and forth.

And I think just keep thinking of LinkedIn more as kind of Facebook, but kind of cleaned up. So you don’t have the politics there so much you’ll have really a lot of information. And let yourself be part of that information flow. So that people see that you provide value. So that’s really a lot of and takes a while, but pretty soon you’ll start getting comments out of nowhere like “Oh that was so nice. That she really liked it.” Like it goes out like they really like me, kind of regular data [inaudible]. So yeah. Those are just some other sort of random thoughts about LinkedIn.

Janine: So people can find you on LinkedIn. Do you mind spelling your last name for us?

Joyce: So tricky. Excuse me. So, it’s Joyce. J-O-Y-C-E. But then F as in Frank. E-U-S as in Stan, T as in Tom, E again like Edward, and L. So F-E-U-S-T-E-L. I believe I’m the only Joyce Feustel LinkedIn thing that I’ve ever found. Also, if you go to Boomer Social Media Tutor, then that will also… the website can take you over to my LinkedIn as well.

Janine: Yeah, so I highly recommend that if you’re a little nervous about LinkedIn, you’re unsure of where to go, it doesn’t matter if you’re 19 or your 99, I highly recommend that you visit Joyce on LinkedIn. Let her know you heard this episode and that you would very much like to get her e-book. She does not sell you. You’re not in a sequence. You can’t get out of I mean, we’ve all had those sort of experiences. She doesn’t. She’s truly gives you the nine tips for LinkedIn as a gift. And then your newsletter is always informative and I always learn something from her. So yeah I can stand by that since I’m actually subscribed to our newsletter so. Anyhow, well have a fabulous day, Joyce. Thank you so much for being with us. And this is Janine Bolon with the Writers Hour Creative Conversations. Encouraging everyone that’s listening. If you have not started writing your story make it happen. There’s somebody out there that is a reader that is looking to hear what you have to say. Until next Friday. We’ll chat with you soon.