Happy Friday! Casey Wyatt here.

I admit I was reluctant to take the plunge and join Twitter. My thought was –  Ugh, another thing I have to do on top of Facebook and the blogs.

And it is another thing to keep track of … except I like Twitter it.

Maybe too much. It appeals to my inpatient nature and is a great opportunity to spend time avoiding writing. I get instant feedback and someone, somewhere is always tweeting about something interesting. So what is Twitter? It’s a social media tool that allows you to speak to your “followers” or “tweeps” in 140 characters or less. People have to choose to follow you. And you choose to follow them. You can only read comments from those people or organizations you follow. And they in turn will only read your comments if they follow you. (Twitter allows you to directly message people if you know their user name). Our friend and marketing guru Jennifer Fusco likens Twitter to a cocktail party. I think that is a great analogy.  Except my problem is I like the party a little too much. So what’s a writer to do? Limit yourself – I re-tweet (a function that allows you to share tweets you like with your followers). And I publicize for the Scribes (@Secretsof7Scrib) and for Casey (@CaseyWyatt1). I try to read the “feeds” only a few times a day, rather than all day long. Connect – Many applications “talk” to each other. I allow Twitter, Facebook and WordPress access to each other. When I tweet or re-tweet, it appears on my Facebook wall and on my blog page. When this blog posts, it will appear in Twitter and on my Facebook wall. Kinda of neat, huh? Be Meaningful – Ask yourself before you tweet- does anyone care what you ate for lunch? My yardstick for a RT (re-tweet) is – would I like to share this with my followers? Is this an interesting tweet (example, it leads to cool blog post or a contest)? Be mindful of other’s time. Tweet with a purpose. And remember to be professional. Follow – Follow others and they will follow you back (for the most part). And don’t stick to just other writers. I’ve branched out and started following review sites, artists, even the Dalai Lama (he has very sage advice). And speaking of advice – embrace some form of social media. It’s not going away anytime soon. Pick something you like and can manage. Remember, writing should always come first. We can’t sell a blank page! p.s. follow me, I follow back! What is your favorite social media? Least favorite? And have you had to go on a social media diet?

18 thoughts on “Twitter-pated”

  1. Twitter in a nutshell! thanks for clarifying and making Twitter sound much less threatening. I too was resistent to the little birdie, but now I’m glad I jumped in. I’m no Twitter expert, (can’t seem to figure out all the lingo just yet), but I find the concept and the marketing possibilities astounding. I currently have about 90 followers (I’ll be so excited to break 100). I think about the power of tweeting to 100 people who have 100 or 1000 followeres that they RT my message to and before you know it, my message can get out to tens or hundreds of thousands of people in a matter of minutes. WAY COOL!

    I liked what you said about making your tweets useful and interesting. I try not to make my tweets just about promotion, but I don’t often feel I have much to offer the twittersphere. I do tweet about what books I’m reading (tweeted Kristan Higgins, Until There Was You, yesterday), and I will definitely RT (that’s retweet) interesting tweets and sites I think my followers might like.

    I don’t love Twitter as a time suck though. I do limit myself to checking in twice a day and spend only about ten or fifteen minutes tops. I do the same for Face Book, although I’ve been know to spend too much time on Scrabble when my brain needs a break from the myriad of other details in this business. My next investment is a TIMER, so I can set it for an hour and have it catch me when I spend too much time on e-mailing and social networking:-)

    1. I have to say I really enjoy Twitter. It’s so much less work than keeping up with Facebook. I enjoy reading the links and other blogs. I’ve tried to diversify beyond writers. I love the comic book guys, the artists, themusicians. I periodically just follow people who seem interesting. It’s amazing how many followers I’ve picked up from following others.

    1. Hi Joy! Yes, it is an excuse to ignore writing but it’s also a great way to attract people to your blog. I guess, like anything, it’s how much time you want to put into it. Speaking of writing, I’m looking forward to your latest… hint… hint.

  2. I tweet … not a lot, but a few times daily. I post the blog and I retweet. I also retweet the tweets of blog notices of my pals here at Scribes 🙂 and MOD. I do follow a few folks, but until I get my new phone, I won’t tweet from my phone. I’m holding out. Yeah … one more thing we have to do, but it really doesn’t take all that long. Besides, cocktail parties are fun!

  3. Oh no, another social media that we are told is helpful. I have been resisting. We’ll see … tomorrow is another day, maybe?

    1. I find Twitter to be easier to manage than Facebook (not sure why). Like PJ, I still have a lot to learn about Twitter etiquette and hashtags (those thing with the # sign in front of them). If you decide to take the plunge be sure to share your “handle” so I can follow you.

  4. I have a Twitter account (@susannahhardy1) but I’m not actually Tweeting or following or checking for updates. Soon I will be a Tweeting fool, though! I can see how it would be addictive, so I will have to limit myself to a couple of times a day. BTW, thanks, Casey, for being Tweet-Mistress to the Scribes!

    1. My pleasure to be the Scribes Tweet-Mistress. Or is that Tweet-Goddess?? Yes, limits are important, yet so hard to do sometimes…I need to learn to shut it down when I’m supposed to be writing. We’ll see how that goes.

  5. I have a love/hate relationship with social media, but of all the social media out there, I like Twitter the best. It really is user-friendly. And very fun. Sometimes too fun! Glad you have electricity again.

    1. I’m happy to have electricty too. Julia – you are my favorite Tweeter! You have magic powers because you find the best blogs and interesting information. I always love sharing your tweets. I feel like I’m riding on your coat-tails! Thank you!!

  6. Great post…and congrats on the power. Not there yet, myself.

    As for twitter I’m growing accustomed to it. Still more of a fb follower, but getting there. Still working on understanding hashtags I think when I do I will like it more.

    1. Hey! I just left you a note on FB. I’m so sorry you are still in the dark. I think I like Twitter more because it’s easier to do things. I can’t keep up with the constant changes in FB (drives me nuts!). Yeah, I don’t quite get how people pick hashtags. I think they make them up and then others pick up on them. If anyone knows, please share!

  7. I think if authors are only going to focus on one social medium, Twitter is it. It’s short and sweet…you can still post photos, book covers, links. Your potential for reaching a large audience is much greater than via facebook (because of retweets), and if you are disciplined, it should only take up 15 minutes a day? (I’m not disciplined! I like chatting too much). Also, facebook has implemented way too many changes recently….it is no longer user-friendly. That is the kiss-of-death for social media. Twitter is a great option!

    1. Exactly! All the changes in FB have driven me nuts. Maybe that is why I like Twitter so much. Thanks for stopping by Penelope. Please thank Julia too. If it wasn’t for her tweets I wouldn’t have discovered your blog!!

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