As I mentioned last week, Twitter is my favourite social networking site. But building a solid social network is a marathon adventure, not a sprint. You’ll burn out trying to do everything at once.
So what can and should a newbie author do with Twitter?
1. Be nice. You attract followers who like the way you sound. If you tweet about every bad mood, social disaster or catastrophe in your life you run the risk of alienating the very people you’re trying to impress. Keep your tweets professional and friendly at all times. Take your bad mood out on your voodoo dolls or a punch bag.
->Publishers, editors, and agents use Twitter. If you have submitted a project in the hopes of publication don’t ruin your chances with rants. They do look you up.
2. Talk about your work/book a little. Some tweeters get a bit spammy over time. The point of twitter is to interact in real time with people with similar interests. I don’t know about you but I have no interest in following someone who says ‘buy my book’ fifteen times a day.
–> Facebook, Blogspot, and WordPress can be linked to Twitter, but be careful of message duplication (more on linking social networking sites later)
3. Pass along good information. The retweet button on twitter is probably the worst used feature. You could theoretically retweet every link that comes into your twitter stream but before you do think about the people that follow you. What you retweet they see. I have had 20 consecutive tweets from one person and all had links to follow. Do you believe anyone has the time for all of that? No, of course not. But one or two I would explore.
—>Use URL shorteners like ShrinkThisLink when adding website links to your twitter messages, and be sure to post a description of what the link is about. No one likes to follow a link blindly.
The point I’m trying to make about twitter is that your participation should not become spam to others. Keep it real, and make sure you leave time to write.