5 Important Twitter Tips for Authors

Posted February 4, 2019 | Laura Christianson

5 Important Twitter Tips for Authors | BloggingBistro.com
By Robyn Roste
Guest Contributor

Before we get started I’ll say it:

I know you’re not on Twitter anymore because you’ve heard it’s dead and you don’t understand it.

And that’s fine. But I think you should be on Twitter because that’s where the writing people are.

Here are a few of the types of writing people on Twitter:

  • Agents
  • Editors
  • Publishers
  • Publications
  • Authors
  • Freelance Writers

I’d like to prompt you to reconsider being on Twitter in order to network with writing people and grow your platform.

To help you make the most of your time, here are the five most important things to pay attention to on Twitter if you want to connect with any of the types of people listed above.

Five Important Twitter Tips for Authors

Tip #1:
Use the @mention tool as much as possible.

One of Twitter’s strengths is giving you direct access to people you don’t know, but want to. And when you @mention someone (this means tagging the Twitter user in a tweet) it grabs their attention and helps them notice you in a not-creepy way.

Even though the landscape has changed over the years, Twitter is still all about connecting. When you compose tweets, you should be thinking about who you can mention.

Some examples:

  • If you’re sharing a great article you read, @mention the person who wrote it and the publication that published it
  • If you’re tweeting about having a great writing session at the local coffee shop, @mention who you were with and where
  • If you’re at a writing conference or event @mention the speaker you’re watching and the conference you’re attending

Integrating @mentions into your tweeting strategy helps keeps your content focused, relays valuable information to your followers, and helps you make connections.

Tip #2:
Use the right #hashtags.

Hashtags are so important on Twitter. Maybe I’m preaching to the choir here and you already understand hashtag best practices, but I’ll mention it again, just in case.

Hashtags are meant to help people find you and connect with you. So using hashtags and using the right hashtags is important.

From the examples above, here are a few hashtags you could try:

  • If you’re sharing a great article you read and want other writers to check it out, try #bookrecommendations #amreading or #writingtip
  • If you’re tweeting about having a great writing session why not try #writerslife #writersgroup or #critiquegroup
  • If you’re at a writing conference or event make sure to use the event hashtag along with whatever the topic is about (e.g. #writingprompts or #writingcommunity etc.)

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Tip #3:
Use lists.

Lists are curated groups of Twitter users, which makes it possible to spend less time on Twitter and yet take strategic connecting to the next level.

Your lists can be public or private and I recommend a mix of both.

Here are a few suggested lists you could create to get the creative juices flowing:

  • Agents you want to connect with
  • Writers you admire
  • People you want to work for or collaborate with
  • Local people you want to keep track of
  • People you meet at writing events

Once you create these types of lists, start adding Twitter users to them. If your list is public the user is notified when you add them to the list. If your list is private then no one knows about it and no one can see or follow your list.

I have a few lists of people I’d like to connect with or work with and I keep those private, but some of my lists are curated based on types of writing and I keep those public so others can benefit from them if they want to follow my lists.

Twitter tip within a Twitter tip: If you don’t know much about Twitter lists but want to try them, here’s Twitter’s step-by-step guide to setting up a list.

Tip #4:
Complete and optimize your profile.

The best way to make authentic connections is by ensuring your profile makes people want to connect with and follow you.

Here are five quick tips for optimizing your Twitter profile:

  1. Choose a professional/standout profile picture and cover photo
  2. Make it easy for people to know who you are and what you do
  3. Link to your website and/or your free offer (lead magnet)
  4. Include keywords about your services
  5. Be clear on your location/contact info

These are basic tips but there are so many profiles out there missing one or more of these key elements. In order to make a good first impression and grab people’s attention, your Twitter profile must be complete and optimized.

If you want these tips in more detail and download form I have a free printable for you: 5 Tips for Optimizing Your Social Media Profiles.

Tip #5:
Understand Twitter best practices

If you want to succeed on Twitter, you have to abide by its best practices. So while you want to create a strategy where you’re not on the platform 24/7, you also want to understand it enough to use it properly. What does this mean?

Here are a few Twitter best practices to consider:

  • Don’t just schedule tweets, put Twitter on auto-pilot, and never engage with others
  • Don’t spam people with self-promotion. Send valuable and on-brand content to your followers
  • Don’t stalk people! Follow them, retweet them when appropriate, and watch for opportunities to make genuine connections
  • Don’t just show up for what you can get out the platform. Be generous and add value
  • Join the conversation when you can, in real time

Twitter thrives on generosity. When you provide relevant information and entertainment, and build genuine relationships, you become a part of a vibrant community that you contribute to and also benefit from. By following best practices it ensures you aren’t seen as a spammer or someone just out for themselves.

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5 Important Twitter Tips for Authors | BloggingBistro.com

Robyn Roste | Guest ColumnistAbout the Author

Working for the better part of a decade at a non-profit, Robyn Roste’s experience combines new media, broadcast media, journalism, public relations, and social media. Say hi on Twitter @robynroste.




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