Twitter is another great vehicle for connecting with readers and (to a lesser extent) other writers, but if you do it wrong, you could be turning them off. So here’s what you shouldn’t be doing:
1.) Tweeting asking people to buy your book all the time. If you do this, the people who actually read their feeds will stop following you pretty quickly, and other people don’t really matter. Will you sell a few books? Sure. But not enough to get any kind of traction.
2.) Have an auto Direct Message when someone follows you back directing them to buy your book. Now, for most users on Twitter, auto DMs aren’t obnoxious as long as they’re phrased right and as long as you reply to other people’s replies. Something like “Thanks for the follow! Love to see you on Facebook: [link]” is more than fine. So is, “Greetings! If you’re a reader, my newsletter is here: [link]” or even, “Looking forward to your tweets!” But once you start sending people to your books, you have to be careful. Your first contact with someone shouldn’t be a hard-sell. “Thanks for the follow! Buy my book Sleepless in Peoria here: [link]” is obnoxious. But “Thx 4 follow. Read paranormal romance? 2 free books: [link] [link]” is roughly what I have, and here I’m offering a gift, not demanding a buy. Enormous difference!
3) Posting really explicit material. Unlike Facebook, Twitter censors very little, but even if your work is really kinky, if you follow someone and they go to check out your feed and it’s quite extreme, there’s a good chance that you’ll turn them off even if they might otherwise like your book.
4) Retweeting many, many posts from the same source. If I want to follow Beyonce, I’ll follow Beyonce. I won’t follow some person who retweets half of Beyonce’s posts.
5) Asking other people for retweets through Direct Messages. Unless you have an established relationship with someone and an agreement to share each other’s posts, this is a big no-no. Please don’t do it.
Tired of hearing what NOT to do on social media? In a little while, I’ll let you know how you SHOULD be using it!