A month ago, I realized I was neglecting my Twitter platform—it’s pretty easy to do since I didn’t make it much of a habit before; it wasn’t a part of my schedule so it easily slipped through the cracks. I decided that I wasn’t using it because I hadn’t adapted it to jive with how I like to use social media. I mean, people can tweet so much in a day, that there’s no way I can see all the hundreds of tweets that come in my feed.
Here’s a few things I’ve done lately that have worked for me. I bet they’ll work for you, too!
Research relevant hashtags
It helps to know what hashtags are; it’s even more helpful to know which ones actually work. I mean, use hashtags with a purpose. Are you wanting to find others in your writing community, or are you trying to reach out to potential buyers?
Tried and true hashtags like #amwriting and #NaNoWriMo are great for writers. They’re still pretty broad and overused, so unless your tweet is absolutely stunning or the most recent tweet, then it might be a slower way of getting people to find you.
Yesterday, the hashtag #1lineWed was trending. You basically tweet a sentence of your novel or WIP. Trends like these are a great way to say “hey, I’m writing—and I’m pretty good at it” to gain friends or readers alike.
I probably shouldn’t have to mention this, but I will. Using a slew of #buymybook #plzshare and similar phrasing is over the top. We all get it that your goal is to write a novel and sell it. Just don’t look #desperate to get there.
I’m still researching hashtags that work, but for now, read what Author Media suggests, depending on your purpose of using Twitter. Also, if you see a hashtag in action but don’t know what it actually means, you can look up the definition.
Harness the power of Lists
Oh my days. Lists are an amazing way to categorize all the people you follow and filter them. You can thus access tweets you feel like reading. For example, if I want to see what my real-life friends (and now amazing blogger friends) are up to, I can categorize them separate from the famous people, products I like, or other writers that I just don’t know well yet.
If you haven’t done this before, go to your list of people you follow. Then, you’ve got the spread of everyone’s photo and profile description. You can then sort out as many as you want into a list. Just click the little gear next to the “Follow” button and opt to add them to a list.
Note that when you go to your main feed, it’ll still show everyone who’s tweeting. You have to manually go to your lists and select them to view a list. You can comment me if you have further questions.
When you do this, people will get a notification that they were added to your list. Imagine sending out 300+ notifications to every follower individually? The response can vary; some people chose to follow me back, or go through my most recent tweets to either respond or like them.
Overall, my lists have helped me sort through the 300 or so people I know and get to the tweets I actually like. It makes Twitter easier for me to use, and thus I’m inclined to use it more often for my author platform.
Participate weekly or daily
It’s really easy to find time to use Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram; mainly because I know how to use them. So how do you add on Twitter to your arsenal of social media if it’s not really your thing?
I’ve started to take 5-10 minutes each day to do something. That includes writing my own tweets, posting blog posts that I like (promoting other friends), replying to other tweets, liking tweets, and retweeting tweets. Holy freak that’s a lot of tweets in one sentence.
I won’t go into detail in each one, but the point I want to make is that people will actually care about following you on Twitter and thus other platforms (like the author webpage you’re advertising in the first place) if you’re actually using it. If you use Twitter to barrage people about your book, the tweets may get ignored because there’s so many of them.
Promoting other people is probably more helpful than promoting yourself. This is because you create real friends along the way. You scratch their back, they’ll eventually scratch yours when you’ve got the itch, right? Meaning, if they write a meaningful post and you retweet it, it means a lot to them. They’re inclined to see what you’re blogging about, or what you’re working on.
It doesn’t take a lot of time out of your day to reach out to people. If you keep a writing and blogging schedule, include a bit of time each day devoted to Twitter-ing; I’m sure the addiction will settle in soon enough.
Which social media platform is your favorite? Which one is most effective for you? Share your opinions or tricks below!