Social Media Insights from an Indie Author: My Cross-Platform Journey (Q1 2024)

Whenever I watch videos about social media online, it often feels like the advice comes from someone with hundreds of thousands of followers. While that’s great, it can feel a bit disconnected from the reality of being a beginner.

Today, I want to share some social media insights, tricks, and tips that I’ve learned from cross-posting content on TikTok, YouTube Shorts, and Instagram Reels.

I’m on this journey as an indie author, trying to promote my books. I’ll go through my video analytics and sales numbers to see if these videos impact my book sales. If you’re interested in following along from the very beginning, this is it. This is the beginning.

If you want to go through three different videos with me to see how each of them performed across platforms, you can watch my YouTube video here, but for the sake of a blog post, we’re just going to look at stats for one short form video.

My Social Media Experiment

I joined TikTok in 2020, thanks to the pandemic, but didn’t start posting until December 2022, after finishing my book and planning to self-publish it on Amazon. I needed readers, so I turned to TikTok and started making videos. Since the beginning of March, I’ve been conducting a social media experiment, and I want to share the results.

The primary reason for this experiment was the looming threat of a TikTok ban. Without any insider information, I decided to cross-post popular TikToks to Instagram Reels and YouTube Shorts. Today, I’ll share my thoughts on which platforms are best for different types of content and provide insights into social media cross-posting.

Tools for Cross-Posting

  1. SnapTik: To download TikToks without the watermark.
  2. CapCut: For trimming and aligning audio.
  3. Best-Hashtags: An Instagram hashtag generator that suggests popular, medium, and easy hashtags based on your content.

Analytics and Insights for One Video in Q1

TikTok Analytics: One of my videos had 15,000 plays, 1,400 likes, 14 comments, 2 shares, and 542 saves. This video correlated with a spike in my Kindle Unlimited pages read.

Instagram Reels: The same video got nearly 34,000 views, 449 likes, 7 comments, 39 shares, and 446 saves. It took a couple of days to gain traction but resulted in more Kindle Unlimited pages read.

YouTube Shorts: I mistakenly posted a different version of the same video, which still got 719 views, 16 likes, and no shares. The engagement was low compared to TikTok and Reels.

Initial Pros and Cons of Each Platform


  • Pros: High growth potential, strong community engagement, comprehensive analytics.
  • Cons: Can’t edit captions post-upload, views can be inconsistent.

Instagram Reels:

  • Pros: Longer shelf life for content, ability to edit captions, good for shares and saves.
  • Cons: Slower follower growth, less engagement in comments.

YouTube Shorts:

  • Pros: Potential for high views, educational content performs well.
  • Cons: Low engagement, less community interaction, viewers have the option (and they use it) to “dislike” content.


I’ll continue cross-posting content tailored to each platform and share updates every quarter. If you have any questions or want more information, feel free to let me know.

This journey is just beginning, and I look forward to sharing my insights with you along the way!