AUTHORS Don’t be TWITS when TWEETING and making Online ‘Friends’!

As someone who makes online contact with authors on a daily basis, there are a few things that actually IRK me (not a pretty sight), so please excuse me while I arrange this soapbox more comfortably and elaborate further.

These irk-making issues are not unique to me and have been expressed by many people – including many non-irk making authors – so unless you want to LOSE potential readers, fans and friends, you need to STOP doing the following IMMEDIATELY on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Goodreads, Shefari, Librarything, et al:

Making your first contact with the immortal words:

Get my books at ***************

LIKE my FB Page at ***************

Follow my Website / blog at ***************

And similar well meant (?), but self-centred sayings!!!!!

Think about it for a few moments – WHY did this person start Following / Liking / Send you a Friend / Connection Request?

Is it because they liked the look of your photo / avatar?

Maybe they were bored and sent out lots of random requests?

OR, could it be that they discovered that you write the type of books and stories they like and wanted to get to know you better?

How would they know this?

Because they found you online and already knew what books you’ve written and – shudder, tremble and shake – they’d actually already READ some of them????

Yes – I DO understand that you really, Really, REALLY want people to love your books (and You) – but the above ‘greetings’ are NOT going to successfully promote you or your books.

In fact, they are more likely to repulse people rather than attract them!

If you set up your online profiles properly, you don’t need to use any of the above ‘Greetings’.

For example – my Twitter profile informs everyone as follows:

Very active owner of a new (to me) authors and their books blog set up to promote Indie Authors as widely as possible – see it at: https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/

So I don’t need to ram it down their online throats any further unless they specifically ask me for more details – however – if they click on the link provided, they’ll get all the information they could possibly need.

Having said that, many of the ‘First Contact’ authors don’t seem to bother themselves with checking out my profile BEFORE sending me their – frankly – ‘OFF PUTTING’ Greetings.

So – how can you promote yourself and your books if you stop using the above ‘ Greetings’?

Carefully word your Profile Information so that it includes the following:

What you do – AUTHOR / WRITER / POET

What your books / poems are about – GENRE

Where else you and your books can be found:

YOUR WEBSITE / BLOG ***OR*** FACEBOOK PAGE

Ensure that your Website / Blog / Facebook Page displays all the links where you and your books can be found (don’t forget to show ALL Amazon country links – ONLINE means GLOBAL)

Also on your Website / Blog, provide a means for people to contact you directly by email, or, (preferably and recommended to avoid or minimise spam engine and people) a Contact Form

Facebook, LinkedIn, Goodreads, etc, all have Message facilities already available.

Will this guarantee you more readers / fans / friends / sales?

NO!

But it WILL guarantee you DON’T LOSE any!

Right – That’s it – I’ve said my piece and stepping down off the soapbox now. I KNOW many of you may feel offended, outraged, go off in a huff / hissy-fit, some of you may even leave me your candid opinions in the Comments Box under this diatribe (article). But it’s been IRKING me for months – and I’M ON YOUR SIDE!

So what’s it been like for those other strangers who just wanted to reach out and touch you?

DON’T FORGET – A Stranger is just a Friend you haven’t met or got to know yet! TWEET and GREET WISELY.

TSRA

Now just you listen to me - PUNK

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93 thoughts on “AUTHORS Don’t be TWITS when TWEETING and making Online ‘Friends’!

  1. Great post. Not even sure if I am doing some of this, but as a newbie to the promotional side of self-publishing I am sure I have made plenty of irking mistakes. I guess it is a trial by fire.

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  2. Yes, yes and yes – the secret is in the name SOCIAL media. Not PLUG YOURSELF media. Would you walk up to someone, and before a handshake, say: please read my book? The other thing I really don’t like is automated messages on twitter. Seriously? It doesn’t work.

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  3. Too right Chris! I come across a lot of newbie twits who do that.(or is that, twats?… idk) I can’t believe it when I go to their twitter page and bang! right in the face! that’s how it feels to me and from what you’ve said… pretty much the same. After the initial shock, I begin to think about how AMATEURISh (lower case intended) it looks. I don’t think they realise that it turns more people off than they think and is therefore, counterproductive. Great post, Chris.

