I recently wrote a post about social media for writers – and, following on from this, I’m now focusing on advice specific to Twitter.
It’s the social media site, with which I’ve personally had the most success. It’s also, in my opinion, one of the best for writers. I hesitate to say the best, because everyone is different, and what works for each of us is going to vary. That said, if you asked me which one social media site you should really be on, as a writer, I would say Twitter, for sure.
So, let’s start at the beginning: Name.
Use your real name, or the pen name that you write under, unless there’s a particular reason not to do so.
Your profile picture should be a photograph of yourself – unless, again, there is a definite reason not to use your own image.
Use a logo, if appropriate – but no profile pictures featuring your pet dog or guinea pig, however cute said pet might be. If you want to feature your books, incorporate these images into your cover photo, whilst still allowing potential readers to see you, as the face of your author brand.
It’s usually advisable to use the same profile picture, for your various social media accounts.
It makes it so much easier for people to find you, if you look the same on Twitter, Facebook, Tumblr, Pinterest, and so on. It’s generally recommended to use consistent cover pictures as well, although this can be difficult in practice, because different dimensions are required for each site. It’s certainly the ideal, but I must admit that my own cover images are currently not consistent, across the board.
Ensure that your profile information is complete, and that you include the URL of your website or blog, if you have one.
If you don’t yet have your own site, maybe link to your Facebook “fan” page, You Tube profile, or whichever site or profile seems most appropriate.
Consistency is very much key with Twitter.
This is the case with social media in general, but particularly so, when it comes to Twitter. You should definitely make use of scheduling and, if you can’t afford to pay for this, don’t worry. I’ve never paid to schedule my social media posts. There are so many free options and, for more information about schedulers, with an emphasis upon free alternatives, I recommend reading my post about how I schedule for social media. There’s also a follow-up post, in which I expand upon the information given in part one.
Post as frequently as 10 + times daily, for optimum results.
Yes, seriously. As long as you’re spacing your Tweets out, using some sort of scheduling system, it won’t be too much. Twitter moves fast, and you have to be posting regularly, if you want many people to see your content. You can recycle posts, much more so than on other networks, such as Facebook.
Post varied, quality content, such as writing and inspirational quotes, poetry, and links to blog posts and videos.
These links can be your own or other people’s, and should ideally be a mixture of both. If you include someone else’s link, you might want to tag the person, using their Twitter handle. Twitter is much more visual than many people realise. Aim to include images with the majority of Tweets, as this will increase the number of “likes” and Retweets that you receive.
They make a significant difference to your reach, and you will definitely be missing out, if you’re not including them. Don’t overdo it, however. 1 to 3 tags are the general recommendation. 4 is borderline. More than 4, and many people will view your post as “spam”. Over time, you will get to know which hashtags work best for you but, for anything writing related, you can’t really go wrong with #amwriting or/and #writerslife.
Another quick point about hashtags: Don’t just add them to your own posts, but “visit” them, too.
It’s a great way to find people in your niche, and make valuable connections.
Pin a Tweet to the top of your profile – a post that you particularly want people to see, when they land on your profile page.
It’s well worth the effort to do so.
Although scheduling can take care of most of your posting, it’s important to check into Twitter regularly – ideally once or more daily, most days.
When you do go on, make sure that you engage with others, and Retweet a selection of quality content, from the people you follow, or ones whose posts you find via hashtags, as previously mentioned.
I would also really appreciate it if you would share this, or/and any of my other posts, on social media. It makes a difference, and means a lot to me. Thank you for your support.