Bookish Media Strategy recently launched into the Twitter-sphere (shameless plug, follow me @bookishstrategy), so Twitter and more specifically Twitter for author marketing have been on my mind. When utilized to its fullest potential, Twitter can be a powerful tool for an author to grow their social media presence and engage their target market. When misunderstood, Twitter can be downright frustrating. It’s easy to get lost in the vastness of the platform, but once you make your way through the weeds, there’s a whole world of potential for authors to promote their books.
When I sat down to write this post, I came up with so many best practices I decided to make this a three-part series on the ins and outs of Twitter for authors. This post gives tips on how to format your posts for Twitter. Stay tuned for future posts on engaging your audience and growing your platform.
Keep it Short and Sweet
What makes Twitter unique as a social media platform is their word count limit. Even though it was recently expanded, Twitter is best served with short-form punchy content. I know writers like to write but maxing out your word count every time you craft a tweet may be working against you.
Don’t shy away from using pictures or videos to liven up your tweets. This will catch your audience’s attention if they’re scrolling through dozens of text-only posts. Here are some examples of authors that are using media in their posts to grab attention and add value.
Get Your Links in Order
As a social media manager, buggy links are a pet peeve of mine. It’s important if you’re posting a link that the card is showing correctly. You can tell if something’s off if there’s a blank where the picture would be or the summary is wrong. When that happens, throw your link into a Twitter card validator; that should debug it for you. The link for that is here, and if you want a walk through on how to do it check out this Wikihow article. If it’s a post from your own blog, you may have to play around in the settings on the blog post to make sure that all your ducks are in a row there.
Format Your Posts for Twitter
When I find an author that feels like they aren’t getting value out of Twitter, they usually say the same thing: “Yeah, I usually just repost anything I post to Facebook or Instagram onto my Twitter.” Formatting your posts to Twitter is important. If you take the time to format your post specifically to the platform you’re posting it on, I promise you it will be worth the extra time it takes to do so. This way you can make sure your entire message is visible, and even add some hashtags.
Next week I’ll be exploring how authors can use Twitter to engage their readers. Make sure to follow along on Twitter or LinkedIn to keep up to date with my latest posts. If you’re an author who’s ready to take the next step in your social media journey, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can talk!