Tuesday 1 April 2014

Twitter Marketing Strategy: Follow Lots of People

This past weekend, I came across a post on the Awesome Gang blog, entitled How To Find Followers on Twitter That Want To Read My Book.

As I understood it, Vinny (the author) was saying that you as an author should scour Twitter, looking for people who read books in the genre you write (or are otherwise interested in that genre), and follow them indiscriminately, hoping they will follow you back.

I commented on that article, saying that I've never been a fan of that approach. I know that it works for some people, but in the end it just makes me feel "dirty". Personally, I try to be as authentic as possible on Twitter. I only follow people I'm interested in, and expect other people to do the same, by only following me if they're interested in what I have to say. I don't follow hundreds or thousands of people a day (which is what Vinny seemed to be suggesting).

Another reason that I disagreed with what he had to say in that article was because getting people to buy my book is not the reason why I'm on Twitter in the first place. Of course it would be nice if someone who finds me through Twitter ends up buying one of my books, but there are just so many other aspects to my personality. Aside from being an author, I'm a Christian, I'm a computer programmer, I like to play games occasionally, and I'm a husband to the most beautiful woman I've ever met. And I tweet about all these things, not just my books.

My comment caused a bit of a discussion with Vinny, who in the end agreed with me, saying that you need to reach out to people, looking to make genuine connections. That's kind of what I was getting at, but I'm still not a hundred percent satisfied.

I tweeted about the article yesterday morning, hoping to get some other peoples' perspectives on it:

So, as a reader, how do you feel when authors follow you? Are you inclined to follow them back or, as I suspect, does it depend entirely on whether you have a connection with what they have to say? Does it make you more (or perhaps less) inclined to buy their books?

As an author, how do you do Twitter marketing? Do you try to follow as many readers in your genre as you can? What about your tweets: do you keep them as specific to your writing as possible, or do you like to show off all the different layers of your personality? Somewhere in between?

I'd love to hear what everybody thinks. Pop your comment into the box below, and let's start a discussion!

* The image used in this article comes from Flickr. It's an image entitled marketing-strategy-plan, by a user called DigitalRalph. The image is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license.

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