Monday, January 30, 2012

Do I Have What It Takes To Be A Book Pimp?

I’m a bit shocked with the change in Twitter since my brief hiatus. I don’t know if I just didn’t pay attention before, but I find myself avoiding it all together. Each time I log on, my Timeline is full of the same five to ten faces, all pimping their books or blogs. The tweets vary, but are obviously scheduled and mostly sound the same.

It didn’t always seem like this. It was more about people, building relationships in 140 characters or less. Tweets were creative, drew attention to themselves with their wit and spontaneity. Those are the people I wanted to follow. 

Now it is simply feels like a pimpfest of street vendors, parading as authors. I don't blame them, but in less than three minutes . . . the same post?

If I choose self publishing is this what I’m going to have to do just to sell a book? If so, I might as well pack it up right now. I’ve never been a good salesman. I sold Avon for a short time and felt so guilty for providing people with a free, no obligation brochure. Needless to say, I closed up shop a year and a whole lotta face cream later.

But is there any other options for the indie author? Is this the only way? 

Maybe I need help from this guy. 

What do you think? Does all this blogging and tweeting endlessly about your book really help?


Michael Offutt, Tebow Cult Initiate said...

All of my twitter posts are filled with snark and cleverness. You must be talking of other folk who have less going on upstairs because they can't think of anything besides "buy my book nao!"

Deborah Walker said...

There's a backlash over social promotion in the blogosphere. All things in moderation.

Diana said...

Exactly! I'm sure they start out that way, but maybe get overwhelmed with it all. Lots of time needs to go into an online presence.

Diana said...

True. I decided not to tweet this post because that would be going against what I just said and I am only getting a quarter of the hits I normally do. So it is important, but needs a mixture.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

You make a very good point, Diana. I tweet a new blog post occasionally, if it's about something others might be interested in - but only once, on one day. And if I'm profiling an author (on Thursdays), of course I tweet that, as it's for the writer's sake - but only once!

I can't stand endless tweets about the same thing, or the over promotion of people's books. My daughter joined twitter and promptly gave up for the most part because of the repetitive tweets. I don't like the whole self-promotion thing at all at times on anything, but unfortunately some of it is necessary or no one would hear of new authors. One person I know does it to excess and that completely turns me off.

Garry G. said...

I always considered Twitter to be more of a news/messaging service rather than a social networking site.
Most of my tweets are from companies rather than ramblings from individuals.
Wouldn’t facebook be a better venue for that type of thing?

Diana said...

Definitely dislike the excessive, but tweeting more than once for a blog post helps. I usually tweet one blog post about three to four times when I first post it, the next day I don't post and there is a dramatic difference.

Diana said...

Usually I get very little traffic from facebook, although I don't have an author page on FB and most of my friends are family and friends who could care less about writing blogs and such. Twitter does drive traffic, you need followers and lots of them.

Angela Scott said...

If you don't promote yourself or your work, then who will? How in the world will people/readers find you? I hate the over promotion, I do, but at the same time, what else is an author supposed to do? Wait on their publisher to promote them--HA,HA. I laugh. Without some type of promotion, an author is dead in the water.

If you don't have a lot of people following you (and those people aren't following a lot of people themselves) then yeah, tweeting your post only once a day is plenty. But I have over 6k followers. The life span of a tweet is roughly 30 seconds, if that. How many people do I reach with a 30 second tweet? Not many, especially when only a handful of followers are on twitter at that precise moment. I tweet blog posts once every two hours for the first day I post it and then I use Hootsuite to schedule tweets over a two month period. I've had very few complaints. The reason? I think because even though I have scheduled tweets, I still use twitter to interact with people. I interact all the time to balance things out. It should be 1/3 promotion, 2/3 building relationships. Everything in moderation.

I'm with Diana on the facebook thing. I don't get much traffic from there even though I do have an author page. My traffic comes straight from twitter and my blog followers and since using twitter, my stats have increased more than triple what they used to before using twitter.

I guess the big thing, just do what you are comfortable in doing. I want to get my name out there. If there is a different way, I sure would love to know about it. I'd much rather spend my time writing than blogging, tweeting, and posting for sure.