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Exactly how to use Twitter?

Before posting in this marketing forum, please try to read 10 Step Plan to Promote Your Book: Online Book Marketing on Any Budget. This forum is mainly for followup questions and discussion after reading that book. This forum does indeed allow for much broader discussion of marketing and promotion than just that book, but it's good for everyone to be on the same page about the basics.

Please note, this forum is not for self-promotional plugs. It's for discussing how to promote your book or other writing.

Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#1 by moderntimes
» 09 Oct 2015, 22:16

I think I understand the hashtag thing but I'm still a bit clueless about exactly how to use those tags and other Twitter elements to promote a book.

For full disclosure I'll say that I have recently signed a 3-book contract with a conventional publisher but a small publisher nonetheless. So they won't be doing a lot of promotion and I'm expected to help with pushing my books to sell. So they are on Amazon.

Since my real books are being sold commercially, I'll avoid the actual titles and use an example...

Let's say I've written a novel "The Maltese Falcon" and I want to help promote the book. I can simply post a Tweet of course which lists maybe the link to Amazon and my author's name, Dashiell Hammett, but I don't know how to use the hashtags to build a bunch of followers.

Can someone help educate me on the specifics of Twitter for my new book? And yeah, I write private detective novels so let's use that topic to start with.

Thanks in advance.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#2 by stoppoppingtheP
» 10 Oct 2015, 14:04

Tip. Many people follow you back if you follow them. If you have more followers, more people read your stuff.
With regards to the hashtags, they are basically keywords that people search for things with. Hashtag everything. Hope this helps
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#3 by CzechTigg
» 10 Oct 2015, 15:50

yep many follow back, but watch out for those who stop following after any length of time. I use it more for breaking new and opportunities. It's also a lot easier for a user with a photo of a young pretty girl (you don't know who they are!) to get hordes of followers.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#4 by stoppoppingtheP
» 10 Oct 2015, 16:22

Yeah. I also use it mostly for news.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#5 by moderntimes
» 10 Oct 2015, 20:33

Well, Scott recommended Twitter but the exact specifics were kinda hazy. When you say "tip" what do you mean? Thanks.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#6 by ChantelSeabrook
» 15 Oct 2015, 16:50

I haven't had much success using Twitter for marketing, but it is a great place to meet other authors.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#7 by HalcyonFlower
» 01 Nov 2015, 20:46

Maybe you could create a number of 'mysterious' tweets then begin to follow authors or big-names in some fields? The reason for this is, whenever I get a notification that someone followed me, I check out their page and if there's a tweet I like, I retweet it. If my followers like what I retweeted, they retweet, etc. What I mean by mysterious tweets is to create an intriguing atmosphere regarding your novels.

Perhaps take the most shocking quote from your novel (because people love the shock effect nowadays) and put some sarcastic - or not - society commentary. You'd want people to keep reading and as an author, I feel like you already this skill. Here's an example:

""I have four less followers!" Odin exclaimed" - #godproblems #theresbeenfourdisastersworldwide

This tweet could speak to a novel I could have about heavenly beings and it's a piece that I don't mind being made fun of. In your case, maybe you could use philosophical questions and relate it to a character in the novel: "Should a terrorist deserve a second change? Michael Stanton didn't think so in _________."

Tags don't necessarily need to be used every tweet but keywords are important. It's also vital to use the proper tags since there could be social movements around them and you could risk offending a particular group. Twitter is a creative means to express yourself since only a select number of words is allowed. I say take a unique approach to marketing instead of the usual 'book signing @___' or 'on sale now!'. Create a world through tweets and I'm sure you'll have people talking about the novels sooner than later.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#8 by CCtheBrave
» 02 Nov 2015, 01:16

so, I've started using twitter to connect with other authors and promote my own work, and I have to say that although it's slow to start, it has helped me quite a bit. If you want to build a following of people who share the same interests, it's really helpful to hashtag the areas that you'd like to expand in. For example, if you're an independent author and you want to connect with other indie authors, just attach #indieauthor to the end of your tweet, or #amwriting, #fiction, #mysterynovels, etc.

when you do this, anytime someone searches for "indieauthor" or "amwriting" or "fiction," or whatever you hashtaged, your tweet will pop up.

hope this helps, i use it all the time to connect with other poets and writers.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#9 by moderntimes
» 02 Nov 2015, 09:43

Thanks for the feedback.

Is there a search algorithm of a way to find out about existing hashtags?

For example, since I write private detective novels, there might be a tag #privateeye or #privatedetective but how would I find this out?

In other words, if I were to want to find ANY hashtags already in use which are about private detectives or mystery novels or whatever, is there some way I could enter "private detective" or "private eye" and there would be a list of:
#PIstories
#PInovels
etc

shown for me? I could make up my own hashtag but unless others were using it, there would be no linkage to them. So how do you search and see about existing hashtags already in use which are specific to your field of interest?

Thanks
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#10 by CCtheBrave
» 02 Nov 2015, 10:28

On the twitter website, just enter your search terms into the search box and if there's already a hash tag, for those terms, you should see them populate in the box. That way you'll know that (1) there's a hash tag already out there for the term and (2) you'll hr able to read the tweets and see if they're relevant to you.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#11 by khudecek
» 02 Nov 2015, 10:48

I had to learn how to use Twitter to market my book, too, Modern. I caught onto the hashtags but I did a bunch of research in an effort to try to figure out the tinyurl thing and other problems that I encountered. One thing I learned in a hurry was that it doesn't post pictures of the cover of your book directly from Amazon like Facebook does. You have to upload the picture and post the link or go make a tiny link at tinyurl. I think there are a few more places you can go to make smaller URLs but I use tinyurl since it is so simple.

As for followers, I'm slowly acquiring them. As mentioned in a previous post, if you follow them, chances are good that they will follow you, too. I don't know if that's going to really help sell books but hey, every little bit helps.

I'm trying to figure out the "card" thing. I'm not exactly sure what that is or how it works. I've seen them on posts from the Onlinebookclub.org and from Scott Hughes. I don't know how to make one nor am I sure what it means.

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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#12 by moderntimes
» 02 Nov 2015, 12:06

Thanks for the info, folks.
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#13 by Scott
» 03 Nov 2015, 09:33

khudecek wrote:I'm trying to figure out the "card" thing. I'm not exactly sure what that is or how it works. I've seen them on posts from the Onlinebookclub.org and from Scott Hughes. I don't know how to make one nor am I sure what it means.

I pay for those. ;)
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#14 by khudecek
» 03 Nov 2015, 09:40

Scott wrote:
khudecek wrote:I'm trying to figure out the "card" thing. I'm not exactly sure what that is or how it works. I've seen them on posts from the Onlinebookclub.org and from Scott Hughes. I don't know how to make one nor am I sure what it means.

I pay for those. ;)

Ahhh. Now, I see. No wonder I couldn't find much information on them.

Thanks for the information! :)
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And that has made all the difference
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Re: Exactly how to use Twitter?

Post Number:#15 by Lincoln
» 25 Nov 2015, 13:59

I've used the cards, but they are expensive. I used it to get email addresses for my email list, but I don't think it has really paid off very much. Unfortunately it's just expensive for an address of someone who clicked, so a lot of people just unsubscribe right away.

All in all, twitter is good for information, but very few people seem to look at twitter feeds to see important information.
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