by: Stephanie Burkhart
Twitter is a great resource for marketing in the social media domain. Back in October 2011, I wrote about Twitter and how to use it, so I thought I'd take another look at it – a "refresher" so to speak.
Twitter's changed its look this year. If anything, I find the new look "busy," and I'm a firm believer in the "keeping it simple" look. The good news about the changed look is that it's still easy enough to find the spaces to post a tweet, send a direct message, and find the follow button.
The pros and cons haven't changed. Pros: It's cheap and fun. Cons: It's confusing and intimidating. In my opinion: if you're new to Twitter, the learning curve is in the middle, not too high, but you have to hunt for a couple of things.
Twitter is a great way to get the word out about a new book, or a new review if you're an author, but in order to be successful, you've got to do a couple of things. I recommend:
· Dedicate 10-15 minutes a day to be on Twitter.
· Friend 5 people a day, preferably those who share your interests. If you're an author you might want to target book bloggers and book reviewers. Friending people is a great way to build your Twitter base.
· Do a half and half. Make half your daily tweets promotional, the other half, let your personality shine. Tweet the little things. I find I always get a good response when I tweet "getting 7-11 coffee."
Going Deeper - Twitter 102
When you tweet, try to use a keyword to describe you or your book. For example, the genre of the book, or the price point.
Use an icebreaker to bring in followers. Icebreakers like "How's the weather your way?" "Who saw Game of Thrones last night?" or "What's your favorite coffee?' attract people to answer and follow.
Use programs like Hoot suite to preschedule tweets so you don't have to be on Twitter frequently, especially if you have a busy day running errands.
If you have a blog, and blog fairly regularly, use Triberr to connect with others to Tweet about your blog posts. The basic Triberr account is free. There is a bit of a high learning curve with Triberr – you need to link up your blog and Twitter, but once you master it, you'll have a steady stream of tweets that will attract people to your blog.
The little things go a long way. It's important to talk about your interests – gardening, movies, music, books, traveling, coffee, wine, things that appeal to kids. Fellow Tweeters get to know you and tend to reciprocate. It's all about reaching out and finding an audience.
#hashtags: when you hashtag a tweet it allows fellow tweeters to find tweets in that topic.
@sign: lets people know you're talking about them, or they are talking about you. I love seeing an "@" sign and my name. I appreciate it and try to reciprocate.
Question: I'd love to hear your thoughts about Twitter. Do you use it? Why or why not? If you do, what do you do that makes it work for you?
Author Bio: Stephanie Burkhart is a 911 dispatcher for LAPD. She loves coffee, adores chocolate and is going to participate in the Alz.org Walk to Cure Alzheimer's on 20 SEP in Santa Clarita, CA. Her children's book, "The Giving Meadow," is published with 4RV Publishing.
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