Seven ways for writers to use Twitter

Karalee’s Post #71 — I met with my fellow 5Writer Joe this week. He asked me to share what I knew about using Twitter. It’s not that I know a lot, rather my husband David Greer is a computer geek that has embraced social media of all kinds since, well, forever. He’s an early adopter and for some reason Joe feels that since I live with a geek, some of the geekiness will rub onto me.

It has in some ways and I want to share what I know about Twitter and how writers can use Twitter in an interesting and engaging way (rather than it being a complete chore) that also increases your profile and the number of potential readers for your books.

Within the last year Twitter put the brakes on the automated following and unfollowing programs many people were using to obtain literally thousands of new followers in a short period of time. I had used one of these automated programming interfaces (API’s) too and the number of followers seemed to be what everyone was after. But, to me, it didn’t make much sense since none of those “people” knew me, or me them. Thousands of tweets flew by on my timeline every day and I really didn’t know what to make of them and how they could help me with my writer’s profile in a marketing sense.

So how do I interact with all these followers, and without API’s, how do I continue to gain followers?

Talking to my geeky husband that is also a marketing expert, he enlightened me that I need to let the Twitter world know who I am on a regular basis and offer something that is interesting and useful to my followers.

How do I do that? Does that mean that I need to be more selective in who I follow? These are my helpful hints you may want to consider:

1. Find the type of people that you want to follow and that you want following you. Twitter search subjectFor writers that could be agents and authors, but it is also important to follow people that have other interests of yours such as gardening, photography, pets, etc. This encourages more potential readers for you. To find them, do a search in Twitter and look at profiles and follow people that interest you. Note: this does take time.

 

 

 

 

2. Tweet something interesting every day. Many people develop a tag for themselves such as  using a quote, sending a picture, a daily suggestion, etc. This is one way to let your followers get to know what you like or how you think, etc.

3. Twitter your own blog posts.

4. Read other people’s blogs and discover ones that interest you and are professional and well-written enough for you to want to tweet them. You can set up an automatic tweet for all the new posts from their blogs. (My geeky husband did this for me. Thanks!)

Note: you can also set it up to automatically Facebook to your friends too.

 

 

 

 

5. Reply to people that retweet and/or favorite one of your tweets. These messages are found under Twitter’s ‘Notifications.’

twitter notificationsThis is a great way to establish a relationship with individual followers. In turn it encourages them to retweet your information to their followers, which increases the potential for more followers for you, etc, etc.

 

 

 

 

 

6. Retweet your follower’s tweets that interest you. This helps to connect with your followers too and adds to the potential for new followers (refer to number 5 above). For writers this is a great way to connect with agents, and if they are using Twitter as a connection point in the social media world, they will become aware of you.

7. Take time every day or so to look at the profiles of new people following you and see if you want to follow them too. To find your new followers, look under ‘Notifications’ as in number 5 above. Also look under ‘Me’ and scroll down and have a look at ‘Who to follow’ since the Twitter app suggests people with similar interests.

To help make tweeting a habit for you, you may want to check out Becky Robinson’s blog called Weaving Influence. In her Resources section she has a book to help you increase your Twitter traffic and it is also available on Amazon.

Product Details

Becky works with authors and leaders to increase their online influence and promote their books too.

Happy tweeting!

 

6 thoughts on “Seven ways for writers to use Twitter

  1. Right now, blogging is about all I can manage when it comes to social media. But if I ever get close to publication, I know I’m going to have to look into Twitter. And that’s a scary thought for me!

    • I love your blog! If you have a computer savvy friend he/she can set up a Twitter account for you as well as automatic tweets for your own blog posts and those of other blogs you follow. That in itself will start getting you followers and if you like something they tweet, then push retweet and you will get become aware of each other and start to connect. It was scary for me at first too, but like riding a bike, after you learn to stay on the ride begins to be fun. I find Twitter takes less time than Facebook and/or email!

  2. Thanks for the tips Karalee! I keep promising myself I’ll dive into Twitter “soon” and not just leave my account languishing. Like others, time is the problem for me. There’s only so much of it. Maybe I’ll have to give something else up, like sleeping.

  3. I started a Twitter account because that was supposed to be a way writers could develop a readership. Not so much for fiction. I discovered that there were twitter services that would advertise your book on the Twitterverse, but Twitter was crawling with them. I came to recognize and just skip over them, and assumed that was a common reaction. The 140 character limit developed my ability to be concise (if not precise), but I just stopped keeping up with Twitter, especially as my Facebook contacts started to include more actual friends with whom I actually wanted to communicate. I seem to acquire politically like-minded followers, because political barbs can fit within 140 characters, but these folks aren’t’ likely to read literary/historical fiction. I’l play with Twitter Notifications, and see if i can get back into it.

    • I hear you and it’s hard to know what connections will help, but like Facebook, you can start to interact with some people you think are interesting and that can lead to them helping you connect with others, etc. Time is a factor too…

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