This is part three of a series of blog posts about promoting your own book. If you missed parts 1 and 2, here they are.
Stay tuned for another post about using Facebook to promote a book soon.
According to a Pew Research Center article, “23% of online adults currently use Twitter, a statistically significant increase compared with the 18% who did so in August 2013. Twitter is particularly popular among those under 50 and the college-educated.” Does that sound like your audience?
Be Generous First
Use Twitter to tweet about yourself, your interests, and, of course, your book. More importantly, engage with your friends and followers, as well as other authors on Twitter. You can ask for retweets occasionally by saying “please retweet” in your tweet. Share other authors’ and friends’ tweets. If you’re generous on Twitter, your generosity will be repaid.
Write Great Tweets
As with everything on twitter, your writing must shine so that people will want to read your books. Crisp, clear, fun writing will attract people. Tweets can include great quotes from book reviews (with links to where people can buy your book), and fabulous images.
Pin Important Tweets
Twitter now allows you to “pin” your tweet to the top of your account. Go to the tweet you want to pin, click on the three little dots under it, and choose “pin to your profile page.” Now your tweet will live at the top of your profile.
Use A Hashtag or Two
A hashtag such as #SciFi or #Fiction may be just the ticket for your book promotion so that people looking for something to read can find you. You could also add them to your profile, along with #author.
Who is your ideal audience? The narrower you can define your audience, the better. You can search within Twitter for your audience and follow those people.
Tweet chats are an excellent way to get more high-quality followers as well as to become an authority on your topic. If you don’t know what a tweet chat is, here’s how to participate. I highly recommend that you begin your tweet chats long before your book is published.
If you have a book with 12 chapters, you probably have at least 12 topics for tweet chats. You could have one weekly for 12 weeks (or longer, to gain even more followers). To promote your chat, send reminders every week. Tweet them out a day or two before the chat. My chat, #DigiBlogChat, is on Tuesdays at 1 pm, so I schedule my reminder tweets for 5:00-7:00 am Monday mornings. That way, they’re not in the main “stream” and don’t cause a lot of clutter.
Here’s an example of a reminder tweet (note: send it to multiple people at a time):
Schedule your reminders every five minutes. I use HootSuite Pro, but you could also use any number of other schedulers.
Use Tools to Help During the Chat
For the chat itself, log into Twubs or TweetChat (log into your Twitter account first), then put in the hashtag of your chat. Twubs and Tweetchat help you by automatically adding the hashtag. Also, you can slow down the stream, since many chats go very quickly, with lots of people tweeting in.
The Twubs interface is quite simple. You can see who’s tweeting about the topic. You can also see the contributors, and you can also easily retweet.
One way to see how much reach you got during your chat is by using Tweetreach. Simply log in (perhaps halfway through the chat), enter the hashtag, and Tweetreach calculates the reach. The below is a snapshot (50 tweets only).
Prepare Questions Ahead of Time for a Tweet Chat
To run a tweet chat, prepare the questions ahead of time. I create 8. At first, people like to say hello and introduce themselves, so give people 3-4 minutes for that. Then you can tweet a question every few minutes during the hour. Some chats are more freeform, but I like the question and answer format.
Have Guest Hosts
You could also have guest hosts who can create topics and questions, and this can generate excitement. If you do a book giveaway, that will be even more exciting! I’ve given away books, e-books, tickets to social media events, and classes during chats. The more promotion you do, the more excitement will build. Use all your social media to promote, and you might even want to call people if there’s a big giveaway!
Are You An Author with a Book to Promote?
How has Twitter helped you? Or if you’rejust getting started, what did I leave out? Please leave me a comment, below!