For any self-published authors out there – I have blogged on Off The Shelf Book Promotions about publicising your book on Twitter. This post gives basic Twitter tips for writers, to help you hit the ground running when you sign up to Twitter.
Debbie’s book Sell Your Books aims to help self-published authors market their books. It is concise, well-written and chockablock with useful tips, from identifying your target market, planning your strategy to getting media coverage. While it is a must-buy for those who have published their own books, it also contains plenty of tips for those who are working with a publisher.
As Debbie says,
‘If you think that a publisher’s profit from producing your book should cover its marketing costs, think again… Promoting a book is very, very time-consuming, involving many hours of work with no guarantee of success… It’s not even all about money – because a publishing company doesn’t exist that could field a person more passionate about your writing than you’.
Now, if you will excuse me, I am off to put all that newfound knowledge into practice…
Authors are often told that they should use Twitter to publicise their work. This advice is given to both self-published authors, and those working with a publisher. Twitter is easily accessible, has no barriers or borders, and costs nothing but time.
I hear you shout, ‘But I don’t have the time, I need to WRITE!’
That is what this post is about – ensuring that you get the very best out of Twitter in the time you can afford to invest.
Take a day or two before you start tweeting to organise your set-up. Doing this ensures that every tweet you send reaches your target audience.
Pep up your profile
Your profile is your shop window. It consists of:
- Header – the rectangular box
- A profile photo – lose the egg. The generic profile picture is a sign of a Twitter newbie. Be brave and put a picture of yourself as your avatar as people tend to respond better to a face than a picture of a dust jacket.
- Your Twitter name and your user name (the @name). Make it easy for people to find you by sticking as close to your author name as possible.
- A short bio – You have 160 characters of space on your profile to provide a snapshot of your personality. Use them wisely, but don’t go overboard with self-promotion.
- Your location – make this as vague or exact as you like
- Link to website or blog
- Header photo – lots of people don’t bother doing anything with it, but it is a good way of visually linking to your website, using similar colours or patterns