To Tweet Or Not To Tweet: Is Twitter Worth A Writer’s Time?

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twittergoodbadTwitter is a powerful social media platform that connects users from across the globe in realtime. A fun way to keep in touch with friends and celebrities, Twitter can also be used as a productive marketing tool. You can keep tabs on the Royal Baby while simultaneously telling the world that you’ve got a brand-new novel up for sale! Check out our list of Twitter pros and cons, and decide for yourself if Twitter is right for you.


PROS: Reasons Twitter Is A Fabulous Reputation-Building Tool For Writers

  1. Drive Traffic To Your Site — Driving traffic to your author website is no easy task. Waiting for users to stumble upon it while they’re searching for something else is often long and fruitless unless your SEO is perfectly executed. Instead of playing the waiting game, Twitter allows you to tweet a link to your author website to all your followers (who may retweet to their followers and so on). Getting your name (and a link to your author website) out there is the most effective way to drive traffic.
  2. Get Connected — By regularly engaging in Twitter conversations, you can establish yourself as a key player in Twitter’s massive writer community. Wish more people would pay attention to your work? Try interacting with industry influencers with large followings. If someone like @chuckpalahniuk gives you a shout-out, you may find your followers growing overnight. The connections don’t have to end here. Build up enough clout and you may see yourself being offered a chance to contribute to an influencer’s own site or blog.
  3. Easy As One, Two, Three — While the format may take a little getting used to, setting up your Twitter account is fairly simple. Once you’ve created your account, Twitter will even suggest other accounts for you to follow to get started.
  4. Instant Gratification — Since Twitter conversations occur in realtime, you have the potential to get all of your updates and even get suggestions from fellow writers every second of the day.

CONS: Reasons Why Twitter Is More Trouble Than It’s Worth For Some Writers

  1. Big Time Commitment — Because of Twitter’s realtime, conversation-based nature, a large time commitment is needed to use it to its full potential. It’s important to regularly interact with your followers and those you follow in order to remain relevant in the quickly paced online community. If you are unable to put in the necessary time, you may not be able to use Twitter to its full potential.
  2. Hard To Follow — In order to be considered an influential Twitter user, you must have a large following. There are several methods to gaining followers (such as constantly tweeting and engaging in conversations to get yourself noticed), but these methods take quite a bit of enthusiasm. While ultimately rewarding, gaining followers demands your engagement in the larger community and in posting relevant and interesting content. Just think of it this way: Based on what and how often you tweet, would you follow you?
  3. Learn The Lingo — Interacting with a community of writers on Twitter can be very rewarding, but without knowing how DMs, RTs, and MTs work (direct messages, retweets, and modified tweets, respectively), one can really miss out on Twitter’s full potential.
  4. #Hashtag — Hashtags may also take some getting used to. They act as a great way to interact with other users about a specific topic and as tools for tracking conversations, but without practice and a little research your hashtag game may leave you #wantingmore.

Twitter For Writers: What You Put In Is What You Get Out

Twitter is a powerful and productive social media platform that can not only increase your reach as an industry influencer, but also publicize your author persona and author website. After learning the major pros and cons of the social media platform, how will you answer the timeless question below: To tweet or not to tweet?

Photo by Rosaura Ochoa

QUESTION: To tweet or not to tweet?

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