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  4. The author whose posts I ALWAYS read on Facebook does the following things: She shares and promotes other writers’ books and successes. When she tells stories about herself, they are funny and interesting and not self-indulgent. When she wins an award or has a successful event (and she has lots of both), she comes across NOT as bragging but as truly delighted and grateful to her friends and fans. I’ve never met her, but I feel as if I know her and like her as a human being. I read her books because of HER.

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  5. Good advice, Chris. Something I started doing a few months ago is quoting a poignant passage from my book, followed by the book’s title and link. I’ve been surprised by the number of re-tweets I’ve received.

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  6. Great post. I dislike it when the first thing somebody says to me is buy or review my books. Quite often they do it without saying thank you. I also loathe trutwit. If I get a trutwit validation message I don’t bother going through the million hoop process to prove I’m not a robot – imagine dyslexia with numbers rather than words. Yeh. So the simple step is a complete ball ache for me.

    Cheers

    MTM

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  7. Guilty…I used to do this in the beginning, when I was brand new to publishing and didn’t know any better…but luckily I was house-broken quickly 😉 It’s such a wake-up call to see other authors do this, get super annoyed, and then realize that’s how some people may have felt about you…

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  8. Maybe Chris you could add to this by hghlighting the authors who ask for reviews but never reciprocate. A review is a lot of reading and then some! A big ask. I like writing creative reviews ( for books I enjoy) but a little the other way would keep the wheel turning. Perhaps you might have a page for ‘Inking/Linking the irk?’

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  9. Hear, hear Chris! I get loads of PM’s with those messages, and delete them straight away – nostril irritants. That photo really shows your very handsome side by the way. *Hides under table* 😀 😀

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  10. This article made me chuckle, perhaps wearily, at how much my twitter feed is stuffed with self-promotion. I don’t mind it once in a while, because I understand we all want to get our stuff seen. But it’s true some of us (many?) follow folks on social media because we sense a kindred spirit, not only about writing, but about family, life, jobs, causes, hobbies, food, beer/wine, whatever.
    Th

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  11. I’ve un-friended a number of people because it seems like ALL I ever hear from them are book promotions. I don’t mind the occasional one (I mean, my blog updates tend to go out on twitter/tumblr/facebook) but I want to be getting much more out of the connections that I’m making out there. Interaction is key.

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    • Like you, my posts also go out to a lot of places automatically, and manually to others, but that’s what my blog is for – if these authors made the effort to check me out first, they would gain a lot more than their Hard Sell tactics could achieve 🙂

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  12. Thanks for the advice. I’m not there yet on promoting my book (still needs to be published) but I’ll keep this in mind. I’m not a hard-sell sort of person anyway, but not knowing what I’m doing, I’m bound to make such mistakes – even the ones done by others that annoy me. 😛

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  13. Great post. I totally agree. Usually when I follow someone on Twitter, it’s because we’ve had some interaction. I’ve interviewed them on my blog, or we interacted on FB or on a forum. So it’s a bit insulting when I reach out to connect on Twitter and all I get in return is a canned message demanding that I like their FB page.

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  14. I absolutely agree with this, Ape, and think it needs to be said – again, and again, and again, if necessary. The authors who irk me most are those I follow who then send a direct message to thank me for the follow, tell me where I can buy all their books – but DO NOT FOLLOW ME BACK! (Which means I can’t send them a direct message in return telling them what I think of their promotion methods.) I guess they don’t read that part in my Twitter Profile Info where I mention, “Author Impresario – Promoting reading, fellow authors and books where/whenever I can”. They really don’t want to piss off promoters like me who can help them with spreading the word about their books.

    And that’s also what I look for when following back authors who follow me – some indication in their profile that they are actually paying back to the community by promoting their fellow authors and not just themselves. Like you, I’m tired of hearing about “ME! ME! ME!” all the time. To paraphrase John F. Kennedy: Ask not what your fellow authors can do for you, but what you can do for the writing community!

    Am going to retweet and share this now in the hope that some of those offending authors will see themselves in your description and STOP DOING THIS! Thanks, Chris!

    Liked by 1 person

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